our work

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Honeymoon

Well, Zkel has been home about three weeks now and we are either on an extended "honeymoon" or he is really the best little 2 year old I've ever met! What a sweet spirit! He is happy almost all the time. He only whines when he is excessively tired and laying him down in his crib actually makes him HAPPY when he's very tired! He has been sleeping all night for about 5 nights now (I do hear an occasional bit of chatter from his crib but it only lasts literally 60 seconds before he's asleep again) and what a crowd pleaser! Everywhere we go, he is complimented by total strangers for simply being cute - a feat he accomplishes with no effort whatsoever! I have heard others talk about children with Down Syndrome as "angels". While that doesn't exactly line up with my theology, I can clearly see why this title is applied to these particular children. My husband purchased a t-shirt online months ago that says "every family deserves the blessing of a child with Down Syndrome". When he wore it for the first time, Zkel wasn't home with us yet and I honestly felt it was a bit of an overstatement. I stand corrected. Any family raising one of these precious babies should consider themselves very blessed! I know I do!

Friday, March 19, 2010

Good News

Ezekiel will NOT need repair surgery for his PDA (heart hole) anytime in the near future! He was also taken off the medication he had been on since before coming home to us. I am so thankful for prayers being answered!! Thank you to all who prayed!!
I can not say enough wonderful things about Dr. Kanter at Duke Pediatric Cardiology!
He is a caring doctor who took so much extra time explaining to us exactly what a PDA is, how it works and why Ezekiel's is no big deal! Thank you, Jesus!

Never The Same

Ezekiel (or Z-kel and we call him) has been home for just under two weeks. I still can not believe he's here sometimes. All the prayers, tears, joys and hope have come to fruition in this one little man! We all love him immensely! We sit around as a family and just laugh at his dancing. We cringe when he pulls two great handfuls of fur from the dogs' back and sigh with relief when she just lets him do it! (the dogs have learned to exit the room when he comes in - ha ha). We all crowd into our small hall bathroom to watch him splash in his bath and put his face under and blow bubbles in the water. He has brought joy to us that I wasn't even aware we needed!
Today we head to the Duke University Pediatric Cardiology unit for his first heart consultation. I have begged the Lord to close that tiny hole in his heart and heal him fully but I know God does as He pleases. His ways are NOT my ways and if He has chosen not to heal, we will treat medically. I have always said that I am not one bit afraid of the Down Syndrome in my son but I am petrified of the heart condition that came with it. If you happen to be reading this today, a prayer for my baby's heart would be a gift.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Completion

Ezekiel arrived at 8:36pm, Monday March 8th at Raleigh-Durham international airport.
He came straight from his daddy's arms to mine and it was a phenomenal day! The prayers
I offered up for him NOT fear me did not go unanswered! He allowed me to take him from Anthony, give him a big hug and kiss and carry him a way off from the family. I admit I did each of these things expecting to hear a shriek from my new son and having to hand him back to Daddy. Never happened. He came to me and he has been right next to me for over 24 hours straight. I adore him. I am mystified that such a gorgeous, cheerful, precious little angel went unadopted for over two years! The only explanation I have for this fact is that my Heavenly Father was preserving him for my family. Thank you, Jesus!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

The Countdown

Monday night my precious family returns to me with our new little one! As I thank the Lord for the technology to skype, call, facebook and email, I can attest wholeheartedly to the fact that none of these modes of communication can trump the good old fashioned hug.
Yesterday in The Philippines, my husband decided to take the three children to see the new movie "Alice in Wonderland". . .hey, where else can you see a first run new release for about $3? I was quite skeptical that a two year old child could sit through such a long movie but sit he did! Anthony was astounded at how calm and enamored he was of the entire experience.
A heart rending experience that also happened on this trip was our 11 year old son, Lemuel was able to visit his 19 year old biological brother, Ariel.
Ariel is living at a shelter for street kids in Antipolo City. He was never adopted.
The Philippines customarily does not separate siblings but this was truly an emergency situation. Ariel's health as a young child prevented him from immigrating. As his brothers grew older, their chances of being adopted diminished. As a result, the painful decision to separate was made. We have made a point of writing to and sending small gifts to Ariel since we adopted Lemuel three years ago. I have to tell you in all honesty, that is not enough! I feel that God wants us to do more for this young man! I don't know what our options are or what God is asking of us but I am praying daily that He will show us. When I look at his handsome face, I see my son just a few years down the road. I believe he should be somebody's treasured son. He should have the chance to call out "Mom, Dad, I'm home" and see relief in the eyes of people who love him. I shared my sadness with my husband on the phone and his response to me was "sweetie . . . we can't save them all". He's right, we can't but maybe we can help just one more . . . Please pray for Ariel. There has to be more for him than life in a shelter, unclaimed.