Friday, June 29, 2007


We leave Portland on July 13! We will arrive in Addis on the 14th and spend our first day with Anna Jubilee on the 15th. We hope to also meet the girl I sponsor through Compassion--pray that they can arrange this on such short notice. We leave Addis at night on July 20 and get home on the 21st.

We are going via United/Lufthansa even though it's painfully more expensive because the better connection times will almost save us a day of travel/hotel each way, and with this long of a trip and us living 3 hours from the airport and Aaron still tired and uncomfortable, comfort and ease won out over dollars. We will change planes in Germany to give me a chance to try out all the Deutsch I once learned from Das Frau, in whose honor I shall wear purple (that day only, not every single day, as she did).

I continue to be amazed and grateful how every apparent setback is met by God's abundant provision, delivered by his people. Medical bills? How about on the day before surgery you receive a $2500 grant from a certain diminutive musician's ministry, Shaohannah's Hope! I love that we got a grant from Mr. Chapman because I met him once, and seriously, he's hardly taller than me. We got free backstage passes to a concert when I interned at a radio station, so we went, even though we weren't really fans. We hung back in the meet-and-greet line to let all the actually-excited people get their handshakes and autographs first. We thought this a bit amusing since people sometimes wanted Aaron's autograph when he was in his band and he always felt funny doing it since really, what's the point? Finally we stepped up and greeted him and he offered nicely, "Would you like my autograph?" and I replied without thinking, "No thanks; would you like mine?" Obviously he did not remember this incident or we would have been on Shaohannah's Blacklist.

Price of plane tickets almost sending you back to the hospital? Generous friends have sent a large gift to help make up for the unexpected extra cost!

Need some baby stuff? Ha! We will have you drowning in pink clothing and sippy cups before you can count to onesie! Our anniversary felt like Christmas when we opened two boxes of baby goodies from our friends Mike and Ren. Feeding stuff, toys, clothes, carrier, you name it, they passed it on. My mom couldn't keep herself away from garage sale steals. Aaron scored the essentials for fall at And then today there came The Giant Box of Adoptive Families' Girly Goodies, oh my! I'd told other moms some time ago that I needed very small clothes since Anna was so tiny, so I was next on the list for this box as J's daughter had outgrown things already. I couldn't stop laughing pulling things out--it just didn't stop! I think Anna is already too big for some of this, but the friend from our Web board I affectionately call Crazy Laura just received a referral for a very young girl. Congratulations and watch your doorstep before too long, girl!

These are a few of my favorite things!

Okay, in the interests of honesty . . . this is what the rest of the room looks like right now. I had it all cute and organized until I started doing laundry, I swear!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

GO for Travel!

Addis, we are GO for travel!

This morning I called Aaron's surgeon's assistant (who is, as she would say, FAN-tas-tic) and explained that our agency had an embassy date for us and although I wanted to be so excited as she suggested, I really wanted the big doc's A-OK before I bought airplane tickets. She checked with the doctor and called back in an hour and said "Buy your tickets!" YES!*

We are looking at leaving on July 13 and returning on the 21st. Can you say holy cow that's only 2 1/2 weeks from now!? And #&^!@* the tickets cost how much?

Baby girl is coming home!

* I would like to revoke the love I spontaneously pledged to a certain surgeon, although I will let my professed love for the assistant stand.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Big A, Little A

The Big A, Aaron, is slowly getting his energy back up and his pain and narcotics down. He generally feels pretty good during the day, although he tires very easily. He also has this weird hot/cold thing going on. During the day he is down to just Tylenol, but at night he has more pain and needs prescription meds. Please keep praying for less pain and better sleep . . . especially since the doctor didn't want to give us the A-OK for Ethiopia until after he's off his pain meds. Meanwhile, though, our agency is planning an embassy date for us. I feel weird and sneaky again being half-committed, half-waiting. I hope we can have a conversation with the doctor early next week (before he is out of town) and he says it's okay to move forward. 'Cuz I'd hate to have to disobey him, but I need to buy tickets.

Meanwhile Little A, Anna, is going on with the business of growing up. Specifically, up to 11 pounds 10 ounces and 22.8 inches. Apparently she got shorter since her last measurement (23 1/2 inches)--or, more likely, she likes to squirm. Someday she'll even fit in her sweaters.

