She’s Holding Her Own

There are times when I get frustrated with the very profession of which I am a part. Health care can be very frustrating and there are people within this system that you can tell truly care about what they do and their impact on others and there are those who you can tell don’t…I have experienced the “just let me get this done” by Tiffani’s current Social Worker at Banner Thunderbird Medical Center- Steven/Stephen. All others that have been a part of Tiffani’s care have been awesome and for that I thank them!! I will be contacting patient relations regarding Steven

However, Tiffani continues to hold her own and will be transferred to a long term care center for continued wound care and rehabilitation. Thank you for your continued prayers and support.

Please continue to pray for me as well…I am trying to remain professional in my dealings with all entities from hospital staff to DES folk.

Hopefully this next year is not as eventful, so please don’t take it personally if I don’t respond to your ‘Happy New Year’ text…I am just trying to get through  each day.


She Continues to Fight


Tiffani has been holding steady. She has been participating in speech therapy to strengthen her muscles used for swallowing and physical therapy to strengthen her muscles period!

On Friday another abscess revealed itself and the health care team was on it-continuing with antibiotics and controlling her pain.

She has an awesome Chaplain that sees her and spends time with her encouraging her…thank you Sherry or your presence!
Thank you for your continued prayers and encouraging texts. Continue to pray for Tiffani’s strength, healing and most of all her emotional well-being.

I came across this song this morning that reminded me of Tiff…love to all of you!




Life: Enjoying each hour of every day

Tiffani continues to do well.  I cherish each moment I am with her and each text I receive from her when I am not with her. We Face Time and OOVOO-whichever is working! I make it a point for her to ‘see’ her son everyday. She moved to intermediate ICU today! I will be able to take Makai to visit!

We met with some members of the Palliative care group today. It was tough talking about Tiffani’s reality. Tears were shed, but one thing remains: God knows the number of her days. I will continue to enjoy each one!

Continue to pray for God’s will. Loving you all!


Our God Stands Alone…He Takes Care of His Own

Last night was HARD!

Lord I need to hear you! I want to make the right decision regarding Tiffani!! I NEED TO HEAR FROM YOU!! …this was my prayer last night as I restlessly fell  asleep, eyes filled with tears and a heart as heavy as a boulder. Jon (Tiffani’s father) and I were to meet with the doctors and other medical staff that has been caring for Tiffani to make sure her wishes were honored at this juncture in her journey. On my way to hospital:

Social Worker (via phone): Cherry, as I went to Tiffani’s room to drop off that letter you requested, I was surprised to see her awake. I asked her a couple of questions and she answered appropriately (one she verified with me, as it was something she would have had to recall). After verifying the question with me she said, you might want to come see her before you meet the doctors.

Me: I am already on my way!! I call Jon to convey the message.

I walk into Tiffani’s room and she is awake! I can hardly get my protective gear on in my desire to kiss and touch her! She smiles…Her father walks in, another smile…

RN: she is on the minimum settings on the vent. The ventilator is only assisting her breathing right now and she is doing well on her own(vital signs confirm this)

Talked with doctors/medical staff…things are different for the moment!

RN: I have to take a stool sample for an infection you have in your stool…your stool doesn’t have the usual smell that the particular infection causes…

Infectious Disease Doctors representative: Her right hip wound is looking good, the tissue is nice and pink and healthy looking, we cannot see any current infection. We will be sending her to CT for a closer look…

Respiratory Therapist: Her lungs are clearer today than they have been in in a long time…

Tiffani: motions for her cell phone!!!!!

If this respite is only for a moment, God’s glory is being witnessed by her medical staff, my friends, her friends, my coworkers, and by our family. I stated after a word came forward recently at church that through this Tiffani’s testimony would go where she has never physically been and it would go beyond her years here on this earth. I believe that with all that is in me.

He allows somethings to run their course, have no fear for God’s in control.

Believe that He has the very last say so, He will perform His word.

For our God stands alone, He takes care of his own.

                                                     ~K. Rutherford



Nothing like Family

My brother and sister-n-law came into town to see Tiffani. It was good to have mom cook us breakfast-looking back 3 months ago- it is truly a blessing and I cherished each and every bite and moment. As we drove out to the hospital (my sister-in-law Kira rode with me) we talked about the decisions I have before me and how difficult the process will be, not only for Tiffani, but for Makai’s well-being and future. As I think back on the conversation of that ride, I see Kira in a different light. I mean I always knew that she loved us all as her family; however, today I KNOW that she would give anything to make things right for everyone right now. Kira, thank you for listening to my concerns, fears, and sharing in my present state. I will never forget those 20 minutes, they are truly special to me.
Tiffani looked good today. I don’t know what was different, but she looked ‘bright’, like she was truly resting. I have talked with her critical care doctor and we are waiting as we see very small episodes of improvement. I will be talking with her pulmonologist tomorrow. I pray for clarity and continued strength.
My family-my strength…
Henry-a huge support, my love, my friend…
Tynisa-my colleague that God appointed for this season in my life 10 years ago…
Thank you all for your individual shoulders, ears, hands and hearts that help me get through each day

Next Steps…..

When the time comes I will choose comfort care for Tiffani.

What does comfort care entail?

Comfort care is medical care that is focused on relieving symptoms and optimizing patient comfort. Comfort care does not seek to cure or aggressively treat illness or disease.

At this point they have nothing else they can do to cure Tiffani. But what they can offer you is to keep her comfortable and to help her have a good death. It may not mean that Tiffani is dying immediately but that the aggressive treatments that they have been trying are not working to get her better. And now they want to focus on relieving the suffering and keeping Tiffani comfortable. They are not abandoning her but they are changing the focus from curing to caring. Her sisters and I want this for her.

I don’t know how long this process will take but at this time, the goal is to feed her emotionally by saying words of love, telling her that she will be remembered and that she touched a lot of lives in her life and during her sickness. This will be a time to hold her hand, stroke her hair, play music she loves, and continue to tell her what new things her son is doing and praying for her. The end of her life not about medicine, but about love and comfort and respect and dignity. I am confident that this is what she would want.

Cherry Cook

Your Love and Concern is Overwhelming

During the last few months of Tiffani’s struggle, I am continually amazed with the outpouring of support and concern that has been personally expressed to me. It’s obvious that Tiffani has touched the lives of so many people from family, friends, Tiffani’s co-workers, my co-worker’s, her many healthcare providers to  my students, and our church family.

I understand that many are waiting for me to announce my decision; however, this is a very trying and difficult time. I am taking every minute that the doctors have allowed me with Tiffani. Please respect me taking that time to make a decision. If you are in town go see Tiffani-have no regrets-when I make the decision things will move quickly.

Due to the overwhelming amount of support for Tiffani, I cannot personally respond or keep up with the number of inquiries regarding her condition. The creation of this blog was to provide up-to-date information on what was going on with mom and Tiffani and now is to keep all informed of what’s going on with Tiffani- in one convenient and easy to use location: the internet. So please do not take it personally if I do not respond to every phone call, text, or inquiry regarding Tiffani’s condition, please use the blog to get the most recent information.This will allow me to focus my attention on making the right decision for Tiffani and caring for her cherished son Makai.


Love to you all,