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Jul 10, 2010

Abby Mold Update

From Brent

Some gracious brothers from our church came over today and helped me tear out the moldy bathroom. It took 4 of us about 3 hours. Not too bad. Taught me a lesson too...

Normally I just do all this kind of stuff by myself and it would have taken me 10-12 hours to do it by myself. But stubborn me would have done it because I don't like to inconvenience others or ask them for their time. Lesson: sometimes we have to humble ourselves and ask for help. The flip side of that is this: there are lots of people who would love to help, they just have to know there is a need. They can't know of a need, if no one asks.

Which brings me to another point.

Someone wrote a nasty comment criticizing us (and Christian bloggers in general) about "asking for stuff all the time", (ie. prayers, advice, help with adoptions, etc.). They characterized the Riggs family specifically as an example of moochers and beggars, always wanting people to "help" them. (Note: it's particularly interesting to be accused of this when my own friends have chastised me more than once recently for not asking for and accepting more help during this overwhelming situation)

Besides the obvious (why do you read our blog if you have that low an opinion of us or Christianity?) what they don't consider (or maybe know because we don't get on our blog and say "look what we did") is:
  1. How much of our own life, energy, emotions and time is given to help others (which is a considerable amount and that's all I will say about that).
  2. We are rabid believers in personal responsibility and never DEPEND ON or EXPECT help with an "I deserve" mentality that is so prevalent today. Anyone who has read our blogs or my books AT ALL knows we work hard, live modestly and invest our life in others.
  3. How many decades we've been the ones GIVING THE HELP (time, money, energy, advice, support, care, etc), and God has blessed us in return with support we need during this particularly difficult time of cancer for our family ("you reap what you sow"... sound familiar?)
The primary reason I mention the nasty comment (submitted by the always brave "anonymous" of course) is to take the opportunity to say "thank you" and brag about you (okay, and maybe I felt a little defensive too).

We've come to realize that our blog friends have a wealth of great advice, experience and ideas... and you are totally unselfish with it. It would be stupid not to ASK you fine folks for your advice, suggestions and HELP (especially given the amount of times people have expressed their desire to help but just didn't know what they could do).

Since Abby got sick, we've solved problems, fixed things, accomplished things, and made a lot of this much less painful because of "help" (in all forms) from our gracious blogging and Christianity family. If that's "begging", then call me a beggar. If that's not Christianity and/or "goodness" in action, I don't what is. Perhaps "Anonymous" has neither given nor received the blessing of brotherly love where HELPING and receiving help is a way of life.

By the way, never hesitate to ask us for help. If we can we will. We always have.



Here was the mold on the drywall after we pulled the tile off the shower/tub. The drywall all the way around the tub area looked like this.

I’m wondering if this is why I’ve (Brent) been sick every 3-4 months for the past 3 years. I used to get “upper respiratory” about once every three years; now I get sick every 3 or so MONTHS like clockwork. We hope this mold removal will solve the mystery with Abby, and maybe be the end of my own chronic cycle.



Thanks so much to Meeksy, Evan and Scott for coming over today and making quick work of this mess. And a HUGE thank you to all involved in this project to help Abby; the mold testing, the ideas, the time, the materials, labor… we are SO blessed to have such wonderful friends.

33 comments:

jusjonzin@yahoo.com said...

Brent... it is what it is... anyone who has followed your blog knows how giving you are but there are always those who mean no good. I've been in the spot of the giver and also of the needy. I KNOW how much better it feels to be the giver as opposed to being the needy. It's very humbling.... One day the people who criticize you may very well be standing in different shoes... then they can speak. I hope getting rid of the mold helps you all!

Mom to 9 Blessings! said...

Sometimes I wonder where in the world grace and mercy live?

What about love?

What about don't judge lest you be judged?

I'm glad to stand along side of your family in prayer and help in any way we can living so far away! We love all of you! We praise God for your testimony!

Praying this really does end your chronic health issues - you will be surprised how bad that mold is for all of you!

Blessings and love,
Jill

Anonymous said...

Brent,

I'm glad you asked for help because...

God is using this situation to teach you humbleness (I'm not saying that in any joking fashion, it's just always good when we learn.

You are doing your family a disservice if you do not ask for help. If you had stubbornly done the entire thing yourself you would have taken even more time away from your wife, your kids, your job. A good husband and father knows when to ask for help.

If you never ask for help you deprive others of the chance to serve and to bless you. You can't always be the giver. Others want to be givers too.

You had the chance to become a little bit closer to some brothers in Christ, yes? My guess is that you haven't exactly have time to go bowling with the buddies lately. Friendships are often built or deepened during hard times through helping each other. My guess is that you guys had a few laughs as you worked.

