Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Ultimate Fix It Man

I am by no means a 'blogger'. Most times I have to ask my 11 yr. old how to turn some game on or switch inputs on our TV to watch a movie and I even grew up with video games (goes to show how quickly technology changes). Over the last week many many people have emailed or texted me or left voice mails with encouraging words and offers of prayers and positive thoughts and/or suggestions. I truly cannot thank you all enough for that. The sheer number of well wishes and prayers is overwhelming but most appreciated. I regret that I haven't been able to return every single one of them as my time is divided and stretched thin right now.

As a father and as a man, I am a 'fixer'. Many times Mandy will come home with a problem from the studio or with life in general and I have to ask her 'do you want me to simply sit here and listen or do you want me to fix it because that's what I do'. The bathroom sink overflows, I fix it. The washer doesn't work, I fix it. The rain gutter leaks, I fix it. I have a problem with a co-worker, I fix it. That's just what I do, it's how I'm wired. So, when a doctor says he can't instantly fix my son, I don't know how to handle that-it's against my nature and I'm pretty stubborn too so I don't take no for and answer very well. But for as much as I have beat my head against the wall the last week, wondering why we treat this type of brain stem tumor the same way for the last 30 years, I realize that I cannot personally do ANYTHING to fix my son. It is fully beyond my control to reach inside his head and rip that alien growth out of his brain stem and it is easy to give into the feelings of hopelessness and despair. However, over the last week, I've come to realize (more so than any other period in my life) that God is in control of this life. As I weep for Dylan, I know that Father in Heaven weeps as well for he is his Dylan too (and was so before he was sent to me).
Many people have asked over my life how I can believe in a God that would allow such terrible things to happen to such innocent children. My answer is this: It is part of the human experience that we all signed up for (although I'm convinced we didn't know all the details or severity of pain involved). Sometimes good things happen to bad people and vice versa, that is part of life. As soon as we learn the true relationship in which we stand toward God (namely, God is our Father and we are his children), then at once prayer becomes natural and instinctive on our part (Matt 7:7-11). And yet, it is not a case of always getting what we want but bringing the will of father and the will of the child into correspondence When I was in high school, had I aligned my will with that of my earthly father, how many mistakes could I have averted? (trust me there were many) Now is the same with my Heavenly Father. The object of prayer is not to change the will of God, but to secure for ourselves and for others blessings that God is already willing to grant, but that are made conditional on our asking for them. Blessings require some work or effort on our part before we obtain them. Prayer is a form of work, and is an appointed means to obtaining the highest of blessings. (gospel Library). Do I believe in miracles? Yes, I do. I have seen many in the last week. Am I prepared to face the future with God at my side for support and guidance? More so than any other period in my life! And I wouldn't trade the peace and love I feel for my savior, my God and my family now for the bitterness and anger that others feel about these types of tragedy for anything in this world or the next.

So, I can't fix this. I can merely place my faith and my son in a Heavenly Father's loving arms that loves us and cares for us deeply and I'm sure at times he must hide himself in the corners of the universe to hide his pain for the children that he so loves so dearly here on earth. I must turn him over to the ultimate 'Fix It Man'.I have lost others before and I will lose others after this and through it all, one constant remains: My faith in the plan of salvation and the truths contained therein. Needless to say my priorities have changed the last week and if I could ask anything of those reading this blog, it would be that we be a little kinder to one another, we forgive one another a little quicker and in the immortal words of the greatest mother I know (my own) 'if if matters a 100 years from now then it matters now' Hug you kids, tell them you love them. Forget about the 'art work' on the wall and the mess down the hall or in the bedroom. Man was created to have joy and I can only hope to one day 'pay it forward' to the throngs of people that have literally come out of the woodwork to offer support and love for my family. It was never promised to be easy, only worth it. And this life is So worth it and I am thankful everyday that I get to spend it with my loving wife, children, family and dear friends.

Ryan-the dad.


  1. I love reading your thoughts and testimony Ryan. I cant imagine what you are going through, I check this blog every couple of days to read how things are going. I must do it late at night because I cry like a baby. my son is about the same age as Dylan and I cant think of how I would be dealing with something like this. You are in our prayers, please let us know if we can ever do ANYTHING to help. Dylan you are good looking young man, keep fighting, stay positive and beat on your dad a little.

    Ryan Kent

  2. I am so with you on all of this! :) Your words are perfect. I have loved being in your home & watching you take such good care of your family. You are a great man! love you

  3. Your words are so powerful, your testimony is beautiful, and your family is amazing. Thank you for taking the time to post this. We love you and continue to keep a constant prayer for you all. - Greg & Jess

  4. Your family is in our thoughts & prayers! I know that God is a God of miracles & your testimony of this is amazing!

    President Boyd K. Packer said, "If you are helpless, He is not. If you are lost, He is not. If you don't know what to do next, He knows. It would take a miracle you say? Well, if it will take a miracle, why not?"

    We will keep praying that many miracles come your way!

    Heather & Russell Deem Family

  5. Well....Ryan....for not being a "BLOGGER" you have sure had me weeping like a baby with the feeling of the spirit whirling around me!!! I can't imagine what it would be like if you were a "BLOGGER". I am no blogger either but I do know this. You and your family have expressed how much love and how many prayers you have felt by those around you who love you but what you really need to know is how your love has spread so far and wide! Farther then you would even think. This situation has caused so so many of us to wake up! You have touched so many lives and shown so much love for people in the service that you and your wife have done for other people currently and in years past that people can't help but love you and pray for you hundreds of times a day! I too believe in miracles and one miracle I know for sure that is happening right here today is all the people you have touched and lives you have changed simply by sharing your raw, pure feelings and love for the gospel. Our heavenly father is watching over us and you hit the nail on the head when you said that he is probably off in some corner somewhere weeping for the pain and suffering that we all encounter in different ways and the faith and trust that we need to put in him. His plan is a much bigger plan than we have the capacity to remotely understand. I can't pretend to even come close to understand what you, Mandy and your family are going through. I don know this....that we are all praying for you five million times a day and if there is a miracle to be had to find a cure or something for sweet Dylan in I don't even kind of know what form then our Heavenly Father WILL hear our prayers!!! I love you, your wife and your family more the words can ever express! Our prayers are with you everyday!


  6. Our thoughts and prayers are with your cute family!! Brandy Hansen and family!!!

  7. Ryan & Mandy -- Please know that we love you and that your family is in our prayers daily. If there's ever anything more we can do for you, please let us know. We're so happy to have you as family.

    Love, Lisa & Monte

  8. Ryan- What an amazing Dad you are and what an awesome testimony you have. Dylan is touching so many lives in such a positive way. I know for me I have been really enjoying my kids a lot more from your experience and forgetting about the messes and some of the "naughty" things they do and just loving them as much as I can! Thanks for sharing! My boys pray for Dylan in all of their prayers. We have something little for them they want to bring over one of the next few days!

  9. Dear Jesus,
    Your word says that when two or more are gathered together in your name, asking anything,
    That whatever they ask will be done for them, by the Father in heaven.
    We therefore come together and ask in your name,
    For your healing touch on this little child and all the other children who suffer,
    Remove this sickness from them in the name of Jesus.
    Father, it is written that if we believe, that we shall drink poison and it will not harm us,
    We pray therefore that the poison of any treatments (chemo, radiation or whatever)will not harm this little child,
    We thank you Father that you have heard our prayers and your healing will be complete.
    You will be in my prayers daily.
    Kay Dighans