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Wednesday, May 27, 2009


(To all the friends, family and strangers who have been supportive and amazing, please feel free to bypass this entry. I love you all.)

It was bound to happen. I figure I'd get this blog entry out of the way first and leave negativity to sleep with this entry before I go on to post all the positive and amazing things I have to talk about.... Because anyone who knows me knows I will go to ANY extent necessary to defend and protect my children. ANY.

I was directed this morning to one of the many articles about my little girl. This one, however, was loaded with some hatred and criticism.... judgement at it's finest. I have come to realize that even in the situation of a dying child, there are those people out there so hopeless and full of hate, they cannot even sympathize. I am assuming those people with hateful words probably do not have children of their own, and cannot grasp the concept of being willing to do anything for your child.

Anyone who has spent time to read back on my blog or that knows me prior to this knows there are some factors in our past that could be grounds for someone to judge us. I am going to be completely candid here. Yes, we did go to Disney a few times a year. Yes, we short-sold our home at the end of 2008. Yes, we have wanted to live in California for some time now. Those 3 things seem to be targets for criticism among strangers who feel a need to pick apart our current path in life, and for all I know may even give those who know us well some unease as well. But to call me a "train wreck" is something I will fight anyone on. Given the last 18months of our life, I will take credit for keeping it together for the most part. I know plenty of people who in my position in life would have just given up on it all by now. That claim, that judgement of being a "train wreck", I deny.

I honestly don't feel I should HAVE to justify any portion of our past, but since there are some out there who feel it is okay to disregard the life of a child through judgements, or to the person who insinuated that my daughters illness was karma.... here you go.

Grounds for judgement: Moving to California? No.
I have always wanted to live in California, but never on these terms or in this situation. I wanted to go there on a job promotion with my husband and where I could work a part time job, where we could live comfortable. Read that in my back-blogs, instead of picking out the particles of it you want to pick at to make your judgements sound juicy. Where we could go and be healthy and live a normal life, visiting the beach and Disneyland on a warm weekend without worry. Having the ability to drive the 6hour drive back home anytime we wanted to to see family. NEVER did I imagine or would I have chosen we would have to go like this, or that we would be forced over there on the minimal salary he makes, possibly separated since he may have to stay here to work until he can relocate over there, and where I couldn't even get a job if I wanted to because my baby is sick. My life in California now will consist of the inside walls of hospitals and the Ronald McDonald house until she has her transplant. Our life in storage while we move into a small apartment, not going to the mall or Target on a warm weekend, let alone Disneyland, because of her weakened physique and immune system. Maybe going to the beach for a day, but without my daughter being able to jump waves or dig in the sand and at constant fear she will get skin cancer- a common risk with transplant patients. All I can think about now is moving back to Arizona when she is healthy enough to do so, because life is different now than it was last year when we wanted move there. So someones comment I read today about being able to move there now and live my "dream life" with the assistance of people's hard earned donation money is a sickening and morbid comment to make.

Grounds for judgement: Disney trips? No.
We go to Disney a lot. It's what my children love, and we love taking them. People obviously need an explanation as to why or how we went so often, or even a lesson on how to go to Disney with a family of 4 for just a couple hundred dollars. Last year, we went early in the year and had an amazing time. That trip was well planned out, budgeted for and saved on due to our experience on going with a small budget. Right after our first trip, we unexpectedly bottomed out with many difficult instances we were faced with- those instances I feel no need to go into detail with but please be assured they were not expenses we were prepared for. Those instances led into us falling behind in income and causing struggle with our mortgage. We had zero intention of going to Disney again for a LONG time because we initiated the short sale process on our home, when my mother offered to take us and pay for our December trip as a Christmas gift for us, along with renewing our annual passes for the next year. Our Christmas trip was tradition and something she was not willing to let us miss, and for that I am now grateful. Especially since all of those things we are now being judged on occurred before we even had a second to consider something might be wrong with my daughter. She was a normal healthy 4 year old until March 2009.

Grounds for judgement: short-sale? No.
The short-sale was the best thing we ever did. We were behind on our mortgage, and would have killed ourselves attempting to catch up on it. Looking back now, getting out of that house was the best thing possible. It put us into a position today where we are able to tend to Gabriella's health better. We have saved so much money renting and living closer to our jobs that we are completely current on bills, have paid down debt slowly, and have some money in savings (of our own, not donations). We have also saved 2 hours a day of driving- that time well-spent with our kids. We also are not stuck in a home we would probably have to foreclose on anyways since we have to relocate and the value is so low, because dealing with a foreclosure while focusing on my daughters medical status is not something I am going to want to deal with. We were blessed to be able to short-sale the home, sparing our credit from a foreclosure, and also getting us out of the obligation come time to move. God prepared us for this in even the oddest ways, our home being one.

