On behalf of The Ruel Family, THANK YOU for your generosity!!

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Back L-R: Izzy, Zoe, Lilah | Front L-R: Kristen, Callie, Neil

 

100Brokers Members voted and we are very pleased to announce that we will be sending a cheque in the amount of $4,050 to The Ruel Family, Recipient of the 1st Quarter vote of 2021.

Thank you to Jodi Whalen for bringing this Cause to our attention.

Nomination Story

On December 30, 2020 Neil and Kristen received the news that no parents want to hear, their baby girl Callie has an inoperable brain stem tumor that has been diagnosed as a Diffuse Intrinsic Potine Gliomas (DIPG) tumor, which is terminal. This form of cancer is very rare, with only 3 other cases diagnosed in Canada in 2020. Callie is the light of their life, so this news is completely unfathomable.

Neil, Kristen and their 3 daughters Zophia, Lilah and Izzy need support so they can all be remain together as a family to support Callie as they navigate future challenges in her journey. The family will require financial assistance to replace lost income, provide immediate financial relief, future medical support for Callie, and counselling support for the family.

A post from her dad really had me tear up reading this.

Another day has come and gone. Sweet Callie had dark bags under her eyes but they still glimmer and shine. She looks up to her “mama” and says with a smile “I tired” followed by her fake but oh so real yawn…

Mom picks Callie up and starts walking her up to bed. I tell her I love her so much and give her a kiss on the forehead. Sometimes she tells me she loves me, sometimes she doesn’t but I know she does. Mom takes her upstairs and calls down to me. “Babe can you bring up her…” tablet, soos or both. I happily run it up and get one more look at my baby girl, give her the item and she always responds “Thank you my dad.” There is and was no better feeling. Mom and I watch through the monitor as little Callie rolls on her side and watches her tablet until she slowly closes her eyes and falls asleep.

Then reality strikes, is this the last time? Will she wake up? How are we all going to survive this loss, the pain, the emptiness that will never go away.

Mom and I look at each other and with a quiet nod we both know what the other is thinking and we start to watch a show or play on our phones to lose ourselves for a brief moment before we tuck the other children in for the night and have to go to bed. The one place neither of us wants to endure because that awful reality awaits us. Hopefully one more day is the phrase that constantly wonders through my mind.

It’s bedtime but I cannot sleep. I lay there aimlessly for hours reading random articles on my phone, checking Facebook, playing games and watching the monitor to make sure Callie is still breathing. Mom slowly falls asleep first as she is utterly exhausted from being awoken numerous times the previous night before finally being up for the day any time between 3:30 and 4:30 in the morning. I continue to lay restlessly and make sure my alarm is set for 6:00am because Mom and I have made it known that if Callie does not wake us up in the morning and suddenly passes away in the night, I chose the responsibility of finding her in the morning. It’s the least I can do for Mom as we both know she would never come back from it.

For the next few hours I contemplate the family’s future. I try to distract myself with copious amounts of planning but it all comes back to how do it fix this? Deep down I know I can’t but it is who I am and not something I can just turn off at a moments notice.

Every night it is the same, funeral, memorial, therapy, counselling, finances, another new normal at home, going back to work, and not just surviving through this myself but being the pillar my family needs to survive this pain. I think we all understand that this will always be a part of us and it isn’t something we will just “get over” in time but what can I do for everyone to move on?

I know it’s not fair but I still cannot wrap my head around knowing that there is a finite amount of time with Callie. It hurts to see her struggle, it hurts to watch her slowly regress and it kills me to know that sooner than later she will not be with me anymore.

That’s when it hits me the hardest. It happens when it’s quiet, it’s dark, everyone is asleep and I am alone with my thoughts. I tear up from this overwhelming guilt that it is her and not me, I tear up from joy remembering all of her cute little sayings and quirks and I tear up from sadness because I am going to miss her so much.

The fatigue from this different type of stress wears me out and places a heavy weight on my eyes. As strong as I think I am, I cannot fight falling asleep forever. I hope and pray it isn’t the last night but eventually concede that I cannot control this fate. Slowly I fall asleep hoping my alarm doesn’t wake me up first, hoping I hear a giggle, a scream, a cry, anything from Callie because then I get one more day. How long will this groundhog’s day continue? Every night I ask for one more day.