Saturday, September 10, 2016

It's Been A Year


Today is Grant's "Cranioversary".
And if you saw him on the street, you'd never know the story his first year of life has to tell.

One year ago today he had his surgery that took us to "the other side" of cranio.
The miraculously quickly healing side of craniosynostosis.
Today's tears are joyful.
They are reflective.
They are proud, relieved, mesmerized, & grateful.

I've referred to this last month or so as the final step in the cycle of emotions this journey has taken me on.  I've looked at pictures, read my blog, and watched videos I didn't even know Doug had taken in the hospital because I was so focused one thing - remaining faithful and calm for our Sweet Baby Grant. I've read and reread notes and emails and comments and prayers. 
"My staff is praying for Grant".
"We've been praying for you guys at faculty meetings".
"Our church is praying for healing".
At this time last year I knew hundreds of people were praying for Grant and our family.  What I realize now is that number is exponentially higher than I had ever imagined.

I feel "fall to my knees" humbled and blessed by the love and support that kept us lifted up this entire journey.  The mercy and grace bestowed upon us by our loving God was eminent in you all as the hands and feet of Jesus.  I couldn't imagine going through this without the promise of hope the Almighty Healer ALWAYS brings as He truly is good ALL the time.  And I most certainly could not imagine how this would have looked without the love and support of our friends, family, & and our church family.

So how are we celebrating this milestone?  I am behind the mic this morning at church and am thankful for our dear friend, "Mr. Jeff" for letting me choose a few of my favorite songs for praise & worship today.  And DOUBLE shoutout for putting together the video that would have taken me forever to figure out on my own.  Thank you for saving me hours of frustration!  ALSO to his "other half" Diana for supporting this task on Jeff's already crazy long "to do" list.  We love you guys!

I've mentioned before that this blog will be printed for Grant as a keepsake.  I want him to always know how brave he was and how brave he made me.  How much he is loved and how unshakable God's love is.  When Uncle Teddy baptized him, our congregation welcomed him into the Lord's family as a child of the same Heavenly Father to work together in His kingdom.  I pray he uses this story as a testament to his own faith one day just as I use it to mine.

Thank you all for being a part of his story. Thank you for joining us on this journey. 

 Lord knows we never could have done it alone.  

I LOVE his beautiful noggin'.

Saturday, August 20, 2016

A Year Ago Today

I knew this day was approaching.
I've been thinking about it for weeks.
There are lots of solid, vivid memories that jump out at me as a mother.
The positive pregnancy tests, the first ultrasounds, the losses, the labors and deliveries.  First steps, first words, first slobbery kisses, first unprovoked, "I love yous".  The list goes on.
But August 20, 2015 was the day my mommy radar was SO off that it knocked me on my butt.

This photo showed up in my Timehop this morning....

I remember EXACTLY what I was thinking when I took this picture.  I was going to show this to Grant when he was older and reminisce about "That day I had to take you to see a neurosurgeon.  It was a 'better safe than sorry' appointment".  That word alone, "neurosurgeon", sounded a little scary, but two days prior our pediatrician told us it might be a good idea so I made an appointment ASAP just to "get it over with".  

Doug was away on business (at the same convention he's been attending this week) so my dad INSISTED that he come with me.  I kinda thought he was overreacting but didn't turn away the opportunity to have him with me, "just in case."

A year ago today I had moments of speechlessness.
A year ago today I was heartbroken,
A year ago today I cried a LOT of tears and slept almost ZERO minutes.
A year ago today I heard a word I'd never heard before.....

Thank GOD my dad was with me because as Dr. Tomita waltzed right into explaining what exactly he was going to do to my precious baby's head without skipping a beat, HE was the one listening to the details.  I was the one whose brain was acting like the panel from the movie, "Inside Out", run soley by "Disgust" and "Anger".

"You're gonna do WHAT do my baby?"
"You aren't touching him".
"I'm getting a second opinion".
"So WHAT if he has a misshapen head.  Doug & I can raise a tough kid".
"Where's the "but" or the "or" or the "option" here?"

I only shut those emotions down when he started talking about the repercussions of NOT having the surgery and that's when "Sadness" and "Fear" stepped in.

"Why is this happening to HIM?  I can't imagine watching my baby experience this pain".
"Will this surgery be successful?"
"Could he die?"
"How soon can we do this?"
"What is he going to look like afterwards?"
"How hard is this recovery going to be?"

The 12 or so hours that followed can be described like "That Scene" in a movie where the main character hears life altering news and a musical montage of images flashes through the screen.
Driving home with a tear streaked face.
Calling "Daddy" and Grandma and the other few close friends that had been praying for him.  You know.... "Just in case".
Friends rallying to help before I could tell one foot to step in front of the other.
The look of horror on the faces of those I had to tell in person.
Friends coming over to help put my kids to bed.
Our devotion from that night that still makes my heart skip a beat.
Then there was the googling and searching and more googling and more searching.
And the praying.  Lots and lots and lots of praying.

The sun came up and I was a changed woman.  A changed mother.
A year ago tomorrow I faced life with the most unwavering, unfailing faith I never knew I could muster.
A year ago tomorrow we started preparing for doctors appointments and surgery scheduling and an upcoming hospital stay.
A year ago tomorrow I embraced the fact that this was going to become a part of our story.
A year ago tomorrow I felt peace.

I never discounted the scariness of the facts of what Grant was about to endure, but I thanked God EVERY day that in the realm of things that could go wrong with one of our children, this was to be a short season of a scariness that is reality for some families on a daily basis.

We all know what happens next.
Thousands of people prayed for Sweet Baby Grant.
Surgery was successful.
Recovery was miraculous.
Our lives have been forever changed,
I'm not invincible.
My kids are not invincible.
Faith is certainly bigger than fear.
And most importantly, God is good ALL the time and ALL the time, God is good.