Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Linzhi Rose

Oh my sweet baby girl. Those who know Linzhi have seen the precious heart God gave her. Always willing to help even if it's hard for her, no matter what, she will try. On Wednesday, June 8th, Linzhi is going to have a major surgery in order to get her right arm moving so she can have a more independent life. We have watched this angel go from a terrified, shut down orphan to a blossoming, out going, heart on fire for Jesus young lady. She is no longer one of the 147 million orphans, she is a daughter and we are blessed to be her mama and daddy.

Today we met with her surgeon at the University of Chicago. He is a gifted surgeon and we are blessed to have met him. He went over the procedure in graphic detail. Linzhi will have incision starting on her right side, all the way up and through her arm pit then down to her elbow. We're talking multiple inches. My heart sank, my head was spinning but I kept my cool and took notes trying to act like I wasn't going to pass out. Not from the idea of it but the thought of our daughter in pain. Oh my heart! Once she is open, he will move her lattisimus Dorsey muscle through the path he creates to attach it to her bicep. See, linzhi has a bicep muscle but it's like a deflated balloon. It cannot assist her in any function so she cannot bring her hand to her mouth. Linzhi has figured out a way to feed herself with a fork but she cannot spoon feed herself and CJ and I feel it's starting to irritate her because she is getting older and doesn't want to be a "baby" anymore and having mom or dad feeding her most of the time...Well, it's just not fun anymore especially at birthday parties or family events when she wants to be like everyone else. So of course, God's timing is perfect and now is the time for Linzhi to get her arm "helped out" (per Linzhi).

We will be in the hospital 2 or 3 nights depending on how she is handling pain. I will be there the entire time and CJ will be spending the nights with us. I have kid coverage at home with Grandma Sharon/Grandpa Willie, Aunt Onnie and Jill and Aunt Terry and we're thanking the Lord for that blessing!

I will be posting from the hospital because I'm sure there will be a lot of down time and I started this blog to capture memories and this will be a big one for Linzhi Rose.

Please keep our daughter in your prayers!!!!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

My head is spinning...

My dear friend Jill from Florida is an angel sent from God, no doubt. Her sweet Jack has CHD and doing great! I went to Jill immediately after we found Gracie had a serious heart problem. Jill went above and beyond for us by calling Nurse Deb at her son's cardiologist office. Not only did the Dr. agree to take a look at her file but come to find out she's Chinese! So I sent the translated and the Chinese report for her to review AND they were able to view her videos!

The diagnosis based on her report from 1.5 years ago is that she has progressive congenital heart disease. The nurse called our Gracie a "walking miracle" and that "something is keeping her heart going" Well, as believers we know, heart and soul who is holding her heart in HIS hands. Nurse Deb went on to say, she will need lots of work done on that precious heart. They were shocked to see her walking, walking up stairs, talking, laughing, etc... She shows NO struggle or labor when breathing or walking. A total MIRACLE.

I may be OVERLY optimistic here but something is NOT adding up with CJ and me. I hold so much doubt that her medical report is not 100% accurate. With that said, I do believe she has a heart issue that will require major repair but I feel in my heart, the Lord has other plans in mind for her. He is the designer of her heart and He is the ultimate doctor, mountain moving, miracle making Abba Father to us all. It's a blessing to witness other people calling her a "walking miracle" too!

I'm going to be real honest here. I had her funeral planned in my head. Terrible, right? I mean, the reports have been so grim and this mama has had her moments of complete.stiffiling.fear! CJ has remained steadfast and solid. He won't let his mind "go there". I, on the other hand think of all the "what if's". And the enemy has been working double, I mean triple time on me as he always does when one less orphan in the world is going to be released from the chains of living the life of the least of these. I mean anytime there is great "Godly" events happening, not only in adoption but anything ordained by the Lord, the pest goes into overtime, right? THANK YOU LORD for scriptures, prayer warriors, our encourager's, the body of Christ...Pulling us closer and closer to Him. I finally feel some freedom from fear. THANK YOU JESUS. I am no longer fearing her death or illness, I am looking at it through new eyes. We need to prepare her to meet Jesus just like we are doing for our other Children. Pouring Jesus into her thirsty soul is our job, healing her heart here on earth or in heaven is His job. I need to get out of His seat.

