Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tuesday Tidbits - Pumpkins, Presents, Parties

Phew! What a weekend! I'll try to give a recap of everything that has happened over the last three days.

Saturday we went to one of Faith's favorite places - Papa's Pumpkin Patch. It was the perfect way to celebrate her birthday and the fantastic Fall season we have had. It was about 50 degrees but still nice because there was no wind! Faith had a blast, especially with her friends, Chloe, Alivia and Barborka. She was very blessed with lots of wonderful gifts, especially lots of new pajamas which she really needed.

Faith and her friends blowing out her birthday candles
On Sunday Faith went to a friend's house for a Halloween Party. There were a total of about 25 kids all dressed up in very cute costumes such as Jesse and Buzz Lightyear from Toy Story, a few princesses, a butterfly, a pumpkin, a cowgirl, a monkey, Dorothy from Wizard of Oz and Faith went as Supergirl.

The highlight of the party was a blow-up haunted house that the girls would run through screaming at the top of their lungs. Faith didn't want to participate at first, but her friends talked her into it. I took her out of her chair and carried her, running through the house. Of course after the first time, she wanted to do it again and again. It was quite the workout for me!

Making crafts at the Halloween Party
Monday was Faith's birthday. She was so excited to go to school and pass out her treats and be the helper of the day. I had ordered cupcakes from Dan's and they looked so pretty with orange/white frosting adorned with fall leaves. At school she also got to do show and share. She chose to take her new stuffed puppy called a Webkinz where you can virtually take care of the puppy on the Internet.

After school she really didn't feel like going to Speech therapy but we forged ahead anyway. When she got there she was okay because she got to pass out cupcakes to everyone in the Pediatric Therapy Dept. We decided though that this would be her last speech therapy session at Medcenter for the year. After school she is just so tired. We will reevaluate all of her therapies in January to see about starting up again at Medcenter.

Last night when we finally got home from our busy day, Faith opened a few presents from her mom and dad. She got some toys from Toy Story 3 called Action Links. She and her dad had lots of fun with those. We also tried to SKYPE her grandparents in Canada but they were having technical difficulties on their end so we talked the old-fashioned way, by speaker phone!

Faith having a blast playing with her Toy Story Action Links!
All in all it has been a great three days but I'm glad we have nothing planned for next weekend! I'm also thankful the weather held up to take Faith to the Pumpkin Patch as this afternoon we will be in a blizzard warning! I guess it was inevitable.

Have a blessed week!

Monday, October 25, 2010

This Gift

This gift given to me
Seven years ago...

Not given swaddled in pink
and laid close by my side.
Instead placed in a see-through box
helping to breathe breaths of life.

A single touch lasting only seconds
not to be seen for several hours.
Seven days later,
finally in my arms to hold.

This gift given to me
so undeservedly...

Did God really know what He was doing
Giving me this treasure for which to care?

Thankful. Blessed.
These words do not even begin to express
what I feel, what I know, what I have.

Tough times, yes
Challenges, of course.
But still joy
And love...so much love.

Seven years ago
This gift, given to me...

My heart, my soul
forever changed.

Happy 7th Birthday Faith. You are loved!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Pajama Day

Faith was so excited to go to school today
because she got to wear her pajamas!

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Tuesday Tidbits

This month has been crazy with appointments, meetings and unfortunately for me a bit of sickness as well. Here are some tidbits from the last week or so.

Last week I went to the doctor and was diagnosed as having walking pneumonia. She prescribed some heavy-duty antibiotics so along with taking those, I took any opportunity I could to sleep and rest. Now that I have my energy back, I need to make up for lost time especially when it comes to cleaning and organizing!

We had our first parent/teacher conference with Faith's teacher. Hard to believe she has been in school for nine weeks already! We met with her teacher along with her special education teacher, her speech therapist and occupational therapist. They all said she is such a joy! She is doing really well with knowing her letter sounds and learning some sight words. She's also doing great in her power chair at school. The only issue they have had is that she doesn't seem fully supported in her chair and they find her leaning to the left quite a bit. They fixed that yesterday though by making some major adjustments to her chair.

Over the weekend we got to talk to Kimberly via SKYPE over the Internet. Faith and I chatted with her for about an hour. She is doing well with her new job and she and her fiance are making wedding plans. We miss her so much. This morning I was talking to Faith about her birthday party and she said she wants Kimberly and Matt to be there. I don't think that is going to happen but hopefully we'll be able to get to Kansas for the wedding!

