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This site was built to help others be more informed of the hazards of intubation at anytime. My family and I have struggled for several years now with the heartache and financial burden put upon us due to excessive intubation .. We all want our children and loved ones well and will do anything to try and make that happen and tell the courages story of my son Joshua Brent Foraker.

Hi! This is my son Joshua. Cute isn't he ! Joshua is the inspiration behind this page.
This picture was taken in November of 96 at age 4. Joshua was Mr. Photogenic in the Little Mr.Cape Fear Pageant
in our home town. Joshua and his little brother Cory were also in the Glamour Baby Beauty Pageant where his little brother won Mr. Photogenic.This picture was taken less than year before tragedy struck. Tragedy that
took Josh and those who loved him down a rocky road of heartache and devastation.
Joshua Story began on September 27th 1992, the day he was born. Nothing unusual about that, right? Wrong! He wasn't due until January 3rd 1993. Joshua was born 14 weeks early at a weight of 2 pds 3 1/4 oz. After spending several months in the hospital and numerous intubations he finally came home. Joshua was my Christmas Miracle that year.
Joshua spent the first year of his life on a heart monitor, more as a precautionary measure than anything else. Josh was a year old when his little brother Cory was born.Which I might add after I had a tubaligation. Josh seemed fine after the first year. He played and responded like all other little boys his age. All though he was a little bit behind because of his prematurity, he responded well to his inability's. Joshua's spirit and courage made up for the lack of learning. I remember I was in College at the time studying Criminal Justice. I used to tote him around with heart monitor, showing him off to all my instructors. Even then he was adorable.

Below are  brief summarys of Joshua's life beyond the incubator. Starting from age 5 until now. It is written by a mothers perspective and the love and effection of a family united as one through love and tragedy. Joshua's surgery dates,procedures and outcomes can be found by clicking  HERE.

Raffle for Josh and Family

Please scroll down before leaving to see a recent picture of Joshua with is brother and dad.

October 1, 1997
Lasers Surgerys

August 10,1998
1st & 2nd surgery

January 5, 1999
3rd surgery

February 16, 1999
Stent removal
March 20, 2000
2nd opinion

Cricotracheal Resection

Joshua w/T-Tube
August 17, 2000
Removal of the T-Tube
September 3, 2000
Follow-up to his T-tube removal

Childrens Flight Of Hope

September 17,
Updates & more dilations

Keel and Stint placement

November 6,
Stint removed

Follow-up to stint removal

January 12,2001

July 9,2001
July 16,2001
Medical site
made by me
Recent Airway Pictures
Graphically Intense!
The 3 Little Bears
By: Joshua Foraker
A Mother's Frustration My Little Warrior Jonco Creations Meet Angela
Future Hopes My Family MLM Voting Booth
This site hasn't been upgraded in awhile.  Just to let you know Joshua got his trach out  Nov. 4, 2001. We went for a follow-up visit on Feb.4,2002- things seem to going well except his voice. He still has a whisper for a voice. But HEY, at least he has his trach out! We are due to go back on Aug. 4, 2002.

     Come Visit My new site!

Please visit Jonco Creations -Sign Language Flash Cards,Unique SnowGlobes, & Personalized Keepsakes,
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Use Google for all your search engine needs and help a little boy by doing so.
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A Path of Uncertainty by Janice
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Cory, Dad and Joshua. 4-21-01
Coach Pitch Baseball. Opening day.



Hello Sister Janice,
I heard you that you were blue......
So I sent along a friend of mine
To sorta help you through.
She's aweful cute & friendly,
So very sweet and soft;
I hope the very thought of her
Will send your spirit aloft.
Hugs 'n' Stuff,


Meet my Pikachu "Jonco"

Click HERE to get your own Pikachu!







