Deacon went to collect the eggs from the chickens this morning. Minutes later, muffled pleas for help made their way to my ears. I threw on my galoshes and ran outside to find our dog Sadie with her teeth around a rooster’s neck and Deacon flapping his arms like a chicken screaming at her. Our other dog Howdy was running around barking and the scene was chaotic. The door to the chicken coop was still open and as I wrangled the rooster free of Sadie’s jaws another one escaped. I wrestled both dogs to the ground, pinning them under my knees while Deacon tried to corral his crowing subjects back into the coop to no avail.

All this while still wearing my pink pajamas and polka-dot rain boots mind you.

In our front pasture, mid-morning.

I just knew the neighbors would come outside to see what all the ruckus was about and there I’d be. My cheeks reddened at the thought.

It soon became obvious that the rooster was outwitting Deacon and I needed to step in. So I drug the two reluctant canines to the house, yelling and jerking them towards the front door as they tried to back out of their collars. This was not the peaceful Saturday morning I was anticipating.
When I got back to Deacon we worked together and finally corralled the birds back into the coop. I locked the gate and we made our way back to the house so I could finish my coffee.

Fast forward a couple of hours and Deacon and I are on our way out the door to go to the garden supply store. I slide into the driver’s seat when I notice that ALL of the chickens and roosters are having a meeting by the neighbors fence-line. They are not in the coop. They are staging a coup.
Madness ensues, all the big boys are away for a morning with Dad, and Deacon and I are responsible for getting all of these birds to go back. At least this time I have clothes on.

After several unlucky attempts at trying to bait them with food and herd them toward safety, we give up. All of the birds are now tucked into the brambley bushes that line the fence-line and they are not coming out.
In a moment of frustration I put my hands on my hips and look up. And that’s when I see it.

The wind is blowing the clouds so fiercely it looks like they are tumbling over one another. They move so fast that it’s striking and supernatural and other-worldly. And I cry a little, because my tears are always near the surface these days. I cry because I’m reminded that He is still BIG and He is still HERE and I had forgotten that for a minute or a day or more.

But there’s no denying it. Chance doesn’t make clouds like that with a flawless blue backdrop, and order doesn’t magically appear out of chaos. And Phoebe wasn’t just some happenstance of cells coming together. His fingerprints are suddenly on everything and for a moment I’m drawn out of the abyss with the stark raving beauty of it all.

The heavens proclaim the glory of God.
The skies display his craftsmanship.
Day after day they continue to speak;
night after night they make him known.
They speak without a sound or word;
their voice is never heard.
Yet their message has gone throughout the earth,
and their words to all the world.
~Psalm 119:1-3~


About Amey Fair

I am Amey Fair, wife to Nathan, and home-educating Mom to Benjamin (9), Averic (7), Deacon (4) and Phoebe (2) . Phoebe was diagnosed with a rare childhood malignant brain cancer called Atypical Teratoid Rabdoid Tumor on January 1, 2012. She had complete resection surgery to remove the tumor on January 4th and began chemotherapy using the Dana Farber protocol on January 26th. A few weeks ago I was sleeping in the chair next to Phoebe's bed in the hospital when I heard her little voice drawing me out of sleep. It was 3 am and it took me a minute to shake off the slumber. "Mommy I'm a mean girl" I thought she said. "No Phoebe, you're a nice girl!" I replied. "No Mommy, I'm a MIRACLE!" Phoebe said. "I'm a MIRACLE, I'm a MIRACLE, I'm a MIRACLE!" she continued on. My tears welled up and spilled over as she made her declaration. Phoebe doesn't know the word "miracle" nor the concept, she's only 2. It was as if the Lord was speaking through her like a prophetic utterance. She fell right back to sleep and I sat there awake, lingering in the magical moment. Less than 40 children are diagnosed with Phoebe's type of cancer in the U.S. each year. This is why it's called "ATYPICAL Teratoid Rabdoid Tumor". So, I have titled this blog in honor of Phoebe, our "Atypical Miracle". We are YWAM'ers, serving in missions through Youth With A Mission since 1998. Before returning to the states 1 year ago, we lived near Guadalajara Mexico for 3 years. It was during our year of agricultural missions training in Waco, TX that Phoebe began exhibiting symptoms from the pressure of the tumor on her brain. Weight loss, lethargy, extreme thirst and vomiting were her symptoms. We have been granted sabbatical during this time to focus on Phoebe's intensive chemotherapy treatment and are renting a home in Dallas near the Children's hospital where Phoebe is being treated. Like the woman who touched the hem of Jesus' robe in Luke chapter 8, we cling to Him, knowing that He is Phoebe's healer. If we can just touch Him, be near Him, bring Phoebe to Him each day, we have hope. He is our hope. Thank you for coming along on this journey with our family. It's therapeutic for me to write it all out, and in so doing, I hope God will use it for His glory.

