Thursday, September 16, 2010

Mexican Bicentennial Independence Day

Hello to All,

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

Mexican Independence Day is today - September 16 - as this year’s occasion will signify the 200th anniversary of Mexico’s war of independence from the Spanish Empire.

Mexico’s independence struggle began with “El Grito de Dolores,” which means “The Cry of Dolores.” The Dolores here is not a woman but the town where priest Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla incited people to fight their Spanish rulers. (By the way --- the word "dolores" in Spanish means "pain")

To include a bit of history, Hidalgo himself would not live to see Mexico sever her bonds with Spain. The revolutionary priest was captured and executed in 1811, but Mexicans did not achieve independence until 1821.

Today, Hidalgo is known as the “father of the nation” for spearheading the Mexican War of Independence. Every year on the night of September 15, the president of Mexico addresses the Mexican people assembled in Mexico City’s Zocalo (main square), one of the largest in the world. Here, the president proudly waves the Mexican flag and rings the history liberty bell that Hidalgo once rang.

Mexicans show their green-white-red pride with elaborate decorations on their homes and place flags in their windows and cars. During this time, families come together and enjoy Independence Day treats.

Mexican Independence Day is an extravagant celebration in Mexico.

Update on Jessica:

Jessica is still on IV heparin infusion for the thrombosis in her right arm. Dr. Luigi has applied wrapping to the arm and she has to keep it elevated on cushions. Blood tests that were taken revealed that she does have a gram positive infection and so her antibiotics were changed to Zyvoxam and Avelox, as well as Cancidas for the candida infection. It was also necessary for her to receive a blood transfusion yesterday due to continuing low hemaglobin counts and her feeling very drained of energy. So, I guess after receiving this blood, Jessica is a little more Mexican today - and - on the occasion of their Independence Day! Viva Mexico!

Thanks for all your continued prayers for Jessica. Despite all she is going thru, she is doing well and we praise God for giving her the fortitude she needs each and every day to face any new obstacles that come her way!

Stay well,
In God's love, always,
Sarah Gina (Jessica's Mom)***

***To Post A Comment, CLICK on Comments Below***


Fern said...

Thanks for the history lesson and the updeate. It has ben quiet and I have worried. I am so glad that there is celebrations going on right now both in the Mexican people and also with you and Jess. It is a wonderful testament to God that things that are obstacles are so quicly looked after and by such caring people. The hands of God at work.
May you feel added strength today and courage continue to abound as you follow the path laid out before you. It is my deepest prayer and wish that God will heal Jess from this round of infections and that the doctors will be given extra measures of wisdom and compassion as they work to keep Jess comfortable.

I think that even without the infusions, you are both part Mexican! Your hearts will always be tied to this city and these people as mine is. God has shown us true compassion in these doctors as they care for our illness.

I am permanently in the wheelchair now and feeling a little sad, but God continues to inspire hope in me and an abiding peace that Heloves me and has plans for me. I sent you a few items today that really spoke to me and hope that they encourage you as you read and watch them.

Have a wonderful day my friend. My goal for this week: Counting blessings! There are always many and I see you often doing the same!

Anonymous said...

Something to encourage you ...

She had RSD too!

ALYSSA BARLOW: Isaiah 61 really played a key role in my life, of God really showing me– ‘cause I never really believed God could have a plan for me. I don’t know, people say that in the church all the time, you know, Jeremiah 29.11, “For I know the plans I have for you” declares the Lord, plans to give you a future and a hope. I’ve heard that my whole life but for some reason I just didn’t really trust it, I guess. And the amazing part was I had gone through a time where I had been–when I was 18 I was diagnosed with a disease called RSD, and they told me, you know, you’ll never really walk normally again. It’s a chronic pain that spreads throughout your entire body and it’s kind of an incurable disease, and you pretty much just live with chronic pain the rest of your life and you’re on very, very heavy medication.
And I just remember kind of struggling with God at that time, just saying, you know, “You say you have all these great plans for me and yet why does this kind of stuff happen in my life, why in the world would I have to go through this if you are really a God that has great plans for me.” So I kind of began to shake my fist a little bit and say, “Well, then that’s not the kind of God I want to serve.”
During that season of me just kind of having to lay in bed pretty much all day long ‘cause I couldn’t do anything, God really began to just melt my heart and really just bring me to Him, and to show me that He had a great plan for my life, and to show me that His love really was all that I needed and that He really was going to give me great things. But a lot of that was His presence, you know was Him. And Isaiah 61 really played a key role in my life in, you know, what we’re called to do, of the calling of a believer and what we could be. You know, that we’re called to open blind eyes and set the captives free.
Through that I was miraculously healed by God through that time, and I began to really see that Isaiah 61 was true, that healing was still for today. That God still was a powerful God. That it wasn’t just Old Testament stuff, that this was truth of today and that Jeremiah 29.11 was actually truth as well, that God actually really does have amazing plans for all of us.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jessica and Mrs Stevens,

