"What would have become of me had I not believed that I would see the Lord's goodness in the land of the LIVING. Wait, hope for and EXPECT the Lord. Be strong and of good courage and may your heart (Ned) be sturdy and enduring.....Yes, Wait For and Hope For and Expect the Lord."

Psalm 27:13-14 (Amp)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

A Tribute to Seth

This morning around 1:15am, Seth Vandyke was called home to the arms of our Lord. It is with such deep sadness and regret that I relay this to you all. My heart is broken for a precious family who has watched their son fight the hard fight with CDH. I know, without question, that God chose his parents, Russell and April, for this very special child because He knew that Seth would need extraordinary parents to see him through his short, yet highly purposeful existance. I thought today how much I will enjoy seeing Seth when I get to heaven. I have no doubt that he will have more to share about how Jesus worked in him and through him in his three week lifespan.....he'll be able to hang right in there with the story telling of all the old saints. I know God has been holding Seth and guiding him every step of the way until he led him home to a place of peace, comfort and joy.

Please keep April, Russell and Seth's brother Nash in your prayers. They are walking through a very deep valley where most of us only every tread in our worst nightmares. But they will also experience a peace that most of us will never have the priviledge of feeling. I know God is smiling down on this family with such pride for their never-ending faith and enduring dependence on the their Father. I am praying that even during this time, they will feel the hand of God in their lives and know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that this was His very best plan...maybe without fully understanding, but with complete trust.

Tonight, I will put my little CDH babe in the bath. I will wash his little body and inspect his little scars. I will again be so poiniently reminded that his life is more than a blessing....it was a miracle handed to ME? Everytime I think of April, I will be reminded of what a gift I have received and what a responsibility I have in being a good steward of the children God has placed in my care. I hope that the light and life I see in Ned will always be a constant reminder to me that God entrusted me with a life full of purpose and that will inspire me to raise him in a way where he can fulfill his potential.

Please continue to pray for Russell, April, and Seth. They need to feeling the healing power of prayer and scripture at this time.

Thank you....love you all so much!

Betsy, Travis, Jack and Ned

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Jigity Jog.....

Home Again, Home Again.....We are so very thankful! I will have to say that this hospital stay was the most taxing on me personally. I know that sounds completely insane since Ned was completely stable and the surgery wasn't the life or death type, but he had to endure so much pain and discomfort this time and watching it for 6 entire days straight just about sent me to the psych ward! We have just been really spoiled being in the intensive care units where modifications to care are made immediately when there are any signs of intolerance. Following the issues with the narcotics, we went through a whole other ordeal attempting to get him on a feeding schedule that his little tummy could adjust to. On the weekends with few people around, such change takes an act of congress. He cried more in the past week than he has ever cried in his entire life combined. I may be the only mother in the world who would prefer that her son be in an intensive care if he is going to be hospitalized at all?

Enough of that....we're home and he is doing great. As of today, Ned is back up on full feeds, but is still being fed continuously. Our goal is to increase the calorie concentration of his feeds (he has lost about a pound and a half over the past week and needs some serious fattening up) and then transition him to bolus feeds (which is how normal people eat....large volumes over short time periods about every three hours). It may take us a while because we don't want to push him at all and risk compromising the nissen again? As you can see from the picture above, Ned is elated to be back home. In fact, he cried until we exited the hospital and then he settled down quite a bit....like he knew! The only issue we are having with him at the moment is that he has developed a severe "mommy complex" and I can hardly leave the room without him crying. I'm hoping when we go on vacation, he'll be around Travis all day for a while and loose a little of his obsession for me.....not all of it...just a little bit.

I just wanted to update everyone and let you know how great everything went. I know I have said this a gazillion times, but I have the most compassionate surgeon in the world. In fact, he came by the hospital on Saturday just to check on Ned.....he is a precious man! I just thank God that He placed him in our path and used him in saving Ned's life.

Please continue to pray diligently for Baby Seth. I believe God will respond as His people pray. Seth is on a difficult road, but there is no path or place from which God cannot redeam and restore us....just ask anyone who has been spared by the transforming grace of Christ!

Much love to you all!
Betsy, Travis, Jack & ned