Monday, January 10, 2011


"To the world you may be one person...but to one person, you may be the world."

Dear Mommy,


Having you as my mother has definitely been the greatest gift and biggest advantage God could have ever given me. I don't think that there are many other mothers out there who could have endured what you have with me during this past year alone-- especially with such amazing grace, incredible strength and unshakable faith!

Unconditional and absolute love is the greatest gift a parent can give to their child and you have given yours to me in abundance! You have been the purest example of Christ's unconditional love for me and it has been this love and devotion that has enabled me to fight through these past years of illness. I am certain that without you by my side I never could or would have made it through!

I really don't know how I can ever tell you in words just how much I love you and appreciate everything that you have done and continue to do for me, every day. But, today, on your special day, I just wanted to say thank you...

Thank you for putting your own life on hold for the past 5 years to take care of me. No mother should ever have to see her child suffer in the ways that you have had to, I know how hard this has been for you too, yet, you continually put my needs before your own.

Thank you for researching and learning everything that you could about Lyme disease and RSD, for locating and bringing me to see the best doctors and for being my biggest advocate through it all.

Thank you for being there to hold my hand through so many painful tests and procedures, for comforting me afterward, for being so strong for me, always.

Thank you for not allowing me to give up, even when at times I felt like I couldn't do it anymore. For always having hope, even when I had none left.

Thank you for being there for me, when others didn't know what to do with me, or for me. For loving me through all of this, even when I felt unlovable.

Thank you for always making me laugh, for continuing to be your crazy, funny self, even through the hardest times.

Thank you for everything you have done for me, for everything you have said, and for all of the times you said nothing and just listened to me.

Thank you for being my hero, my inspiration, my biggest cheerleader, my best friend, my nurse and my doctor.

Thank you... for everything! There are sooo many more things... small things and big things...

Mom, I love you so much and I know I don't tell you nearly enough just how much I appreciate your love, support, friendship & patience... but... just so you know... I think that you are the perfect, most amazing mother and I thank God, every day, for giving me the honor of being your daughter. I don't know what I would do without you!

You were my strength when I was weak
You were my voice when I couldn't speak
You were my eyes when I couldn't see
You saw the best there was in me
Lifted me up when I couldn't reach
You gave me strength 'cause you believed
I'm everything I am because you loved me...


Love always,

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


Anonymous said...

To my dear friend Sara, whom I think of and pray for everyday (of course, along with Jessica) I want to wish you 'Un muy Feliz Cumpleano en Mexico" que la pases hermoso junto con Jessica y que todos tus suenos y deceos se realizen...que Dios te Bendiga y que regreses pronto a loss EE UU...tu y Jessica sanas...te extrano mucho!!! Besos y un abrazo fuerte!!!! xoxoxoox
Con mucho carino,
Angela y flia.

Anonymous said...

Happy Birthday to my wonderful wife.



Anonymous said...

Beautifully said, Jessica!

Happy Birthday, Sarah!

You are a child of God, a wonderful wife, a devoted mother (to 3) and a most beautiful reflection of God's amazing love and grace.

May God answer all your prayers for your family and may He answer all our prayers for you.

I hope you have a wonderful time celebrating your birthday with your girls.

We, too, thank God for you!

With love & prayers,
The Turners

Anonymous said...

Hola Mi Amiga Gina Feliz Cumplanos te queremos mucho y que cumplas muchos mas Dios te premiara por ser tan buena tu Famia Colombiana xoxoxoxooxo
Sandra Jimmy Cany Cookie y Cecilia

Anonymous said...

mom, you are the greatest most amazing person and mother in the world, i thank God everyday for letting me have such a wonderful mother. I cant believe youre 25!!! youre growing up so fast!

I'll love you forever, i'll like you for always, as long as youre lving, my mother youll be.



John and Rosemary said...

Dear Jessica & Sarafina...

What a beautiful loving message from a Daughter to her Mother. Thank you both for sharing your love for each other with us all.

Your love for each other and the grace under which you both operate is plainly evident. It has been a blessing for me and Rosemary to have come to know you and your entire Family.

You have all come through so much together and you have been such a shining and clear example of unselfish love and strength.

We wish Sarafina a Happy Birthday and we know that she would want nothing more than to have Jessica come so far in her recovery from the nightmare that has plagued your Family for so long.

God Bless You Both!!
John and Rosemary

Michelle said...

Dear Mommy

HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! I love you so much you are the best mother in the world! God blessed me with such a wonderful mom so that I could be a bit as great as you:) Have a fun and wonderful birthday today!


Marianne E. Quinn said...

Happy Birthday Sarita Gina!

May this Birthday be One of Your Happiest! May God Bless You for all You have done and continue to do not only for Jessica and your Family, but for all who know you.You are an Amazing Woman and Mother. Jessica Said it All so eloquently! Thank you for sharing Jessica's Journey with us, Inspiring us and bringing us closer to Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Thank you for letting us see that Faith is not Believing that God Can But Believing that God Will! I Love You! I will always Continue to Pray For You,For Jessica, and Your Family. May All Your Birthday Wishes Come True!HAPPY BIRTHDAY! HAPPY NEW YEAR! With Love and Prayers, Marianne

Marianne E. Quinn said...

Happy Birthday Sarita Gina!

May this Birthday be One of Your Happiest! May God Bless You for all You have done and continue to do not only for Jessica and your Family, but for all who know you.You are an Amazing Woman and Mother. Jessica Said it All so eloquently! Thank you for sharing Jessica's Journey with us, Inspiring us and bringing us closer to Jesus Our Lord and Savior. Thank you for letting us see that Faith is not Believing that God Can But Believing that God Will! I Love You! I will always Continue to Pray For You,For Jessica, and Your Family. May All Your Birthday Wishes Come True!HAPPY BIRTHDAY! HAPPY NEW YEAR! With Love and Prayers, Marianne

Anonymous said...