This is another eventful week as tonight I have a Cerebral Palsy Support group meeting and finally after asking to wear her pajamas to school since it started, tomorrow is pajama day! Which reminds me I better get laundry done so she can wear her favorite pajamas! There is no school on Thursday and Friday and on Thursday night, I'm hoping to take Faith to an informational meeting about music therapy for kids with special needs. Friday we both have appointments to get our hair cut!

We have had such beautiful weather this fall but this morning I got out the boots and mittens for Faith since the temp is only in the 30's in the mornings. I hope our nice weather lasts a little longer before the snow falls!

Have a blessed week everyone!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Prayer Time at the Healing Rooms

The Healing Rooms is a Christ-centered prayer ministry
Usually on Mondays, Faith and I head over to the Healing Rooms of the Northern Plains for prayer. Every once in a while it works out for us to go as a family. We have been going there ever since Faith was a baby before we even lived in Bismarck. We have become good friends with the directors as well as many other prayer team members. It is a wonderful place of peace and we feel so blessed to be able to go there for prayer.

Just yesterday, Faith and I went and were very blessed. In the little "waiting room" we filled out our prayer requests and then the receptionist took them back to a prayer team. I had requested prayer for Faith's left hip. Because of the high tone in her legs, her left hip is slowly being pulled out of its socket. One of our options to help this is to get a baclofen pump inserted that would administer medicine to her spine to help loosen her muscles. It is a huge decision and I am fearful to do it but I also fear what would happen if we didn't.

While we sat there waiting to go back into a prayer room, Faith said that her knees hurt. I told her we would be sure to prayer for them as well as her hip.

When it was our turn, we went back to the prayer room. Before praying for Faith and before knowing that her knees hurt, a lady on the prayer team gave us the following scripture:

Strengthen the feeble hands, steady the knees that give way;
say to those with fearful hearts, be strong and do not fear. 
Isaiah 35:3,4

It never fails that if we walk into the healing rooms with fear, we leave having faith. If we walk in with anxiety, we leave feeling peace. We often get a wonderful word from the Lord that we needed to hear. He uses those prayer warriors at the Healing Rooms in a mighty way. You can tell by the many testimonies that are written and placed in a special book. If you are in need of prayer for physical, emotional or spiritual healing, I encourage you to go to the Healing Rooms.

Monday, October 4, 2010

A Thankful Heart

As I sat there, listening to the four of them talk, I asked myself, "How many professionals does it take to figure out what's going on with my pacemaker?" I was thankful for the comfy chair I was sitting in because it looked like this was going to take a while.

All I could do was sit there and listen to them talk about me. It's not like I could go anywhere since I was all attached with leads and a big magnet on my chest. I didn't fully understand the terms they were throwing out - P-waves, QSRs, farfield waves, etc. I did however understand the part where they were trying to figure out if my heart was going into atrial fibrillation.

This whole mystery had begun in early September when I went to the pacemaker clinic for a routine checkup. A few days later my cardiologist from Mayo called and asked how I was feeling. It appeared I was having some arrhythmia. He wanted me to wear a 24-hour holter monitor to try to figure out what was happening.

Because of a few errors in the handling of my monitor, I never did find out my results. Until today. And when I did hear what the holter monitor showed, I almost broke out in tears. Not from fear but from thankfulness for God's protection.

According to the holter readings, my heart was having episodes where my heart was not beating for 3-5 seconds and my pacemaker wasn't catching it. During those episodes, I was at risk for fainting and passing out. Really the only thing I ever felt was being more tired than usual but I just attributed that to taking care of Faith as she gets bigger and nights where she doesn't sleep well.  I'm just very very thankful that God was watching over me and I didn't have any fainting spells.

So now this afternoon, my cardiologist along with his cardiologist in training, the pacemaker lab tech and a rep from Medtronic, along with a pacemaker specialist who joined us via telephone, all came to the conclusion that no I wasn't in atrial fib, instead it was my pacemaker's atrial lead acting up.

I don't think I'll get into all the technical jargon - I barely understand it all myself. They did make some adjustments to my pacemaker (all done externally) and because of those adjustments,  my pacemaker is going to use more battery power which means I'll be getting my new battery in about 12 months as opposed to 16. And now when they do replace that battery, it might be time to replace my atrial lead as well.

Also today, they placed another 24-hour holter monitor on me to make sure these adjustments are working. In the meantime, I'll continue getting my pacemaker checked every few months and I'll keep praising God for watching over me, knowing He always has and always will.