Amanda from confirmation sent me a rosary she made for me on the last day of the retreat when I was gone. The color of the rosary she made was orange which represents the fires of the Holy Spirit. It was a nice surprise that she was thinking about me after all that time. She wrote on the letter that there were many things that were said about me. Anyway it put a huge smile on my face when I received her card and gift! I miss my confirmation class/family so much, it's probably THE biggest thing I miss from Houston! I hope to start taking another class in Colorado or get started in their youth group but I don't think it will ever compare to what we all experienced together for confirmation. Thank you Amanda!!
Last Thursday night we had our first practice with the Colorado Rolling Rapids! My dad and some other guy has been working to secure a weekly facility to practice, which is Craig Hospital. It is supposed to be a top rehabilitative hospital in Colorado with a gym. It was quite nice! It was my first time being there. The Colorado Rapids haven't played in a long time since their coach left the team two years ago. My parents were anxious to get me playing again so my dad has stepped up to get the team back together, set up a practice schedule and coach the team. My dad wanted to get there early to set things up like a dork. Well, we got there WAY too early. I had about 45 minutes of playing time before the first person came in. We ended up with three players that showed up Natalie, Carson and Bjorn. I guess because it was the first day of school or something for some players so it wasn't the best night for a large turnout. It was pretty cool to get three players for the first practice though and a few others will be at the next practice so I think we are going to have a good team to start with. My dad let them all warm up and I had to turn the speed down on my chair before I joined in. They all thought my chair was pretty cool and they wanted to see me do a spin kick. My dad is going to try to work on getting some sort of funding to get metal guards for everyone's chair since it's kinda dangerous to practice with plastic guards. After we all warmed up, we played a little dodge ball., something we played at power soccer camp. They all had fun especially Carson and Bjorn kept on thanking my dad for being the coach for the team which I thought was really nice. Next, we did some drills. The first drill that we tried was weave through the cones. Next we did the zigzag drill that me and my dad learned from the power soccer camp. I had the most trouble doing that drill because my Strike Force chair is a rear wheel drive. Everybody else did better than I did because everyone else had front wheel chairs. After that we did stop play scrimmages. The star of the show was Natalie. She even got a goal on me! My dad thinks that she'll do really well in a Strike Force chair. After everyone left, my dad and I thought that it was a successful first practice and everyone enjoyed it. I can't wait until next week, four more players will be there!
On the way back from power soccer camp we stopped at a few places before we got back home. First, I have to tell you that we stopped at Cracker Barrel for breakfast and as my dad was getting me out of the truck, my G-tube ripped out of my stomach because I was still attached to the feeding thing. He was of course rushing because he had to go pee really bad and forgot to check it. I tried to tell him but it was to late. I swear that he's just like his mother. They both have pea sized bladders! After my dad ripped the G-tube out of my stomach, he sat left me in the front car seat without the seatbelt on and the door hanging open and went into the restaurant to go get mom for help. First off, does he not know me and know that I startle with loud noises and could of fallen out of the truck? Hello? When they came back and my mom saw the damage that had been done, she didn't really know how to put it back in because the doctor didn't demonstrate it yet for her to know. Then my dad swooped in, brainstormed for a little bit and saved the day. Luckily I was okay. In fact, I thought it was funny when l looked back at it once we sat down at a table. The part that was not funny is how it felt when the G-tube came out. It was a major pull. While we were waiting for our food, Vicki texted my dad and told him to take our time. Then my dad responded back by saying, "Yea, I probably should I just ripped the G-tube out of my kid". We all laughed at that. After we ate we started heading towards the town of Griswold in Idaho.
When we first started passing through the town, my first thoughts about it was very old and rustic, especially all of the buildings. My mom went into a store looking for shirts for Papa and I. Then we stopped in Red Oak to see the house where my Papa and his brother and two sisters grew up. Finally, we stopped by the cemetery where Granddad was buried at Elliott. My dad got out of the truck to see if he can find Granddad's grave before he got me out of the truck and put me into my mechanical wheelchair. My mom of course had to help him because he's so blind! Once we found his grave site and I went over there, I saw two generations of Broyles, Archie Broyles and Granddad right besides each other. My dad said that the military came to his funeral because he was in the military. Archie was in the military too, back in World War I. My dad was the only one of all of us who went to his funeral. So it was pretty cool getting to see Granddad's grave and Archie's grave along the way to Lincoln. I bet they were both very happy and was smiling down from heaven when we came to the cemetery. We said a little prayer for them and we were back on the road.
When we finally got to Lincoln, Nebraska and parked the truck at Vicki's house, my dad had to walk me in because there was stairs. Once I got inside their house, my dad sat me down in a regular chair. As I was waiting for my dad to bring the mechanical wheelchair up the stairs, my mom and I was talking to Vicki, Valerie, Leah and Tara. Vicki called Rowen and Wyatt to come and meet me. Leah said to my mom that Rowen was the one who is crazy and Wyatt is the calm one. Rowen reminded my mom and I of Caleryn a little bit. If she had been there with us, she would've dumped the basket full of toys in the living room and then spread it all over the place! Anyway, about fifteen minutes later my dad showed up with my chair. When dinner was ready I pulled up to the table while mom got food for me. Once everyone got settled, Leah was the star of the show, she's hilarious! Most of the dorky things that she said was in one ear and out the other, even though I laughed. The only thing that I do remember Leah saying was that her mother-in-law collects creepy baby dolls and has them all over her house. I laughed so hard that I almost choked on my food. I should have asked Leah if she thinks her mother-in-law has Slappy the Dummy from the movie Goosebumps but I didn't. After I was done eating and we had a nice visit, we said bye to all of them and we went to a hotel to stay in for the night.
The next day we didn't stop at anywhere cool. Although we stopped and got a bite to eat twice. It was a very boring drive. My mom and i started to break down after hours of driving. That was when we ate for the second time. After we all ate we were in a better mood. We were very uncomfortable and tired of being on the road. Once we finally got home I could not wait to get into my F-5 power chair. I was very glad to finally be home, even though it is small but at least we are all comfortable.