These men will now be more likely to ask for help themselves, when they need it - continuing the cycle of Christians helping each other and loving each other. This is God's plan and going it alone is not. You know plenty of scripture to support that.

Very glad so much got done and praying this will improve your family's health!

Susan in NC

Tribulation said...

i just wanna say that i love you and your whole family. you guys are an inspiration to all of out here in in the vast expanse of the internet. and as for Mr, Anonymous.... :P who needs him? lol

hope the bathroom remodel does a lot of good for all your health. and to the three guys who helped, a great big THANK YOU!! * now don't go getting yourselves sick from ripping out that yucky stuff! lol

Laurie said...

I always try to remember not accepting help from someone is robbing them of a blessing! So bless them and let 'em help!

Denise said...

SO glad you're getting rid of all of that nasty mold! Praying that you all feel much, much better once it's gone.

Kameron said...

Brent, don't let those nasty people get you down. I know first hand how hard that is though. I have been attacked on my blog and it just eats away at me, makes me doubt myself... But brother, please know that NONE of us see you as a moocher... we are brothers and sisters in Christ, and we are supposed to be transparent. You are doing exactly what you are supposed to. Thank you for keeping up with the blog. You all are always in my prayers.

My Cottage Charm said...

I'm not sure why some people lash out at others, but it's obvious this Mr Anonymous needs prayer and doesn't know your family very well. If he did, he would know how much you help people in the blogging community, you've helped me several times, and that's just me. I think you have a lovely family and a loving, generous heart. We all need help sometimes and it might be humbling, but God expects us to bless each other and also be a blessing...and you've been both. :)
OH and I'm glad the mold is gone! Hopefully you guys will start feeling better soon!
Love and prayers
Missy

Katrina Hammett said...

There is a scripture, you have not because you ask not.
Let others help. Ask for help. Keep doing what you are doing.
It is all about ABBY. Her healing.. WOW She will have a testimony.
I have learned that people will talk about you no matter what you do. Let them Pray for them. BUT DON'T RECEIVE IT!!! WE love your family....

Chris and Sarah said...

Amen!!!

Carey said...

Praying that the mold removal will prove to be a big change in Abby's health...and everyones! God Bless!

{And don't be afraid to ask for more help putting the bath back together! =) }

Are These Kids All Yours? said...

Praying this helps a lot!!!!! AMAZING to have wonderful friends that want to help :)

Anonymous said...

You know, it takes a 'village' to get along. The more we help each other the better off we all are. If anonymous doesn't get it, too bad. He's missing out on the best part of life.

Glad you got that going and hope you get it finished very soon. I'm sure it will make you all feel better.

Jan

Haupi said...

One of the biggest blessings is for someone to ask me for help - it's an opportunity for me to caste my bread out onto the water... You have to give to get. And I always receive when I give, so I don't understand why anyone would or could find fault with you? I'm glad you were able to get your bathroom gutted in no time because you did ask for help -giving others the opportunity to give. I know your little girl will feel better, just watch.

Anyway you're doing just find. Remember some people found fault with our Lord - so why not us. I love your blog. Hope you're posting up pictures of your new bathroom when it's finished. Smiles.

Haupi
http://hauplight.blogspot.com/

Jerry and Christy said...

Brent,
I'm so glad you asked for help. My husband is like you and loves to help others, but doesn't like to ask for help. It always blesses others to be able to help.
I hope this helps Abby and you with your health.
Christy

Sabrina said...

First of all, who cares what those people think!? When you put your family out there in the public there are always going to be those kinds of people that say nasty, horrid things. You just have to grow a really tough shell and say "I don't care what you think". Look at MckMama and all the garbage she's gone through. You are fortunate to have wonderful friends and church family members that not only can, but offer to come help you out. I think it's wonderful. Now, as to the mold - GROSS! I hope everyone had masks on when you were tearing that out! YUCK, YUCK, YUCK! I'm certain you will all be much healthier without all of that in your house! I would have to say that if it's in the walls like that, it's probably in the floor too, be sure to check the sub-floor and whatever is under that bathroom for mold in the ceiling. It's a HUGE undertaking, and mold can be very tricky. My aunt has a major mold problem in her basement right now - it's everywhere. Yuck. There are also companies that will come do the mold-ridding for you, and it costs you nothing. Your home-owner's insurance pays the bill. That's who we called. They located all the mold and are taking care of it now. Best Wishes, and continued prayers for Abby! PS - is it just me, or does Abby suddenly look so grown up!?

Anonymous said...

