Alan has 2 daughters, Katie who just graduated high school this year and is heading off to Oregon State University for Fall semester. The other is Cece who is 15 years old. Katie and Cece's mother just passed away this July after losing her battle to cancer.
A couple of weeks after her mother's death Cece began having Grand Mal seizures and was taken to the hospital. After extensive observation, testing and treatments for 4 days, she got to go home. Within a few days the seizures were back. Alan told me that when Cece heard she had to go back to the hospital she begged him and promised him she wouldn't have any more seizures if she could just stay home. I can't imagine having that conversation with your little girl, knowing she has no control over her condition.
That was over a month ago and Cece is still in a medically induced coma at Randall Children's Hospital in Portland. I think Alan just reported on FB that it is day 35. I won't get into all the medical opinions or procedures she has had because it is so extensive. If you are interested in reading, please check out Alan's page. https://www.facebook.com/alan.dierickx?fref=ts What I will tell you is that the safe treatments are about exhausted and the few options available moving forward have very unfavorable consequences in many of the patients.
Jenice and I have taken dinner to the hospital a few times in the past couple of weeks since Alan is by Cece's side every day, all day and Gina has been there supporting him much of the time too. (side note, if anyone is ever frustrated with your children, take a stroll down the pediatric intensive care unit hall way. It will give you a whole new perspective.) Our visits are very emotional. When I look at Cece, the mechanical breathing of the ventilator, all the tubes and wires keeping her alive and sedated, I find the tears instantly well up in my eyes. Yes fella's, it's true, macho stays at the door when you go to the kids ICU. The 45 minute drive home after the visits is quiet, mainly because I feel like I'm going to lose it if I even open my mouth and try to utter any words. When I do finally find the strength to talk it's about 2 things, how lucky we are to have healthy kids and how we would like to do more for Alan's family in their time of need.
Alan hasn't been able to work since Cece got sick and Gina has taken a lot of time off as well. He just started a new job without family leave benefits. I'm hoping that all of my friends who are Alan's friends would be willing to follow Jenice and I (and others as I've heard) by giving a little financial boost. Even if you don't know Alan or Cece and are so inclined, we found a web site to make it real easy. Your donations will go to their family instantly. Maybe together we can eliminate one of his daily struggles. There is strength in numbers...lets see if Facebook can help us do something good here.
Alan buddy, we wish the best for Cece and for your entire family, Katie, Gina, Miranda and Tyler. I know they have all been greatly affected by this and have been supporting you all the way.
- Shirley Hansen
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