I had a great time at Vicki and Valerie's house. I think we all did. The drive really sucks but it's nice to be able to stop and see family. There were lots of laughs in the mix too. We are definitely going there every year after I go to power soccer camp. Hope to play better next year too.
This blog isn't going to be long because I don't really want to share anything that that we were taught because it was really a lot. I think my favorite person was Riley from Team USA because he controls the ball so well with his chair. It was as if the ball was glued on to his guard. Pete, also from Team USA was very nice and helpful when I wasn't sure if I was in the right place. I'm telling ya, being in all the coaches presence was really intimidating especially when you're really not playing your best and everyone is better than you. Towards the end of the camp I finally started playing aggressive and more like myself. I went up against him during the scrimmage and I got a goal. I had so much fun at that camp and I learned a ton!
Two weekends ago, I went to power soccer camp in Minnesota with my parents. Caleryn didn't go with us because she would not have lasted the thirteen hours in the truck and my mom thought that she would be so bored at the camp too. Honestly, I think she would of been too naughty. So my dad flew with Caleryn to Nanna's and Papa's house beforehand. While Caleryn and my dad was away, my mom started packing. I was trying to finish the blog about the atv ride. Unfortunately I didn't get that done before my dad got back. The next day, my mom and dad packed the rest of the stuff we needed, including my mechanical chair and my Strike Force power chair into the truck. Sadly my F-5 power chair wouldn't be able to fit 😟, which also meant I most likely would be uncomfortable all week.
Once we finally got everything loaded, we stopped at La Peep for breakfast and my dad looked up directions to Sioux Falls, South Dakota and finally we got started on the road. At around two hours of driving I got tired of sitting in the truck with no sound, you see, my dad broke his antenna so we have no radio in the truck. I told my dad to put on some music so my dad asked the Siri for Bluetooth audio and when she repeated it, my mom made fun of her because of the way she says the word Bluetooth. It sounds like Bluethooth. My favorite songs that I like to listen to is the Guardians of the Galaxy songs vol. 1 and vol. 2. When we got to Nebraska, my dad turned on Don Williams because there was nothing but corn fields. After he did that he said, "good luck not going to sleep". It was so boring! I eventually got tired of listening to that music and told him to change it to something else. We started seeing some Indian Reservations and housing which was different. And that's when my dad got pulled over for speeding through a town with a 25mph limit. Luckily the police officer just let him go and didn't even ask for his license. My mom kinda got mad because we really did everything last minute with this trip and she likes to stop at interesting places. She realized that we were semi close to Mount Rushmore but it was in the opposite direction that we were going. We really didn't have a lot of time to waste so we kept on going and finally arrived to Sioux Falls at around 12am central time. Part of the reason we got there so late is because my dad just passed by the town on the highway. He thought that there was going to be some hotels further along the highway, but there wasn't. Although, we did see one hotel and my dad went inside to see if they have any rooms but they were booked. It was probably a good thing because while we were waiting in the truck, there was a big group of people gathered outside the hotel and two of the guys started fighting and pushing each other. The check-in lady said to my dad that there might be something back in Sioux Falls. So my mom made my dad do a big loop back to the town. By the time we found a hotel and my dad hooked me up with an accessible room, everybody was dead tired especially my dad because he had drove for ten hours.
On the last day of our long haul, we took our time because there were only three hours left to go before we got to the power soccer camp. So we decided to have breakfast at Cracker Barrel and then check out the Falls in Sioux Falls. The Falls were pretty cool for pictures but that was about it. When we finally got to the camp, my parents started unpacking all of the luggage into the cabin that we were going to stay in. The only problem was that the cabin was the furthest away from the cafeteria and gym and down a big steep hill, a little too steep for wheelchairs. Luckily my dad would sometimes drive us over there in his truck when it was a little rainy. All of the cabins were pretty big because it was a family camp. Later on, my old rival from San Antonio, Corey, came in the cabin with his coach Jennifer and his parents and said hi to me. He also said that they drove in all the way from San Antonio with a trailer. He was able to bring his F-3 with him. That evening we just stayed in our room and rested. We could have gone to the camp fire and had smores after our dinner but nobody really wanted to because we were all kinda exhausted and I needed to get some gbutton food for the energy. The next time we drive to camp hopefully we will have an accessible camper so that we will be comfortable during the long drive cause I definitely want to go again next year...more to come on Part 2!
