An Answer

Pictures from yesterday (hour developing wasn’t available at Photo Hut *wink*):

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Visiting other lands (the front room). Very interesting!!

Pictures from today:

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Good morning, good milkies!

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Wait a minute.......

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Is that baff water I hear running????

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I like this!!!!!!

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Baffs make me sleepy (except for at night when I'm SUPPOSED to be sleeping)

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In the TOASTER after baff 2

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Thank goodness for TOASTERS!!!!

We had our visit with Nora’s cardiologist this morning. It was strange being there without Nornor! We brought along a medical advocate who has become a good friend of William’s. Today was the first time I had the pleasure of meeting Mike. He was there to hear what the cardiologist had to say and would then be able to interpret the medical lingo in laymen’s terms if need be, as well as offer his opinion. In addition to Mike’s medical knowledge he also offers an amazing faith perspective. I feel so blessed by people like Mike that God has placed in our lives.

Without going into all the particulars, there still was not a concise plan of action by the end of the meeting. Basically the decision is ours. Our cardiologist thinks surgery is a bad idea, another doctor thinks it would be of benefit. With that said, Dr. H made it very clear that whatever we decided to do, he would respect that decision and continue to care for Nora as her cardiologist.

I left with the same feeling of uncertainty that I arrived with. I think I speak the same for William. In my silent prayers I pleaded with God to make the answer to this decision glaringly obvious, “Write it in the sky! Emblazon it across a billboard with arrows pointing at us!” Not 10 minutes after I had that one-sided conversation, I picked up my “Jesus Calling” devotional.

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Um. Wow.

So the conversation wasn’t so one-sided after all. I got a very pertinent response that seems pretty glaringly obvious to me. Wouldn’t you say??

So many of the pages in this awesome, awesome book deal with worry, gratitude, forgiveness, a whole spectrum of topics, but today, November 30th it touches on THIS VERY TOPIC of “fixing things”. I still don’t feel like I can make a set in stone decision right then and there after having read that, but not because I don’t believe it. I think God will continue to lead us down the path that is right for Nora. It will be so obvious that we couldn’t imagine doing otherwise. I trust and know this.

The LORD says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life.
I will advise you and watch over you.
(Psalm 32:8 NLT)

Hearing Test / Cardiologist Appointment

Nora had an appointment yesterday to have her hearing retested. She failed her initial newborn screening when she was first born. However, since she’s been home we’ve become quite certain that she can hear. She startles at loud noises and responds to all of the silly noises going on around here. We hadn’t been in any great hurry to add more hospital / doctor visits to our already brimming schedule. Now that things have settled down just a bit, we decided to revisit her hearing testing. Today’s tests also came back inconclusive. Her ear canals are so narrow that the devices they use to measure the sound weren’t able to operate properly. There is one other option we can do that measures the response to sound by brain waves. She has to be sleeping for that so we’ll need to reschedule for a sleepy time. Not sure how to keep a baby asleep with buzzers and beeps playing in their ears? We shall see… (and hear).

Tomorrow we meet with Nora’s cardiologist to discuss our options in regard to surgery. Our doctor has spoken with the other doctors we received second opinions from. There seems to be a big difference of opinions and we’re anxious to see if there has been any resolution between all 4. While the thought of sending my infant daughter off on a gurney for open heart surgery scares the absolute hell out of me, not doing something that could potentially save her life scares me worse. Please pray for clarity; that God would guide these doctors down the exact path that would be of benefit to Nora and that we would be at peace with whatever route that is.

Pictures from yesterday:

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Baffs!!!!!!!!!!!


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Someone was about to sneeze!!!

Trust in the LORD with all your heart;
do not depend on your own understanding. Seek his will in all you do,
and he will show you which path to take.
(Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT)

God’s Tests?

First of all, I would be remiss if I didn’t wish my brother Joe an official Happy Birthday on his actual birthday. We celebrated yesterday at Mom n’ Dad’s.

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Happy Birthday, Uncle Joe!!!

More pictures from Sunday:

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While we’re on the topic of brothers Joe, my friend Maggie also has a brother named Joe. This morning I received an email from Maggie’s brother, Joe. It is in reference to my post about Abraham. Joe brought up a few interesting points about this Biblical story that I had never bothered to ask or wonder about. But as I read Joe’s email I thought to myself, “Yeah! What about that?? Why WOULD God do that??” Joe’s conjectural explanation made so much sense to me – that it would almost certainly have to be the answer!

Email from Joe:

…you were talking about Abraham the other day. The story of God asking him to sacrifice Isaac used to bother me. On the face of it, it seemed a little sadistic. “Kill your son…JUST KIDDING! HA!” That’s pretty harsh, especially when an all-knowing God already knew that Abraham was ready to obey, and would, Why put the poor guy through that?

But a few years ago, something occured to me. Sometimes people are tested, not because the person testing them wants to know how they’ll do…but because the person testing them wants them to know how they’ll do. A kid walks into a classroom scared to death of a test that he’s going to take, and the teacher KNOWS that the kid’s going to ace it…but gives the test to him so that the kid knows it too. As a mother, you must have had several occasions when one of your kids wasn’t sure they could do something that you knew they could do…and you had them do it so that they knew they could do it, too.

Maybe that was the point of God’s test of Abraham…because for the rest of his life, whatever God asked him to do, Abraham could say, I can do this…I know I can, because I was ready to do something a lot harder. And I’m not afraid…He’s shown me time and again that obedience to Him is always rewarded. After you’ve been asked to sacrifice your son, how hard could anything else be?