    On October the 1st 1997, on his little brothers 4th birthday, 4 days after Josh turned 5. He was rushed to the hospital because he was having problems breathing. He was diagnosed with pneumonia and sent home with medication. My husband and I thought that things where going to be fine , just give Joshua his medicine and he would be all right. Wrong again.Time passed, we realized there was something more devastating wrong with him. We took him to another hospital where a Ear, Nose and Throat doctor was brought in.. After thorough examination it was determined that my son's airway was as big as a pen tip. The cause of this was due to being intubated at birth. He didn't act like a child with a pen tip airway. He ran and played like the rest of the kids. I realize now after listening to his Audio, back in January of 98, that there was a definite breathing problem. None of use new it back then, not even his doctor. So let that be a warning to those with premature children. Excessive intubation at birth can be very devastating to the airway. 


   Josh spent from April 14, 1998 till July 28, 1998 going back and forth to the hospital. At the same time I was taking my daughter back and forth for physical therapy. You can read more about that in Related Story.
    Laser surgery was performed on him in attempt to laser out the scare tissue in his airway. On the 3rd or 4th, I don't remember,laser surgery the doctor inadvertently paralyzed his artnoid. My son's voice was temporily paralized.  But his story didn't end there. Realizing that nothing more could be done in our home town, the ENT sent Joshua to UNC(University of North Carolina) Chapel hill. There's an update on his voice. Joshua is a canidate for a device called a Mighty Mouth. It is a speaking device much like the operators use. I will be giving more information on this device while building my Medical page.




University Of North Carolina

   On August the 6th 1998 until September 3rd, Joshua's home was UNC Hospital. His dad and I spent our nights at the Ronald McDonald house and our days at his bedside. Josh's first surgery at UNC, which was a graph taken from his rib cage. A piece of his rib cartilage was taken from his ribs and placed in his airway in a attempt to widen it. Joshua was due to go home a week later. A mothers instinct knew that something was not right. His throat looked like a frogs. With my insistence the doctor took him back into surgery confirming my suspicions. I never will forget the phone call on August 24, 1998, one month befor our son's 6th birthday,telling me and my husband that the rib graph had disintegrated and that they would have to put a tracheotomy in. It wasn't like I didn't know it could happen I just wasn't prepared for it. For all those that don't all ready know, a tracheotomy is a tube placed in the neck allowing air to go directly into the lungs. Since Joshua airway is so small, air can not vibrate his vocal cords, thus enabling his speech.
     We all went home on September the 3rd 1998. The family was waiting when we got there along with a nurse from PSA (Pediatrics Services of America).That was a big change in our family life. We were all unfamiliar with tracheas and it took a big toll on all of us. See I have 3 other children other than Joshua. We all had to bond together to make this work.




    On January the 5th 1999 Josh went back to UNC for another surgery this time they where going to put in a stent with 2 rib graphs. A stint, as I describe it, is like a thick tube. I will be placing a picture of Joshua's stent soon on the medical page.They placed it in his airway and attached two rib graphs in another attempt to widen his airway. The swelling from the stint blocked his esophagus causing everything he drank or ate to go directly to his lungs so a feeding tube had to be put in. He went home with this feeding tube inserted in his nose. Thank God a in home nurse had been put into place. Joshua's feeding tube was supposed to have been removed on January 27th but when we got there it seems they didn't have him sceduled (I'm being nice here).When we got home that evening Joshua was playing in the yard and he accidently pulled his tube part of the way out so the nurse pulled it out the rest of the way.





    On February the 16th the stent was removed. He was starting to sound better. We could even feel breathing out of his mouth, something we haven't felt in months. We all figured that in no time the trach would be removed and we would hear our little boys voice again. It wasn't a week later that I noticed that the breath I was feeling a week before and the voice that started to peek out was now starting to reverse itself. Another trip to UNC was planned on March 22 to take a look to see how he was doing. As I had suspected Joshua's airway had closed back up. The Doctor was at a loss as to what to do next. The only thing that we could do was to sit and wait in hopes that our son would outgrow the problem. He is do to go back to UNC in March of 2001, to see if there is any changes. We all hope and pray that our son will be relieved of his trach at that time. All we can do now is sit back, wait and pray.
    On March 15,2000 on one of Joshua's follow-up visits. The Doctor   talked to us about doing what is none as the Cricotracheal Resection. When asked how many times this doctor had done the surgery the response was none. Prior to this date I starting doing so investigation on this surgery because it had been mentioned by this doctor on other occasions. I found out it had never been performed in the state of North Carolina. The only place in the U.S was in Cincinnati Ohio by Robin T. Cotton. So I placed I call to him on a Wednesday and that friday he called me back personally. I found that to be very conforting and I knew this was the man I wanted doing this surgery on my son, if   it had to be done. By the following monday we where scheduled to go see him.You can read more about Dr. Cotton on my medical site as well as the hospital itself.



