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Chris Fabry
Married to Andrea since 1982. We have 9 children together and none apart. Our dog's name is Tebow.
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Where We Are Now

After finding and remediating mold twice in our Colorado home, we abandoned ship in October 2008. Because of the high levels of exposure, our entire family was affected. After months of seeing different specialists for all of the problems, we came to Arizona to begin comprehensive treatment to rid our bodies of the toxic buildup. In August 2009 we moved into a larger home, four bedrooms, south of Tucson, north of Mexico. I am doing my daily radio program/ writing from that location. Thanks for praying for us. We really feel it.

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Wednesday, January 28, 2009
It happened on Saturday when a friend "just happened" to be in the area. He asked what I was doing and I said, "Packing."

"Okay, I'll come help."

He drove down from Denver and we mostly talked and ate lunch. He was about to leave when he said, "Let me pray for you."

He put his hand on my shoulder and prayed something from the heart and I was overwhelmed with gratitude, not only to him but also to God for such a wonderful person.

It happened again tonight. My son suggested we give some of the furniture we'd been given to a friend's family. Wonderful people. It's too long of a story to tell, but suffice it to say, we loaded up the truck and moved it on over to their new house.

Before we left, the dad put his hand on my shoulder and said, "Let us pray for you before you leave."

I can't tell you what that meant. It almost felt like a hand reaching down from heaven, not just touching us but holding us up.

This has been a really terrible, awful, horrible, wonderful experience. And it just keeps getting better the more I relax and let God work out the details.
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
I know this move to Arizona is really happening because I just changed my address. Actually, we'll have our mail forwarded to Arizona for a while, until we can return. My credit card was charged $1, so I know this is happening.

If you haven't read Andrea's post about the symptoms she has had over the past few months, go to her blog. The link is to the right. It's scary to see such a young person have these symptoms. She is sure that I have them too. Memory loss. A brain "fog." Repeating things you've told friends and family. Just sounds like a normal day to me in the camper. I don't think I have those symptoms, but she's usually right.

It snowed here last night and the temperatures are frigid. Ryan and I sat on our one piece of furniture remaining, a couch, and draped electric blankets over us as we watched a movie. I took a bunch of food cans and unopened packages to our local food pantry but they had closed because of the weather. Where is global warming when you need it?

Oh, I almost forgot. If you haven't read Andrea's post about the symptoms she has had over the past few months, go to her blog. The link is to the right.

I guess this is really happening.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Here is an update on the post about Thunder, the service dog. On Friday, 1-16, I read some stories about little things people do that mean so much. There's something about Thunder's story that gets me, and I'm hoping it gets you, too. This is a puppy picture of Thunder. Read the email from a listener who has done a lot for someone she doesn't even know. And then enjoy the pictures of this beautiful dog.


Hi Chris,
I caught the last 10 minutes of your program today and it caught my attention. I just re-listened to it.

My little puppy story began last April (2008). I became a puppy raiser for an organization called Dogs for Disabilities who provides service dogs for people with disabilities. I received a 9 week old puppy named Thunder. I did all of the puppy raising; house-breaking, obedience training, etc. After he graduated from obedience training he received his "service dog in training" vest and we went out into community to get him exposed to different environments. We went to grocery stores, the mall, a restuarant and on a train and bus.

This past Sunday, January 11, 2009 I had to say goodbye; it was time to return him so he could begin his 8 months of formal training; learning how to turn on lights, open doors, retrieve items, etc. When he completes this training he will be given to a person that has a disability. I will be able to meet this person that I helped raise this dog for.

Thunder's job will be to assist this disabled person with daily tasks; giving them their independence back. He will also provide companionship and unconditional love and make them more "approachable" by people in the community.

It is difficult to say goodbye to Thunder. However, I know that I have given someone a very special gift; the gift of independence and uncondtional love and that makes it all worthwhile.

Jodi


Friday, January 23, 2009
Here is the family I talked about on the program today. What a story!





As you can tell, they are fans of the Indianapolis Colts!
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We finally took the plunge yesterday and hired an enviro company to test the entire "old" house. We believe this information will help us determine what will need to be done to make the home habitable again, or if we will need to simply destroy it.