Last weekend my parents and I went to go atv riding in Estes Park. When we got there we met Karen, Brian, Madison, Ben, Colby, Nanna and Papa. We had to meet at the helmet place first to get directions and instructions. After the guy told all of the information that was needed, everyone started lining up to get helmets. What's funny is that I have a bigger head than my mom! I noticed that when my dad accidentally put my mom's helmet on me later on. It was too tight around my cheeks. Once everybody had a helmet with the right fit we had to drive twenty miles to get to the actual place. Once we got there, of course there was no parking spaces available. My dad's truck had a hard time parking backwards up the hill. And then when the guy asked my dad if his truck is a 4x4, I started snickering because I knew he'd say no and get all mad again because he should of got one in the first place. Instead my dad has a fat truck! Anyway when we got into the atv's and finally got going, it felt like riding my go cart. There were three atv's for all of us. One for Karen and Brian and their kids, one for Nanna and Papa, and another for us. We decided to go on the easy trail because Caleryn didn't have a car seat and I was super drowsy from the extra baclofen pumping in me caused by going up in the mountains. So we had to stop for a couple snack breaks. My mom thinks I'm like a diabetic! The easy trail had too many rocky places and not enough flat areas. The flat areas were the funnest to go on because you could go really fast and there would be huge puddles of water because it rained right before we got there. My dad was of course too scared of going the full speed (20 mph) when there was a big puddle in front of us because it would most likely get Caleryn and mom all wet. So my dad would gradually slow down until we drove over it. Now if I were driving, I would've just kept moving super fast and let everybody get all wet and then I would have yelled out, "Its shower time!" That would have been funny! But the downside into doing that is I would hear the two knuckleheads in the back seat yell at me. Anyway right after we got to the end of the trail and turned the atv around we saw Nanna and Papa pass by us. My mom thought it was so funny seeing that they were almost at the u-turn because Nanna and Papa were having back issues. Nanna said that the reason they could never catch up with us is because Papa was only going 6mph. After hearing that, I totally know how the conversation went. I bet it started with Nanna yelling at Papa, "Steve! Why are you only going 6mph! I'm sure you can go faster!". Then Papa says in a deep low voice, "What???". After we saw them, Caleryn fell asleep in the atv while we were going on the roughest and fastest part of the whole trail! Her head was slouching downward, so my mom held her head up so she wouldn't get a whiplash. We all couldn't believe that Caleryn was able to go to sleep with all of that shaking. On the way back, I was more awake because my dad finally started going really fast. Caleryn was a little fussy when she had to wake up and get in the truck but all in all she was a trooper and a very good girl during the atv ride. Once everybody got in the truck, my dad wanted to drive the atv longer to waste time because nobody else was back and he can't sit still for two seconds, just like his daughter. When everyone got back we went to the house that Karen & Nanna and Papa rented in Winter Park. Which was a two hour drive from the atv place and the highest elevation to boot. In fact, we were so high that the trees stopped growing and of course no railing on the edges of the road! During the drive I had to get fed pouches because I was so out of it. My mom sat by me in the car and used the syringe instead of the pump. I felt a little better after I ate but it didn't last long until I would absolutely crash again. I think we were around ten thousand feet when we got to the house. My dad had to walk me in because there was no ramp. That night I didn't sleep too well because at around eleven my mom came and asked if she could sleep with me on the pull out bed instead of the couch and I said "yes". Then about a thirty minutes after she got in the bed I heard her loud snoring behind me. I was like, "oh yeah, I forgot that you snore like a bear! This is just great". This was of course all inside my head. On the next day, I get up and eat one of the pouches with the pump on my mechanical wheelchair. Then once my mom set my pump up I drove outside and stayed out there with my Papa for a while. Thirty minutes later I came back inside because I was getting hot and then after that, it hit me. I was back to feeling drowsy again. So I wanted to lay down on the couch while everyone else went bob sledding and fishing or something. My mom stayed at the house with me too because she was having a migraine. Then when they all came back I still felt drowsy, even though I just took a nap. Mom and dad were having trouble with my stoma feeding because the pump decided to start acting up then me and my mom was kinda sick of being there and was ready to go back to the apartment. Caleryn was not on board with the idea of going home. She had a little hissy fit because she didn't want to leave her cousins. Even though she was with them for four days! Mom decided to start throwing up in the truck then started hyperventilating cause she couldn't get enough oxygen or something, so that was real fun! Good times! Once we got back down to six thousand feet I started feeling more awake. I had so much fun during the atv ride. I think that I would have had a better time if I wasn't so stinking drowsy during the ride. Maybe next time before we go up high like that, we will ask Dr. Stratton to bump the baclofin pump down a little so it won't affect me as much.
Well its been a while since my last blog post and we have gone to a couple of places. We went to the Renaissance Festival down by Colorado Springs and then to Boulder Colorado for Fourth of July to check it out. The Renaissance Festival was a little bit different than it is in Houston. The place was not as nearly accessible as the Renaissance Festival in Houston because it was literally on the side of A MOUNTAIN! There wasn't as many stone roads either. They were only stone roads by the entrance not along all of stores like Houston had. It was also very hilly. My mechanical wheelchair had a very hard time getting a firm grip because it kept on wanting to go down the hill. So I had to constantly fight my chair to go the other way. Sometimes my dad had to push the chair to the side because just trying to fight the hill with my joystick isn't enough. There was also a lot of tree roots all over the hilly ground which made it more difficult as well. I saw some other older folks that had to use scooters and wheelchairs and I was just thinking to myself how hard it must be for them too. Anyway there was one store that interested me but before we were able to cross over to the other side, we were stopped by a parade. Caleryn of course loved seeing the princesses go by and the King and Queen. When we got to the store I bought a cross necklace. For some reason Caleryn got a princess tiara even though she was acting really bad that day. We had the best corn on the cob, sausage on a stick and turkey leg. After dad took Caleryn on a couple rides we started making our way back to the car. We most likely would of stayed longer but it was too tiring trying to just get around. We got our annual Renaissance experience and were satisfied!
That same weekend, we drove to Boulder. I don't remember much about going to Boulder but my mom thought the town was cute. This Fourth of July, I didn't really participate but there were a lot of fireworks. How do I know? My parents told me, apparantly you can watch them from our patio and see all of Denver! Mom said it looked like there was bombs going off all over the city and we were being attacked. I don't like to go on the patio because my chair is too heavy and I feel like the porch might collapse. So I think I missed out on this year's Fourth of July. Hopefully next year I will pay more attention.
A week ago I went to my g-button follow-up appointment and I have gained back 6.5 lbs!!! That would usually take me forever to gain that much weight! Unfortunately my blood pressure was out of control for some reason after the nurse checked it manually 3 times. It was 164/110. Don't know what was going on with that but, oh well. I also have granulation tissue growing out of my g-button but the nurse put some silver nitrate on to help get rid of it. She said this happens all the time so hopefully it will go away. My mom has to put this cream on it three times a day now to help it along. So far so good!
