26 August 2014

Fix My Eyes

To hear the song.

The girls and I are big fans of For King and Country and this song has been my mantra this year, especially in light of all that’s been going on with Zach. Each day, he continues to make small improvements in the right direction and we are so thankful he is getting better!

In the last 2 weeks, we have gone through just about every emotion I can think of but the overriding one is by far, GRATEFULNESS. Not just because our boy is getting better but because God, in His infinite Sovereignty chose us to be Zachary’s family.

Even before he got really sick, we were feeling so blessed by the addition of a new little one. The love in our family grew even more (and to think, he’s not even home yet!).

When Zach was at his sickest, there were moments when things got really hard.

When doctors tell you there’s nothing more they can do. They hug you and look at you with eyes of empathy and say things like, “I’m so very sorry.” Yup. That was hard.

When you see your baby and he looks nothing like how you left him. He’s connected to a million different tubes and his little body is swelled up like a balloon from all the different meds. That was hard.

When his puffy chalk-colored body is lying there bare on a table, shaking from the ventilator that’s keeping him alive by breathing for him. That was hard.

When you spend days starring at a screen of numbers willing his vital signs to move yet they don’t begin to show any signs of improvement. That was hard.

And after 5 days of this, when doctors tell you that he’s probably not going to make it. Yes, that was very hard.


Despite it all, we had a supernatural peace that only God can give.

Oh, believe me, there were moments when fear and fatigue tried to overtake me but God’s promises and His love for us, carried us through those darkest days. Even though it was surreal at times, we knew we were exactly where we were meant to be as family. We were (and continue to be) in the center of His will. And somehow, Our Gracious God was going to use it all for His glory. 

And that made everything OK… even though we didn’t know the outcome.

We were being given the opportunity to live out everything we believe in.

Our girls were not only seeing our faith in action, they were a part of it-- creating their own ministry, both within our community and at the hospital.

They made these signs and posted them everywhere.

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They made these notes and handed them out to anyone they could, asking them to pray.

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They comforted me when I was on my knees crying out to God.

And they never, ever, gave up their JOY or their HOPE that God would heal their baby brother.

Some may consider a trial like this an interruption to life as they know it but as Morgan and I sat there exhausted in the hotel lobby that first night after seeing our son on the edge, we believed with all our heart that this was no interruption or inconvenience to life…

This is what life is all about.

And we are privileged to be a small part of his story.

Thank you for sustaining us with your heartfelt prayers and your words of encouragement.

It has meant so much to us.

Let us continue to fix our eyes on Jesus, the Author and Perfecter of our faith. ~Hebrews 12:2 

Love like I'm not scared
Give when it's not fair
Live life for another
Take time for a brother
Fight for the weak ones
Speak out for freedom
Find faith in the battle
Stand tall but above it all
Fix my eyes on You

24 August 2014

Beach Therapy



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Ben, Joe, and Morgan.


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Faith and Joshua.


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Beach critters.


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Lots of exploring going on.


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Fishing in the lagoon.


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Faith loves to fish.


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Buddies: Joshua, Grace, Jacob, and Faith.


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The waves were perfect for the kids.


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Catching a wave.


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Back at it again. She couldn’t get enough. It was the highlight of her day!


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Our sweet friends invited us to enjoy a day of rest and respite at the beach this weekend.

There’s definitely something about the salt water, sand and ocean waves that help you to breathe again...Just what the doctor ordered.

The beach is ALWAYS wonderful but sharing a whole day with friends who love and support you while bearing one another’s burdens is a GIFT!!

So grateful to the Lord for blessing us with a fun and beautiful day with our dear friends.

23 August 2014

Update on Zach

Blessed is the man

Morning update for all those that are following through the blog:

Zach had a good night! His oxygen levels are weaned down to 36% (21% is room air) and there is talk of maybe moving him today (or tomorrow) to a less aggressive ventilator (one that does not shake him). This would be a BIG step in the right direction. Also, last night, they gave him a tiny dose of food in his stomach. Poor baby was probably starving! He processed it well and even stooled this morning. Hooray!

Today, they will try some food again... Baby steps.

Yesterday, he also had an eye exam and he did well through that. So far, his eyes seems to be fine for his age and development. 

A few days ago, we were told that Zach's chances of survival were very slim. He had been in an extremely critical state since last Wednesday night when the pneumonia came on. At the time, things looked dismal.

They tried a new antibiotic this Tuesday and The Lord has been using that to show some signs of improvement over the last few days. Today, our son still lives and although the doctors are saying that his condition is still critical, they are now encouraged that he may, in fact, LIVE!!

Despite what the doctors tell us, we know Who's in control.

Our hope and prayer is that our Gracious God would bring himself Glory through the complete healing and miracle of our baby boy.

Thank you for your unceasing prayers. The battle is not over but the war is already won!!

Blessed be the name of The Lord!!

20 August 2014

Our Precious Son

It is with some reservation that I post these precious moments with our new son, Zachary Benjamin. We returned from visiting him in San Francisco on Friday, August 8th, where we spent 4 days holding him and watching him grow. He was doing so well that there was talk of him going home by the end of this month. We were overjoyed to say the least. We came back home and started preparing for his arrival. 

Just two days later, by Sunday morning, we got word that another infection had formed by his jaw line and this time it was serious. It was MRSA. By Tuesday, the 12th, he was undergoing surgery. By Thursday morning, the MRSA had moved into his lungs and he had full blown pneumonia.

The doctors told us it didn’t look good. That we should probably come back to the hospital because he may not survive much longer. We needed a miracle.

