Friday, June 4, 2010

Big Weekend

Right now my sweet little baby girl is napping with my hubby in our bedroom.

I love Fridays because they are our family days. This morning I have been on a cleaning frenzy of sorts...steam mopping the floors...shampooing the carpets...laundry...dishes...the works.

But I sat down for a moment as I was putting some bibs in their place in Madelyn's room and I felt this wave come over me. I began to look around the room and glanced at a picture on her dresser from one of our first sonograms. The frame simply reads,

"love at first sight"I was so completely overcome with emotion as I remembered the day we first got a glimpse of the life that was growing inside of me. I remembered counting up the weeks with excitement and anticipation as my pregnancy progressed. Then the day came when we were to have our baby girl...I will never forget the first time I saw her as my doctors held her up over the curtain in the operating room.Love at first sight could not have been more true.

Then as I turned to go back to what I was doing, my eyes caught a glimpse of this picture. Our newborn baby girl, that should have been at home in our arms, with IV's in her head instead.

By this point, the elephant tears were flowing. I sat down in the middle of her nursery and felt like the Lord was leading me to take a moment to just reflect. To remember where this journey started. To think back on where we have come from. To be thankful for how and who has gotten us where we are today.

Before I became pregnant and throughout our pregnancy, I clung to the verses from the end of Ephesians, chapter three, that reads:

"Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we think to ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."

As I thought back on our journey...I could not help but think of that verse again.

He has done so much more than we could ever have even imagined possible on our own, by His own power, for His own glory. Wow!

He used so many different people to bring us to where we are today.

Our parents, families, friends, church family, strangers, as well as many nurses and doctors.

We are so fortunate to live in an area that has fantastic health care facilities. That is one thing that I know that I took for granted before Madelyn came along.

Madelyn has a phenomenal pediatrician that has walked through life's darkest moments with us. When she was born, there was no clear cut reason as to why she was struggling for each breath. As the days passed on and she continued to get better then regress, the uncertainties seemed endless. The day she quit breathing in my mother's arms in the special care nursery, it was evident that she needed a higher level of care. Her pediatrician called for a transport team and in that moment it felt like my world was crashing in around me.

I remember watching as the transport team arrived with the isolette.

In some ways, that first week feels like it passed so quickly and was just a blur. In other ways, I feel like time dragged slowly and the world stood still.

In retrospect, there are so many aspects of Madelyn's journey that were insignificant (or at least they seemed to be) at the time. Those details that were not even on our radar of what was important, now mean so much.

For instance, that isolette that Madelyn was transported in cost enough to purchase a nice home. If Madelyn had been born a few years earlier, we would have waited much longer for it to arrive on a helicopter to transport her to a Dallas hospital. Thankfully, we live in a community with a Children's Miracle Network hospital.

In just the last few years, much of the money that has been raised by the Children's Miracle Network funded not only that isolette that Madelyn was transported in via an ambulance across the street, but the entire Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Trinity Mother Frances Hospital where Madelyn recovered.

My sister and sister-in-law have volunteered for CMN for several years. My mom works at TMF and has supported them for years. I am somewhat ashamed to admit that I did not even realize what they did.

Sure, I have seen the telethons on TV. I have even listened to my sister as she coordinated volunteers and prepared the weekend celebrations in the past. Like so many, I had even watched several of the stories of the miracle children. Yet, I was completely oblivious to the impact that it has on our community. To me, they were heartwarming stories of children that overcame unbelievable odds. I honestly thought that the Children's Miracle Network just (like that in itself isn't a big deal) raised money to pay for those children's medical bills.

I could not have underestimated their impact on our local community more.

Don't think you know anyone who has benefited from the Children's Miracle Network?

If you know someone that has even had a perfectly healthy child at Trinity Mother Frances Hospital, then more than likely you know someone that has benefited from Children's Miracle Network funds.

If you know a child that uses Trinity Mother Frances Pediatric Clinics, then more than likely you know someone that has benefited from Children's Miracle Network funds.

If you know someone that has had a child on the pediatric floor of TMFHS, then more than likely you know someone that has benefited from Children's Miracle Network funds.

If you know someone that has had a child in the NICU at TMF, then you know someone that has benefited from Children's Miracle Network funds.

If are reading this right now, then you know someone whose life was changed because of people like you who donated what they could to the Children's Miracle Network.

Why, you ask?

100% of the money raised this weekend through our local Children's Miracle Network Celebration will stay right here in East Texas to provide:

  • specialized state of the art medical equipment in Trinity Mother Frances Hospitals
  • specialized state of the art medical equipment in Trinity Mother Frances Clinics
  • charity care for children who need it
  • preventive education
  • life saving research
  • other immediate medical needs

    I could go on and on about all the things that the Children's Miracle Network has done and continues to do, but the one thing that makes it hit home for our family is that right now, I have a precious eight month old baby girl that is napping with her daddy.

    Her life was directly impacted by the generous people of East Texas and all over the country. As of 2008, Children’s Miracle Network has raised more than $3.4 billion—most of which is donated a dollar or two at a time.

    This weekend we are so fortunate to be a part of the local Children's Miracle Network Celebration telethon in Tyler. It is going to air from 7pm Saturday night through 4pm on Sunday afternoon on CBS 19 or live on the web at Be sure to tune in (especially Sunday at 2pm to see some familiar faces...our family of 3).

    But more than that...give.

    Even if it's a dollar. Give.

My prayer is that you never have to experience what our family has in order to realize how important it is to give to the Children's Miracle Network. I hope that our journey is enough.


  1. I love the way you tell your story. It is so evident that faith in God matters. Incredible.

  2. We just finished our radiothon in Mineola and came in with $39,928.05 .....!!!
    CMN is the absolute greatest jewel in the crown of East Texas!

  3. kat... i love you! rach


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