I called Amy @ Lifeline to let her know what the doctor said and she assured me, she is going to do EVERYTHING on her side to expedite this adoption so we can get her home as soon as possible. We're praying to shave time off of waiting for certain steps that can take a bit of time and we're going to make our trip in China as quick as we can. I hope she's home for Christmas...Hopeful thinking!

We are going to be rolling out a fundraiser raffle in the next couple of weeks. We will be raffling off an ipad2 and maybe a few other things. Please pray for financial provision. I know the Lord will provide, no doubt!!! Any fundraising suggestions would be greatly appreciated!!!!

God bless!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Guess who's coming to our house???

That would be Miss Gracie Faith! China sent Lifeline our approval today!!!!! Here's a little picture of our baby girl. Oh my heart, she's too precious!!!!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Rachel is SAVED!

Our church just finished up a 15 days revival and WOW, our family has been blessed!!! This evening CJ and I were putting the girls to bed and as we walked up to Rachel's room we saw her on bended knees, head down in her hands praying silently for the burdens of her heart. We were filled with Joy to witness our daughter going to her heavenly father in prayer. I quietly walked in and placed my hand on her back and prayed over her as she continued on. A beautiful moment to share with my daughter. After a bit, Rachel came down stairs, walked over to me and whispered in my ear "Now that I am older, I accept Jesus Christ as my savior". She then walked over and told her daddy the same thing. THANK YOU JESUS!!! My sweet angel is saved! A precious day for us!!

God bless!!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

My Rock. My gift.

At times, CJ and I are on different planets. :) Honestly, he is my best friend and I would be lost without him. He truly is my gift from God. This week has been emotionally draining for me. CJ has been rock solid about Gracie which gives me so much encouragement. I (we) can do all things through Christ who strengthens us and with the help of the people HE places in our lives.

So grateful to my hubs. Love ya's!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

From conflicting hearts to PEACE

What a day the Lord has made for us. Today, I woke from my sleep so conflicted and angry and on bended knees in prayer. I wasn't throwing a fit of anger or anything like that but I was angry my heart was choosing to believe the enemy and not my Lord and Savior. All the lies he pours on us to make use feel so inadequate and selfish. This morning I woke up knowing I can't move forward with Gracie.. I, I, I, I, I, I...That's all it was, it was ALL about ME. And I couldn't stop it. I email Lisa at Lifeline asking if she could refer to to another doctor and she did but she also sent me an angel named Andrea. I was able to talk to this fellow adopting mama about special needs kiddos and homeschooling our blessings. PRICELESS. I could feel my heart opening for Gracie. It was becoming more about God's will and Gracie and less about me, me me... CJ, bless his heart has not moved too far away from Gracie but the enemy worked on him too and put some fear into his heart as well. Our fear?? Bringing home a dying child. I can hardly type it because how dare we limit God? The Same God that created all things and is control of ALL things! We limit him too much!

Our church is having a Revival, it's actually wrapping up here in a few days and I will miss them all so very much. We have not missed one evening but tonight, I needed to stay home. I did not want to go, I was tired and teary and I wanted a pity party in my honor. CJ felt very different. He didn't ask me to go, he said "honey we're going". Reluctantly, I went and from the minute we walked in the Lord was convicting us left and right. I asked Him for something today, anything to give me hope and direction. Instead, He gave us 2 hours of answers to all of our questions. Here's a sample:
1. Hebrews 2:10-"It was fitting for Him...to perfect the author of their salvation through sufferings"

2. Hebrews 5:8-"He learned obedience from the things which He suffered".

3. 1 Peter 1:7- "the trial of your faith, being much more precious than gold".

I was so convicted that during the time we were asked if we felt the Holy Spirit calling us to share our testimony, yours truly went up to the mike. I cannot tell you what I said because I can't remember. My tuff as nails husband wept. When I was finished, I was asked to go to the prayer room and within minutes, I had two women who have children through adoption and a sweet girl that was adopted praying over me. We held hands and prayed and oh my, I had PEACE. By the time I found CJ we just knew our prayers were answered and God specifically told us to bring that angel home. We have no idea how much time she has on this earth but honestly, I do not know how much time any of my children, husband or even myself has on this earth.