It’s a theory. I’m telling you all this because I think that some of the tough or scary times that you and your family have gone through in the last year have been similar kinds of tests. It’s not God saying, “Let’s just see how much they love me”, it’s Him saying “I’m going to show them just how capable, how strong, how loving they really are as a family.” I don’t KNOW if that’s what God’s doing, but…it doesn’t seem impossible that He might be. Anyhow, since you mentioned Abraham the other day, I wanted to shoot that at you.

Take care, Miz Yusko,

Joe

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In summary, and in inspirational “Pinterest photo” format: God doesn’t give you a test and say, “I want to see what you can do.” He allows you to be tested saying, “I KNOW what you can do… I want you to know it, too.”

Thank you for that, Joe C!

Yesterday, Nora neglected to mention her time here at home while Mommy was out gallavanting around the town, reunion hopping. Apparently there was a request for a baff that was placed. Daddy had to throw on some swim trunks and fulfill this requisition. I received these series of photos by text while I was out and was a little, greatly “nermused” (nervous and amused). Perhaps it was ACDC’s “It’s a Long Way to the Top (If You Wanna Rock and Roll)” bagpipe solo that was blaring in the background when I received these pics that added to the craziness factor.

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Wide eyed babies, guinea pigs, bathtubs, and crazy fuzzy hair. One might pause to ask, “What the heck is going on there?”

That’s all I got!

Goodnight! (I hope!!!!!!!)

For you, God, tested us;
you refined us like silver.
(Psalm 66:10 NIV)

Busy Weekend!

Apologies for not updating in 2 days/nights! A medley of fatigue, 2 class reunions (one of which I crashed), and a very, very high maintenance house guest attributed to the neglect of the blog. (I’m teasing, Maggie. Love you and miss you already!)

I’ll just let Nornor fill you in.

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Oh hi! It's me, Nora! Guess where I am!

I like the baffs. I lost count of how many baffs I’ve had over the past couple of days.

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It's a lot though. Right, sister?

When I get out, Mommy bundles me up in my robe and my slippers before dressing me up for the day.

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Mommy usually just dresses me in cozy things.

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But I got dressed by myself the other day.

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And Mommy was all, “Where do you think you’re going in that outfit, young lady!!!!!????????”

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And I was all, “I guess no where, Mommy because it’s cold and flu season and I can’t get exposed to anything!!!!!!!!”

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I'm not one to argue, so I changed.

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Mommy said I must be going through a rebellious stage.

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I think Mommy just doesn't know what's cool anymore!

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But that's neither here nor there.

What’s ALMOST here is my very first Christmas!! Mommy, Daddy and Gavin went off in search of big giant REAL tree on Friday at Hyde Park Floral & Garden Center. This is the one they liked the best best, but they said that ALL of the trees were perfect!

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It’s getting delivered in a few days. It’s a biggun – in honor of my first Christmas!! They also got delicious coffee and hot chocolate. I wonder if that stuff is as delicious as milkies?? Thank you Jen and Derinda – from Mommy, Daddy and Gavin!

Mommy went to her grade school reunion and also to her friends’ high school reunion (a year younger). They were both on the same night and right down the street from each other.

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Aleisa, Maggie and Suzie

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I sure hope Mommy wasn't dancing. So embarrassing!!

I’m off to sleep. For a couple of hours. And then back to sleep an hour later after that, and then back up again, and maybe back to sleep and then back up again, back to sleep, up for a little bit and then back to sleep some more. Goodnight!!

Thankful

I don’t think I have ever been so thankful in my whole life as I am this year, for obvious reasons!

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I get a sense of what Abraham felt like when he was asked to sacrifice his only son. Obediently he set forth to do as God had asked. Undoubtedly his heart was heavy and filled with terror yet he chose to trust God — no matter what. At the risk of sounding like a cliché t-shirt, “Been there, done that.”

We quickly learned all the statistics about trisomy 18. We’d seen the mentions of “incompatible with life”. We were offered, but NOT ENCOURAGED a supposed “way out” of this. Instead, William and I chose to submit to God’s will. We set off on a journey filled with great sadness, fully expecting to say goodbye to our baby girl very shortly after we’d just said hello.

Now here we are 7 months later. I can hardly put into words how blessed I feel, how thankful I am to be walking down off of that mountain with my baby girl safe (and squealing) in my arms! Thank you, thank you, thank you, God!!!

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So thankful for kissy-smiles

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Will someone please pass the *rolls*?

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I’m so incredibly thankful for these people!!!

“Don’t lay a hand on that boy! Don’t touch him! Now I know how fearlessly you fear God; you didn’t hesitate to place your son, your dear son, on the altar for me.”
(Genesis 22:12 MSG)

I will praise God’s name in song
and glorify him with thanksgiving.
(Psalm 69:30 NIV)

Preparings

As Nora woke up this morning a sweet smile spread across her face as she saw me smiling back at her. Could there really be anything sweeter?

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The big kids were home today on break. Nora was excited to see them when they woke up too!

Before long it was baff time. It’s not so bad getting out of the bath when you have a warm schnoogy robe and slippers to snuggle up in!

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Alllllll these kids :

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We’re having my parents and my Oma over for Thanksgiving tomorrow. The turkey is thawed, the pumpkin pie is baked and the table is set!

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Oh yeah, and the baby is bathed. Again.

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I do have a special prayer request from a dear friend of mine. A friend of hers delivered identical twin baby boys at 25 weeks yesterday. They each are just a little over a pound. Please join me in praying for these little guys and their families!

Now, our God, we give you thanks,
and praise your glorious name.
(1 Chronicles 29:13 NIV)