Two weeks ago Nanna and Papa flew on a plane to visit us for Caleryn's 4th birthday party. The plan was to go have her birthday at the lake with a picnic party then go fishing. Personally, I have never been a big fan of going fishing because it's just hard to hold a pole but for some weird reason I actually wanted to go on that day. When I told my dad that I wanted to go fishing, he acted like he was having a heart attack. Of course, my reaction was to laugh because I have never actually said to my dad "Hey, I kinda want to go fishing". So I think that my dad was pretty flabbergasted that I said that to him. Usually, I would pretty much say "no" to him any time he asked me if I wanted to come. Anyway, the lake that we went to was about twenty minutes from our apartment. My mom had to go to the lake earlier to set up the table for Caleryn so it would kinda be a surprise. When we all got to the lake, Caleryn saw all of her presents and her strawberry cake sitting on the bench besides mom. Mom kinda of made a pretty good spread of different sandwiches, pasta, chips and dips, fruit and the best part, strawberry cake with an unicorn horn on top of it, which made Caleryn super happy. So overjoyed that I almost thought that she was going to explode because she had a big grin on her face and she was shivering her head! Then once she took the unicorn horn out of the cake and held it, she didn't want the cake! We definitely got a weird one one our hands. I actually kinda like it because that means there's going to be more for me. After we ate, my dad, Nanna and I went to the bank of the water to fish. Caleryn didn't want to go and stayed with her Papa. For about a hour of fishing and with little success, Nanna got tired and gave up. Then as soon as she left, me and dad started getting bites but we still couldn't catch a fish! I think it would have been better if we went to a lake that is less fished. Then after ten more minutes of fishing I got tired of it, which is probably good because I knew that he would want to fish all day. Caleryn got a lot of presents and I think she enjoyed her special day with Nanna and Papa.
It all began going to Dr. Stratton for a baclofin pump refill and botox on my right hand. When we got a there, my mom and dad told Dr. Stratton that I have been struggling to breathe while eating and I was tight all of the time, especially when I ate. So she bumped up the dosage to 5 percent which is not a lot. With all the problems my mom and dad told her I was having including the seizure, she thought it would be a good idea to admit me into the hospital because I had also lost 10 lbs in the last month in a half! My parents thought that it was a great idea. After getting botox and refilling my gas tank, we walked to the special care clinic. For some reason the botox hurt less than the baclofin pump refill. I think that I was worried about it hurting so much because my mom kept on telling me that it would hurt when I asked her. When we got to the room we were going to stay at, people came in and asked all kinds of questions about me since we were new to this children's hospital. My mom mentioned to the doctor that I don't get enough fluids in my body because my urine is always dark, especially since we live here now I have to drink a extra water because there is no moisture in the air. Which is also why I don't have bowl movements as frequently. She also told him that I didn't really have that much of an appetite ever since I started taking my seizure medicine again. The doctor said that one of side-effects to zahnisimide is depression and anorexia...yeah, I was pretty messed up!! After that he put me on a liquid diet and told someone to give me a I.V. They also made me drink half of a bottle of Gatorade with one packet of miralax mixed in it every two hours. Ever since I got the baclofin pump I have been more constipated more often. Then after staying for a day in the hospital, the doctor wanted to see if I would be a good candidate for the G-tube. So they wanted to do a swallow study with me laying flat on my back to see if anything comes back up. Once they got me on the table I started to get real stiff and started arching my back every time I would take a drink. Next they did a swallow study with me sitting up. I didn't really eat good because I usually move my head to the left when I am eating and I couldn't do that. When we finally got the results from the swallow study, the physician said that I am a good candidate for getting a G-tube. He also said that I couldn't eat or drink anything after 12am once he figured out what time the surgery was going to be on the next day because he had other people to operate on in the morning. At around 12pm the next day, the transporters came and moved me to the operating room while I was laying on the reclinable bed. My dad wanted to go with me until I got to the operating room. My favorite part about the surgery and including all surgeries I have had before, is when they knock me out because it is really the only time that I feel that I get a nice two hour nap without being woken up for a vital checks. You really never can get good sleep in the hospital because stuff is always beeping. After the surgery was done, I had sharp pain every time I would move and whenever my dad made me laugh for the first week. I think that the G-tube definitely has been the most helpful for me because after a week of having it I finally feel like I am finally getting enough water, nutrition and calories. I haven't been weighed yet since we got out of the hospital but I'm sure they will get one with my next appointment. All that I'm hoping for is that I can at least gain back the ten pounds I lost. My favorite part about the G-tube by far is that I don't have to take any kind of medicine by mouth anymore! The only thing my parents has to do is make the medicine small enough so that it doesn't clog up the tube while it's feeding me. Anyway, I think the moral to this blog is to always listen to your body, stop with whatever you're doing and reboot. Now, after getting the surgery I have more energy and I absolutely love it!
Three weeks ago mom (the activities coordinator) got us some tickets to go see the Colorado Rockies baseball team so we all went to go see them play against the Cardinals. The place where we sat at was up high. The Rockies did awesome! The score was 8:4. Actually, the team is doing really good so far. They are not in the same league as the Astros but the Houston Astros are in first place and the Rockies are right behind in second place. Caleryn's favorite part was the breeze we had the whole time. The weather was awesome all day, it's probably the best part about living here!
Then we went for a drive to Golden Gate Canyon State Park which was about an hour away. The drive there was really cool because you were really in the mountains and there would be steep cliffs right on the edge of the road. I guess they don't really think rails along the roads are needed in Colorado but THEY ARE! Some of the roads were super steep too. Mom was kinda freaking out. I think dad wants to take Nana and Papa there to go fishing when they come up. There was still a lot of snow up there so it was also really pretty. Anyway, we stopped for a bit so Dad could go fishing AGAIN and yes, he caught a lot of fish.
So Caleryn had her end of the year preschool program at Our Lady of Fatima. Now, remember she was only there for one month....and it showed!!😂😖 She came out well, like a princess waving to everyone and it all went downhill from there. The first song they sang was the ABC song and she was kinda into it. Next was the I'm a Little Teapot song and she did the movements for that song. Then after that, the next seven songs she just stood there frozen like a bumb on a log!! She was in good company because two other kids at the the end of the lines were not participating either. I wonder if the teachers put those kids at the ends on purpose..the slackers! One little boy looked like he was just exhausted and rubbed his eyes the entire time. One little girl just completely turned her body around in order to not participate. And then there was Caleryn, just standing there frozen! She seems to have a pattern of doing the same thing at her last two preschool programs and her dance recital. She acts like a crazy clown all the time at home but when she gets in front of a crowd she freezes for some reason. It was actually really funny watching all the kids perform.
