Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Good-bye cold virus, hello wheelchair!





There is joy in a sister's hug.

There is joy when children feel better after several sleepless, tear-filled nights.  Both Rachel and Janneke took on a cold, and Rachel was in significant pain due to a g-tube infection.  They took turns not sleeping at all...  

There is no joy in those kind of all-nighters.  

Thankfully, everyone seems to be mending. Em and Soph did not get much of the virus, and I was able to replace Rachel's g-tube, albeit with heart-breaking cries from her because of the pain involved with removing the old one.  

While we are thankful for recovery, we also wish speedy recovery to the Brand family (yucky flu) and to Ella (surgery on her foot).  

* * *

Managing life with little sleep is a challenge, and I find those days and nights need constant prayer.

There are still those moments when it also helps to yell into a pillow or say one cuss word.  (Sorry, Dad.)

Speaking of sleepless nights, this week, we marked Emily's 10th birthday; ten years ago, we started the parenting journey in Fridley, Minnesota.  I went from teaching 75 middle school students to parenting one tiny baby.  (Why is it that one small baby crying for five minutes can completely unravel you when, pre-baby, you thought nothing of playing Bunko with 75 screaming adolescents for an entire afternoon, three days before Christmas?)

And here is another little one, just born.  This is Asher Hoff, born on Sunday to Aron and Rachel, friends through church. I wanted to not only show off his beautiful face but also his beautiful hat.  



With the helpful the Niagara Midwives, Asher was welcomed into his family.  The Niagara Midwives have also been a part of our family with the pregnancies and births of Sophia, Rachel, and Janneke.  With Rachel, because we knew of her anomalies before birth, there was a transfer of care to McMaster staff, but the midwives continued to see me and support me pre and post labour.

The midwives were also on hand to share the complicated feelings of joy and sorrow when Janneke was born.  We thank God that the team was so quick to act when Janneke went into distress in labour, and we deeply appreciated their quiet comfort when we all realized Janneke was presenting problems just like Rachel. The midwives continued to visit me and support us even though we had a transfer of care with Janneke whisked off to SickKids in TO.  

The support and love from Niagara Midwives continued this summer with the sale of these hats.  These hats were on sale in the clinic - the money raised went to our Appeal for Wheels campaign. We were so moved by their continued support. How thankful we are to have experienced midwifery care with our girls, both in the years past and this summer!

* * *

Here are a few photos taken before the girls became sick.  Janneke really enjoyed being outside for the afternoon, and I loved the way she watched her sleepy big sister Rachel get off the bus.





Janneke has also figured out our spot for her drums.  Sitting on a pile of shirts in the drawer, she can hit the drums, creating sounds and lights.  When we put her in the Pacer, she often zips over to her room and stands there for as long as she can, drumming away.


* * *

Today's fun included Rachel official first wheelchair!  It took three people to adjust and ready the chair for her, but her throne is complete.  It's called a Zippie...  not sure how much she'll zip around in it, but her posture is already better with the new seat.  Mind you, she doesn't look too impressed with the adjustments.




I discovered that the chair is much larger and heavier than her previous chair - and it can't collapse into smaller parts.  We signed the order for the Sprinter van at the dealership yesterday....  it can't come soon enough.  



Now we wait.  When the van arrives from the factory, it will go to Northend Mobility.  We have estimated we will welcome the finished and accessible Sprinter to our driveway in January.

Thank you again for your support with our van.  We could not place this order without His blessings extended through our amazing community.

Peace for your week.
spot

Oh,  Rachel's old chair?  For now, it's a new-to-you chair for Janneke.  Hand-me-downs aren't always exciting, eh?

4 comments:

Cousin Eric said...

Only one cuss??

Heather said...

Hurray!
Also, love the big sister outstretched arms :)

Anonymous said...

Sara, the seat and handle portion will fold forward with some effort. Fold in the laterals and pull up on the two little silver knobs with black covers at the very bottom of the handle and the seat will go forward. Easiest with two people, but do-able with one person. Also be careful of the front of the foot plates. Syiriah is always cutting open the backs of her heals because she extends and then pulls them up along the sharp fronts of them. She is having a custom foot box made to alleviate the problem. She also cuts her heals on the seat front, just under the cushion. And yes, they are heavy, they weigh about 70 pounds each! Amy

Thomas Wright said...

I’m sure Rachel and the girls would be happy with the new vehicle. Having a custom-fit van would make them comfortable during trips and long drives. And you don’t have to worry about the space, since vans like this are made for such a purpose. I do hope that your daughters are doing fine!