We immediately packed our bags and headed for San Francisco again where Zachary has been in critical condition ever since. MRSA in the lungs is so fierce and vicious on a preemie. There have been moments when we thought we would lose him. Since last Thursday, each day and each hour has been tenuous…

But by the grace of God, our son still lives today. 

It is by faith, I am choosing to post these pictures of our beautiful baby boy…



This was the first day we met him, over 4 weeks ago. As soon as his sisters came close to him, he reached out his hand to touch them.



Our little guy was born at 28 weeks, 3 lbs. 3 oz.


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Such a cute little peanut!



Our happy family of five.


TWO weeks later…



He had gained another pound!


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We were absolutely thrilled at his progress!


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Grace, his proud Big Sister.


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Mommy’s sweet boy!


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What a gift! My precious SON!!



Big sister Faith loves to cuddle with him.



Daddy and his new boy. So sweet!



Today, was the first bit of good news we’ve received since the critical emergency last Thursday. Yesterday, the Infectious Disease Team researched and added a new antibiotic to his treatment. Overnight, it has made some marked improvement. We are not out of the woods yet by any means but for the first time in a week, there are signs he is heading in the right direction! Praise the LORD!!

We will continue to press into our Mighty Healer and storm the heavens on behalf of Zach’s healing.

Will you please join us in prayer and petition for our son?

“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen!” ~Ephesians 3:20-21

12 August 2014

San Francisco

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We made the long trip up north in our new rig. This summer, Ben and Lucy gifted us with their old RV and truck! That’s a story in and of itself. What an extraordinary gift! 


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How anyone can read without getting car sick is beyond me but they manage to do it all the time!



Ice Cream shop in Larkspur.



An evening at the Larkspur Landing.



Here we come, Zach! Crossing the Golden Gate bridge into the city.



We made it!!


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Grace marvels at everything about her little brother.


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All THREE of my precious children together!



Our little guy was doing so well, they moved him into his own open crib.


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San Fran is not complete without a trip to Fisherman’s Wharf.



Dinner at Boudin’s.



My amazing and handsome husband.



The girls couldn’t wait for their clam chowder in a bowl. They ate every. last. bite.



I suppose there are stranger ways to make a living.



The girls were unsure what to make of the eclectic street performers.



From the Wharf, we walked to Ghirardelli Square.



The World Famous Ghirardelli Ice Cream Shop.



Vats of chocolate.



The perfect visual after we just read Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.



When in San Francisco…



The gateway to Chinatown.



The girls loved all the trinkets and shop vendors.






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We also had to make a quick stop on our street. :)


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It’s kind of nice, in San Francisco, no one mispronounces our last name!


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Zach’s bear made it to his crib and the nurses even dressed him up.



Sibling love is the sweetest.


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We were about to change his diaper when we undressed him to find this adorable onesie!



Good morning, sunshine! The girls loved sleeping in the RV and made their bunks into private cubby holes. It’s luxury camping, I tell ya!



Less than an hour away from the city, we hiked the beautiful Redwood Groves at Samuel P. Taylor Park.




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Amazingly lush and picturesque.


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One of the prettiest hikes we’ve ever done.


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We’d return to the RV Park in the evenings after a full day in the city.



Yes, those are sparklers.



This is what happens when you find firecrackers in Chinatown for 25 cents. :)

What a trip!

Looking back, it was a bit of an ambitious drive, hauling the RV for the first time that far but WE DID IT!!It was wonderful to come back to the RV Park in the evenings and having full hook ups made our stay that much more comfortable. 

Although we managed to sneak in a few site seeing adventures, the highlight was definitely getting to cuddle our boy all day. We spent most of our days in the NICU where we took turns loving on him and meeting his team of doctors, nurses and hospital staff. Thankfully, they allow siblings in the NICU so the girls were absolutely thrilled to be with their baby brother. They helped with changing diapers, taking his temperature and simply marveled at the miracle and gift of new life.

Unfortunately, I still can’t post any pictures of his precious face until the 18th (when some legalities will be finalized). But I look forward to sharing those when the time comes…SOON!

Little Zach was making major strides for a couple of weeks. He got up to 4 lbs. 4 oz. and was breathing all on his own. We loved spending time with him and bonding even more. It was definitely hard to leave him on our last day. I was in tears because I felt like I was leaving a piece of my heart in SF and coming home without a member of our family. It gives us great peace knowing how well he’s being taken care of there.

He’s now at 33 weeks and unfortunately, over the last couple of days, he developed another infection. Last night, he underwent surgery to remove an abscess that was found around his salivary gland. It does feel like three steps forward and two steps back but we were told that life with a preemie often works this way. A roller coaster ride. 

Needless to say, there have been countless opportunities to buckle up and rely on God even more. This latest trial is certainly no exception. Did I mention we were also robbed, ticketed, fined, and had a nice visit with the Police Officers and detectives of the Central San Francisco Police Station? 

Yes, lots of surprising adventures on the streets of San Francisco! The girls thought it was THE MOST exciting adventure they’ve ever had and they can’t wait to tell Zach all about it when he gets older. It all reminds me of that quote on adoption:

Adoption is costly, exhausting, expensive, and outrageous. Buying back lives costs so much. But adoption is also REDEMPTION. Hallelujah!

The Lord has been near to us and He is so faithful. We have every confidence that Zachary will come home to us whole and we will continue to thank and praise God for the work He is doing in our son and in us.

Thank you for checking in and most importantly, thank you for your continued prayers for our family! 

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