Life has been moving so fast these past several weeks that I can barely keep up! My work calendar has evolved into tracking Drew Walking Tall events! Life is not dull in the Gatten household, that’s for sure. Between visits to local schools and groups to doctor appointments to buying a new truck, our first big step for preparing for our WPB trip, I’ve barely had time to sit down for this blog!
First, an update on Drew Walking Tall. It is going great and we have surpassed $12,000 raised! The Advocate hosted a Valentines Day candy sale for Drew Walking Tall and made over $800. We had divinity, fudge, cookies, chocolate dipped cherries and strawberries, truffles and I could go on and on but I’m on a diet and I’m punishing myself listing all of these yummy desserts.
Drew is a local celebrity now. We’ve been on the radio, thanks to WMSK, we’ve visited the Union County Middle School, Girl Scouts, and have scheduled appearances in Sturgis and a church in Morganfield. I have one more exciting outlet that we are preparing for, but I’m going to let that be a surprise and reveal it later!
We are starting to collect our baskets for the Drew Walking Tall auction and they all look so nice and exciting! All of the volunteers are holding the baskets at our homes and space is getting more and more sparse. And, we’ve received a lot of monetary donations from businesses so we get to go shopping! I’ve been needing a little retail therapy!
In other news, we recently learned that Drew has obstructive sleep apnea. I swear, I just can’t figure out why this little boy was dealt such a hand. Sleep apnea was confirmed through a sleep study in Nashville. We stayed overnight in a sleep lab located on the Vanderbilt floor of a hotel in Nashville. I had been dreading this appointment for weeks. Not because I was worried about some risky ailment (well, not JUST because anyway), but mostly because I had no faith that Drew would tolerate the dozens of cords, tubes, and straps required to monitor is breaths, oxygen level, and sleeping patterns. However, I was proved wrong as Drew just sailed right through the night. Even as the bedside nurse applied all of the cords and wires as Drew slept, I anticipated Drew waking, peeling off his human skin to reveal a Hulk-like monster and ravaging the hotel room in anger.
But, what do you know, he did well. But, now we have to go see an ear, nose and throat doctor for a possible tonsilectomy. This being so close to the trip to West Palm Beach enhances the stress. Typically, it takes a while to schedule the consult then schedule the procedure. Well, we don’t have that much time before we leave in April. So, if we don’t address the apnea in time then now I have to worry about Drew going under anesthesia even more so than what would be normal. Not to mention that sleep apnea can cause damage to the heart! Ugh!
On the other hand, really good and surprising news. Drew actually took two steps on his feet the other day. I was so flabbergasted and uncertain that instead of squealing with joy and jumping up and down, I actually quizzically asked out loud, “Did…he….just..take….two steps?” It was such a surprise, I found myself questioning it as if I saw a UFO. But, Nathan saw it too as did the luck Girl Scouts who were lucky enough to be there as it happened. Drew was showing off hopping up and down a table lined with young girls (perhaps a preview of a Chippendale stint in his future?) and I asked him to stand up for everybody. He did. Then took a step with his right foot and then a step with his left foot. He was crouched down so he wasn’t at full extension when he took his steps, but no less exciting.
Seeing Drew take those steps did give me encouragement looking ahead at his future. Not that I didn’t already know how strong he is, but seeing him take those two steps really enforced the reality that he can overcome anything.
Drew just now came in the door from his day at school and he said, “I got to tell you sump’in.” He proceeded to tell us that a boy pushed him in the gym and “I cried.” I was glad to hear that the teacher did address the boy’s behavior. I asked Drew if he was hurt and Drew said, “No, I fine. I fine, Mama.” I know you are, Drew and I know you will be 🙂
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Great meeting Drew and his family/friends tonight. Best was seeing a boy with the heart of a lion and showed off his walking skills.