A big thank-you to Joyce and Rick for keeping me company and helping us out during all this! Hope you are back on the right time zone and enjoying that big wannabe-ocean of yours.

Friday, June 22, 2007

In Sickness and in Health

June 21, 1997.

I, Wendy, take you, Aaron, to be my husband. Relying upon the strength of Christ, I promise before God and all who are present here to be a loving and faithful wife, for better, for worse, for richer, for poorer, in sickness and in health. I will love you, serve you, and encourage you according to God's holy Word until death parts us. I pledge you my life.

Best promise I ever made. Even though I didn't really know what I was saying. Does anyone ever? The correct answer to "Are you ready to get married?" is not "Yes" but "Ready as we'll ever be." That's when you're ready: when you know it's a bigger promise than you can live up to on your own but you're humbly, wholeheartedly dedicated to making it work by faith, commitment, learning, and grace.

We've had our share of sickness to go with the health. I started us off by getting food poisoning at the end of our honeymoon and spending a week unable to keep anything down. There is no good place to be that sick, but I can testify that airplane seat narrowly beats out airplane bathroom, airport bathroom, hotel room, and home as Worst Place to Vomit. And no, genius in front of me on the plane, it's not motion sickness since we're not moving yet.

We did pretty well from then until this year's eye surgery and open heart surgery for Aaron. In year ten of our marriage I have driven to appointments, argued insurance coverage, administered eye drops and narcotics, put on a brave face, scrubbed rashes, fluffed pillows, fetched water, and held hands. In year ten I have been scared, nurturing, angry, steady, and exhausted.

In year ten I have loved like never before.

And for ten years, I have been loved like no one deserves.

And that, my friends, is what it's all about.

Thank you, God, for this man I love.

Thank you, Aaron, for sharing it all. I pledge you my life.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Hanging at Home

It is good to be home, and we have been out and about a bit too. On Saturday Joyce and I went to the Beachcomber Days parade and walked around town a bit in the perfect weather. Sunday we had worship outside in front of the church and then a BBQ to benefit the scholarship fund. Aaron made it down for the BBQ.

After a couple hours home recharging we all went into town for our favorite cultural event, the bed races. Sadly, only two entries. Young Life has got to get a team together next year. Briggs can build an aerodynamic pirate ship/iPod/slingshot or some such elaborate craft. But I digress.

Aaron's energy level is obviously up, although I think I hear some, uh, "relaxed breathing" coming from the recliner again now. His pain levels are definitely down during the day, but he still has trouble staying comfortable and sleeping at night. Keep praying for sleep, please.

With this summer weather and no work, I feel like I'm on some sort of unauthorized summer vacation. I haven't even cooked, thanks to church folk. I am ready to tackle my to-do lists, packing lists, shopping lists, and household disaster zones.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Settling In

We are settling in at home. The first night Aaron had a hard time getting comfortable in bed. Every 20 minutes we were trying a different arrangement of pillows and I thought, Will I ever sleep again? Tell me this is not preparation for how our baby will (not) sleep. Eventually we got it right, though, and for the rest of the night and last night we were only up every couple of hours (well, at least I was--I suspect Aaron was up more).

Friday Aaron had to get his blood checked here in town, and I had more errands to run in the afternoon. Then we had a period where I think all three of us were napping. I think I am slowly getting caught up on sleep, and Aaron's pain seems to be slightly less, although it comes and goes, and when it comes, it's not fun. As my brain slowly defogs, I will have more thoughtful blog posts, but I know you only really care about what's below anyway: new pictures of beautiful, alert, smiling, giggling Anna!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Home Sweet Home

We are home. It has been a long day. In time we will love to see you all again, but for now best to phone first and don't be offended if we don't pick up. We also have to swing by the local doctor tomorrow.

We got word about 9:00 a.m. that Aaron was cleared to go home. Once we got him discharged we had to get his prescriptions at the hospital pharmacy and go check out of our hotel. We got home at about 3:30.

We are all worn out and Aaron was at times overwhelmed, I think, by the strangeness of knowing what has happened to him over the last week and now being on his own in a sense rather than under nurses' watchful eyes. It is in a sense hard to trust that we will be okay with all the medications and pain and all on our own. I think once we settle in and get better rest he will be glad to be home, though.

We are grateful to the Howes for dinner and the Esteses for the loan of a recliner that doesn't have "issues." And now, finally, I am going to go be grateful for my bed.

