This is the first post I’ve written since Evanna arrived, and it’s not for lack of things to write, but because we’ve just been posting directly to the Facebook Community page. (So check there for all the things that have happened and all the pics posted…)
For this post, I’ll summarize it in this: it has been a difficult time. We’ve shed plenty of tears for Evanna, for our family, and for other families in the NICU.
Sunday we decided to surprise the kids by coming home and showing up at church. On the drive out of Seattle, one of the things we talked about is how much of a departure this is from what we’ve done as parents in the past. We’re in uncharted territory.
The message? The last in the series from Joshua, from chapters 3 and 4 (link here). The people of Israel were about to cross the Jordan into the Promised Land…and Joshua instructed them to follow the Ark of the Covenant, but at a distance, because they had never been that way before. As Pastor Jim Hays was talking through that more, he said these words:
Have you ever wondered which way to go in a place you have never passed, somewhere you’ve never been, circumstances you’ve never experienced before, adversity that was different than you’d ever faced?
Those words struck such a chord that I asked for a copy of his sermon notes, which tend to be quite extensive, and that section wasn’t in them. [I had to wait for the sermon to be posted, then listen to it and transcribe…]. Those words were for us.
They were to follow the ark in order to know the way they should go because they had never passed that way before. We are in very much like Israel: we’ve never had a child with spina bifida, chiari malformation, hydrocephalus, or clubbed feet; we’ve never had a child that had an extended stay in NICU; we’ve never had a child that wasn’t able to be breastfed on demand at birth; we’ve never had to try to balance hospital visits with time with the rest of the family; we’ve never had to leave our child in the hands of a stranger…and so many other things could be added to the list.
Yet here we are, crossing the Jordan into unfamiliar territory, into a place we’ve never been.
Then you will know which way to go, since you have never been this way before.
Do you catch the implication in verse 4? We’ve never been this way before…but God has. We don’t know the way…but God does.
So we too follow the Ark. We trust.
There have been so many amazing things that have happened since Sunday: Evanna’s digesting milk wonderfully now, to the point they’ve increased to full feeds (60ml); we’ve seen movements in her legs multiple times now, where there hadn’t been before; she’s more awake and alert. Join us on the FB Community Page for all the latest updates as they happen.
The original estimate of stay in the hospital was 2 weeks…they have since been prepping us for it to possibly be months. So I’ve increased the goal of the fundraiser and will be keeping it active.