Childrens Hospital  Medical Center Cincinnati


   On March 20,2000 my husband son and I flew to Cincinnatti Ohio for a second opinion with Dr.Robin  T. Cotton. We where told at that time that my son's airway and vocal cords where completly taken over by scar tissue and that there is little hope he will ever speak again or live a life without his trach.
    Joshua will be having surgery in Cincinnati Ohio on May 4, 2000. The prognosis is NOT good.   We are still going ahead with this procedure called CricoTracheal Resection with Dr. Robin Cotton in Cincinnati,Ohio. A Crico Tracheal Resection means taking away the damaged section of his airway and shortening it.If there is a chance he will be able to breath again,without his trach,this is the man that can do it. He's the only surgeon in the U.S. that has ever performed this surgery so we are putting our child in his hands with the Lord to guide them.






May 15,2000

        Where back from Ohio and now it's just a waiting game,again,to see if the surgery worked. We got there the afternoon of the 3rd. The Ronald McDonald House was all booked up so we stayed in a Motel. That evening my husband, son and I watched the approaching storm come in from the roof top.He went in the next morning  at 8:30. It was supposed to have been a 4 hr. surgery. Around 1:00 another doctor came out and told the couple beside us that Dr. Cotton had just finished up there son's surgery. Dr. Cotton! He was supposed to have been doing surgery on our son. We hadn't heard a thing. What where they doing? Anyway, after the initial panic I asked and was told they where closing him up and that they would be with us soon. Talk about being a nervous wreck! Around 2:30 they called us in and said he was fine and we could go see him. He looked good considering what he had been through. Doctor Cotton cut out 2 inches of my son's airway and put in a T-Tube. His neck was covered in blood, he was groggy and he had a a pair of stitches coming out of the bottom of his chin to his chest and back up again. I guess they where about 2 inches long,2 inches down and 2 inches up.They where put there to keep his head from moving to far back or side to side.
      We stayed with him in the recovery room until 9:00 that night. Unfortunately for Josh they had no available rooms. We finally got him settled in around 9:30. He slept most of the next 2 days. He was awake and alert by the end of the second day. We spent the rest of the week trying to get him to eat so we could go home. He was having allot of trouble with that. He wasn't able to keep his food down without aspirating. Meaning food and drink was going to his lungs. He had to learn how to swallow again. The trick to that is to keep the chin down when swallowing. By Friday he was doing better and they took his  stitches out. We had been there a total of 8 days and we where all ready to go home. Saturday they gave us a zoo pass and we where supposed to leave Sunday. (Mothers Day):O) So we started making plans to go home. I called the pilot from Miracle Flights for Kids and wouldn't you know it his plane was broke down. We had also made plans to spend our last night there at the Ronald Mcdonald House,they finally got an opening, but the doctors wouldn't let us stay for some reason. They wanted Josh to stay in the hospital. They finally released him Sunday so we took Josh to the zoo again and  stayed at the R.Mc.House.Monday morning we arrived at the airport to find out the pilot was not able to come. :O(  Anyway we finally got home around 10:00 that night after missing our plane in Ohio.




    I have inserted a thumbnail picture of Joshua with his t-tube. Actual picture can be seen by clicking on thumbnail. This picture was taken at the Musuem of Life and Science here in Fayetteville N.C. June 20, 2000.


    We will be going back on August 4th & 14th. On August 4th they will be taking out the T-Tube and placing the trach tube back in. He will be staying at the hospital for observation that night, then in a week and a half later,on the 14, they will be scoping him again. That will tell us whether he needs another surgery or will be without the breathing device forever. I've decided not to update this page until we get back from the Aug.14th trip.
                                                  Keep your fingers crossed. I know I will be and more.