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Recovery Report: Day 8

Aaron had a good day today. Mine was a little goofy. I think my brain is addled.

This morning we took Aaron's dad to the airport. Joyce is staying another week. On the way we stopped to fill one of my tires with air and Rick noticed it had a piece of metal in it, which would explain the slow leak. Dropped him off and I went the wrong direction on the highway. Please send coffee.

We went to the hospital and hung out and took walks with Aaron. He did well through the day with only pain pills, no IV drugs, so I hope he can get through the night that way. If he can and the blood thinner levels are good in the morning, he should get to go home. His biggest annoyance today was that he has been feeling itchy all week but now it's a full-on rash all over. The nurse looked up all his drugs to see if it said any can cause itching, and it could be his pain meds, or just the way everything is interacting, or what the linens are washed in, or the super concentrated soap they gave him. I tend to think maybe the soap since he seemed to get worse after trying to wash away the itch, so I got him new soap and they got him hypoallergenic linens and Benedryl. 'Cuz he wasn't on enough drugs.

In between all that I decided my brain was too fuzzy and I needed to go get the tire fixed and crash in my hotel room for a while. I went to the van and found a note: "Just a friendly note from the valet staff that you have a flat tire." Yep, FLAT, like can't even drive it to the gas station flat. But the nice, probably bored valet guy offered to help me change it. Of course I have only had this van 6 weeks so I wasn't familiar with its spare and jack system. We spent an embarrassing amount of time puzzling over how a T-shaped piece could "tilt through hole to remove spare" when the T is bigger than the hole. I felt like a monkey with no depth perception. He said, "You'd think a college degree would be helpful here," and "Don't they say insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results?" Then he beat it on the ground and got it into two pieces as apparently required. Duh. The poor guy got filthy and can't accept tips. I nominated him for a Rose Award; maybe he'll get a two-cent raise.

Got the tire fixed; it had not one but two pieces of metal in it, which would explain the rapid acceleration of flatativity. Went to the hotel where, oh yes, I had left the cell phone in the morning, and got a 45-minute nap.

We're hoping to get to the hospital early enough tomorrow to see the surgeon on his early morning rounds. I don't know what time they'll check Aaron's blood and make a decision about letting him go home. But we're all about ready to get out of here.

There's no place like home . . . There's no place like home . . . There's no place like home . . .

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Recovery Report: Day 7

Live from room K11 . . .

Aaron had a good day today. Since he is now alert enough to be bored, the other good news is that we discovered that we can indeed access the Internet from the hospital room. Shall we try some live blogging?

8:45 p.m.: Sitting in hospital room, waiting for nurse to come fiddle with IVs.

9:00 p.m.: Sitting in hospital room, watching nurse fiddle with IVs.

9:15 p.m.: Sitting in hospital room, watching nurse fiddle with IVs.

9:20 p.m.: Sitting in hospital room.

Well, I’m pretty disappointed in that little experiment.

Anyway, last night Aaron got some nice meds to help him sleep, with the only side effect being him waking up in the night in some sort of weird dreamlike state before figuring out where he was. Trippy is better than not sleeping, though. The pain was under control pretty well today, although it is always there. He walked around the hall and enjoyed the view of the city and mountains from the waiting room, which I also enjoyed for quite a while from the sunny, warm terrace garden area. If you have to hang around a hospital for a week, this is actually a pretty nice one to be in, especially this new wing.

One of the doctors talked to us some more about his blood coagulant levels this afternoon. Aaron was just started on a drip to get his blood thinned more; when it is at the right level, he can probably go home. It is looking like he might be able to go home Thursday, although it is still wait and see.

Please keep praying for (1) the blood anti-coagulants to get adjusted easily, (2) good rest at night, (3) good energy and exercise during the day, (4) pain control, and (5) boredom control.

We got new pictures of our baby girl! I will get a couple up here soon.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Recovery Report: Day 6

Ugh. Aaron had a horrible night last night and a pretty darn bad morning too. He was pretty worked up when we got there about how bad the pain was in the night and still was. He was really scared something was really wrong. They had kicked up his pain meds by then but he couldn't seem to get comfortable and the on-call doctor had Dr. Slater come by. He did not seem to think there probably was a problem, but Aaron was going to have a chest x-ray anyway and it would show a couple of possibilities if they were going on. Joyce and I talked with the nurse quite a bit about what was going on and what they were doing for him. She was great not only with him but also with us in taking time to talk and being understanding that today, I was losing it. I didn't think anything to serious was wrong, but it was hard to have left him doing so great Sunday and come back and see him in agony and so scared.

