Monday, January 18, 2010

34,000 Views of Blog ! 6,000 Views of YouTube!

Hi everyone,


To view Jessica on Fox TV, Click on Link Below:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PW_vstm0bS8


Thank you all once again for all the beautiful birthday messages for Jessica - she received a total of 147 comments - 137 on her actual day and 10 the day before! 147 "Presents"!!! Thanks!!!


Special prayers are needed today for Jessica. Also, special prayers for her Dad who is back in the hospital for a few days. I will keep you posted on the both of them!


The following is a quote from Robin Roberts of Ch.7's - Good Morning America in N.Y. It is the prayer that she begins each and every day with. She is a cancer survivor. Here it is:

"The light of God surrounds me,
The love of God enfolds me,
The power of God protects me,
The presence of God watches over me.
Wherever I am, God is!!!"


May God be where You are today as well!


With love,
Sarah Gina (Jessica's Mom)


***To post a comment, CLICK on Comments Below***

15 comments:

Fern said...

Good morning,

You definitely have my prayers! Hope all is well again very soon. Keep me posted.

I like the poem. We should all remind ourselves of that fact each and every day!

Yesterday, our church did a special prayer and offering for the Haiti earthquake victims. While I did pray for them, I took the silent time to lift up those of us who are also suffering. Families hit by medical struggles daily and need our resources and support as well. Of course, your family was on my mind at that time.

May God give you the words you seek today, the support you need, the wisdom to make the choices that need to be made, the energy to keep you from fading, the confidence to keep you marching forward.

Sending love your way today

-Fern

Anonymous said...

I was away this weekend and didn't have internet access, but still wanted to send my birthday wishes to Jessica.

Thinking of you and praying for you daily,

Love, Megan Jermain

Anonymous said...

As always I prayed for you both during the day but especially during the Mass on Sunday(I was in Huntington, ny). The homily was about love and the Wedding Feast at Cana. The priest spoke about working with Pre Cana groups and how the men say they love God but don't really believe in attending weekly Mass. That they believe in prayer and of course going to church on Easter and Christmas and always making the sign of the cross when they pass the church. They do love God. The priest response - I am sure your wife will realize your love when you call her on the phone, visit her on Easter and Christmas and wave as you go past the house.
Gina and Jessica, we have learned so much about love, dedication and what family is all about from both of you. We have learned the true meaning of friendship and being there for others and being supportive of others. What a gift you have given us. May the Lord bless you today and always and bring health to your body as He healed the sick when He was on Earth.
Heavenly Father, we ask you for the miracle of healing. Blessed Mother, you asked your Son to help at the wedding, please ask us for your Son's help now.
I hope you will all say an "Our Father and Hail Mary" for the Stevens family today.
Love from Saratoga
Linda

Laci said...

Hi Jessica and Sarah Gina,

I just wanted to let you both know that Jessica received some birthday wishes on the Lyme Disease Awareness group on facebook.

Peggy Sue said, "Happy Birthday Jessica!! Hope you are doing good and hope you have a wonderful Birthday!! Big Hugs and lots of love!!"

Angela said, "Happy Birthday Jessica! I don't know you but, groups like this are very important- Thank you!"

Karen said, "Happy Birthday Jessica! I don't know you either but we Lymies all have to stick together!! :-)"

Keesha said, "I am grateful for community --- a place to meet with others who have common challenges to support, share with and encourage one another. Thank you Jessica for creating this group."

I just wanted to make sure these sweet messages reached Jessica. :)

Praying for Jessica and her dad,
Laci

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Anonymous said...

Father,

Thank you for the healing and endurance you have provided Jessica thus far. But as you know, this has been a long and difficult road for Jessica, her Mom and her whole family. Please give them the strength to persevere through each and every day. We pray that you will bring complete healing to their family very soon and that Jessica and her Mom will be reunited with their family.

We ask this in His Holy Name,
Amen

Anonymous said...

Keep believing in miracles ! I will have you and Jessica in my prayers always.

Anonymous said...

Dearest Jessica and Gina, I am thinking about you and praying for you today and always. Seeing how many people blogged birthday wishes for Jess was so inspiring, and so interesting. With your experience, you have deeply touched people of all ages, places, situations in life, and stages of faith and belief. There are more than a few who have renewed their faith and relationships with God after following your story. Your faith and hope are something real and alive that people can hold onto even in their own difficult times. That is an amazing gift, more than you can know. Hang in there, special ladies! Love always, Angel

Anonymous said...

Hey guys, just a hello and a hug. Thinking of you and hoping your day is sunny and bright. love, Bonnie

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Jessica's Journey to Getting Her Life Back

By Sarah Gina (Jessica's Mom)


As we begin this journey toward renewed health we would like to express our sincere heartfelt thanks and appreciation to Dr. Anthony Kirkpatrick and all the work he has done and continues to do in order to bring patients like my daughter Jessica back to a more meaningful life and restored from this devastating illness. Also, special thanks to Dr. Fernando Cantu and his team of doctors in Mexico for taking on a difficult case like my daughters, Words cannot express the renewed sense of hope that we have that one day, our Jessica, can regain her life that has been taken away from her – God Bless you all!