That same weekend, we went Red Rocks Amphlitheater where they play concerts. You really can't explain a lot of what you see here because pictures just don't do it justice, you have to see it in person. It's pretty much and open air concert in the Rocky Mountains. It's supposed to have awesome sound. We haven't been to a concert yet but it looks pretty cool.
Last Friday night, my whole family wanted to go to bed early (around 7 o clock) because we were all pretty exhausted from the incident that happened to me the night before. Secondly, me and my dad had to wake up at 3am to start getting ready for the flight to Houston at 5am from Denver International Airport. From my personal belief, I don't really like to wake up during that time because honestly I feel like its the devil hour even though, sometimes I wish that I can somehow punish the devil out of my struggles. Anyway, after my dad packed his bag, we said goodbye to my mom and Caleryn. We all hugged and kissed each other. Here's the thing, whenever my mom wants to kiss me on the lips I always get excited and start smiling and would laugh at the worst time for no apparent reason! The result for my clumsiness, my mom sometimes gets teeth on her lips. Luckily, most of the time I back away before I mess it up. After we got done with saying goodbye to each other, my dad and I walked to the car and started the forty minute drive to the airport. It's kinda weird because everything seems around under forty minutes from Lakewood, except if you want to go Colorado Springs. That takes a hour and a half to get there. Once we got to the airport and got padded down, I wanted something to eat before we had to board the plane. So my dad led me where all of the fast food restaurants were since he'd been in that airport so much from coming down to Texas every weekend to visit us. He pretty much knows every nook and cranny of that place. The fast food place that caught my eye was a pizza joint. I don't remember what it was called but whatever it was I thought that it was pretty good. The flight to Houston went smooth. Although, I had to sit by somebody to the left of me during the plane ride. When we officially landed at Houston Intercontinental after the three hour flight, my Nanna and Papa picked both of us up with their truck and drove us to the hotel they were staying at, in the Woodlands. My dad and I wanted to stay in their hotel room for a little bit until our room was ready. Our room that we got was a handicapped accessible room and it was right next to Nanna's and Papa's room too! At around 11:45 all of us had to get ready because I had to be at the church by 12:30. We were a little bit late. My friends were super excited to see me again especially Ms. Jeanne. As we were all waiting for Bishop Lopes, Ms. Jeanne led me to a place to park my wheelchair. We all said some vows and later on in the mass Bishop Lopes called all of the confirmands, including me, to line up to receive the Holy Chrism. Once it was my turn to receive the Holy Chrism, the Bishop put the oil on my head and then did the sign of the cross. While I was driving my wheelchair back to where I was suppose to park it at, I was just hoping that I could hold my emotions together but I couldn't. Once I got parked, all of my emotions unleashed because it was so cool being close to a Bishop! The reason why receiving the Holy Chrism from a Bishop or a Cardinal is so important is because it completes your baptism and, it protects you from the devil trying to pull you away from God. Then everybody came up to receive holy communion. Ms. Jeanne told me just to stay there so that somebody who is giving out the body of Christ can come and give it to me. But after five minutes of waiting for a person to come to me, everyone else had already received the body and blood of Christ. I think they forgot about me. When the ceremony was over, my dad and I asked my godparents, Jim and Amalia, if they wanted to go and eat at Mamacitas with us and they said yes. Before I talk about how the dinner went, I want to talk about the history between me and Mamacitas. When I was just a baby, I wasn't the greatest eater at all. The only thing that I ate good without spitting it out was milk and a fajita burrito from Mamacitas. The funny thing is that after sixteen years of going to that Mexican restaurant I still get the same thing. The dinner went very good. I almost thought that I was in heaven because it has been so long since I had actually ate good Mexican food. The other two places we go to are La Loma and On the Border. La Loma is really good but it's in downtown Denver, expensive and you have to pay to park and make reservation. On the Border, is close and cheap but we go to as a last resort when we're desperate for our Mexican fix. My mom says Denver is definitely not a foodie town, which is probably good for us because we're hogs! I kinda felt bad for my mom because she had to stay home with the hog and dog and miss out on the gourmet food! Can you tell Mexican is my favorite?? Anyway, even though dad and I were super exhausted and kinda out of it, it was really nice to see my Godparents again, Jim and Amalia who came all the way from Spain for me and of course my Nanna and Papa. It was a very momentous weekend for me and I'm glad that I was able to finish out my confirmation at my church home..St. Anthony's!
I want to go ahead and say my thank you's on here since it's easier for me and I know they read my blog...Thank you again to my godparents for coming so far to be with me on that special day and the gifts you brought! Thank you to Ms. Garthwaite for being not only my sponsor but also my teacher and helping me get closer to God and of course the gifts! Thank you to Ms. Shelly for allowing me to be in the confirmation class with my buddies even though I missed too many classes last year and for the gifts! Thank you to Michael and my group for being so caring and making the class fun and interesting. Thank you to Nanna and Papa for coming on my special day and of course my gifts! Thank you dad for taking me and not embarrassing me! Thank you Momma for making me study so that I am more confident in my faith. Also, for getting up at 3am to make sure I looked good for the day... because she knows that my dad will never care enough to make me look decent!