Just as we go to Disney often (and we have gotten so good at going cheap), some people go to Baseball games and drop over $100 on tickets alone plus parking and food in one afternoon, which we only do if we win tickets or are given them. Some people buy designer purses or clothes and we shop at Target and Old Navy and I sew my own bags. Some people concert hop, seeing their favorite bands and going a few times a year to concerts that cost over $50 a ticket. The last concert we went to, the tickets were won on the radio by my sister. So if anyone is truly that concerned or lacking in trust whether donations will go to my daughters heart or to "frivolous" spending, then I urge you to hold onto your funds for a child you feel deserves to live more than mine does.

I guess in my blog I should be more specific about the generous and amazing family we have that actually do those kinds of things for us. THAT is Karma. Because before WE became the charity case we would have done anything for anyone, just as people are reaching out to us for right now. Unfortunately, once I post this, I am going back in time on my blog and making private the posts I feel are being violated and judged. Not to make us look better, because all the judgements have been spelled out here, but because I feel the less tools you give to evil people, the harder they will have to work to get to me.

We didn't ask for any of this money or fund-raising. We asked for prayers and love. The money and fund-raising was all initiated by others whether they were the ones facilitating it or just the ones wanting to give. And whether people were giving their financial support or not to us right now, we would still be the people we are and would still do whatever we needed to to get my daughter a new heart. The $$ donated has been out of love and hopes and TRUST, and the donations from negative or doubtful people do not need to be part of my daughters heart.

All I can give to anyone is my word that this loving money will be locked away in a Trust until we are in desperate need of it. I am still working now, and my husband is working overtime, to be able to save enough of our own money for as long as we can. I am slowly selling items we have stored away for no reason to help assist in our daily living for when I do leave my job, so we do not tap into our loving well of financial assistance until it is time for her transplant. We are still paying every single copay, medicine and expense of our own family, as well as cutting back on luxuries to reduce expenses for day-to-day living.

Be prepared, negative people. We are going to the Zoo, Aquarium, Disneyland, ocean, etc..... some of it as a gift from people and some of it on our own money, none of it from the generous donations given to us. Right now it is about building memories and living life. Filling photo albums and fulfilling my daughters requests.

Every time we go to visit our doctors in SoCal, we will stop by in Disneyland, and I will post pics after. We will use the annual passes my mom bought for us to get in, we will Priceline a 2 star hotel for $25 that night, and we will pack a sack lunch. And when we are sitting on Main Street, and my daughter is smiling ear to ear because SHE is in the most magical place in the world enjoying those so very precious and few moments she is 'just Gabriella' and not a transplant patient, I will say a prayer for the heart of those who feel she should be deprived of that moment.

If she died tomorrow because of this, I am sure you would regret your judgements.

My husband quoted it best... "When God is giving His blessings, the Devil is at his best!"

ETA: And now the validity of her medical situation is being doubted. I give up, I truly do. Doubt me. Judge me. Just leave me alone if you aren't in support. My daughter deserves a mom who can focus on her health and not dealing with hateful hearts.


Helen said...

You have and always will have my love and support. Shame on those who choose to judge. You and Paul are wonderful parents. I will continue to pray and now feel the need to pray for those evil people who judge you so wrongly. Hugs

April said...

It just disgusts me that someone would have the nerve to go and waste their time researching dates and past blog entries to JUDGE someone! Get a freaking life! The one thing that I came away from last weekend and attending Gabriella's fundraiser dinner saying was how humble your family is. I know you and I know that you didn't ASK for ANY Of this! Not once any of you said "Hey we should do this to raise money for ourselves".... in fact quite the opposite has been said to me in privacy. Things like wondering how you can ever thank and repay the people that have shown their love and generosity. I will tell you again.... The people that have given.... have given for Gabriella... because they love her. Because they love you. Because she has touched their heart in some unique way. It disgusts me that people would turn that act into something negative. You keep on doing what you are doing and don't let the negative comments and haters get to you. Satan is going to keep attacking and as long as you know this you can stand Firm against him! Spoil that little girl of yours and enjoy her... however you want to and however she wants to!!! Make Memories. Smile. Laugh and Soak it all in. Anyone who loves you will support you whole hearted and 100% in THAT!!!! LOVE YOU ALL!!!

