Thursday, March 18, 2010

Paul's Headstone

Paul's headstone is finished and put in. They had to wait until the ground wasn't frozen. It looks awesome. It really reflects Paul's life when he was here.

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Pictures of Paul

There is a nonprofit organization called Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep all over the world that takes pictures of your infants when the child has either passed away or is going to pass away. They are professional photographers that volunteer their time and their talents to families that want to remember their child. Eric and I received the photos and would like to share them with you. I think that they turned out beautiful. It is nice because Paul does not have tubes and tape all over him and he looks so cute.

We asked to take Paul off the respirator outside so that he had the opportunity to feel the sun on his face. It was such a neat experience.

Paul in his blessing outfit.

Our forever family.

His feet and hands were huge. He takes after his grandpa Steve.

He is such a beautiful boy.

Saturday, May 9, 2009


I remember when I went in for the job interview at Granite School District I had a good feeling about working there. But when they interviewed me at Taylorsville I told Eric if they offer me the job that I was going to tell them that I was going to think about it. But when they asked me if I wanted the job I felt like I shouted "yes". When I got in my car after the job interview I cried and cried and I remember talking to Paul while he was in my belly and saying I took this job for you. At the time I had no idea why I said yes and I was angry at myself and now that I think about it I feel like it wasn't me that said yes. After working there for the last few months I have enjoyed the people that I work with and I have a lot of fun being there. It is a whole different ball game here at Taylorsville than in California. Those of you who know me well know that I didn't have the best experience teaching special education in California.

Now when I see what Taylorsville has done for me in the last few weeks I realize why I said "yes".

This is an email from one of the teachers at Taylorsville.

In the first days after Paul was born the faculty wanted to do something for you. I had a particular sense at the time about how selfish my students had become in regards to thinking they should have to do no work from after Spring Break to the end of the school year. I also felt, that perhaps with our classroom doors across the hallway from each other that I might just be one of the people in the school that knows you the best.(at least by sight) the best. In regards to doing something for you, this little voice said to me as I looked at your classroom door, “If not you, who?” So, I walked to the office and told the administration that it would be really good for my students to take on a fund raiser in your behalf. As, I presented the idea to my students, a student in my first class, said we could call it a “McEntire Miracle.” And, that is how the “McEntire Miracle” began.

In the first days, I had faculty tell me that unless I started with something big, nothing big would happen. I quickly became overwhelmed with what everybody thought would work and would not work. Confused and overwhelmed with the idea that I should have to do one of their gigantor suggestions, I went home the first weekend and prayed until a little voice said, start it small (because physically that is what you can handle) and I will help you with the rest. It was not long until our McEntire Miracle began to take on a life of its own. My classes spent the next two days making and decorating and placing one can on every teacher’s desk and posters throughout the hallways.
For seven days, students were told your story and they began to give. My students went out during the lunch hour seeking donations and each day my fourth period class collected monies donated in each classroom. Initially, the students gave in ways; I did not think they would. After baby Paul died, I worried that the students would no longer see the need. However, that is not the case and each day faculty and students continued to be very generous. One teacher gave her stipend she received for an outstanding teacher award. A sweet ESL Vietnamese student in one of my classes, who has not said one word in class all year, shared your story with people at her sister’s work place, she alone raised $600. The cheer team donated proceeds from their Spring Variety Show. The suggested donation was $1.00 per person. One gentleman walked in and gave my student ticket takers $100. They were so excited.

Not only have people been financially generous, but they have also donated art skills, and printing needs.This morning we did a segment on the Fox 13 News about the McEntire Miracle.

It has been very good for my students. Each gaining some, based upon what they have given. We will continue to work hard from here to the end-of-the-school-year to see if we can’t make a McEntire Miracle happen.

We know that several of you have raised donations for us generously and we know that you will be blessed for your hard work. Thank you!

It suprises me everyday what the Lord blesses me with and I know Paul had a hand in this as well. I am so happy that I have such a great son and I thank my Heavenly Father everyday for him. I just can't wait for the day when I can raise him.

I found a cool mothers day poem for those who have lost their children. Here is the link