Gosh, I am sorry I was MIA. Things have been quite hectic here. For the most part a good hectic though which we praise God for. This past week I was able to move OUT of my parents house and into a townhome with two of my friends from church. I love it! God has really blessed us with an amazing house but for a very reasonable price. It is amazing considering the day I entered San Jose Hospital ER. I never could have imagined a day like this would ever come. God is good. God is faithful.

Anyway, I will try and email you soon and give you an update from here, but please know you are never, ever far from my thoughts and certainly my prayers. I looked for your skype name but do you know how many Sarah Stevens there are??? Not happening. If you'd like, send me your skype name at some point and maybe we can catch up.

You remain in my prayers. The verses I have been clinging to in the last few days in Psalms 91. What imagery.

I also love the verse in Ephesians that talks about the incredible power within us that comes from God. 18 I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may KNOW the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19and his INCOMPARABLY great power FOR US WHO BELIEVE. THAT power is like the working of his mighty strength, 20which he exerted in Christ WHEN HE RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms,"

Hillsong has a song that says called "Same Power" that says "Same power, that conquered the grave lives in me, lives in me... Your love, that rescued the Earth lives in me, lives in me..."

How encouraging to know that SAME power is that that is alive and well in us. Somehow I think Satan likes to distort that truth. He has already ultimately lost and He knows it. He likes to just make us forget that.

Love you guys and continuing prayers here from PA.

In His Great Power,


Anonymous said...

Nice, I forgot to include my email address. It's


Rosemary and John said...

Hello Friends,

We are praying for Jessica to win this vicious war against RSD and that her victory brings her independence from it's grip forever. She is a brave soldier and you are her warrior Mother. There is no doubt that God has plans for your future(s). May He continue to strengthen your resolve and light your path. We all know that you are in the best place possible in the entire world where doctors do not give up, they fight and never loose hope. We are so proud to be amoung those who have witnessed your strength and the miracles of Jessica's recoveries under the most extraordinary circumstances. You amaze and inspire us, everyday!

With Much Love, Always,

Rosemary and John

Anonymous said...

We are so glad to hear that Jessica continues to do well even with all the new obstacles.

We keep praying that God will completely heal Jessica and all the other RSD patients.

Ephesians 3:20-21
20Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

With love & prayers,
The Turners

Antonio said...

Independence was achieved in 1821, not 1921...

Anonymous said...

Thinking of you, you are always in our thoughts and prayers. Sometimes things are just a process that must be followed. We are having our good and not so good moments (it has only been 3 1/2 weeks since his mom's passing) Knowing that she had a full life and so many good things is helpful but one cannot rush the "loss" process. I guess you cannot rush God's Will for you. But I do hope that each day brings you closer to walking and less pain.
Linda in Saratoga

Anonymous said...

Dearest Jessica and Gina, I'm sorry I haven't written in so long. It has been a little hectic around here with the start of school, etc. You are in my prayers every day and in the prayers of our rosary group each week. It is through God's grace and your monumental efforts that you are able to make it through these difficulties and continue to improve little by little. You are doing a great job!! Keep on hanging in there!! I love you guys!! Sending some sunshine your way-- Love always, Angel xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday Michelle!

I couldn't leave the comment in Michelle's birthday post above, so I'm doing it here and hoping that it will be seen.

You are such a great sister for encouraging and helping your family through this time when a lot of kids would be only thinking of themselves. I know you are not looking for a reward, but you are a blessing to the heart of Jesus!

Wishing you a great birthday and as much phone, internet, vacation visits, etc. as possible until the day when all the Stevens are united again.

Your friend,
Linda Pedigo
West Lafayette, Indiana

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Anonymous said...

I seldom leave comments on blog, but I have been to this post which was recommend by my friend, lots of valuable details, thanks again.

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!