Today was sort of like that.
My phone rang at 6:45. IN THE MORNING. There are not many things that happen around the Knoll house at that time of day, and if they are happening, they are usually not pleasant. My first thought was, "Oh help us, it's the NICU!" I managed to clear my throat enough to answer the phone, and imagine my surprise to hear, "GOOD MORNING ABBY! You're on the radio!"
**insert scared-news face, except with pajamas, runny mascara, and dried up drool on my cheek*
To make a long story short, my dear friend Patti had sent a local radio station (shout out to Kicks 101.5!) an email about Parker. Their morning show does a segment every Monday called Make Your Monday, in which they just do nice things for people. Today, we were those people.
You can listen to the whole thing here, so long as you promise not to laugh too loudly at me. I have learned several things about myself from this experience:
1) There are approximately 100 different voice inflections to use on the word "okay," and I managed to use all of them fifty times in the course of this segment.
2) When I am not fully awake, I make up information. I told them Mike was at work (he was at CrossFit). I told them Patti is still a middle school teacher (she's not). Sigh.
3) I 1000% don't sound like I do in my own head. In the words of one of my favorite Disney movies:
Regardless of that, it was a truly amazing start to my morning. There is still kindness in the world, there are good people with good hearts in the world, and there are sweet friends who will do sneaky things because they love you. My friend Jill pointed out that God's glory was being spoken of on a radio station that wasn't the "Christian" one, and I think that's my favorite part of the whole thing.
Thank you, Cadillac Jack, Dallas, and Tug.
Thank you, Patti.
Thank you, Lord, for unexpected blessings at the crack of dawn.
In other news, Parker is doing GREAT! He's still on a very high amount of oxygen support, which is scary for us. It makes sense, as he is still learning how to breathe and his lungs are still playing catch up, that he will get tired every so often and require more support. He started out on 60% and has gone as low as 35%, with various fluctuations in between. They are happy to give him as much help as he needs right now, so that he can continue to get stronger and do this on his own. He is such a fighter!
They also resumed his feeds... he made it all day yesterday at 2 ml/hour with no puking. Today, he's up to 4 ml/hour and still no puking. This is VERY exciting news, as breathing and feeding are going to be the longest parts of the road to home.
We have gotten so much snuggle time with him, now that the big clunky ventilator is out of the way. I am not entirely sure there has been a worse picture of me taken, but I don't care because I have been DYING for the day I could snuzzle that little fuzzy head up against my neck.
**how many chins do you see? I see four. FOUR. Counting down to treadmill clearance.*
He's been so awake these last few days, which we love.
He also got put in a big boy crib, which is just plain cute.
Ever so slowly, he's turning into a normal baby. We still need your prayers, though. Drug withdrawal, feeding, and breathing are what keep these babies in the hospital far longer than their hernias. The CDH itself wasn't much of a problem-- it's the side effects of it (compromised heart, lungs, and digestive tract) that cause the troubles. Parker is over the biggest hurdle he was facing, but now begins the long road to recovery from all the damage done before he was born.
Please pray for Parker as he goes through drug withdrawal. We've all seen what it can do to grown-ups, and though his withdrawal is carefully managed and monitored, it's not real fun for Parker, either.
Please pray for Parker's lungs to continue to grow and be able to support themselves with less outside intervention.
Please pray for Parker to be able to first keep milk down, then to learn how to eat without the use of a feeding tube.
Please pray for Mike, Jeremiah, and I as we go about life at home with a giant piece of it (well, a tiny little 9 pound piece of it) missing. It is exhausting, it is hard, and sometimes it's just downright sad.
But above all else, join me in sending up big huge praises and thank-yous to God for His blessings. On my way to the hospital for Storytime Shift tonight, Matt Redman's "10000 Reasons" came on the radio. Summed up my day perfectly... Under normal circumstances, being woken up at the crack of dawn would put me in an ugly place for the rest of the day. This morning, however, my heart was full to bursting before I'd even had my coffee. It's amazing how, when you allow yourself the correct perspective, the list of people and things and situations for which you can thank God (from whom ALL blessings flow) grows and grows and grows.
"For all Your goodness I will keep on singing, Ten thousand reasons for my heart to find."