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

The Adventures of Paul

As we pondered how long Paul was in his mom's belly, we noticed that he had done quite a lot with his mom and dad during his short stay here on earth. He has camped and hiked in Big Basin State Park(CA), backpacked and cliff-jumped in the Sierra Mountains, listened to his dad sing and play the guitar, worked in the garden with his mom a lot, went on a motorcycle ride to Half Moon Bay, went tide-pooling in the ocean, hung Christmas lights, traveled from California to Nevada, Utah, Wyoming and Idaho, went 4-wheeling, fed horses, went snowmobiling and tubing, watched his dad graduate as a Doctor of Chiropractic, listened to many high school and primary lessons from his mom, including animal wildlife ecology lessons enthusiastically taught along the Hayward, CA shoreline, helped at the "Coastal Clean-up," helped organize the 10K on the Bay, went snow skiing several times, went on a tram ride in the Tetons, learned karate by kicking his mom in the ribs so many times, flew on an airplane, played with several of his cousins, cross country skied the Olympic course at Soldier Hollow, went to aquariums in San Fran and Utah, went to several of his dads soccer games, laughed with his mom and dad during funny movies, watched some great University of Utah football games, breathed in the majestic spring mountain air on trails in the Wasatch mountains, felt the fantastic sugar-rush of some good European chocolate, went over the speed limit on an ambulance ride, felt the loving touch of his mom and dad, got a sponge bath from his mom and dad, had his diaper changed by his mom and dad, he got to be in a parade of doctors and nurses on the way to get an MRI (and to go outside), finally got to be held by his mom and dad, and felt the warm sunshine on his face. He fought a good fight, he taught his mom and dad several spiritual lessons, he brought family and friends closer together, he increased the amount of love felt by many ten fold.

What most people see as a tragic loss, we at one time would have agreed and shed many...many tears. But there has also been enough to be happy about if we chose to acknowledge those feelings. We sure felt a strong presence at Paul's funeral of peace, joy and an overwhelming feeling of happiness. We know he was telling us it will be alright. There is no doubt that God could have healed him from his earthly condition, especially by all the prayers that were said on his behalf by all of you, but that was not part of the big plan. He was just too perfect for this world, and he has a lot of work to do on the other side.

This sorrowful experience, uplifted by your prayers, has helped us realize that just as there have been many opportunities to find feelings of joy, there have been equally as many opportunities to choose to be angry. It even seems that they cannot co-exist in your heart at the same time. You're either filled with anger, which pushes out all joy, or you're filled with joy and love, which replaces anger and propels one to forgive rather than take offense. We're blessed to have been given some insight as to discern between the two and we feel that we would not have learned that important lesson had we not gone through this. We hope that you can identify these choices in your life as well.

Thank You for your continued support and love, we definitely feel the love from all of you. You've been kind and generous and there is always room enough in this world for that.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Paul the Fighter's Graveside Service

Sweet Paul has returned to our Heavenly Father today. We are grateful for all your support and prayers. Tagen and Eric wanted me to tell you that they have been inspired by all your kind words. I feel deeply blessed by having Paul as my nephew, and I can't wait to meet him again!

The Graveside Services will be held on Friday, April 24th at 3:00, at the Bountiful Cementary. The address is: 2200 South 200 West, Bountiful.

Donations can be made to The Paul William McEntire Charity Fund at America First Credit Union. The account number 9036823.

Tagen will have some more updates for you soon.

Love, Jami

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

A Decision No Parents Should Ever Have to Make

Friends and Family we are so thankful for all of your prayers. I just want you to know that you have been blessed this week because of your faith and prayers which have brought you closer to God.

Eric and I recieved some devastating news on the brain MRI report. We found out that Paul has severe brain damage and is unable to move or speak, let alone be coherent. Eric asked the doctor if this is similar to a coma and they told us it is much worse because people come out of comas. But this is permanent he will never come out of this. We didn't want to believe the news, because he has been improving.

Unfortunately, they were automatic responses rather than coherent responses. So Eric and I have the ethical and moral dilemma that no parent should ever have to make. At first we thought it wasn't fair, but the more we pondered and prayed about Paul's situation the more we realized this has been a major blessing, not only in our lives but in all of yours. We don't want to be selfish and continue to hold onto him because of our need for him in our lives. We want him to have the best quality of life and we know that he will have that up in Heaven while he is with his Heavenly Father.

We have heard from many of you that your children have been taught how to pray for others and that is a priceless lesson for them to learn. We have learned of people who have drawn closer to God after having been away for sometime and we feel that this is part of Paul's calling in this life. The other part of Paul's calling is to bring us closer together as a family which has been an overwhelming experience. Eric and I want to be better people because of this experience. Paul has taught us how to forgive others, he was poked and prodded for different reasons and easily forgave the hospital workers for doing it.

The good news is that we got to hold him, finally! It felt so good to hold Paul in our arms. So we're going to take him off of his respirator to hug him, snuggle him, and enjoy our time with him as much as we can, and take him to see the sun while we still can, and teach him everything a parent should teach their child, or was it he who taught us? I can't wait for the day when we can see him again and hold him in our arms, because families can be together forever. We testify that we will be with our son Paul again as he waits for us on the other side.

We love each and everyone of you. Thank you for your sacrifices, your thoughtful and kind words, and your faith that has just so happened to have been increased for the very hour that you will need it.