August 17,2000

    Things went well in Ohio. It seems the major surgery Joshua had in May worked! When we were there on the Aug, 4th they scoped him, took his t-tube out and put in a 4.5 trach tube. On the 14th  they scoped him again and downsized his trach tube to a 4.0. We will be going back on the 28th of this month for another scope. If things are still looking good they will downsize his trach tube once again and send him home. Hopefully he will be trach tube free,after 3-5 more visits, by the end of the year..


September 3,2000

    When we went back on August 28 things aren't going as well as expected. Joshua's airway closed back up. Dr. Cotton dilated is airway and would like to see Joshua in Ohio every week for the next 3-4 weeks to dilate his airway. Joshua and I had suspected that his airway was closing up. To recap we live in N.C and fly to Ohio whenever the need arises. This is all made possible because of a wonderful man who formulated and put together  the Children Flight of Hope. This is a non-profit organization who fly children in need to varies states.

Childrens Flight Of HOPE!




A Mother's Frustration

    Joshua seems to take all this in stride. I can't speak for Joshua on his feelings and thoughts but as for myself I'm drained mentally,emotionally,financially and physically. It's hard to see a child that was so normal for 5 years to all of a sudden not be able to breath and speak like all others around him. One of the hardest is not being able to understand him. He gets so frustrated it's  heartbreaking to see him go through this. He has a speaking valve but what good is  it when he has no vocal cords or an airway that doesn't stay open long. The other is Joshua loves to play sports. He's a natural at baseball and can throw a mean curve ball. He likes basketball, soccer and even golf. All these things he shouldn't do because of his trach. Joshua will be playing baseball next year with the aid of a neck guard. I refuse to disallow him his hopes and dreams.

    Speaking as a mother I can't help but ask why didn't the doctors place closer attention to his vocal cords. I understand the airway is the first priority and that's how it should be,but to neglect the vocal cords in the process is unjustified. Why didn't the doctor scope him within the year after his stint was removed,causeing the scar tissue to take over his vocal cords? Why did the doctor find the supposed disengrated rib graft over a year later lodged in his airway? These are mothers questions that will never be answered satisfactory. Why?Why?Why? Why ask why? Things are as they are and there's nothing that can be done about it. Now is where we are at and that's what we have to deal with and move on but I can't help asking WHY?

    I will say one thing though after being in Ohio and seeing a child with no veins that is being taken home to die,meeting a child that is emune to proteins,a child with cancer and many others I realize how lucky I am to have Josh just the way he is.





September 17,2000

    Joshua has been back to Ohio twice since my last update. On September 1st they dilated him in hopes of after several dilations,that's where the 3-4 dilations come in to play in the last intery, the airway will stay open. He went back on the 8th. The dilation from the 1st looked promising so they dilated him once again. We returned on the 15th. Well it seems that the way it looked on the 8th was as best as it was going to get. So Dr. Cotton  decided to preform another type of surgery because the dilations weren't working. Within the next couple of weeks (October 16,2000) Joshua and I will be headed back to Ohio for another major surgery putting us there for a week. The plan is to cut a slite between the vocal cords and putting in a, what the doctors refer to, as a keel. A keel, as described to me, is a piece of material placed in the cut opening in hopes of keeping it that way. Opened. On Nov. 6, 2000 we are to go back to take the keel & stent out. Hopefully the opening will stay that way and the process of decanulation will be started.

    I'm really irrated at the fact that the scar tissue that is causing the problem is the tissue that is on the vocal cords. I can't help but think that if he had been paid closer attention to  before I took him to Dr. Cotton, his vocal cords would not be scarred over and the process of decanulation would be done.




October 16,2000

Joshua had his surgery(keel and stint placement). We spent a week in Ohio. He did well. Not much to do when there's no transportation and cabs are like a roller coaster ride. Not to mention they charge you a fortune. So I spent all week either sitting at his bed side or outside talking to others. Towards the end of the week I was able to take Joshua out with me.

