Sunday, January 26, 2014

Feeling the Heart

   This morning I felt compelled to type out exactly what was on my heart right out onto my FB page.  It was stirred in the night as I had dreams of injustice being made right.  When I woke up I felt the cries of some adoptive mom's return to me.  So many times they reach out and their hurt one bats back or they think they've come so far only to find out new hurts peek from around the corner.

   What I wrote truly can be for anyone, going through ANY difficult circumstance but I wrote this in particular for my mommy friends who are fostering, have adopted, or are working with children who have been traumatized. 

   I want to preface this just a bit with a note to my struggling friends:

 I see YOU from the top.  I see your capabilities and the possibilities even as you list for me all that is set against you.  I see myself IN you.  And even more, Jesus does too.  He already knows what he set into you for this journey.  You are so very precious.  You have been chosen to CHOOSE back that you would be the vessel in partnership for your child. 

  If it's been a long while that you have struggled and you think you can't possibly do it right today, will you find yourself a mirror.  Look into it and will you recognize the miracle of you that God created?  (You had nothing to do with that.) What you want to do for your child, you must see in yourself.

Here's what was laid on my heart.....

Choice requires faith and courage. Every time you choose what is both right and difficult, whether you realize it or not, you have stepped into greater strength even as you feel yourself weaker. Doing this repeatedly develops the change we have hoped and prayed for. Not that the circumstances in front of us changed but that we were lifted up and over them. Our view of them is no longer looking up at a giant, but from a higher standpoint we can see the intricacies of that situation and this is called wisdom. Looking up to God for our answers and in our yes being risen over our circumstances to understanding.

The fear of the Lord leads to life; then one rests content, untouched by trouble. Proverbs 19:23

Walking toward the fear, not running from it.....its how we fly into victory with Jesus. He is the lift to the mountain top and the beauty that we can look up to along the way.

Maybe loving a child into healing feels like the impossible as you run to it, know that your heavenly Father not only waits on the mountain top, he not only lifts you up when all hell seems to break loose, but he is with you now as you take the first step and what he whispers is, "I did it all for you and I will bring you with me into perfect peace if you will keep focused on my voice, my deep love for you." 

Come away, my beloved, and be like a gazelle or like a young stag on the spice-laden mountains. Song of Songs 8:14

 You are able...more than able to live your life as a hero in faith. You are able to leave a legacy of wisdom and truth starting with one choice- to respond to His invitation.

Will you believe? Your child might not be seeing you as the hero right now and maybe you dont feel like one. Maybe you dont even feel like you have a choice in the matter but you do now. You choose how you will perceive. You CHOOSE to stay when its hard. Choose faith again today even if you have to do it intentionally every minute so you dont lash back in their pain.

Some who first sang out in joy to the world that God will never leaves us as orphans are singing it now, with tears streaming down, on their knees, outside the bedroom door of their broken hearted child who now to needs to know this truth.

Rise up mama and papa, you can do this love walk and you will experience the most alive in Jesus as you choose to see them with His heavenly lens.  Those tearful cries are a beautiful fragrance to your Father in heaven.

Breathe. Hear His voice. Look up. Let the tears fall through your smile and song.

 Love is worth it all.

 In the last days the mountain of the Lord’s temple will be established as the highest of the mountains; it will be exalted above the hills, and all nations will stream to it.  Isaiah 2:2

Lord, give them ears to hear your songs of invitation and eyes to see your working behind the scenes.  Let grace rest on their hearts today and mercy on their lips.  Your word does not return void.  You are our GOOD daddy!  Amen!

Monday, January 13, 2014

First Update Since Surgery

We are so excited that Lucia came through surgery so beautifully with no trach and she was extubated quickly.  She also showed off by spending less than a day in the PICU.  Her first night on floor she got some great sleep and we thought she was cruising for some sort of record.  Perhaps she remembered how things went with Cephas back in September.

Come Saturday morning she began to struggle with nausea and getting her pain under control.  Nothing unexpected or out of the norms for all she has just gone through, but my normally positive girl was struggling to see the good in what had just been done.

