What a difference a year makes!

Timothy was born on 12-6...after being discharged from the hospital on the 8th, he was admitted to Children's Hospital -- our very first time being in that hospital! -- on the 9th for jaundice but discharged on the 10th. Lots of drama that week including a "fight" with the doctor as we had to have blood draws to make sure his levels were going down. Then, just when things were starting to seem to get back to "normal", along came December 23rd. I noticed Timothy seemed kinda stuffy on the 22nd and that John was coming down with something. Then, right before bed on the 22nd, Timothy started making weird noises. I thought to myself that he was holding his breath but then I thought I must be crazy. Even though he didn't seem really sick, I was very uneasy about both him and John and decided to take them to the dr on Christmas Eve. Jonathan thought I was loosing it or hormonal or both. "But," I thought, "I don't want to be going to the ER on a holiday, should one of them get sicker". John's turned out to be nothing or at least nothing serious. I honestly can't remember what his symptoms were or what the dr said. At first, the doctor said that Timothy did appear to have a cold or something similar and while he really wasn't holding his breath in the office, it would not be uncommon for him to hold his breath with a virus and to keep an eye on him. They had him on a pulse-ox monitor and his stats were steady in the 90s which is good. Then, he dipped into the 80s. After it took a while for him to get back up into the 90s, it was decided that we were to go to the ER at Children's for observation. After he never really improved -- and after being put on an apnea monitor that monitors breathing and after he set off that monitor several times -- it was decided that he should be admitted. Admitted to the hospital on Christmas Eve. I missed Christmas morning with my other 4 but after several break downs, decided to go have lunch at my in-laws house with the rest of the family so I could at least see my kids opening SOMETHING on Christmas Day. Turned out Timothy had RSV, a form of the common cold that does very UNcommon things to little ones, even causing death. He was admitted on Monday and discharged on Friday....

And here we sit, exactly one year later. The Lord has certainly stretched me beyond what I thought I could handle with Timothy's breathing issues and hearing loss. But as I sit here this morning, watching him pull himself up to standing by the couch, feeding him oatmeal (he loves the cinnamon roll flavor!), wrestling him for over 5 minutes to get his hearing aid in his ear, listening to him babble and cry, with the realization that he's got a baby sister coming in less than 100 days, I'm amazed at what a difference a year can make, at what strength God gave us to endure what we have endured. And I wonder what surprises are in store for us this next year with a new addition to the family and the drs appointments Timothy continues to go through. If the Lord wills, we'll be blessed to watch John turn 4 (and hopefully be potty-trained?!?!) and Elizabeth turn 5, both in May. And Nathan will hit double digits in July, turning 10. And then the Christmas season will come again, if the Lord wills, and we'll watch Caleb turn 7 and Timothy turn 2, not to mention the multitude of things Lydia will probably go through in her first 9 or 10 months of life. If the Lord wills..... Never have I realized more than this year exactly what that means. And never have I been more grateful.

I wish you all a very blessed Christmas!

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