What a trooper…

Kayla's new t-shirt :)...however she needs to add FOUR times to the that statment!

Kayla’s new t-shirt :)…however we need to add “FOUR times” to the caption

Kayla came through her surgery, once again, with flying colors.  Now a seasoned veteran to brain surgery, she even skipped a step this time and didn’t even bother with a stop in ICU.  As I sat holding her hand in the post-surgical recovery unit, the attending RN leaned down and said “this one really is an all-star, isn’t she!”  OH YAH!

We went in praying it would be a hemotoma.  If they found infection, one possibility was removal of the infected bone flap.   That bone flap happens to be the skull that supports the structure of her head so removing it would be an unpleasant experience (!).

Bad news: they did find an infection

Great news: the infection was in very early stages.  Our amazing neurosurgeon determined mid-surgery that he felt it was treatable without removing the bone – what an answer to prayer!  Full treatment protocols will be determined in the next couple of days.

I sit here snuggled in my little side bed by Kayla watching the nurses quietly checking her vitals and listening to the sound of her sweet, steady breath.  I feel so grateful….

  1. for our amazing team is at Alberta Childrens Hospital.   Not only is Dr. Hader a brilliant neurosurgeon, he is also an incredibly compassionate, kind man.  I am so grateful he looked at the entirety of the situation and did everything possible to make this as easy as possible for our girl.   It’s a challenging thing to put your child’s life in someone else’s hands however there is never a moment’s hesitation that we are looked after by the very BEST!
  2. the most incredible support system.  How would we get thru this without our amazing circle of love – from the angels sitting with me during surgery to the hundreds up peeps that wrap us in prayer, food, flowers, notes of encouragement & so much more. You each make such a difference to us!
  3. To my munchkins.
    I shouldn’t be surprised by Kayla, having seen her maneuver this path so brilliantly on countless occasions.  And yet I do sit here in awe of the inner strength and grace she maintains, despite the many challenges she continually faces.
    And Tyler…this young man had his life turned upside down by cancer after I was diagnosed the first time, when he was only 3 months old,.  He epitomizes “Stay Calm, Carry On”, rolling with whatever life puts in his path with humor, strength & kindness.
    I love & admire you both so much.

“There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”  (Albert Einstein)

I celebrate the many miracles in my world.  Carpe Diem!



About Shannon Duke

I'm Shannon Duke and I’ve combined my business skills with the wisdom that literally saved my life and have built a system that redefines success. Today I am passionate about helping you achieve life-fulfilling and life-enhancing success in both your business & personal life. Read My Story


  1. Michelle Richardson says:

    SO glad to hear that Kayla is recovering and that the infection is treatable. There is no end to the admiration I have for all of you and the inspiration you all are to so many, including me. Love to all. oxo

  2. Kim Johnston says:

    Very glad to hear Kayla is coming through her surgery with positive energy on her side. My thoughts were and continue to be with you and yours everyday. Stay strong.

  3. Janice B says:

    Keeping you all in my daily prayers. You are an inspiration to us all.
    I need to learn how to appy “carpe diem” to my life.

  4. Heidi Gedlaman says:

    Happy dance! Thank you for so generously sharing your journey. The light that you and Kayla and Tyler bring to this world is priceless. I love you so much. xoxo

  5. Cindy Schaber says:

    So glad for you all to hear that the infection was early and very treatable. I will continue to keeping healing and loving prayers of light pour over you both. You both and dear young Kayla enduring so much and to have the courage to share and continue to inspire us all to remember to make the most of everyday. May some peace and healing come your way. Sending tons of love. XOXO

  6. Becky Shaw says:

    So glad to hear this is early stages. Give our love to Kayla. Thank heavens for the wonderful Dr. Hader! Thinking of all of you!

  7. Carolina Oxtoby says:

    My dear sweet Kayla

    What great news!!! Let us pray for the next steps to be kind to our sweet girl.

    Kayla you are a constant inspiration and my love and prayers are with you for a speedy recovery. Shannon hold her and Tyler close as you always do. He is also a very courageous young man. It is no surprise for both of your “munchkins” to be so brave – look at the beautiful role model they have.

    With Love and Friendship Always.


  8. What an olympian, Kayla! Shannon, we love how you share this journey with all of us. Enjoy your private time with with your gorgeous children. Sending healing love to Kayla while she recovers. Also sending love to your medical miracle workers and support team.

  9. michelle says:

    ” listening to the sound of her sweet, steady breath” …. is there a more powerful sound to any mother’s ears? I am “ebbulient” :) to know that these are the sounds you are listening to dear Shanny …. and I wrap you both up in butterfly kisses xoxo

    Love, M

  10. Bob & Lorry says:

    We keep watching and praying from Wisconsin. The three of you are amazing and models for us all.

  11. Jennifer Palmer says:

    What great news! Sending love and light to Kayla through her recovery. And as always your amazing family inspires all of us with your strength, courage, and wisdom. Love, love, love. xo

  12. Lu Kovacs says:

    What great news for all of you. My thoughts and prayers are always with you, Shannon and Kayla. And Shannon, you have an amazing young son who joins his two favorite ladies along this difficult journey with strength and courage. Kudos to all of you!!!!

  13. Stephanie Dea says:

    LIfe is indeed a miracle. I am humbled by your journey and the inclusion of us all on it. I am relieved that everything went well. The spirit, the mind, the body when united are capable of miracles, or rather, things that are yet beyond our comprehension. I continue to send all of you my love and healing thoughts.

  14. Cathy Bridges says:

    Thank God for the good news and the blessings. And thank you for continuing to share your journey with us Shannon. You and Kayla and Tyler are in our hearts, thoughts and prayers continually.

  15. Shannon…. I read your posts with the memory of Kayla’s quiet smile and despite what she’s going through, the vitality and twinkle of youth…, with the memory of Tyler’s infectious energy tossing a football around (he was on my team) and with your steady faith in whatever comes next. I’m really happy for these results… and hold the three of you in my thoughts and in my heart.

  16. Yeaaaaaahhhhhhh!!!!! Our prayers and yours answered!! Trust Kayla to find an alternative option!! So happy for all of you!! So inspired by your grace. Sending out more healing light – soak it up, my friend!!
    Carpe Diem!!

  17. So very happy to hear the news! Shannon, Kayla and Tyler, you are in our hearts and prayers every single day. You are all truly amazing and inspire all of us. Sending love and peace T xoxo…..

  18. Rebecca Braun says:

    Wow….another amazing miracle! You are surrounded by so many people who love you! Your twinkles in your eyes give us all confidence that you will win!
    Love always,

  19. The Stepan's says:

    As Steve Miller Band says “Keep on Rockin Baby!” Kayla we are so glad you are doing well and keep on astounding us with your easy going spirit just rolling with the curve balls you are being thrown with such grace! As the saying goes Carpe Diem!

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