Tagen, Eric and Paul the fighter

P.S. Speaking of Paul the fighter, we wanted to point out that he has fought for everything that is good to take precedence in your life. Priorities are rearranged when looking at the eternal perspective.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Baby Steps

One of my favorite shows is What about Bob. I love when he takes little baby steps all over the office. Paul is taking showing slight improvement with baby steps right now. He is slowly healing. He looks like his Papa but he is as stubborn as his mom. He is trying to breath on his own. What they thought were seizures were only reactions of his diaphragm to the respirator. It is so great to see his little chest and belly moving up and down. He is starting to pee up a storm, which is was a HUGE concern. If his kidneys aren't working, his liver gets backed up, then his lungs have issues with blood not moving through them very well, so his heart has to work harder to supply more blood to be oxygenated for the body's use. Eric said that they showed him the recent chest X-ray and his Right upper lobe wasn't collapsed anymore, so we're happy about that too.

He loves to squeeze our fingers ever so slightly when he is awake. His eyes are pretty swollen, so he cannot open them up yet, but his swelling is starting to go down because he is peeing and getting rid of excess fluid, so we are hoping we will get to see his baby blues real soon.

The other day Eric and I got to give him his first sponge bath. It was pretty cool because the nurse noticed that his blood pressure went down and he wasn't fighting the respirator. Last night, I got to change his diaper for the first time. I never thought I would be so excited to change his diaper! We all thought Paul was big when he was born, but he has gained so much water weight that he is now 13 pounds. I look at him and wonder how he fit inside of me. It is funny because in the NICU all of the babies around him are tiny. Our boy is defiently the biggest kid in the NICU block.

I know people talk about the love of child and how they would give their life for their child. I now know that feeling. Eric and I love Paul so much. I was away from him for a few hours the other night and all I could think about was him and much I love and care for him. He is an amazing boy. He is so strong. I wish I could help him fight the war he is going through. I guess that is why I was a cheerleader in high school so I could cheer my little boy on while he is going through this, despite the negative reports we are given.

He's getting an MRI done today, so we'll post an update as to the results of whenever the radiologist can give us a report later on today or tomorrow.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

A Parent's Desire to Pick Up Their Child

We're on the last day of "cooling" and they're now going to slowly bring him back to normal body temperature. Tagen's main desire is to just hold him close, but alas, the cooling and intricate tubing placed on him do not allow it. It was necessary, and yet excruciatingly painful to stand by and helplessly watch his cold body, unable to pick him up and take away all the problems his organs and brain are going through. One doctor said that it is up to him on whether or not he survives. And so we continue to watch Paul go through something that only he can go through. Someone gave me a few religious talks recently, so I have read them to my son at his bedside and I came across one that seemed to resonate powerfully in my heart, because I was watching my son go through his own difficult journey. It is given by Elder Jeffery R. Holland and called "None Were With Him" and it is well summarized with this clip:

My son has overcome so much already and still has an undaunting task to fulfill, and yet miraculously, he seems to bless the lives of everyone he comes in contact with. And despite what we see as limitations, are they really limitations, or is he communing with God? He is the most wonderful christ-like example and I keep thanking our Heavenly Father for sending us this child.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Sweet Baby Paul's Story

Paul is a special baby and he is a blessing in all our lives and everyone that hears this story. He is a fighter, and he has an amazing spirit. Here is Tagen and Eric's story.(I'm Jami, Tagen's sister:)

Tagen was in labor and pushed and pushed, but baby Paul was having a hard time coming out. They were monitoring his heart the whole time and it was completely normal, and then it just dropped. They ended up doing an emergency c-section. They pulled baby Paul out and his heart stopped. It took 15 minutes to resuscitate him, so he didn't get oxygen for 15 minutes! They life-flighted him to another hospital, and now he is getting really great care at this hospital. They have him on a cooling unit right now, and this is the only hospital in Utah with this special machine. Check this site for more info on "cooling."

With the wonderful help of our social workers, Tagen was able to be transferred up to the hospital where Paul was at to finally see him after only touching his arm before he was rushed away. Can you imagine only seeing your baby who is in critical condition for only a minute before being separated for more than 24 hours?

On top of that, their insurance doesn't start until 5 days after Paul's birth due to a 90 day rule set by the school district that Tagen started working at. However, given the circumstances, Tagen and Eric feel blessed to know that everything is being done to help their son, who is currently fighting for his life, wanting to exceed doctor's grim expectations.

We love Paul so much. We are grateful he is in our lives. He is just beautiful, and we will post pictures soon. He is a big baby, he weighs 10 lbs and is 22 1/2 inches long. Please Please keep praying for him, and have faith in him! We will keep everyone updated as much as we can.

Check this story out!

Some of you have asked what you could do to help, we can only hope for the best and need all of your prayers and support for Paul during this difficult time.