Corey~living and loving said...

I am so sad that people find it in their hearts to make you justify your life, especially your past.
I am so sorry, you have been made to feel at all poorly about any of it.

It is my experience that once people put any money into something, they think they have the right to judge every singel action that takes place. argh...


Megan@SortaCrunchy said...

I've erased this comment several times because I am having a hard time not using profanity in addressing people who are so calloused and insensitive.

I hope, Kristi, that you won't give these people the power to make you second guess any part of your life or your current circumstances. Please focus on the power of love and hope and compassion for so many who are daily praying for you guys.

This is a sad, depraved world, but I believe in my heart of hearts that G and your family will shine forth with the glory of God.

Dahlia said...

I can't believe people are that judgemental. *hugs* and SHAME ON THEM!

Mary Ann said...

Oh my gosh. It makes me sick that you have to defend yourself like this. Give me a break. I truly can't believe you would receive this criticism. Don't let these people bring you down. Continue to focus on your family and G and don't worry about anything else. (I know that is easier said than done.) Hugs.

Tina H said...

Well said! Shame on those people. You keep on doing what you do best-- taking care of your wonderful children.

HUGS and Prayers


Kara said...

I read all of the comments those jerks posted last night, and they have been haunting me since then. I did nothing but have dreams about it all night too. I am disgusted. How dare any of them judge you for things that you have done in the past that are 1000000% irrelevant to your current situation. How dare someone say that Gabriella's life isn't important enough, so go save a ton of kids in Africa instead. How dare anyone call you a train wreck when you have held it together pretty well these past couple of months. How dare anyone even try to judge. Pay attention to the plank in your own eye.
I've been thinking about Matt Logelin. I'm sure he has had those negative commenters as the one that was scolding him about his cussing and saying that he wasn't a good father because of that. (I know that's a different level that this, but it is still negative commentary.) Then you look at all of the positive comments....they overwhelm the negatives.
The biggest critic is the guy that lives in Queen I would love to meet up with him.
All I have to say is that God does the ultimate judgment, and these people will have their time as well. I sure hope they repent before then, otherwise their eternal future isn't looking so good.
That being said....screw them.

Anonymous said...

The whole point of a "donation" is just that. If someone gives you money to help out your family, it is up to you to decide how to use it. If you feel the best thing for your family is the memories of a trip to disney or the smiles on the kids faces, then it is worth ever dime spent whether it is from your paycheck or given to you. The choices you have made in the past are just that, you did what was best for you and your family. No matter the choices of anyone at anytime, there is no justification for a child to have to go through what G and the rest of the family will have to face. Keep of the great work of mother bear and focus on your family at whatever cost!
I love your blog (past and present)!

Lauren said...

This makes me sad beyond belief for you.

I pray for your family!

This is something NO ONE should ever have to deal with and to have how you live and what you do questioned is just vile. I have always though God was guiding you way before any of this came to light.

There judgment day will come.

Nothing but love and prayers for your family.

Laura said...

I'm so sorry you're dealing with this insanity on top of the plateful of difficult things you're already dealing with, Kristi. Stay strong, and keep your eyes on the things that reflect love, hope, and the work that God is doing. Much love!

Nikkie said...

I'm so sorry Kristi. I know you would neve wish for this...who would?! You have all my biggest thoughs and prayers coming my way. Spoil that princess in any way you can!!!

Emily said...

If people don't want to donate, don't believe your "story", think you aren't deserving.....why do they think that THEIR OPINION is so deserving of being heard? Funny isn't it, that the most outspoken, judgemental people seem to also be the stingiest? Hmm, seems as if they were spending more time spreading joy than hate, they wouldn't have time to post such filth on the internet.

I'm sorry you have to read that BS Kristi, and even more sorry that you feel you have to defend yourself. No matter what, whether you have perfect credit and can afford all the disney trips you want, or weather you are on welfare and live in a shack.....WHAT DIFFERENCE does it make?? Why should ANYTHING you guys do or don't do reflect positively or negatively on a sweet, sick little 4 year old???? She didn't have the choice in making any financial decisions in your family....why should she pay for them like this, good or bad?????

Makes me sad :(

Prayers all around Kristi!

Mary Ellen said...

I'm sorry that on top of everything, you are having to deal with the unfair judgements of a few. Stay strong and focus on the positive ((hugs))