Monday, July 1, 2013

Stuff Dreams are made of. . . .

As most of you know, the past year has been one of the most difficult years ever for me and my family. 

In October, my mom was very, very sick and I wasn't sure she was going to make it. At that time, I thought that week was the most difficult in a very long time. I've had a lot of "crying-on-the-floor" moments in my life and that was one of them. 

In that week, though, I saw God do some amazing things I never expected. She got better and was able to go home again. 

Little did I know, just a few months later, I'd be sitting in an ER room hearing these words. . . 

"It looks like leukemia. I'm sorry." 

It's sort of odd being in the place I'm in right now. I look back at the last year and see all the things that happened and all the amazing things God has done. 

I reflect on the word of our pastor. "2013 is the year of ENLARGE!" I remember sitting in a service in February trying with all of my heart to believe that God had a plan to ENLARGE my life, my faith, my experiences, and my trust in Him during such a rough year. 

But I believed. 

And I kept going. I kept praying. I kept my faith. I continued to believe in the miracles He'd already allowed me see front row. 

6 weeks into Jace's treatment we were able to say "He is in remission. There is NO evidence of disease in his body." 

You cannot even imagine what that is like. :) God is our redeemer and every single time he has taken something that was meant for EVIL in my life and turned it GOOD. 

How can I have complete faith and gratitude in ALL circumstances? Because time and time and time again He shows me that LOVE WINS. 

So, I could probably do a little motivational speech for you over the course of my life and my testimony. If you've followed me on twitter/FB or Jace's caring bridge or Facebook site, you know my philosophy will always be based in gratitude and thanksgiving. 

Fast forward to last week. I had already bought VIP tickets to see New Kids on the Block in Dallas the day before Jace's diagnosis. I'm a huge fan compared to most, but this was only going to be my 2nd 30 second meeting with them. It was only going to be my 6th show in five years. Many, many fans I know have been able to do so much more. I've always wanted to be that girl. 

Last week, I entered a raffle for Remember Betty for 2 tickets to the Oklahoma City show. I warned my friend, Mandy, that if I won she was going. She has helped us so much in the past 6 months by picking up the girls and letting them stay over when we were both with Jace at the hospital. I prayed that I could do something FOR HER. 

Also, I couldn't have a NKOTB fan/friend who'd NEVER been to a show before. ;) #travesty

Imagine her surprise last Sunday when I got word we were going! :) So exciting! A girl road trip to see our favorite band! The plan was to get 2 tix for the show and then get to meet Danny Wood before the show started. 

We had a blast on the way there listening to the songs. She wanted to hear details of my show the night before. (Front row, catching a rose from Boys II Men, meet & greet, and after party) I caught her up on the different "fan levels" and gave her a quick twitter lesson. :) 

We got ready Saturday night and picked up our tickets from Will Call. I could tell our seats would be good right away. We were just right above the floor a couple of rows. Once we got in the venue, it was almost time to meet Victor so he could take us to meet Danny. After a bunch of crazy running around and up and down stairs we found him. He said we were going to have to meet Danny after the show. 

Lesson 1 & 2: Timing is everything. Patience is a virtue. 

So, we found our seats and settled in to enjoy the show. Watching my friend watch the show was the best part. :) 

After the show, Victor found us again and we followed him back. We were just asked to be respectful of other people that we may or may not run into while back there. As teachers, we are pretty much rule followers, so that wasn't going to be a problem. 

As much as I'd like to give FULL DETAILS of our time back there, I'm choosing not to. I want to be able to share with you the awesomeness of it all, yet, still respect their privacy and keep some of the fun details to just us. 

We did get to see some people in the back. We did get to hear some info that wasn't fully known to everyone. We kept quiet and just observed the scene where the dressing rooms were. 

THIS was my 13 year old dream come true - getting to watch things happen in their "safe place." It was kind of like being a fly on the wall. 

The guys we saw just did their own thing. It reminded me of how when we teach, we turn ourselves "on" and do our thing. When teaching is over, we wind down and do our thing, too, yet our students are still in awe that we, too, shop in the grocery store. :)

We heard some singing, some laughing, saw people I'd seen the night before in Dallas and chatted with the venue guy. 

About 25 minutes after we got back there, my stuff fell over in the chair and I just knew Danny would walk out at that moment. (He didn't, thankfully.)

I asked the venue guy if my hair looked ok. He smiled and laughed and said "Yes, honey, you look great." 

I pulled out my phone camera and checked my hair. 

Yep, Danny walked out at that moment. :) 

He was super nice. We got hugs and photos. I told him everything I'd rehearsed. 

Next, Victor was telling us where to go. Down the hall, take a left. Elevator up to Floor 3. Wait there for him.

Ok. Got it. Well, I sort of did. 

Mandy and I walked like we knew exactly where we were going. And then we took a wrong turn. When we realized it, we had to turn around and get back on track. As we were doing that, I saw Donnie in his pink shirt and hat walking down the hall behind us. 

I decided I wasn't turning around for nothing. So, we casually walked to the elevator and pushed the button. Or so we thought. It never turned blue. 


We pushed it again. I could hear the guys coming down the hall closer. The elevator doors opened. I quickly looked for LEVEL 3 when, suddenly, Victor's hand catches the door. Mandy said the guys were just standing there until Victor said "Yep! We are going with you guys!" 

OMG! OMG! OMG! OMG! <-----this was happening in my head. In reality, I was calm and cool as a cucumber. :)

It was just me, Mandy, Victor and the guys. All of them. Mandy said nothing. :) Jon hugged and kissed us both and asked about my "Hope" necklace. I told them about Jace and how he loved singing and listening to Crash. They all laughed. Again, no full details, but it was nothing short of amazing. 

Then I made a joke that this was the best first ultimate I'd ever dreamed of. :) More laughing.

We all got off. 

Victor walked with us. Then he told us that the guys were going in first to the after party and to go in right behind him. We followed. It was very cool being on the other side of the screaming girls. :) 
The after party was AWESOME. We were able to get lots of photos and Mandy had her moment with Jordan (her favorite).

As we walked back to our car, we were still in complete shock of what had happened. 

Lessons 3 & 4: Feel the fear and do it anyway. Ask & you shall receive. 

Yeah, it was "only NKOTB" to some, but for us, and especially for Mandy there will never be a moment that will top June 29, 2013. 

Nothing that day was planned except for tickets and a quick meet and greet. Everything else came down to timing. 

The two of us feel incredibly blessed with such a unique experience. It's the stuff dreams are made of....... 



Big love and gratitude,

For Dallas Photos:

For OKC Photos:


  1. It couldn't have happened to a better person. You received because you give. I am so happy that you got to experience this, and shared with us. Love you girl! :)

  2. Wow Tisha! Luv it! Nothing short of absolutely amazing! Thx 4 sharing that! :)