Gracie needs to know what it feels to be loved by a family. Gracie needs to be celebrated. Gracie needs to get medical treatment. Gracie needs to know Jesus. Gracie is our daughter.


This is our true story to Gracie. We are leaving the details to God. Our faith will be tested no doubt. The enemy will be attacking. We are putting on our Shield of Armour and moving forward into battle for our girl.

Please pray for us. Please pray for our baby. Please pray for healing. Please pray for a speedy adoption. PRAY PRAY PRAY!!! I would love to know how I can pray for any of you!!! Send me a note, I love prayer partnership!!

We will be sending in our LOI and as soon as we get PA, I will put my baby on my blog. She's a sweet, cutie little angel!

More to come... :)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Pouring out my heart.

I am in a place I never thought I would be. In my hands I am holding the last document before submitting our LOI for Gracie Faith (Yes, we changed her name). We received some devastating news from a adult cardiologist about our baby girl. News that shook us to our core. I frantically called Children's Memorial hospital in Chicago asking (begging) for someone to read her report. The gal on the phone very nicely said to me "I don't think we can do this but I will ask". While on hold I was praying and waiting and I heard the message on the line "Children's memorial, the nations top hospital in cardiac advancements...A place of Hope for families". I started to cry...The ugly cry. Within a minute the gal came back on the line and said, her manager said to fax over what we have and she will hand deliver it to a doctor and someone would call me back. I could hardly believe my ears...Thank you LORD!!! A few hours later, she called me back asking if I had the CD of Gracie's ultrasound because the report is 1.5 years old. I said I didn't but I would request a new ultrasound from China but I was doubtful. I emailed Kelly at Lifeline and she immediately emailed Lily in China to see what she could do. Children's memorial did not feel comfortable diagnosing her within an updated ultrasound. Believe it or not, it gave me hope. Hope that the doctor wasn't too confident in an old report and maybe there was hope for our girl.

I am frozen in fear. CJ is more confident than I am at this point. I am on and off the fence within minutes Tears do not seem to stop dripping from my eyes.

I can't leave her there. I am afraid to bring her here, love her, mother her and then bury her. Where is my faith? Why is my heart so uncertain? We were committed to her on Sunday and then Monday we get bad news and I bail? Lord help me!

Ok, I know the minute I became a mother 18.5 years ago, God never promised me Trevor would out live me nor with my other three girls. But this time, we know she is ill and we might be walking into the fire of loving a gravely ill child and then possibly face her going home to Jesus. How selfish of me! As I sit where ever I am at the moment I am reminded of a little girl half way around the world living in squaller, probably not feeling very well, without a mama and daddy to love on her and care for her as she lives this life on earth. Alone.

We cannot leave her there.

Then my mind will wander to HOPE (darn I say it). What if the report is wrong? I mean, come on, it's a year and and half old and she's still living!!!! What if she comes here and the elite doctors at Children's memorial has options and treatment plans? Do I darn to hope?

We cannot leave her there.

No one is promised to live through tomorrow. I know this is fact! Why am I so afraid of this? The enemy is on high alert with me. I am feeling vulnerable and not at all like myself. The Lord is wrestling with my heart, HE is confirming many of my thoughts and helping me face my fears. I want Him to tell me what He has is store for this little girl but Faith in Him not come with a map or medical record. Faith is following without seeing.

WE cannot leave Gracie Faith in China. Please, please join us in prayer. We are awaiting more information from China but more than anything we are waiting on the Lord.

I will keep everyone posted. Thank you for letting me pour out my heart. <><

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Happy Mother's day!

HAPPY Mother's DAY to all my friends out in bloggy world!!!!

I will be having an extra special mother's day this year because... WE ARE EXPECTING another little girl blessing from CHINA!!!!!!

Lisa Kelly (Sweet heart) from Lifeline emailed me that we were able to lock a file on Little miss. Now we are preparing all the paperwork to send to China in order to get a Pre- approval. Once that comes in (Lord willing) we will then be able to post a picture of our Mia Faith. But if you can't wait, check out the waiting child list at Lifeline and scroll down to "Gracie" ...That's our baby girl!

Once we get our PA, I will post more on how the Lord moved quickly on getting our hearts ready. GOD IS SO AMAZING!!!!

More to come....