Thursday, September 27, 2007

Pretty in Pink

Just wanted to share a photo of our little cutie wearing a dress her Grandma made for her.  Isn't she adorable - and the dress is too!  Thanks Mom!
OK, this isn't the best one of the dress, but it is the best smiling one of Eliana.  I'm not sure why she was a little serious.   The next one is a close-up - serious, but still cute.  Yes, I"m a little biased.  LOL

I saw a link to a beautiful slide show today created by a Mom of a child with Down syndrome.  The words and the photos are so beautiful.  I wanted to share it here too.

A Life Worth Living

I love the life-affiming messages.  There are times when I read things about people with Down syndrome - how they are viewed by others - and it makes my heart sad.  I understand that many people are responding from fear.  I do understand that.  So many people with DS never make it into this world that many of us have not had the chance to even know someone with DS.  We don't always hear the positive stories and the encouragment.  I hope that by sharing out story that many will see the beauty of life lived with a child with Down syndrome.

Things have changed so much over the last several decades.  The care and early interventions are helping people with DS to have a much better quality of life.  As I read stories written by people who have a loved one with Down syndrome, I am consistently struck by the affirming words and the thankfulness that they have experienced life with a person with an extra chromosome. 

I'm not saying it isn't hard.  Honestly though, life is  hard.  Being a parent is a challenge.  Having a child with special needs just adds a new dimension to all of those things.  I also believe though that in addition to the challenges, that there come blessings!

 We are so thankful to have been blessed with our children.  We see each of our children as a precious gift from God.  Not a mistake.   A special gift given to us by the Creator of the Universe.  Isn't that an amazing thought?  We are given an incredible job to love and nurture and teach these precious little people.

I wouldn't be surprised if Eliana is the one that teaches us the most.  I know that God placed her with us for a reason.  It's not because we are any better able to handle difficulties, because we aren't.  It isn't because we are stronger or more capable - we aren't.  I'm not sure why we have been given this gift - but I am so very thankful for her!  I think that having her in our family has already taught us a lot about trusting God.  I think we'll learn more about slowing down, patience and unconditional love.  I know that I need to learn more about all of those things.  What a sweet privilege to have children to help me learn these lessons.

We are preparing for a pirate party tomorrow and I'll post pictures as soon as I'm able to.

Praises & Blessings:

*Eliana is sitting up by herself.  She is getting herself into a sitting position from being on her back.  She rolls over and then gets on her hands and knees.  Then she sticks one leg out straight and eventually sits and sticks the other one out.  It is really cute!  She still needs her hands to prop herself up, but she is so proud of herself.  Here is a photo.

*My precious children have been so helpful in getting things ready for the birthday party.  The oldest 4 have all contributed ideas and added in their own touches in order to make the party special.  I love that!  Rebecca made a treasure chest today - and it looks great!  Christopher has been working on lettering to add to the pirate ships and helping with planning some of the activities.  Joshua and Isaiah have come up with their own versions of games to play at the event tomorrow.  I love seeing them work together.

*Eliana had a great day eating today.  One of the bottles was 5 ounces!!!  This was a little over what we typically give her.  Just a little, but it's an improvment in the right direction!  All total she had 18.5 ounces orally today!  Yippee!!!  We need to see her taking most of her food orally for a couple of months before we can get rid of the g-tube.  I think she has some pain at the site and I look forward to the day when we don't need that tube any more.  I'm thankful that we have the option now as it has helped to keep her healthy and growing.   

Prayer requests:
*Good Health - Two of my children seem a little stuffy.  I'm not sure if it's  an allergic reaction or what.  I'm really hoping not to be getting something already.

*Sleep - I'm working on getting more, but still need to do a better job.  I took a nap for several hours yesterday and it was so wonderful!

*Patience for me.  Why is that always a lesson I need to work on?  I'm trying to slow down and not do so much.  It is hard sometimes when there are so many things I want to do.  I'm trying to make sure I start my day with God.  It really does make a difference when He comes first.  I know that and yet I don't always do it.  *sigh* 

I hope you each experience a week-end filled with His special blessings!

With love,