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About Me

Single tired mom of four. Lover of chocolate and coffee - not necessarily in that order. Lover of Jesus, photographer by trade, Photoshop junkie and crime TV watcher.


RSS Hallie Westcott Photography

Relief of the Biggest Kind

July 31, 2008



If you have been visiting here on occasion, you might know my mom just had the majority of her esophagus removed.  It was a  major surgery, especially for a woman of her age, but God brought her through and she was well on her way to a full recovery.

After the surgery, the surgeon felt it best to put her in sub-acute rehab for awhile, mostly for physical therapy.  During her stay, she very suddenly stopped eating.  Even though she has a J-Tube in place for tube feedings, the idea was to get her eating and transition her off the tube and onto full meals, but it wasn’t looking good.  She has not even been taking a teaspoon at each meal.

She never complained of pain; only that she had no appetite.  I realized fairly quickly that the facility was not following the doctor’s requests to give her very small meals throughout the day, in fact, they were rarely bringing her a snack at all.  When she was supposed to be eating a soft diet, they were giving her things like bagels.

On one particular occasion, her feeding tube fell out and she had to be taken to Yale to have it replaced.  On her way back to the facility she asked to eat – a huge surprise to us, but upon arriving back at the facility, they realized that the fitting for her tube was not in place, so not only did she not get a tube feeding, they also never gave her anything to eat by mouth.  Of course I didn’t know about this until the next day and I was not a happy camper.

These kinds of things have become regular occurrences over the last couple of weeks.  The stress has been incredible and my body has not been cooperating.  Over the last couple of days, I have had a real struggle to get off the couch.

I raised my concerns and my voice about this issue on several occasions, but to no avail.  It’s always someone else’s fault. 

So the facility called a meeting yesterday and told me my mom could come home – with the tube.  UGH.  Honestly, that was the last thing I expected, or planned for.  All the while I’m thinking, “God, haven’t I done my time with my mom?  Can’t you send her home without a tube?  I’m so tired.  There is just nothing left for me to give.”

Selfish I know.  But you have no idea how tired I am.

Anyway, I asked her what she would like to eat if she could have anything at all.  She wanted pizza.  So I planned to bring her pizza today and this afternoon I called to remind her what I was bringing for dinner.  She informed me that she asked them to take her lunch tray away because she was getting something better.

“Uh mom….I’m not coming until dinner.”

“That’s okay.  I’m not hungry anyway.”

As I walked into her room holding the hot pie, she looked really excited.  I think she even licked her lips a time or two, but I was still skeptical.

And then she very slowly ate TWO WHOLE PIECES!

And this grown woman almost cried…

Thank you Jesus!

I guess the food there just stinks.


  1. Amy SImpson says:

    Hallie- Even though I know very little about you I know God put you on this earth to help others. I read your blog every day and your photos remind me that no matter how tired I am or how hard I am working life’s pleasures are in the people around me and the moments I spend with them. I admire you for your strength as a single mom, your devotion to your children and your work, and your willingness to give everything you have to others. I am sure I can speak for a lot of other people when I say that you’ve touched my life and I’m very grateful to you for that. Good luck with your mom, I know she’s grateful for you as well.

    July 31st, 2008 at 10:04 pm

  2. beth says:

    Praise the Lord for pizza! That must have about knocked your socks off. Hang in there, you’re a gift from God to your mom.

    July 31st, 2008 at 10:21 pm

  3. Kim says:

    I second Amy’s comment and say AMEN! I’ve been praying for you and your mom and will continue. I can’t even imagine all that you have on your plate now!

    July 31st, 2008 at 10:31 pm

  4. Alissa says:

    Praise the Lord!! I hope that God will continue to heal her and sustain you both:) He is faithful!

    July 31st, 2008 at 10:37 pm

  5. chickadee says:

    that’s so sweet and i’m with her. i would have held out for the pizza too!

    August 1st, 2008 at 12:21 am

  6. carrie-the gremlin wrangler says:

    and that story made me cry. wow. I hope she continues to eat well. and the stress has got to let up, no?

    I’m praying it will.

    August 1st, 2008 at 9:05 am

  7. Nikowa says:

    You’re such a strong woman Hallie! Praying for your family…

    August 1st, 2008 at 9:22 am

  8. moobeema says:

    I can so relate to your struggle. We are caring for The Grammy in our home and it has been a huge adjustment. Very rewarding but VERY hard!

    August 1st, 2008 at 1:36 pm

  9. Doug says:

    Halie – I’ve been bouncing in and out of your blog. Not quite sure how to address this particular post… You amaze me! Your humor and gift for expression equally amazing. You truly are an inspiration – I wish I could bring you some pizza and let you have no worries, if only for a few hours.

    Often in my thoughts, I’m thinking about you.



    August 1st, 2008 at 3:58 pm

  10. Carole says:

    I stumbled on your blog a couple of weeks ago and have been enjoying your photography. I wish your mother a full recovery, and hope all goes well.

    August 2nd, 2008 at 12:44 am

  11. Daiquiri says:

    Oh, blessings and strength to you. You are doing a wonderful and loving thing, honoring your mom as you care for her. It can’t be easy to give, give, give.

    I feel that way sometimes with my own children, thinking “But what about ME?!”, and “I just can’t give one more ounce of myself” And then, of course, I feel terribly guilty and selfish.

    What to do though? Some days I live for nap time…hubby home time…bed time…my bed time. I guess that’s what they mean by baby steps and taking things one day at a time.

    Here’s praying for strength and healing for your mom…brought by good food and love from her girl.


    August 2nd, 2008 at 7:10 pm

  12. Marsha says:

    Oh dear Hallie! I never knew pizza could make me cry!

    I am so glad that your mom came through the surgery and although it is exhausting and trying for you, that she is home where you can take care of her. If something happened at that place out of neglect, you’d feel so guilty about it.

    I am praying for you Hallie! For strength to get through the day and grace to look to the next. And for lots more yummies for your mommy’s tummy.

    August 8th, 2008 at 10:02 am

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