Jessica’s Story

Once an A+ student who loved school, was involved in many extracurricular activities, played varsity tennis, lacrosse and gymnastics and enjoyed spending time with her family and friends, our daughter Jessica has spent the last 3 years incapacitated, paralyzed, unable to sit or walk and eat. She spends her days confined to a hospital bed, wearing sunglasses and noise-canceling headphones, due to severe light and sound sensitivity.

Jessica and her sisters, 2 mos. before becoming ill

The pain she feels is indescribable and all attempted treatments have not even come close to relieving her suffering.

She has seen many doctors, undergone numerous painful tests and procedures, has been prescribed various medications, and has been hospitalized frequently including being intubated and on a ventilator. She is severely debilitated and currently is only 92 pounds. This is certainly no life for a 21 year old young woman!


Jessica is suffering from neurologic Lyme disease and Reflex Sympathetic Dystrophy (RSD), a severely debilitating and painful neuromuscular disorder. She suffers daily with constant sharp, stabbing, tingling and burning pain; throughout her body; severe headaches; paralysis; intense muscle spasms; gastroparesis; seizures; twisting of her limbs (dystonia); sensitivity to any touch (allodynia); extreme sensitivity to lights and sounds; excessive sweating; swelling; fevers; softening of bones; decreased hair growth; redness and discoloration of the limbs; and painful skin ulcers. The pain is constant and unrelenting, but despite her suffering, her faith in God remains and she still has hope for her future.

Jessica's painful skin lesions

Jessica's journey began in 1999, when she was only 11 years old. She became very ill with Mono and was bed bound for 3 months. She subsequently developed RSD (stage 1) of the lower right leg. She received early intervention and returned to playing sports and enjoying her life.

Jessica, age 15, at summer camp

Four years later, in 2003, while away at a sleep-away camp, she developed a rash behind her right knee, coincidentally in the same leg that previously had RSD!

At the time, the camps nurse & doctor told her that it was “duck rash” – a rash from swimming in the lake with duck feces. However, Jessica was able to obtain photos from camp from another camper which shows the classic “bulls-eye” rash from Lyme disease! It wasn’t until much later and only after developing symptoms and becoming very ill, was the diagnosis of Lyme disease and Babesiosis (another tick-borne infection) made.


Most people (and doctors!) have no idea how serious Lyme disease can become and no clue how to properly diagnose it. Unfortunately, if she would have been promptly diagnosed and treated for Lyme disease, the RSD would not have been triggered and she would not be suffering.

July 2003, Jessica's Lyme disease rash

If it wasn’t for her doctor, Dr. Liegner, and his expertise with complex cases of Lyme, and his determination to try any means in getting her well, by getting a “team” of doctors on her case, we wouldn’t be here today, still fighting. We owe him a deep sense of gratitude for all he does for Jessica!

During these past three years and with the pain becoming more intense and unbearable she has been seeing Dr. Finkelstein for pain management. He has even made house calls to spare her the pain of coming by ambulance to his office. Jessica has been treated with multiple pain medications, at the highest possible doses, as well as an implanted dilaudid pain pump, which delivers potent medication straight into her spine. Many doctors have told us that with the amount of medications Jessica was taking would be enough to “kill a horse”—yet they had little to no effect on her. If it wasn’t for Dr. Finkelstein trying to alleviate her constant, severe, unrelenting pain, I don’t know how she would have managed. He is very special to us as well.

Recently Jessica was transported by air ambulance to Tampa, Florida to see Dr. Anthony Kirkpatrick, a world renowned RSD expert. Dr. Kirkpatrick told us that Jessica is one of the most debilitated patients he has ever seen.

Jessica getting into the air-ambulance to go see Dr. Kirkpatrick

Upon his testing and because Jessica's condition is so severe, Dr. Kirkpatrick is recommending the only treatment available that can possibly help relieve her suffering, and afford her some semblance of a “normal” life - the Ketamine Coma Procedure - a clinical trial that is being conducted in Monterrey, Mexico.

During this procedure Jessica will be put into a coma , with the hope that her nerves, brain and spinal cord will “reset” -so that her nervous system sends the correct signals to her brain.


Yes, this is a radical, scary treatment, however, for Jessica, "scary" is thinking that she could spend the rest of her life in this condition, unable to walk, eat, or take care of herself. Since all reasonable treatments have failed to help her, we feel we must try everything possible to help Jessica regain her life.

We understand that due to Jessica’s fragile condition, there is a high risk associated with this procedure. We are also aware that other patients with severe RSD like Jessica's have had success.

Jessica’s goal is to one day become a doctor. Our hope is that with this study she can have that chance. As her Mom, I know that she will be a great doctor because when a patient presents in her office and says “Doctor, I am in pain and words cannot express how bad it is” – my daughter –Dr. Jessica– will be able to say - :I know how you feel, I’ve been there too. So, take a seat and let me tell you a story”….

We are so thankful and feel so blessed to have been led to Dr. Kirkpatrick.

God is good and with his help guiding Dr. Cantu and Dr. Kirkpatrick, our hope is for Jessica to be able to return to us whole again and pain-free!