I've kept the electricity off for most of the home, still running the fridge, but cutting off the gas and water. It's been this dark behemoth on a hill. The lights in the garage burned out a month or two ago. So it was eerie watching two people in Tyvek suits and masks wander through the kids' rooms taking samples of the carpet and doing air tests. This company believes the other two remediators did not find the true source of the problem so their testing is more extensive and more expensive. Funny how much a "t" and a "p" can change a word (extensive, expensive). But, as Andrea told me, this is information we really need in order to move on with our lives. Even if we lose that money by being told, "Destroy it," I won't regret it. At least we'll know.

I stood by Kristen's room and saw her favorite cover on her bed, and all the books on her bookshelf. I saw DVDs in the downstairs family room, near a TV. The couch down there was leather and was a favorite of Pippen and Frodo. They would climb up on the back of the couch and sleep in the sun until someone came to the door and then they'd be off, running and barking through the house. Even after Pippen went blind he loved to climb up there. That was the first piece of furniture we bought for the house, as I recall, eight years ago. It had been moved downstairs because of a newer, better colored couch we'd purchased in the past couple of years, but my heart longed to just sit on that couch and drink in the memories. The friends who had been with us there, the movies we'd watched together, the "discussions" we'd had there. The tears, laughter, blood, soil, sweat... Maybe that was Winston Churchill's couch before we bought it.

I went around back to look into the kitchen. It was just like we left it in October. The phone lying on the kitchen table. Homework there. A vase of fake flowers. The oven and the refrigerator were almost new, and it pained me to think of all the work we'd done. All the new carpet. The decorating and painting. It's really a gorgeous home with one problem. It was killing us. Slowly, yes, but it was killing us.

I talked with Andrea yesterday and thanked her for being the one to choose truth over illusion. Sometimes the truth is harder to believe than the illusion that everything is okay. She knew in her gut that something was wrong and wouldn't stop until she found answers.

Now we're in for a battle with the health insurance company over coverage. They've denied us coverage for the testing and the doctor we're seeing. We'll appeal, of course, but it's one more hurdle in a long line of hurdles to discover the truth and act on it.
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Andrea called from the doctor's office in Arizona to give me an update and to let me hear the consult. I've never heard so many words I didn't understand. She and the kids are going through a detox process from the exposure to our toxic mold.

All 11 of us have now been tested for the presence of certain toxins. We are all positive for aflatoxins. I looked it up. "Aflatoxins are potent toxic, carcinogenic, mutagenic, immunosuppressive agents, produced as secondary metabolites..." See what I mean? The word I landed on in there was carcinogenic. Yuck. Double yuck and ewww.

Again, this is why Andrea's "gut" told her she needed to get the kids seen even if the insurance company doesn't cover our treatment (which, so far has not come through).

So we all have basically been sickened by the environment we were in. There is emotional distress not only because of the losses we've seen, the house, the pets, possessions, but also as part of the exposure. These toxins work on the brain and other internal organs, including potential pulmonary problems. I couldn't resist the alliteration.

We were exposed at high levels, higher than any doctors we've talked to have seen. In studies conducted around the world, York England was a site where they found women were at 26 and men 29 parts per trillion. When they detect more than 1 part per billion, it's significant, and we were in the significant range.

Aflatoxins are able to alter the code or structure of the DNA, inserting themselves into the DNA code or causing breaks in the code. That means potential problems of birth defects, cancers, and metabolic abnormalities. It is listed as a confirmed human carcinogen by the WHO, not the band, the World Health Organization.

All of that went by in a blur, especially the part about aflatoxins and it's relation to autism. Samples on autistic children have shown them to be positive for aflatoxin at significant levels. That causes me to wonder about friends who have autistic children.

Here's what Andrea wrote on her blog last night. You can click on her link to the right.

"All 11 of us have now tested positive for aflatoxins. When you understand the nature of these mycotoxins and their capacity to do harm this could be alarming news. But, as one who has searched for answers for months on end, this news comes as a relief.No more wondering which child to treat. No more wondering about Chris or myself. I recommend this test (which is a urine test) wholeheartedly to someone wondering about mold exposure and their family. Aflatoxin is the mycotoxin that comes from aspergillus. Ochratoxin comes from penicillium and tricothecene comes from stachybotrys. The aflatoxin test is the only one we have had for all members of our family. The tests are available through Real Time Labs and require a doctor's order. They are costly but often reimbursed by insurance."