24 responses »

  1. How funny!!! I have been there so many times when the dogs, chickens, cows, horses or whatever, seem to know I am alone and go running wild.

    How precious!!! God speaks to us and lets us know he is ever present and so mindful of our being, and lives, and especially heartaches!!!

    Once again, so well written I feel I was there.

    Thinking and praying for you always,

  2. This is a wonderful, crazy story of your time with Deacon. A memory both of you will always have. Again, Amey, you amaze me with your gift of seeing our Heavenly Father and Saviour, Jesus Christ, in everything that happens in your life. I love this picture of sweet baby Phoebe in her adorable pink dress, standing by what I assume to be the “baby chicks” that are now the big chickens you and Deacon were corralling! Thank you for blessing my life with your wonderment and faith. xoxo

  3. You don’t know me, but I pray for you (we are missionaries in Taiwan). We ordered one of Phoebe’s shirts for our daughter, who is 17, and she loves it. It reminds me to pray. I just lost my dad, but I cannot imagine the loss you feel of your precious Phoebe.

  4. Hugs! She was not by chance and you, her beautiful Mama and Nathan, her amazing daddy. Oh, none of your life is by chance. He is still holding, creating, forming beauty in all of the pain and darkness and struggle.

  5. Isn’t it extra-ordinary how our God can step in to touch our weary souls by capturing our attention ~ sometimes in the most delicious way ~ and remind us that He’s still on His throne and All’s Right With The World no matter WHAT it looks like or feels like?!

    Thank you, Fair family, for touching our lives/my life. I look forward to your posts, Amey.
    With love, and prayers for a more joyous, fulfilling and satisfying New Year for all of you.

  6. That was hilarious. I hope y’all got the chickens back in their coop. And yes, He is always here. Watching over us & sprinkling hope & peace over us. I praise His precious name for all the love & joy I feel when I look up & feel His arms around me. I know it still hurts Amey & I’m so sorry. Just crawl up into our Daddy’s lap & rest there a while. Love & blessings, Elaine

  7. Thanks Amey for the reminder. I forget for a moment or a day or two also! I am so thankful He doesn’t forget to remind us, if we stay open to His voice!! God bless!!

  8. Amey, in the midst of chaotic chicken and rooster herding I am glad you looked and saw the hand of our Father in the beauty of the sky. When I am frustrated from herding cows that have broken loose from the field, I always look for a comfort from Father in His creation may that be seen in the sky, woods or mountains, I can always see His hand print and am comforted. I hope you were able to get those birds back into their pen. That must be worse then trying to herd cats. 😛

    Praying and praying for you all often.

  9. Thank you for sharing the escapade with us and the comfort that you found in the beauty and might of God’s creation. Phoebe’s personality, heart, spirit, and faith still show us indeed His fingerprints of love. May He continue to shower you with special grace filled moments as you journey in the new year. Love to you all.

  10. Ahhh thank you, Amey! I can so easily forget, too. He is BIG and He is HERE. And His creation DOES testify to His glory and majesty.

    Thank you for continuing to write and share your thoughts with us. As others have said. .. your words are inspiring and full of truth. Please continue to write. I miss you when days go by without words from you!! Happy New Year to the Fair Family!!

  11. Amey, we love you and your family. Thank you for always blessing us with your experiences and reminders of our Father Creator all around us. ” All is well in my soul.”

  12. Amey, Nathan, and Boys,
    Your Phoebe is so beautiful. I love seeing new photos of her. She looks just like her mom. I think of you guys everyday and you are always and forever will be in my prayers. My daughter lights a candle in her name every Sunday at church and I say my Rosary for her. I was thinking of Phoebe the other day while I was driving and I was wondering how you guys were all doing and this song came on the radio “Let Her Go” by Passenger. It is a simple but beautiful song and it reminded me of your journey with Phoebe. It brought me to tears especially the timing of it. I know I never knew Phoebe or your family, but everything you guys have been through and endured has touched my heart so deeply. I will continue to pray for Phoebe and your family and for the healing of your broken hearts. God Bless.

  13. Hey phoebe is so beautiful. This story got me into tears it’s so sad. Am sorry you had to go through this. No one deserves to ever go through this. I have a son that’s 2 years almost 3, who is diagnosed with ATRT tumor cancer. I would like to talk to you and ask you a few questions to gain my hope up a little so please email me at feel free to contact me ASAP please thank you.

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