It's not yet 4 in the morning, but my mind and heart are very awake. Last week Ryan went out for coffee with the youth pastor from our church. He told Ryan about this organization called Early Intervention and shared how it helped him and his wife out as they were facing challenging times with their beautiful baby girl who has Down Syndrome. Just a couple days later we got a call from a woman named Roxanne. She wanted to meet with us so we arranged for her to come over to our apartment yesterday. As we were waiting for her to arrive, I was nervous. I didn't really know what to expect. I didn't know what early intervention was or what we would talk about.
Once she arrived my anxiety eased. She was very friendly and easy to talk to. She wanted to know about Landon and when we first found out about his condition. I couldn't believe it when I realized it has only been two weeks since that day in the ultra sound room when I got the news that shook our world. She began by telling us some helpful advice about what we need to put into place to make it easier on ourselves (stay caught up and organized with paperwork and medical bills, find support etc.). Then she started explaining to us the options that we have. She told us that families who go through what we are going through or similar situations often have a very difficult time asking for and accepting help. I could really relate when she said that we often feel that there are others who need it much more than us. She told us that we need to put those feelings aside and accept that asking for help is the best thing to do, for ourselves and for Landon. She told us that Early Intervention was designed by parents who have walked through these trenches and know how hard it is and how alone you can feel. They decided to make a change so that others wouldn't have to struggle or feel alone like they did. She told us about services that the government and the state offers for kids and parents with congenital heart defects. My heart was flooded with peace as she told us about how the program will help us with traveling expenses and hospital visits. Once Landon is born he will automatically be covered under medicaid which will help with his surgeries, doctors visits, and at home care for the first 3 years of his life. I cannot tell you what a relief it was for me to have her say that they will provide him with the at home care he will need the first three years as it is often hard for kids with CHD's to develop and learn as quickly as other children. There are so many things I have worried about, but I had no idea where to even start to find answers or resources. As a mother of a child with special needs (I don't know why, but I don't like saying that) you fear that you won't be able to give your child everything he will need. It is scary enough bringing home your first baby, but when that baby needs extra care and protection... it's really scary.
I am so incredibly thankful to God for providing someone who has done all the research, can answer our questions, and who I truly believe longs for Landon to have the best care possible. She told us that our focus needs to be on him not on the stress of figuring out how to provide everything he is going to need. I am blown away as I see Gods fingerprints appearing on the precious life of my baby boy already. Roxanne explained to us how she met Aaron (youth pastor) and his wife and how the same week that Aaron and Ryan went out for coffee, Aaron's wife had done some training with Roxanne about helping parents of kids with CHD's. She called it coincidence, but I know it is nothing, but the hand of God. I am comforted daily by things God shows me that prove that He knew this was coming, this did not catch Him off guard. Just last month Ryan's company started a new policy where spouses are covered under insurance with no additional cost taken out of his pay check. This blew my mind because I will begin to be covered under him the beginning of 2012 since I will have a hard time keeping my hours full time at the daycare. We also see his provision through the love of our family and loved ones. I have been brought to tears by Christmas cards with such words of love and hope and especially from those of you who have thought of us this Christmas season and blessed us financially. We cannot even tell you with words how extremely grateful and humbled we are by your love and generosity. We thank God for each of you!
One more update on our little man. He gave me the coolest birthday present! He is beginning to kick so hard that you can actually see movement from the outside. I love that I no longer have to place my hand on my belly to really feel him. I can always feel him inside of me and as every mother knows that is the most amazing thing in the world. This also means that he is growing and getting stronger, which is so very important. We are overflowing with thankfulness for so many blessings as we head home (back to MN) today. We are so excited to be with family and friends as we celebrate the birth of our Savior.
We continue to thank you for all of your prayers and support and from our family to yours, merry Christmas and a happy New Year!