All of this causes me to wonder how our story will end. There is someone who knows and he hasn't let us in on any of it. Yet. Part of faith is taking one day at a time and letting God work. I think that's the only thing we can do now--do all we can to get better and let God take care of the rest.
Tuesday, January 20, 2009
Will you respect the office of the President and the man who is charged by our country and by God to lead us?

Will you pray for this man and daily ask God not only for protection, but also for wisdom to lead our free nation?

Will you commit to repent of pre-judging him on things you’ve heard, on rumors you’ve been sent by email?

Will you pray for his wife in her new role? For his daughters who will be in the spotlight like never before?

Will you give him an opportunity to make decisions without vilifying him personally?

And when you disagree with a policy, when you believe he is going the wrong direction, will you speak the truth in love, will you be unlike those who have taken the opportunity to tear President Bush down at seemingly every turn?

To support, means to love. And agreeing with everything a person says when they are wrong is not loving. But to disagree in a way that shows dignity to that other person, while at the same time pointing out the truth, is what support means.
Monday, January 19, 2009
Sometimes things make sense and you feel like God is really in control. Other times he is, but you don't feel that way. Sunday, 1/18, I knew he was looking out for us and others.

At church, I saw a friend who asked how things were going and wanted to know what she could do to help. I told her there was a lot of furniture in our home that we needed to give away, and then I needed to clean the rental house, have the carpets cleaned, etc. She said, "I have a couple of ladies who will come over, clean out your refrigerator, etc. You just tell us when to be there."

That was very nice of them and I felt excited that we had the ball moving. But I was still worried about the furniture. I don't want to store it and leave a trail behind us. The only things we really need are our mattresses and a desk or two for the computer stuff. So after church, Ryan and I brought up end tables and the foosball table we were given. People let us have couches and chairs and soon our rental home was fully furnished.

While I watched the Arizona/Philadelphia game (Yay Cardinals!), Ryan went to a friend's house for dinner. I kept going through the inventory of the house, wondering if Goodwill would take it all, again overwhelmed at the thought of people coming by and taking one table or a few chairs, and having to schedule when I could be here to help them.

Ryan called. "Dad, you know how I told you this family is moving into a house in February? Well, I think they need some furniture."

I talked with the mom and they came over to look at it. This family moved to Colorado from the east coast to work with Youth With A Mission. They basically left all their worldly goods back there and exist on the meager support of their church and friends. They are renting a townhouse now, with very little furniture, and they've been content.

A few weeks ago a couple approached them and asked if they wanted to buy their house. That couple is moving to South Carolina. The family looked at the house and immediately knew there was no way. They couldn't afford the monthly payment.

"Think about it," the owner said.

What was to think about? They couldn't afford it.

The owner came back to them later and said, "What if you paid exactly what you pay now for your rent on the townhouse?"

"How can you do that?"

"We know you are the ones who need to be in that house," the owner said.

So they agreed. However, walking down this new road brings another question. How can they furnish a big house? They decided to cross that bridge when they came to February.

In walked Ryan and our need to get rid of stuff. The couple came to the house, looked at the couches, chairs, table/chairs, coffee tables, lamps, foosball table, and I could see their eyes just widen. This is not beat-up stuff, this is gently used furniture. A lot of it.

"You can have as much or as little as you want," I said.

"We'll take it all," he said.

"Are you sure you don't want anything for it?" she said.

I smiled. It wasn't mine to sell, really. And I wouldn't have charged them a nickel if I could.

"It even matches the color of the house!" she said.

So in a few days, when we work out the moving, all of this stuff that's a weight to me right now will be in the home that God wanted someone else to be in who didn't have anything. It's just like him to see the big picture.
Wednesday, January 14, 2009
It was a hard night last night. Shannon and Kristen left Colorado for Arizona and now Ryan and I are alone here. I kept looking at Kristen's snow boots, her drawings, Shannon's candles, and all the stuff they've left thinking that we are coming to the end of a chapter. A hard chapter.

Before they left I had to have her car repaired, and then, as they were packing, I whisked over to a store in town called Toys 4 Fun. For Christmas someone gave Kaitlyn a $25 gift certificate to the store, but she's been in Arizona, unable to spend her gift money.