November 6,2000

   Well where back and I really don't know anymore now then I knew in the last intery.They took Joshua's keel and stint out. We really won't know anything until we go back on the 17th.I realize most of you don't know what i'm talking about that is why I have built the med page.We are however going back on the 17th of this month to see if the surgery worked. What does that make...7or 8 surgerys this year alone? Anybody keeping count? My pocket book is. Anyways talk to you after the 17th.



November 17,2000

       Just got back from Ohio on the 21st of this month. As suspected Joshua's airway closed back up. On the 17th Dr. Cotton dilated his airway to prepare him for an unexpected 20th surgery. Our trip was only supposed to be overnight. We ended up in Ohio for 5 days. When I packed for this trip I only packed enough for 2 days worth of medical supplies and necessities. The week started out bad. Before we even left for Ohio the pilot called me on a Tuesday,3days before we where to be there, to tell me he couldn't fly us. Seems there was icing over the mountains and his plane couldn't handle it. So I called Ohio to see if this scope could be delayed. Afterall it was only a look see. The answer I got was no. That they where concerned about the swelling in his airway and wanted to make sure his antibiotics where working. At that point I thought I was going to break. I had 2 days to figure out how I was going to get him 800 some miles away. With little income and a prayer I felt that all would work out. So I placed a call to Angels Flight and withing 15 minutes I got a call back. I told him my dilema and the next morning i received a call stating that the Hogans Foundations had bought 2airline tickets to Ohio, round trip, for Joshua and I. I knew the Lord would work things out for my son. I left it in his hands. So we arrived in Ohio, as stated earlier, to find out his airway had closed back up. Dr. Cotton dilated his airway to about the size of a nickle, by the time we got him into surgery on the 20th his airway was back down to a pin hole. A little more than 3 days had passed and my little boys airway was gone again. This is the closest I have ever come to just how bad his airway is. Anyways Dr. Cotton placed another stint in between the vocal cords resting the bottom of it on the trach. His hopes are that within the six weeks we are to be home the scaring will harden itself and the airway will finally stay open.   He's hoping however that Joshua doesn't develope scar tissue between the bottom of the stint and the trach tube. If that happens he is planning on putting in another T-Tube.I hate to say this but my husband and I have pretty much given up hope. Please pray for him.




January 5,2001

Well where back. Things look good for a change. Dr. Cotton took out Joshua's Stint Friday morning. It was a complete surprise to see that Joshua had no scar tissue and the airway was looking great. We are headed back on January 12 to see if it stayed open. If I ever needed any financial help it's now, but more importantly your prayers are needed much more.

January 12,2001

Well where back from Ohio and  as suspected Josshua's airway closed back up. Dr. Cotton put another stent in and has graciously allowed Joshua a 5 month reprieve. lol  We are due to go back June 12th. I have recently renamed this site A Path to Uncertainty. I don't think I need to explain why I named it that. Talk to you in June unless something happens in the mean time.

July 9,2001
Well another trip to Ohio has come with positive results. Joshua's airway is open. Lets see if next week is as possitive.
July 16, 2001
Airway still open but Joshua's has contracted a virus called MRSA. Can be deadly for those that are seriously ill. Joshua will be in islotion each time we go to Ohio to pretect others. Next trip Aug.20th.


    I met this awesome lady today,sept.17th,2000, that I would like to share with you all. See I have been confused with my feeling towards the Lord Jesus Christ. It seems that within the last couple of years I have been seeking his guidance but in the same breath wondering who he was  or is. I don't belong to a Church all though I live right behind one and I have for 15 years. I have always felt I didn't belong. Until today when the new pastors son (Joshua), which happens to be in my Joshua's 2nd grade class, came over today to ask if my boys could come to the church for a Sunday gathering in which there would be food,dessert and several churches joined as one for a singing revival. Normally I wouldn't go to one of these functions but I felt that I could not deny my sons because of my confusion. So I took them. That's where I met the pasters wife Angela. I part of me feels that the Lord brought her to my famly to help me figure out my feelings and thoughts. She is a beautiful lady in heart and soul and to hear her sing brings a warmth from within. She has recently made an album in which I would like to share a portion of her love with you. If you would like to purchase her CD or cassette please contact me at or Angela personally at


