Support For Christi Thomas

This blog is to help offer support to the Thomas Family and their daughter, Christi, in her battle against cancer. Please visit Christi's website at to learn more. There, you'll find journals, photos and a lots of other information about this amazing child and her family.

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Sunday, February 08, 2009

The Birthday Trip

While driving to work last week with temps below 0, I couldn't help but fantasize about Shayla's upcoming birthday trip to a southern location. Friday night we left for the airport and we spent Saturday afternoon touring the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas.

When our plane landed, I of course remembered that Christi's cells are in the freezer from the vaccine that Dr. Heidi Russell (Texas Children's Hospital) was able to grow for her. After much consult with Dr. Maris, we decided not to have her injected with them. In reality, it was probably just another experiment that never would have cured her cancer, but now I can't help but wonder if perhaps that was the magic bullet which would have done the trick. I cannot allow my mind to drift to all of the "what ifs" but it's hard not to do so. I keep reminding myself that it has yet to work for any other child, but why not?! These kids deserve better! They all deserve to be cured from the evil beast which causes horrific mayhem and havoc, wrecking the lives of children and their families.

No, she doesn't desire a career as an astronaut, but it was fun to pretend and play.
Mission Control Center
At the Astronaut Training Facility
Enjoying the day and learning a ton at the Johnson Space Center in Houston, Texas
With the behind-the-scenes journey through NASA's Johnson Space Center, we visited the Historic Mission Control Center, the Space Vehicle Mockup Facility and Rocket Park. When our tram stopped where trees had been planted with plaques memorializing astronauts killed on missions, I watched Shayla make the sign of the cross and fold her hands together in prayer. Although sad, it was also precious.

Sunday found us enjoying Galveston, Texas. When Hurricane Ike came blowing through Galveston on September 13th, I was recuperating from my gall bladder surgery and in a lot of pain. Not being able to sleep for any length of time, I kept waking up and watching the hurricane on television. We already had our trip booked by then and I knew that would work out, but I couldn't help but worry for all of the people in Galveston. We definitely saw effects from Hurricane Ike, but our resort was either spared any damage, or it had been magnificently repaired.

In our teachers' contracts is a wonderful perk called "unrestricted personal days". Due to caring for Christi, I have not been able to use any of these days for "fun" since 2001. When she was dying, the school advanced me my three days from last year before they started docking my pay so FINALLY, this year after many years, I have three days for FUN! I know some teachers like to spread their days out over the year, or not use them so they'll be converted to sick time, but with the short school week this week, I wanted to put them together, and took a dock day to be able to have a week to celebrate Shayla's 10th birthday - yippee! What a blessing! This incredibly warm weather has been a fantastic treat! We've had a absolutely lovely time, but we can't help mentioning Christi every day and what we'd be enjoying if only she were with us.


At 12/2/09 4:56 PM, Blogger Lisa D :) said...

How FUN! What a great trip! Have you ever been to Cape Canaveral/Kennedy Space Center here in Florida? It's a wonderful place to visit, too!

SO glad you have some FUN DAYS off from work Angela!

At 13/2/09 8:25 PM, Blogger Olivia said...

So glad to hear you are having such an amazing time! Shayla, I hope you are having an amazing birthday week!

Loads of love,


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