ESTAS SON LAS MAÑANITAS QUE CANTABA EL REY DAVID....FELIZ CUMPLEAÑOS!!! SARA!! te deseo lo mejor hoy y siempre....tu eres para mi una persona muy especial a la que admiro y me ha enesñado que la fe y el amor todo lo puede y casi todo lo cura. Tu eres una de las bendiciones que por medio de Juan Pablo he llegado a conocer. TANTTI AGURI!!! PAULINA, ROGELIO, MARIANA, JUANPABLO, MARUS Y ROGER


Jessica...that was a beautiful letter and so appropriate for your mom, my sister.


We've shared our lives for many years
Of them, side by side.
Sometimes we laughed, sometimes we smiled and sometimes we even cried.
But through all time, our friendship lasts...
No one can deny
Our bond in life still remains...
Even though you're far away.
A closer friend i'll never find..

Anonymous said...

I think Jessica's letter is the best gift any mother could ever need or want!! It made me cry!!!
You are both AMAZING!!!!
I hope your day was filled with joy & peace.


Anonymous said...

Jessica said it all, you are an amazing mom.

Happy Birthday.

Love - The Calame Family

cindel. said...

Happy Birthday second mother!
Had a great time celebrating with you and Jess, I love you both very much.
You're an amazing woman, never loose that glow!
I hope this new year brings nothing but good things your way, because you deserve that and more.
Lots of love!

"There are women who make things better... simply by showing up.
There are women who make things happen.
There are women who make their way.
There are women who make a difference.
And women who make us smile.
There are women of wit and wisdom who- through strength and courage- make it through.
There are women who change the world everyday...
Women like you."

Anonymous said...

To Sara Gina, a day late and a dollar short am I in wishing you the most wonderful Birthday ever. Jessica, You look wonderful. Keep up the good work both of you. You are both amazingly strong and powerful women. Sorry I havent been on. I am the worst computer idiot. But I try. Hugs and kisses, Bonnie

Anonymous said...

Sarah Gina & Jessica,

Happy Belated Birthday! Hope you had a wonderful day. Miss you ladies, sending lots of love to Monterrey. Here's a little poem for you to enjoy.


Birthday Blessings
Instead of counting candles,
Or tallying the years,
Contemplate your blessings now,
As your birthday nears.
Consider special people
Who love you, and who care,
And others who’ve enriched your life
Just by being there.
Think about the memories
Passing years can never mar,
Experiences great and small
That have made you who you are.
Another year is a happy gift,
So cut your cake, and say,
"Instead of counting birthdays,
I count blessings every day!"
By Joanna Fuchs

Anonymous said...

Happy birthday Sarah! I love the picture. Jessica you look beautiful. - I think of u all often and am so very happy for your incredible successes (and the wonderful people u've met along the way. Hannah and I have been quietly following along, and we send love from all of us here across the street. Big, big hug for all of you, Ellen

Anonymous said...

Jesus Thank You

The mystery of the cross I cannot comprehend
The agonies of Calvary
You the perfect Holy One, crushed Your Son
Who drank the bitter cup reserved for me

Your blood has washed away my sin
Jesus, thank You
The Father’s wrath completely satisfied
Jesus, thank You
Once Your enemy, now seated at Your table
Jesus, thank You

By Your perfect sacrifice I’ve been brought near
Your enemy You’ve made Your friend
Pouring out the riches of Your glorious grace
Your mercy and Your kindness know no end

Lover of my soul
I want to live for You

Anonymous said...

An interesting exercise. Enjoy!

Posted by Dane Ortlund at Wednesday, January 12, 2011

What's the Message of the Bible in One Sentence?

That's what I recently asked a handful of thoughtful scholars and pastors. Answers below.

The point here is to refocus and recenter on the heart of the book that is the greatest earthly treasure to fallen human beings outside of God himself.

Greg Beale:
The OT storyline appears best to be summarized as: the historical story of God who progressively reestablishes his new creational kingdom out of chaos over a sinful people by his word and Spirit through promise, covenant, and redemption, resulting in worldwide commission to the faithful to extend that new creation rule and resulting in judgment for the unfaithful (defeat and exile), all of which issues into his glory; the NT storyline can be summarized as: Jesus’ life of covenantal obedience, trials, judgmental death for sinners, and especially resurrection by the Spirit has launched the fulfillment of the eschatological already-and-not-yet promised new creation reign, bestowed by grace through faith and resulting in worldwide commission to the faithful to extend this new creation rule and resulting in judgment for the unfaithful, unto God’s glory.

Dan Block:
God was so covenantally committed to the world that he gave his one and only Son that whoever believes in him may have eternal life!

Craig Blomberg:
God is in the process of recreating the universe which has been corrupted by sin and has made it possible for all those and only those who follow Jesus to be a part of the magnificent, eternal community that will result.

Darrell Bock:
The Bible tells how the loving Creator God restored a lost humanity and cosmos through reestablishing his rule through Jesus Christ and the provision of life to His honor.

Mark Dever:
God has made promises to bring His people to Himself and He is fulfilling them all through Christ.

Kevin DeYoung:
A holy God sends his righteous Son to die for unrighteous sinners so we can be holy and live happily with God forever.

Zack Eswine:
Apprenticing with Jesus to become human again.

John Frame:
God glorifies himself in the redemption of sinners.


Marianne Caparrelli said...

Happy Birthday Gina! I hope your day is as special as you are! You are an incredible mother. You both deserve nothing but happiness! Sending lots of Love from VA.

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Mohit Raletta said...

It is so good :) please check ours too on birthday wishes for friend

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!