As I walked into the store, a friend passed with a couple of wrapped packages. "You're Chris, right?" Suddenly I thought of all those unpaid bills. Not to worry, she was a friend of Andrea's (now there's a big pool) and had read my blog. "I've seen your van down by the river," she said.

She said she was praying for us and I thanked her.

I called Kaitlyn and said, "I'm at the store. What do you want?"


Here's a picture of Kaitlyn with Tricia last year just before we started doing the Chris Fabry Live radio program.




That little tremble of excitement sounded in her voice. Like the Christmas gift you find in the trash before it goes to the curb. "Okay. You know where we got those animals in the packages? Go there and turn left."

It was like a toy Mapquest. She knew exactly what she wanted and where they were.

"On the wall is a big display of animals. Look at the second shelf where the dogs are. What do you see?"

I told her about all the dogs and the puppies.

"What kind are there?"

"Well, I see a black lab and a yellow lab and a..." Suddenly I didn't know my dog breeds as well as I thought. My back tensed. I was choking. "A border collie! That's what that is. And a German Shepherd..."

"I'll take a Border Collie," she said. "And the two labs. And what other kinds are there?"

"There's a Great Dane...no, not a Great Dane, the kind of Dog that was on Beethoven." Where is the American Kennel Club when you need them? I couldn't tell the difference at the moment between a Shiba Inu and a Cairn Terrier.

"And the Beethoven dog has two puppies."

"Oh, get the Mama and the puppies," she said.

I took the litter to the cashier and the whole thing, with tax, was $25.20. I went back to the house, stuffed the pups into one of the bags Shannon and Kristen had in the car, then stepped back to wave.

The house we're renting is right next to the road and when they went out of sight I ran into the kitchen so I could step onto the porch and wave again, but they passed before they could see me. So I just stood there and watched them drive away.

One day the pain of all this will pass. We might even laugh at what's happened.

Some day.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
I just had a conversation with a friend this morning who works at a trade and has seen his business drop to nearly nothing. He goes to our church and he was in the parking lot of a gas station where people park their cars with For Sale signs. His son has his eye on a nice Ford truck, big tires, rusted out, about $1,500.

I asked him how he was doing and I could tell from the look in his eyes. He didn't even have to answer. Life has just beaten him up. He's been selling everything of value he has to stay afloat.

We talked about the "waiting" message we'd heard on Sunday and how sometimes you have to do something, you have to move, but in the midst of "doing" you can still wait. I think that's the hard thing about faith. To exercise it you have to move , you have to roll up your sleeves and do some hard work, but simultaneously you know that you're not the one pulling the strings. This is out of your ability to control.

Contrast that with the news yesterday that Tony Dungy is retiring from football. Why would anyone give up a lucrative coaching career? I heard him talk about his family, and I know he has some young children. Plus, in an interview before the last playoff game, he talked about the murder rate in Indianapolis and how he thought he could be a good influence working harder in the community. Seems like God is at work in his heart, too.

God is up to something in all of this. He's stirring and "yeasting us." Don't underestimate the power of a conversation in the parking lot. Maybe you'll have one today.
Sunday, January 11, 2009
It's one of the hardest things to do. It's one of the most important.

Waiting.

Our pastor talked about this today. He said, "Without waiting, there is no hope."

If all of our needs were met immediately and we didn't have to wait, there would be no reason for hope.

Are you waiting?

What for?

How long?

I'll talk more about this.
cf
Friday, January 9, 2009
1· Have dinner ready. Plan ahead, even the night before, to have a delicious meal ready on time. This is a way of letting him know that you have been thinking about him and are concerned about his needs. Most men are hungry when they come home and the prospect of a good meal is part of the warm welcome needed.

2· Prepare yourself. Take fifteen minutes to rest so that you are refreshed when he arrives. Touch up your makeup, put a ribbon in your hair and be fresh looking. He has just been with a lot of work-weary people. Be a little gay and a little more interesting. His boring day may need a lift.

3· Clear away the clutter. Make one last trip through the main part of the house. Gather up the books, toys, and newspapers. Dust the tables so that they appear clean. Your husband will feel that he has reached his haven of rest and order. Doing this for him will give you a lift also.