It all started two nights before the day l was confirmed Catholic. I was having a small seizure that night and my left leg was having muscle spasms, I was trying to get my parents attention and I fell off of my bed and hit my top lip on the metal footplate on my F-Five power chair. My dad came in my room and put me back to bed. Now you have to understand that I don't really remember any of this after it happened, I was later told. I fell back to sleep and around 12:30am started having a big seizure (bigger than I've ever had). I fell off the bed again! My dad came in and tried to help me them my mom came in. This was definitely a different experience than I've ever had. My whole body was spastic and my teeth were clenched so hard. My mom and dad noticed that my body was going limp and I wasn't breathing or was way too shallow and my mom started calling 911. Then the next thing that I remember happening is getting into the ambulance and driving off to the hospital. The physician was really nice. Once I got to the hospital, they wanted to do a CT scan on my brain. They also wanted to do a chest x-ray to make sure I didn't aspirate or swallow any vomit in my lungs. Luckily, the x-ray showed that I didn't. After that, they gave me a I.V which is my least favorite part because I have to get poked but, every time after they do that I feel so much better because I have a lot more fluids in my body. All the tests came back okay but my oxygen levels was really low, not sure if this is because of the altitude or not but I might need to start taking oxygen. I think I'm going to have to get a g-button as well just because it's even more important that I get enough fluids in this altitude. I've been off my seizure medicine for a little over a year and haven't really had one until now so the dr. recommended that I start taking them again which sucks but I guess needed. My face didn't look too good for confirmation because I had some rug burns and a big fat lips!
Since my dad and I aren't going to be home on Mother's day weekend because I'm getting confirmed, we wanted to celebrate Mother's day by going on a train ride in Georgetown. The town was really kinda neat because it looked like a town on the northeastern coast. Aparantly, it was established back in the 1800's because we saw the dates on some of the buildings. I think there may be a convent or something there because we saw a few nuns as well. We didn't really see too much on the train ride, all we saw was streams and mountains. I think that the train ride in Alaska was a lot better because there were more sites to look at and of course we stopped at the gold mine to pan for gold. After the train ride, my dad saw a nice size lake on the side of the road and of course we had to stop so he could drop a line in the water. Caleryn wanted to go too but my mom kept on telling her not to go because it was too cold outside and she had a tank top and shorts on. That's what's funny about living here, it's 80 degrees in Denver then when you go up in the mountains it's like 20-30 degrees colder. Caleryn of course didn't listen and went outside anyway. Five minutes later she came back to the car because she was too cold! When she got into the car, she started whining and running around like she had to pee. Then Caleryn got all quiet and squatted down and peed in her pants in moms car!! She had to take off her pants and put on my new shirt that I just bought from the train store to cover her up. All this wouldn't have happened if my dad didn't need to always stop to go fishing, however it made him happy because he caught one. But to me it was kinda funny to see my sister do that instead of me because I am usually the one who pees in his pants, especially when my dad starts making me laugh! I'm starting to get a little worried about him because he's really becoming a professional at it. On the next day after church, we went to the Denver Zoo. It is much nicer than the Houston Zoo. My mom was happy because they had her favorite creepy animal, a hyena, because she always makes fun of the sounds they make. My favorite animal to see was the bears because one bear was lying on a rock while the other bear was walking back and forth like he was guarding his mate or, the mate was telling him to do his exercises. We only explored half of the zoo because my parents were getting tired and we had to go shopping at Target afterwards. My mom really liked the train, I think she just enjoys the scenery. Maybe we will go on a more exciting train ride next time since there are so many around here.
On Sunday morning after going to our new church, Our Lady of Fatima, we drove to Colorado, Springs. It's about an hour and a half away and we wanted to see the Garden of the Gods. It wasn't actually a garden but, it was ginormous boulders. At first sight, I thought that they were small mountains. One of the descriptions said that in around 1400 B.C the first settlers came to Colorado. We could see Pikes Peak (14,000 feet above sea level) off in the distance. Maybe someday we'll hike up it. While we were walking on the trail, we saw a guy that was sitting on top of one of the boulders. My mom thought he was crazy! So she took a picture of him. After five minutes of walking my mom turned around and headed towards the car, while Caleryn, my dad and me wanted to go further. We didn't see not much more, although we did see a cave. When we got back to the car, we went to the store to buy a new pin. I've been collecting pins every where we go and my mom attaches them to the back of my chair. I didn't want to go in, so I just let Caleryn and my dad pick something out for me. Next, we drove to a ghost town museum. By the time that we got there, it was already four o clock and the place closes at five so we kinda had to hurry. Luckily it was close by the Garden of the Gods when my dad looked up where it was at on his cell phone. Once we got there, my dad had to pay the person who owns the place in order to get in the exhibit. The coolest thing about it was that they set up different rooms of a what would of been in a town and what it would've looked like back in the late 1800's. There is one thing I learned by just by being there is that it was definitely not very accessible back then. They did have a ramp to get on the boardwalk to see inside the places but I don't think they would of had ramps back then. I think Caleryn was scared of the jail cell when we walked passed it. The dummy they had in the bed started talking all the sudden and spooked her out. My parents definitely has a weirdo on their hands but she makes me laugh a lot. Before she was born, my dad's humor started to get a little old for me. Luckily my dad's sense of humor is still going strong after being my dad for sixteen years. Anyway, after we were done looking at all of the places we went to the movie theater to see a documentary movie after Caleryn and my mom watched it. I think my mom left to actually go find Caleryn who, I found out later, actually snuck back into the store to go help herself to some candy! The part on the movie that I remember the most is that when settlers from the original thirteen colonies first came to Colorado after the Louis and Clarke expedition, people found gold. Which sparked a gold rush. After we watched the movie, all of us went back into the store to pick out another pin for me. I also bought a shirt too. The next place we went was to go visit Caleryn's friend, Sabrina since they were in Colorado, Springs for a vacation. Sabrina has been Caleryn's friend for over two years now. They started becoming friends when Caleryn first started school in Texas. They would come to each other houses and play for a few hours on the days that I did school with my mom. When we got to the lodge where Sabrina and her parents were staying at and met them, Caleryn and Sabrina ran all over creation and the funniest thing is that they would come by my wheelchair and tell me to go along with them. Meanwhile as I was following Caleryn and Sabrina, Sabrina's parents talked about what they think about Colorado so far and which places they went to for their vacation. They said that they went to the Denver zoo up in the mountains. When we had to leave to go eat, it was hard to separate Caleryn from Sabrina. The first one to cry was Sabrina and then two minutes later Caleryn pouted and started whining. Eventually they both hugged each other and said bye. The whole day was fun for me and Caleryn except when Caleryn had to leave Sabrina. I really liked seeing them play and I'm looking forward to watching them play again someday.
