It's been a week since Pierce had surgery to replace his VP shunt. Thankfully, since then, it's been smooth sailing. We were able to be discharged from the hospital on Saturday and thankfully, have been settling in at home. Fortunately, the take away for Pierce has been that he got a new ipad at the hospital, so we are thankful that he doesn't seem to have any fear or bad thoughts towards all he has been thru.

We wanted to thank you all for your prayers and support. And for the many gifts that were showered on Pierce. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Please continue to pray that this shunt (now on a new side of his noggin') will work a LONG time (forever would be nice!) and for no infections. Pierce has big plans of starting preschool next month (cue the tears) and we would love nothing more than for him to go through the school year uninterrupted by medical complications.

Thank you for walking this journey with us,

Nik, Lindsay and Pierce



Still in business, making phone calls and answering emails
Update on Pierce: We've had a few quiet, good days. Overall, Pierce is himself with little to no pain. Thankfully his biggest ailment is boredom and for that, we are so, so thankful. Thanks to everyone who has sent our boy mail and care packages to help pass the time. Yesterday Pierce had his PICC line placed to help with the administration of his antibiotic (before he was needing a new IV daily). Infectious Disease finally identified the bacteria that caused the infection- Micrococcus (kudos to anyone who has ever heard of that). They said the good news is that he is/has been on the right antibiotics. However, they'll need to wait 10 full days since his last positive culture before re-internalizing the shunt. That means that next Friday is the first possible surgery date. He will then need to be hospitalized for a few more days to finish out the antibiotic course. And so we wait, and pray that nothing new shows up in his cultures so that surgery can proceed as expected.

I'd be lying if I acted like this time around has been pie in the sky and fairy dust. Nothing about watching your child endure pain and suffering is easy. Nothing, not even the boredom they face because they are stuck in a hospital bed. It all stings.

This isn't easy
This isn't clear
And you don't need Jesus
Til you're here... 
("When A Heart Breaks," Ben Rector)

We find comfort in our good and loving Father and knowing that His sovereign plan is at work. These are the times where the darkness seems so thick and so pervasive that He is hidden from us. I am reminded of one of my favorite hymns which states "when darkness seems to hide His face,
I rest on His unchanging grace." Indeed it is true that His grace sustains us. It repairs us. It restores us. It is His grace that spurs us to hope. It is where we find our rest.

Almost every night as I've fallen asleep on the parent bed rock hard chair, I've thought about why God has us here. Why here, why again? And why with future surgeries almost a guarantee?

And then I hear the reminders of His grace that come rushing in: This trial, just like the others you've faced, is preparing you for something far greater, and grander- an unseen place where Christ's glory reigns and sickness is no more. This suffering is not in vain. It is demonstrating God's glory and His all sufficiency to those around you. This suffering- Pierce's suffering, your suffering- it is not wasted. It will not be wasted. It will make you, and him, and your husband more like Christ as you join in His sufferings. This suffering, it will be used this to bring those you love, those you pray for, into the Kingdom.

He is enough. He is good and he is True. He is where we find our peace and rest. And thanks be to God that we can rest in His grace and not in our own efforts or temporary feelings.

17For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal. 2 Corinthians 4:17-18

Thanks for walking this journey with us.
Nik, Lindsay and Pierce

PS- Shortly before I posted this, we learned that a dear friend's son is also having a shunt revision surgery tonight. Please pray for him as well. We love him and his family dearly. 



First off, thank you so much for the outpouring of support for our boy. We are so humbled by the thoughtful messages, calls and visits we've already received.

Pierce is doing well. For those who don't follow us on Facebook, here is a brief recap:
Pierce had a seizure Saturday morning, was taken to the local ER where it was determined he was in a shunt malfunction. Within a few hours, he was airlifted to Duke Children's where he underwent a shunt revision surgery. During the surgery, the neurosurgeon discovered an infection along the entire tract of his shunt. She was baffled as he was asymptomatic (no elevated WBC, temp, etc) and it had been 14 months since his last surgery (typically these infections show up closer to a surgery vs further out). Because of the infection, the entire shunt had to be removed and instead of the shunt, an external drain was placed (essentially a tube that drains the fluid to a bag on the outside). The external drain is very positional, which means Pierce is limited to only moving when the nurse is with him to adjust the position of the drain. He will be in the hospital on antibiotics until they identify and clear the infection (no less that 10 days). Once the infection is gone, he will have another surgery to replace the shunt. Then he will be in the hospital until he recovers and we make sure the new shunt is working well.

Needless to say, he's been through a lot. On top of the surgery recovery and lack of mobility, he's developed an allergic reaction to the antibiotic, so that every time he receives a dose, he gets covered in red, itchy hives. It's pitiful to see.

His IVs keep blowing so they've suggested placed a PICC line, but cannot do so until his infection is clear too. He has been stuck more times than I can count at this point.

We've definitely seen him sick, but this is going to be his longest hospital stay since his NICU days.

We are heartbroken at all he has to endure, but are thankful for the graces that have met us along the way. The entire staff at Duke is nothing but superb. In all of our time here, we have yet to have had a bad nurse or doctor. Incredible.

Funny story: Our boy is handling things in stride and with such grace. He is tough as nails and tougher than any grown adult I've ever met. Yesterday they took him for a CT with contrast to check his belly for any infections, abscess. While he was in "the donut" (his words, not mine), I hear a little voice start talking. It went something like this, "Dear God, Thank you for Needtobreathe. Thank you for Bear, and Bo, and for my mommy's ipad with Needtobreathe music.And thank you for Mr. Ben Rector. Keep my shunt working properly (he hasn't gotten the memo that it is out). In Jesus name, Amen." Y'all I was in tears. The fact that he was just 10 hrs post surgery, still doped up from anesthesia and I'm sure, still had a massive headache, but he still was sitting there thanking God for his favorite band and asking him for healing. It was humbling and so neat to witness. And the funniest part of it all, he gets out of the CT, and the technician says he has a surprise for him. Pierce's response, "yay! I get an ipad." Let's just say the stuffed animal he received was a little lower than his expectations.

Here is how you can pray specifically for our boy:
1. For the infection to be identified (as of now, nothing is growing on the cultures, which is also a mystery), and for the doctors to have wisdom in choosing the right antibiotic to treat it.
2. For Pierce to be free of pain, to rest comfortably and for mercy as he is already stir crazy and only on day 2.
3. For continued protection against any other illnesses that would delay his next surgery.
4. And of course that after this next surgery, he will be back to healthy and able to go home and enjoy the remainder of his summer.

Several of you have asked about care packages. We do have an address for that and will be happy to give it to you if you'd like to send him something. Just email Lindsay at franks.lindsay@gmail.com. Also, if you have the ability to Facetime, our boy would love to chat! Those who know him, know he is very social. He's asked about his friends a lot already and would just love to see them on the ipad. It may help the time go by a little faster. And of course, the best thing you can do for us is to pray.

Many thanks for those walking this long journey with us,

Nik, Lindsay and Pierce