Jon’s Thought For Today – Why My Wife Lisa Inspires Me Every Single Day
This is going to be a tough one for so many reasons, so I have decided to focus on the two main reasons for this piece….two little baby boys named Hunter and Logan. Today is the first day of our annual St. Jude Country Cares Radiothon and as much as the work they do at St.Jude touches my heart, I cannot even begin to try and understand what the parents of terminally ill children go through, but unfortunately, my wife Lisa can. When I first met Lisa, thanks to some very close friends of ours, the first thing that struck me about her was her vivacious, outgoing and very quirky personality.
She is one of the funniest people I have ever had the pleasure to be around and she is also the strongest and toughest person I know and one of the softest, loving and sensitive at the same time. It’s a very interesting dynamic, which is the biggest part of her charm for me.
Five minutes after meeting her, I knew I had finally met “the one” and was eager to learn more about her and one of the first things I learned is that she lost two baby boys to the same disease. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing given the outgoing nature of her personality. Keep in mind, I did not learn this from her, but from our mutual close friends.
I decided I would not approach this topic at all, but after one of our dates, she told me about Hunter and Logan and how they both lost a battle mitochondrial disease.
Hunter was born in 1997 and they knew pretty soon after birth that something was wrong, but they weren’t sure exactly what. When the diagnosis was confirmed, there wasn’t anything that could be done and Hunter died at the age of eight months.
Logan was born in 2001, but while still pregnant, Lisa was told by her doctor that Logan seemed to be underweight and Lisa told me she knew then that Logan too would be born with mitochondrial disease. Logan died at the age of 13 months. I still cannot even begin to process how you ever learn to deal with something like that and not once, but twice.
I asked Lisa that very question and her answer was short and simple. She explained that the thought of even trying to get out of bed and move on from that seemed impossible but she had an older four year-old son, Baylor, who came into her room at her lowest point and asked if he could have cereal for breakfast. She realized in that instant that she had no choice but to go on, for Baylor’s sake if nothing else and go on she did.
Lisa went on to create a life for herself and Baylor that is nothing short of miraculous. she picked herself up, dusted herself off, scooped Baylor into her arms and did something that I’m not sure I could ever do…..she put one foot in front of the other and has not stopped moving forward since.
Hunter and Logan were gone long before I came into the picture, but not a day goes by that I don’t think about both of them. I like to look at their pictures because those two little faces can make the darkest day as bright as the sun and their story is a constant source of inspiration for me.
When I struggle with life and get overwhelmed at times, all I have to do is look over at Lisa and suddenly everything is in perspective and is as clear as the day is long. I think Lisa is the most amazing person I have ever met and I will be forever grateful to Hunter, Logan and Baylor for helping to create the woman and person she is and will always be. Not only am I inspired, I am truly blessed. Thank you Hunter and Logan, the impact of your lives is immeasurable.