We will definitely be going back to Colorado Springs because there is so much to do and see there. Our next trip will be at the end of May since we have a scheduled reservation to see the Shroud of Turin and we want to be able to go on the train all the way up Pikes Peak at 14,000 ft. Sabrina's parents said we also need to see Seven Falls as well so maybe we can just get a hotel for the night and stay longer.
Last weekend my dad, Caleryn and me went to Dinosaur Ridge. Once we got there, all of us got out of the car to check out the store. My dad asked the store clerk where the exhibits were at. She said that they were all along the mountain in front of us. So my dad drove the car to the start of the mountain and parked it. They did have tour buses but they wouldn't allow us to get on it for some reason. After walking for only five minutes, Caleryn got tired of walking up the hill and wanted to sit on my lap and have me drive her lazy butte! I actually didn't mind it, even though it was a little hard to grab the joystick and keep a good grasp on it and hold on to her at the same time. Every time we would stop by an exhibit on the side of the road, my dad would read the info on the sign to me and Caleryn. The first favorite site to see was a hill on the side of the road that has wave marks (fossils) in the rocks. The description about it said that it used to be at the bottom of a sea; and the sign also showed a picture of how big the sea was. It looked like the United States was at one time separated in two! I think the info said that it was 68 million years ago when all of Colorado was covered with water. It's kinda weird that the highest state in the United States was once underwater. Then for the second favorite exhibit to see was the 200 million year old boulders that used to be a part of a mountain but eventually the mountain eroded away and now all you can see left from it is huge orange boulders. Then, about 90 million years ago, the modern Rocky Mountains started to form into what we see today over millions of years. We did see footprints of dinosaurs, crocodiles and other animals which was kinda neat. It was neat to see all the different layers of rock, one layer being volcanic ashe. The mountain was one time a flat beach and now it's lifted up into the air onto its side. Caleryn silently grabbed a rock from the side of the road (which you are not supposed to do) and held it in her lap. My dad didn't take the rock away from her because he didn't want her to throw a fit in front of the people walking past us. As we were heading back to the car, my chair kept on wanting to go left because the road was a little slanted. So my dad decided to push me to the bottom of the hill. Caleryn and my dad went back to the store to pick out something for me while I stayed in the car. They got me a shirt and a pin so that my dad can attach it to my mechanical chair. Caleryn was of course dying to play in the sandbox. She wanted to play in it ever since we first got there! My dad let her play in it for around ten minutes and then we left. All and all the Dinosaur Ridge was pretty cool and the thing that still astonishes me and my dad was that Colorado used to be underwater! It is just mind-blowing!
This same weekend we finally found a good place for Mexican food, which apparently is rare here, and it happened to be downtown so we got to see some sites around town. We also finally found a new church to go to for Easter services and check it out. It's a lot smaller than St. Anthony but we kinda like it and Caleryn will start going to school there as well.
Do you remember from the last blog I said that I was worried that I couldn't do any of the activities in Colorado. Well if you don't remember, my dad and my mom found a snow sledding park about an hour and a half away that I could do. I was able to just sit in a tube and I just sled down. Of course, nothing is ever easy for our family and my poor dad had to drag me to the top of the mountain every time. Because we were at like 9,000 feet in Winter Park, he had to stop every ten feet to catch his breath. Once we got to the top of the hill, my dad sat down in his tube and kicked me off. I was very surprised how fast we went down the hill. On the third time my dad and I went down, Caleryn joined us. She screamed her head off, but it wasn't like scared screaming, she was screaming because she was having fun. After that, my dad dragged me to a spot to wait for my sister to sled a few times. My hands were getting cold since I didn't have gloves on because it is virtually impossible to put them on. My mom had just bought me some new adult mittens and we still couldn't get them on! I think that all of us enjoyed snow tubing and I would love to do it again soon.
This weekend we took a drive to explore what cool places are by the mountains. The first place we went to was a state park. During the drive, we saw a bear cave in a mountain. My parents were tricking Caleryn into thinking that the bear would come all the way down the mountain just to get her. Sometimes my parents can be a little mean. After we already paid to get in, we learned that it was pretty much a mountain hiking park. Once we got to a certain trail, my dad wanted to go and see the pond. After walking for about ten minutes we saw a sign along the dirt trail saying that the pond was two miles away. So my mom and me started to head back to the car while Caleryn, Chewy and my dad kept on walking to the pond. On the way back, I had to drive my chair slowly in front of my mom so she can hold onto the back of it so she don't trip and fall when we were going up or down a hill. After waiting fifteen minutes for the three stooges to come back, they were all huffing and puffing because of the altitude. We were 9000 feet above sea level! My dad said that Chewy had the most fun because she was jumping all over creation. The next stop we made was at the sasquatch store in another town. All I bought is a t-shirt of the sasquatch on the front of it. Meanwhile, Caleryn wanted a fishing pole. My dad was a little iffy about buying one for her since the last fishing pole got thrown away because she used it as a weapon instead of actually fishing. I was hoping my dad wouldn't get that for her inside my head because my head was the primary target but, my dad bought it anyway. That sounds horrible but it really doesn't hurt, even though she still got in trouble after about 10 minutes of us getting back into the car my parents got onto her for hitting me in the face on purpose and took it right back away! Lately Caleryn has been super nice to me and it's kinda weird but it is also awesome too. Maybe she's finally starting to look up to me like I'm special or something like that. Anyway, next we stopped at a motorcycle/beer joint. It was actually pretty good. My dad and I shared a burger with a fried egg and sweet bacon. Those two toppings were the best because the egg yoke would drip down right where I took a bite and it was just purely salty goodness. And the bacon was the bomb! My dad thought it was too sweet but from my opinion, I thought it was perfect! So far the food in Colorado has been pretty good, either that or we've just gotten lucky. The last thing we did before we went back to the apartment is go look at houses up on the Mountains. As we were looking, I know that I will probably never ride my bike here because I can totally see myself riding downhill too fast and then I panic and can't hit the break in time and fall off the mountain and die. It is probably going to be a good year before we have a house. If we can't find a house on the market, then we'll just build one. The three things that I want the house to have if we do build one is a big basement just for me, an elevator, and an accessible bathroom that I can park my fat chair into, so my parents don't have to walk me into the bathroom. The first person to wear out for the day was my dad. The funny thing is that my dad foretold at the beginning of the day that my mom would be the first one to wear out. Then we finally went to the apartment. Hopefully my parents will find some activities that are accessible for me because I was a little disappointed that I couldn't do anything when we went to the park.