Thankfully, pretty soon between the meds and him relaxing a bit, he started feeling better. He was up in his room quite a bit and able to humor the occupational therapist. Finally at about 4:15 they came to take him to the x-ray--by then he thought he might walk but I said, umm, how far is it? He did go for his first walk around the hall before he had dinner though.

The night nurses seem to be slower so he didn't get his shower until about 9:00, and there's a lot of fiddling around with things that makes it take a long time. He wanted to take a walk in the hall after that so hey, I wasn't going to stop him. After that he still didn't want his sleeping pill (God bless the inventors of that pill) but once I'd gotten everything he could possibly want at night within reach, I said, "I can't believe you're not dead tired right now." He said, "I am, actually. I'll probably go to sleep about 20 minutes after you leave." Well, I'm leaving! Hopefully by now, the Night Owl has landed.

I hope and pray that by the time you read this, Aaron will have had a good night's sleep. Please keep praying that his pain stays steadily under control and he does not get anxious when the ups and downs come. I think he will do well with his exercises, etc., as long as he does not have bad pain or the fear thereof.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Recovery Report: Day 5

Progress! Aaron did get his chest tubes out today, and boy is he glad, hallelujah and amen. That meant he also got to take a shower. He can move around much more easily and confidently without those tubes, and although the timing wasn't right for the physical therapists to get him walking in the hall today, he spent time in the chair and can go back and forth to the bathroom pretty well. So he was up for a few minutes numerous times, but he needs to get walking the halls tomorrow.

He was also noticeably more alert and chatty today--especially when he got his visit from Nancy and the teenagers I shall call Chatterbox, ShyGirl, and Hippie. He pouted yesterday when he thought they weren't coming, since apparently we do not qualify as company. He was really glad to see them and hear some news from the outside world and get the cards Nancy brought from church and our mail. Never did try the pizza Chatterbox brought, though.

Tonight we stayed until about 7:00 but did not go back after dinner--now that he was awake enough to think he'd get bored without us! But I am sure he felt tired again when he was left alone, and we'll hope for good sleep tonight. We're hoping for going home Tuesday or Wednesday; we'll see what the doc says now that we're beyond the tubes issue.

Prayers: Thankfulness that the chest tube could come out, for well wishes from friends and family, for more movement and energy. Pray for good sleep, no nausea, good oxygen and blood sugar levels (okay but still being watched), and good physical therapy--time to get walkin'!

Saturday, June 09, 2007

Recovery Report: Day 4

Today was better for Aaron, although the morning was still rough. The only thing he has left in him besides an IV is the chest tubes for drainage. They are really sensitive and hurt like anything if pulled or bumped wrong. Apparently he hadn't slept well and this morning he was having some pain before we arrived, so he was not exactly in the mood for the occupational therapist. But he did everything she wanted and moved to sit in the chair.

After he was back in bed they came to take him for a chest x-ray to see if he could get the tubes out. The surgeon came by at that point so we saw him. He mentioned that he might be able to "get out of here" Monday or Tuesday--although they decided the chest tubes needed to stay in another day, so I'm not sure. But he's definitely on track, doing well overall.

The x-ray trip was no fun though, so it took him some time to get settled down and feeling okay again. He ate lunch, said hi to Terry and Janice, at some point he stood up for a bit, he tried to nap in the afternoon, and before dinner they got him in the chair again. He was definitely much more relaxed and waking less easily by the afternoon. Nurse Micah is super nice.

We came back after our dinner and he was sleeping, but soon the night nurse had to check some things and give him meds. She agreed that after that she would bug him only at midnight and 5:00 a.m. when she had to check again. Then Aaron was really cute seeming to want to get everything off his bedtime to-do list, like taking his medicine and deliberately brushing his teeth and getting everything where he wanted it, before lights out. I think he will sleep much better tonight as he is much more relaxed.

Sunday's prayer request: that the chest tubes can get out but the pain is not too bad in the process. I think he will be much more confident to try moving more without fear of pulling them.

Thanks, friends.