4· Prepare the children. Take a few minutes to wash their faces and hands. Comb their hair and change their clothes if it is necessary to make them look presentable to him. They are “God’s Creatures” and your husband would like to see them playing their part.

5· Minimize all noise. At the time of his arrival, eliminate all the noises of the washer, dryer, dishwasher, and vacuum. You’ve had plenty of time to do these things during the day. Don’t do them now. Encourage your children to be quiet. Be happy to see your husband. Greet him with a warm smile.

6· Do not greet your husband with problems or complaints.Don’t complain when he is late for dinner. Count this as minor when compared to what he had to go through today.

7· Make him comfortable. Have him lean back in a comfortable chair or suggest that he lie down for a few minutes in the bedroom. Have a cool or warm drink ready for him. Arrange his pillow and offer to take off his shoes. Speak in a low, soft, soothing and pleasant voice. Allow him to relax and unwind.

8· Listen to him. You may have a dozen things to tell him but the moment of his arrival is not the time. Let him speak first.

9· Make the evening his.He is special! Never complain that he does not take you out to dinner or to other pleasant entertainment. Instead, try to understand his world of strain and pressure, his need to unwind and relax. Remember that you relaxed all day waiting for his return. Now it’s his turn to enjoy what you enjoyed. Try to make his home a place of peace and order, a place where your husband can relax in body and spirit.
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
My friend Dan did the painting. Now all I need is a really long phone cord and I'm on the road. This is as close to Hee Haw as it gets, folks.
Here it is, my new broadcast home, in a camper in front of the home we vacated in October. This is the Fabry International Mobile Broadcasting Network. Never thought I'd be putting these pictures up. Never thought my wife and most kids would be 800 miles away while this happened. Never thought I would need to level my CD burner because I'm broadcasting downhill. But here we are. Notice the propane tanks on the front. If I get some really nasty callers, those are going to light up. Also, if you look closely, you can see the phone line run in through a window. This is just the clothes I wear to get the studio ready. I always wear a suit and tie when I do the show. Enjoy the pics taken by my neighbor, Becky.


Those pine trees are really pretty this time of year. And you see the amount of sunshine we get, even in the winter.


Here is a profile of the camper, donated for this use by my friend, Jim. He is from Arkansas so I found a dead deer in the back of the camper.



Time to slip the surly bonds of my casual outfit and get dressed for the program. Thanks for your support.
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Someone wrote me today and said, "That you're still broadcasting has to be a God thing." I agree. There have been so many obstacles to getting on the air each day, but that's part of the struggle, I guess.

In my driveway right now, with the blessing of the homeowner's association (only until the end of January), there sits a camper. And in that camper is all the worldly goods I have to broadcast and record my program. And in the midst of hooking up the equipment Monday, I realized that the ISDN unit, the thing that gets my lovely voice into the phone line and out the other side in Chicago, did not power up. I tried everything I know to do and it just didn't work.

Now, either in the cleaning process it was damaged, or in the cold (but I don't think the temperature affects those boxes), or there was some little imp who thought it would thwart our purposes who tweaked a diode or two.

Well, it looks like I won't be braodcasting from that lovely camper today, but I'm not giving up, especially with the subject matter we are to discuss. Read the next blog if you want to know what it's about.

I don't know when or if I will be able to broadcast from the van down by the driveway, but I promise you it will be memorable.
Friday, January 2, 2009
I came to a conclusion today, not as some resolution I have made for 2009, but an awareness that I am at a point where I need to abandon the plan. I spoke to a group of unpublished writers a few weeks ago and my message to them was that their striving for this elusive goal of being published is really not about their book, them, or their plans. It’s not about my book and plans. It’s about what He wants to do to and through us.

So I have abandoned the sweet dreams I had about my career, my radio presence, how moving my writing can be, how much I want to affect others for the Kingdom. I have slipped the surly bonds of expectation about any of that. I have abandoned the good ship Christopher, and am now floating in the stream of the mercy and grace of God. Not swimming and striving, but floating. Being buoyed by a hand I cannot see, but I know is there.

I will still work at the tasks I am given with all my heart. I will still strive to become a better story-teller and interviewer and husband and father. But I have abandoned my own plan for what life should look like. For what happiness should be.

To some that will sound scary. To me, today, it feels like freedom.