For my last confirmation class my group secretly planned a party for me. Ms. Jeanne brought pizza and tons of chocolate. The best part about the party is that there was a Wii hooked up. I tried to play Mario Kart but my hand was super hard to pry open so I couldn't grab onto the controller. Another problem is that I hold the controller vertically instead of horizontally because I'm not good at having to grab something with both hands especially when they are tight. It was a little sad having to leave my friends even though I will come back when I'm confirmed. Right after confirmation class, my family left to go to Nanna and Papa's house in Forney. During the drive my mom heard a sound coming from the wheel. On the next day my dad and my Papa took a look at the car and found out that one bolt was coming off. If that would have happened a wheel would've come off and we would of been stranded during the drive to Amarillo. Thank goodness they fixed it because that would have sucked! Later on my Nanna made me chicken fried steak with a strawberry cake topped with strawberry icing (which my mom made) for my sixteenth birthday. Everything tasted awesome! The next day we started heading towards Wichital Falls for a nice break from sitting in the car. So we took a walk at Lucy Park to find the waterfalls. Once we found the waterfalls, my mom took some pictures of me, Caleryn and my dad sitting by the waterfall. Then we headed to Amarillo. We found a hotel and stayed for the night. The air conditioner in our room sounded like it was an animal squealing in pain! It was so annoying! Unbelievably, Caleryn slept through all of the commotion. Eventually after half of the night of being sleepless my dad finally asked the help desk to see if we could switch rooms. The new room we moved to was much more peaceful. The next day we ate breakfast at Cracker Barrel and I had a burger and fries because I'm not a big fan of eating breakfast but I will, if I have to. After all of us ate, we stopped at a route 66 store. What I bought is a t-shirt that shows the rout of route 66 on the map. The next stop we made was at Cadillac Ranch. I didn't get to go and see the up side down cars up close because my mechanical wheelchair wouldn't be able to go over the cattle guard and they were in the middle of a big field; so Caleryn and my dad went over there to take some pictures. From there to a little past the border of Texas was all desert. We could see buttes and plateaus. After we finally got out of Texas and into New Mexico the landscape started to change. It started to become hilly and we saw more trees. We saw a sign along the road saying that the elevation was already 6,000 feet above sea level and signs along the road that said "watch out for bears"! My head started to hurt but every time my parents asked me if my head is hurting, I said no because I don't like complain. Why? Maybe because I don't want to deal with the trouble of speaking in the car where it's hard for my mom to look at my lips and I will most likely get interrupted by Caleryn; or because I am not a milenial or "snowflake", I don't want to be a guy who complains all of the time just to get his way. Also, my head wasn't hurting too bad anyway. So I just took a nap hoping my headache would go away when I woke up and it did. We were going to drive up to see the crest of Capulin Volcano but had to turn around because we were just 10 minutes late from them closing the drive up. Anyway, when we finally got to Colorado it started to become cold and windy. The drive was awesome because I could see snow capped mountains off in the distance. Caleryn was super excited to see snow for the first time. So my dad stopped the car on the side of the road and let Caleryn play in the snow for a little bit. When we left she started crying because she wanted to play longer, so my dad gave her a snowball to hold on to to calm her down. We decided to stay at a hotel in Colorado Springs for the night since none of our furniture had gotten to the apartment yet. On Sunday morning we made our way to the apartment in Lakewood because the movers was going to be there around noon (one day early)! I felt sorry for the movers because they had to move all of our future all the way to the fifth floor. The thing that I was most excited about getting back was my F-5 power chair. I desperately needed my tray back because it is sturdy and doesn't move around unlike the iPad holder on the mechanical wheelchair that I had to use. The movers had to come the next day too because they forgot some stuff and had to take the rest to our storage unit. It is pretty hard to move around with all of the boxes in the apartment, so my mom has been unpacking everything and my dad has been gathering truck full loads of boxes to the trash container in the car garage daily. I think that the biggest change to my dad's new job is that he can come home for lunch now because he's so close and he's home at 5 now, which is awesome instead of having to drive for and hour and a half. I can't really say what I like about Colorado quite yet because lately the weather hasn't been the greatest and we haven't done any outdoor activities yet but we will once we get used to altitude though.
My name is Cameron Broyles, I'm 16 years old and I started my blog 5 years ago when I was 11. I have paraplegic cerebral palsy and cannot communicate in a traditional fashion. I am home-schooled now but I used to go to main stream public school. My love of exploring first began with going on field trips to learn about history. I play power soccer and it's become my sport of choice! I am originally from Texas but now I live in Colorado and LOVE it! I love to travel and explore but the majority of times it is much more difficult than the average person. I want this blog to not only be my mouthpiece for my friends and family but also give some ideas and maybe light a spark for other people with disabilities to get out and explore life! I was first coerced into starting a blog from my mom and dad and I have to admit that sometimes it's not my favorite thing to do but what I love most about having a blog for these past 5 years is that it's a daily reminder of all my blessings from God and how grateful and thankful I am for everything I have in my life.