Friday, June 08, 2007

Recovery Report: Day 3

Today was tiring and anxious for Aaron. He is out of the anesthesia making him tired, but he still has no energy and is tired by even the smallest movements. This morning they took out a lot of his monitors and lines, which was somewhat painful. They were getting him ready to move out of ICU, so they were doing something or he was anticipating them doing something to him soon all morning. He was getting little rest in there so he was already really tired.

They moved him at about 12:30 and it was rough on him. They had to change connections, recheck all his vitals, ask him questions, and remove the foot of the bed because he's too tall (it's too short). He felt nauseous after the move and one of the widgets attached to him kept beeping and eventually had to be replaced. I think the whole move not only wore him out but also made him feel less secure with less monitoring him--even though he moved because he's doing well and he doesn't need all that stuff and to be watched constantly any more. The nurse now can monitor his signs from wherever she goes, so he should sleep better tonight with far fewer interruptions.

So he did not get up out of bed at all today, although he did eat a bit and was definitely moving his arms and legs around more while in bed. Joyce and Rick and I took turns being in the room and out and about; Janice and Terry came by and Terry and I rode the new tram down the hill just to get out and enjoy the view. However, of course I missed the surgeon's stop by to see Aaron, but he did more reassuring Aaron he's doing well than giving new information. We are getting there earlier tomorrow so we see him on his morning rounds.

After dinner Aaron was sleeping more deeply and didn't even wake when we came by, so we left him to rest. They will make him get up in the chair in the morning and throughout the day and perhaps also walk around. Tomorrow will be a work day, so please pray for strength, energy, motivation, and, uh, shall we say obedience for Aaron as the nurses and therapists push him to do more.

Thursday, June 07, 2007

Recovery Report: Day 2

Aaron was doing very well today. We did not get in to see him until about 11:00 because I apparently do not know how to work a standard hotel alarm clock. By then he was sitting in a chair for the second time of the day, which they make him do because it is good for his circulation to move a little and be in a different position. He was much more awake and had a few less things plugged into him. We sat and watched him doze off every couple of minutes for about an hour, then left so he could get back in bed and sleep better.

We went back in at around 2:30. The nice nurse guy (and you thought the girl was cute? lordy!) had taken another IV line out and resettled him, but then they came to do a chest x-ray. Aaron had to have his pillows move and be leaned forward twice, and then when they resettled him on the pillows, he was uncomfortable and felt some pain, which seemed to make him very anxious. A change of position a few minutes later and some more meds seemed to help, but it was kind of rough seeing him go through that. Once he settled down we left him to rest again.

Before we went off for dinner we came in and he was in the chair again and listening to music, which will hopefully start helping the time pass. He is so groggy that he can't stay awake, even for a few minutes of conversation, but he only sleeps for a couple minutes before he wakes up--looks at the clock--I only slept one minute?! Time is frustratingly slow for him right now.

At about 8:00 we came by and said goodnight--he just wanted to sleep. They are keeping him in the ICU again tonight just so they can watch him closely, but all his vitals numbers are great, his breathing into the plastic thingy is great, and so on. He should move to a regular room in the morning, and I think the physical therapist may try to get him on his feet.

Time to rest. This is going to be a marathon.

Wednesday, June 06, 2007

Surgery Report 1: So Far So Good

Real quick because I am TIRED and it's way too late: Everything went great today with the surgery. They did replace his valve as well as the weak section of the aorta because they thought it would last longer. He is in the cardiac ICU with his very own nice nurse. He's been very stable, good heartbeat and breathing, and they took the breathing tube out tonight. But he is still totally stoned and probably won't even remember we were there. Hopefully he may get out of ICU tomorrow but we'll see how he responds when they make him move from bed to chair in the morning.

Please keep praying for no complications, for waking up to be gentle, for pain to be well controlled (seems to be so far), for strength and perseverance to do what they ask him to do to get strong again.

I had Aaron's parents (Rick and Joyce), Pastor Jim, Nancy, and Billie keeping me company today along with all of you waiting and praying. It's good to be loved. Thank you, friends.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

What is your only comfort in life and in death?

That I am not my own, but belong—body and soul, in life and in death—
to my faithful Savior Jesus Christ.

He has fully paid for all my sins with his precious blood,
and has set me free from the tyranny of the devil.
He also watches over me in such a way
that not a hair can fall from my head
without the will of my Father in heaven:
in fact, all things must work together for my salvation.