Any thing else I can do to help? And what about starting to replace the bathroom pictures? Hopefully you have another bath to use while this one is remodeled. (Have experienced this - no bathroom.)sg-KS

Sophie said...

So sorry your experiencing a mold problem.
I find it so sad that someone would criticize your asking for help, also if people didn't want to help you they wouldn't offer.
Unfortunately so many have become indifferent to the needs of others, how can we express the love of Christ if we never help others and by not accepting help from others we rob them of a blessing.
Keeping your family in my prayers

Anonymous said...

so glad you got help!! it seems we all feel to one degree or another how difficult it is to accept help without feeling pained or awkward or guilty. and yet when we offer it, we don't want the other person to feel that way!!! so bless you for your honesty, and keep asking for what would help you. and challenge yourself to feel just fine about it. people will not do what they can't or don't want to. ask it for your family. we know you are not selfish. as far as the nasty comment: there is so much illness in this world. so many people just filled with rage and ready to attack, and the internet is an easy outlet. it is so strange. please just say a prayer for the person's sanity, and don't give it another thought when you get those crazy mean ones.

Pam said...

my family was sick from mold when we moved into this house too, I am sure it will make a huge difference!! We bought an air purifier too, maybe that would help too! Still praying for your family and glad to do it!! We've been given much!!

jody said...

How can people be just so mean??? Can not understand it? On another note, how can Abby be sooooo beautiful and be so sick? Still praying!!!

libby @ ninesandquines said...

I will bet you that you start to feel better too. We lived in an older house (built in the 40's) for 6 years and had musty/moldy issues in the basement - we couldn't get the "smell" out no matter what we did. We never spent time down there, but it was there. My husband and I would get sick every couple of months, spring, summer, winter and fall. We moved to a house only 10 years old a couple of years ago and I have been sick ONCE - with a bad cold that I caught from my nephews! It's amazing how much it will make a difference!!!

wy-not said...

I hope this mould removal improves even the general health of your whole family. That stuff can be deadly. And kudos for seeking help – it's not easy to ask, but people are usually more than happy to jump in with both feet. As to the Negative Nellies - I really wonder about them. Do they take their hatefulness and just spend their days spreading darkness all over the World Wide Web? I don't understand it. They're the ones who need to be asking for help – divine help.

Becky said...

Hi Brent. I was wondering if you know why boys get one more year of chemo than girls? Is it ALL that Abby has?
Do you get a say in how long Abby undergos chemo? I'm just curious. How do you and Michelle feel about there only being 4 months left? Sorry for all the questions, I would just like to be able to see the long term prognosis for Abby. I pray for her every day!
Becky

Anonymous said...

Brent:
I don't know what the "complainers problem is or why they felt the need to say anything or even why it was their business but please know that I wish I lived closer so I could have came and helped even if it was no more than bringing a meal or helping clean up (since I know nothing about that kind of stuff (o: Please know that I am praying that this helps Ms.sweet brave Abby and that one day you can look and see all of this behind you.
Leveta--A Mom to Chad 17 bio and Sam and Kaitrin adopted from India through Dillon International

Juli said...

Any updates on the mold clean up or Abby? Think and keep her in prayer throughout our days -

God Bless You All! Hope you are enjoying your summer -
Juli in Missouri

Anonymous said...

Christine Reed on www.smilesandtrials.blogspot.com just posted about two children adopted from Ethiopia that need a home. I think they are older than you were planning to adopt, but I thought I would point it out just in case.

Shari said...

Hi Riggs Family - I know you are looking into another adoption, with funding being an issue. I got an email this mornings from Reese's Rainbow where they are looking for a family for a little boy named Monroe - he has a full adoption grant of $20k, all he needs is a loving family! I wanted to let you know in case you feel that he may be your future son. You can find him here http://www.reecesrainbow.org/havegrantwilltravel.html Best wishes and God bless!

Beth said...

I am here on your blog for the first time and reading all of it. I don't get a negative feeling that you are asking too much. I can believe that people are ignorant, self righteous, and just plain mean. I can't however imagine someone being so ruthless and leaving such horrible comments. God Bless you and your family.

Sam said...

It isn't often that I get on your blog and you haven't updated in eight days. I hope everything is okay.

Samantha said...

I'm sorry that someone felt the need to hurt you this way. Please never feel that you have to justify what you are doing to help your family.

Wendi Taylor said...

I hope all is well with Abby... starting to worry that she may be hospitalized & we don't know it. Praying... I know that God knows what the situation is. Please update when you can.

Mary Beth said...

There are people out there that are SO miserable in their lives that they have to contantly attack other people. Asking for help and giving help is what God wants us to do.