The Foraker Clan

This whole page has been written and surrounded around Josh. Let me tell you about the rest of the family.  Joshua has 3 siblings. Monique age 20 , Shawn age 15-going on 20 and Cory age 7.  My name is Janice Foraker and have been married to the same man for 19 years. Been with him 23. Robin,my husband, is a good man and does his utmost best to provide for this family. He works for Terminex of N.C as a carpentar. I however earned my associats degree in Criminal Justice May of 97. The same year we found out Joshua had complications. As I stated earier this all started in October of 97, but what I didn't state was that in the same month my daughter and son,shawn,got into a head on collision. Monique, first name Robin after her father, had a crushed knee cap,feet and left arm,and a dislocated hip. Shawn ended up witha fracture skull, contusion on the brain and laceration to the forhead.  Monique is starting college to be an accountant this March and shawn is struggling to finish school.

Cory what can I say about him. He's the baby of the bunch and I believe the only sane one. lol He's had his days of hospitals and surgeries as well. See Cory was born with Bi-laterial club feet.  Due to my body not healing properly after the C-cection with Joshua and having my tubes tied. His first 15 months of his life where in casts. He seems ok now. Cory is Joshua's backbone. I really believe God brought Cory into this world to be Joshua's confidont, friend, companion and stability. The two are precious together and never to be seperated. I have written this page for Joshua not remember that Cory is also part of the equation.  If it weren't for cory I don't know if Joshua would have the strength to be the fastest runner in class, hit a baseball over into the next yard, beat grown men at darts, shoot a mean game of pool,score a 57 in golf or even have the knowledge to play an adult game like Phase 10.. Cory's always there to  incourage him. There may be a little competition there too. LOL Joshua is good at everthing he does. I can't help but wonder if that is his way of compensatingfor his disibility. I've often wondered what the Lord had planned for Joshua maybe that's the answer. You don't have to speak to be a pro golfer, pool player, etc  and they make pretective guards for baseball players. Joshua however wishes to be a specialist in the field of Otolarynology, fly his own plane and go to the patient instead of the patient coming to him. Great thougtht! Hey maybe Dr.Cotton can be his teacher?

This whole page is written about what Joshua is going through nothing is mentioned about his accomplishments, his family or friends. That is why I felt the need to write a little something about the rest of us. Not about the hardships, financial problems involved,stress or even fears,but about the uniqueness about each and ever one of our family members.

A Momentous Moment

I woke up this morning, Feb.3,2001, hearing noises outside my window. I thought to myself "Great it's got to be the neighbor hood boys on our trampoline again". They know there not supposed to be on there without adult surpervision. Besides my boys aren't home there with there dad at there uncles.  I get out of my nice warm bed to heat my coffee up that my husband made me earlier and to my surprise I look out my kitchen window and find that the noise I was hearing was't the neighborhood kids but my own kids  playing football with my husband and  3 of his buddies. The site brought tears to my eyes,to see 4 grown men playing football with my little men. I watched Cory go for a  pass and Joshua intercept it. It was cute   to see Cory trying to guard Josh or visa versa.  As I stood there watching my tears became tears of sadness not joy.  Joshua and Cory go out for a pass, a pass meant for Cory to catch and all of a sudden Joshua turned around and intercepted it. He didn't  fumble the ball or anything he caught it as if he was training to be a Miami Dolphin. Bobby, my husbands buddy of 15 years,must have thrown that ball, i'll say 2 average car lenghts not good with yards. Joshua ran for the touchdown and all high fived him. I realized at the moment that Joshua isn't an ordinary child that can fullfill his childhood dreams of football and such. He may never be able to play what he is so good at professionally. I've realized this before,but sometimes I forget these things because he's such an ordinary child in so many ways. His trach has become part of his life and we treat it as such. He's just a normal little boy with normal dreams.


We as a family have been through a lot these last couple of years and we have stuck it out together.

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As of 3-24-2000