Dr. Luhmann explained that he was able to get a 50% correction due to her age, inflexibility of her bones and the softness of them.  But as far as we are concerned, she looks like she got much more than 50%. 

This morning began day three of recovery and it wasn't looking so good.  I was beginning to feel the lack of sleep and that helpless feeling of not only being unable to take her pain away but to know I was causing discomfort each time I tried.   I surprised myself when the nurse practioner came in and asked how I was doing. Tears fell like I turned on the faucet.  The kind of cry you didn't know was coming, and you aren't really so much sad as you are tired.  I recovered quickly.  I totally know its okay for me to cry, but I just didn't want to make time for it right then when we had important things to talk about.

Ortho came in to change her dressing and I was able to see the incision for the first time.  (Lucia says I can share it with you because its "not scary." (She is brave!) It's simply amazing to see how straight she looks. 
She let out some screams and yelled "no" at the therapist coming to work on breathing.  After they left I reminded her of the many talks we had about the after surgery days.  She asked me if they made me sit up and stand after my neck surgery and I told her the details.  She asked me if I liked it.  I told her that I hated it very much but I knew they were wanting me to get better.  I told her that when I made the decision that I wanted to work through the pain, for some reason the pain didn't seem as bad anymore.  With that, she looked at me and said, "Today is work day."  (She seemed to appreciate I went through my accident and recovery at 16 too.  She said, "I am like you.")

Soon the therapists came in with a wheelchair to take her to get xrays.  Her FIRST time sitting in a chair without hanging off the sides.  She looked at me with some determination in her eyes and I couldn't have been more proud watching her press into the pain.  She told the therapists thank you.  That's my girl!  Thankfulness DOES so much to help pain.  It just DOES.

Enjoying her grape popsicle with a movie.

She told me I didn't have to go with her into x-ray and when she came back they all said she was in good spirits and talking about her brothers and sisters waiting for her at home.  She has STAYED in the chair and is now eating a popsicle and watching the movie Enchanted.  She looked over a bit ago and asked for a pickle - her very favorite snack.  She got one down and its stayed so keep those prayers going!!

I keep thinking back on Peter getting out of the boat and walking on water.  DON'T LOOK DOWN!  Thankfulness keeps our eyes looking up today and the many days of hard work for her ahead.  Special thanks to those who have sent pictures and messages.  I want to get back to each one of you and its my hope to do that.  Each of you bless us in your encouragement and prayer.

Thank you God for all that you have brought my girl through.  Thank you for answering our prayers and helping us take the next step when it seems difficult to do.  Thank you for your provisions of loving mercy and reminders that your grace is all we need.  Glory!  Amen

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Lucia's Day

Lucia's last night "curly" she says so we decided to take a last photo.  She has a GREAT sense of humor.

     The weeks heading up to this moment have required much patience.

                                       But tonight, we celebrate!

Lucia made it through the having her picc line put in this afternoon. She was great about it.

This will make administering other medications later, much easier for her.

    We started our day getting the kids ready for a television news taping.  We were met driving up in big Gloria, the 15 passenger van and were followed throughout the day.  There was an ease about the whole thing.  Cephas was a great source of joy and laughter for everyone and most importantly kept Lucia's smile bright.

    We picked up some packaged PF Changs at Target and decided to make it a party night back at the hotel eating ice cream and candy.  We've been singing praises to Jesus and trusting Him in all things.

    In a bit we will take the time to read the special messages that have been sent to us for Lucia.  Thank you so much for continuing to pour out those prayers and messages of love.  They mean the most to Lucia.  She is so relational and that anyone prays for her, just blows her mind.  Today she told the camera man that Jesus saved her and that he makes everyone perfectly.  She knows He loves her well and your messages remind her of that love.  I know it will be incredibly encouraging in the days ahead.


    I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten......You shall eat in plenty and be satisfied, and praise the name of the Lord your God who has dealt wondrously with you.   Joel 2:25-26