Because I belong to him,
Christ, by his Holy Spirit,
assures me of eternal life
and makes me wholeheartedly willing and ready
from now on to live for him.

The Heidelberg Catechism, Q&A 1

Friday, June 01, 2007

The Only Way Out Is Through

God is good, all the time.

What a long, strange trip these past couple of weeks have been.

We had our garage sale, and we got closer to (paying for) bringing Anna home.
We had Mother's Day, and strangely enough I was validly wished a happy one.
We had a court date set and high hopes of seeing family and friends on our way to Ethiopia in just a few short weeks.
And then . . .
And then . . .
Why can't we just be happy and excited for one week? Why does something always have to go wrong? Seriously, God . . . what the heck?

Aaron went in to his cardiologist for a routine visit to get his meds updated. The doctor read his charts and a test from last summer and went to check something. When he came back, he recommended surgery. As the kids say . . . WTF?

We waited through the week to get set up with an appointment and go up to Portland for more tests and consultation with a surgeon experienced with Marfan Syndrome. When three doctors (or are they lawyers?) walk in the room, you know they mean business. They determined that Aaron's aortic root (where the main artery, the aorta, comes out of the heart) has expanded right to the point where the risk increases so much that they recommend surgery.

Thanks for noticing that, you know, last summer.

Then again, thanks for not noticing, or we wouldn't have Anna.

The surgeon said he should get it taken care of and there's no reason to wait. Uhh, that you know of. I got one, how 'bout this: We're adopting a baby. In about 6 weeks. In Ethiopia.

Long doctoral pause.

"First let me say I think it's wonderful you're doing that." Yeah, you're just stalling now, doc.

We talked about how the adoption process works, how we wanted to travel in six weeks and how little control we have over the process. Could Aaron travel first and have the surgery late July? He said wasn't his first choice but didn't think it was crazy to consider; he wasn't ruling it out. But . . . it adds risk. How much risk? Unfunny thing about Marfan Syndrome: no one really has any idea. We talked about surgery late July, but we needed to think about it and he wanted to show the tests to more people and think about it. We'd talk Monday. Fair enough.

So, that'll kinda put a damper on your big baby party weekend.

Some people seemed to think this was a no-brainer decision, but trust me, it was pure agony. We wanted to get Anna home as soon as possible, as everything had seemed to be lined up perfectly for, and to share the incredible experience of traveling to Ethiopia for our first week together as a family. And most importantly, we were terrified that doing surgery before court or even just the agency finding out about this before court would jeopardize our ability to bring her home at all. Then there were all the other summer plans so long anticipated and worked for and prayed for: for Aaron to lead the teenagers he's been growing so close to all year at Young Life camp, for him to be in his friend of 20 years' wedding, to see our distant family members and friends . . .

I had a brief conversation with the doctor Monday, we kept thinking and talking with a few wise friends, and our pendulum began to swing from we'll wait to we won't wait. But the doctor still hadn't looked over the tests again, so I stayed by the phone the rest of the week. Or rather the phone stayed by me. Seriously, I took it to the mailbox and the bathroom. That kind of companionship will make you crazy.

Last Friday we finally had a real conversation with the surgeon and decided to do the surgery Wednesday, June 6. They will replace a section of Aaron's aorta with a plastic section. They will also either repair his damaged valves at that spot or replace it with a mechanical one, in which case he'll be on blood thinners, so we are now hoping for a repair job. He will be in the hospital about a week.

The doctor said the soonest he could possibly travel would be 4 weeks, but they say 6-8 weeks for full recovery. People keep saying their 80-year-old grannies were out riding motorcycles after 60 days or whatever, so we'll see. When we heard our court date was successful, I told the agency about our situation and they were extremely supportive--big relief. I am sure they will work with us on travel dates but we haven't gotten that far yet.

I don't think I have ever been as stressed as I was that week of waiting on the doctor and deciding. Even my body was revolting, and I don't just mean how I looked. Aaron has been having trouble sleeping, and although part of the load is lifted with court done, this is still an anxious time. We trust--somehow inside us we know--God will bring us to the other side. But that doesn't make it easy. It's a rough road ahead, but the only way out is through.

All the time, God is good.

“You can’t conceive, nor can I, the appalling strangeness of the mercy of God.”
—Graham Greene