Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Guest Post...Well Not Really

It's just me...Brian. I'm not as eloquent or witty as my wife (or good-looking for that matter), but she's letting me take a crack at updating you on what's going here with us.

I have the privilege of letting you know that Olivia is home from the hospital. She is feeling a lot better and we are thankful to resume some sense of normalcy in our daily rhythms. She is also apparently fed up with having to lay in a hospital bed for most of last week. So fed up that upon being placed on the floor (her usual hangout spot in the living room), she decided that it was time to try this rolling over thing again. With a little help from mommy, she was up in a crawling stance in no time and trying with all of her uncoordinated might to move forward. Need proof...

That, friends, is the face of determination. The fact is, my little girl is tough. She has had a ton of setbacks, but she keeps bouncing back. Her little body doesn't always cooperate. In fact, most of the time it doesn't, but that doesn't keep her from trying. Truth be told...if she weren't so determined, there are days when we would just give up. But she just won't give up. She knows what she wants to do and even though she can't do it yet, she keeps trying.

As Kelly and I talked about it last night a few other things came up...

The first thing...This time two years ago we were not sure that we would make it this far with her. Christmas '09 was a sad time for us. What should have been a joyful "first Christmas with a baby" season was actually a really somber time for us. Livi was about 8 months old and that was when things really got difficult for us...we actually thought that losing her was imminent. There was the difficulty breathing, the need for heart operations, and seizures. If you follow our family at all, you know that for us, that is life for us now...a full, joy-filled life that isn't always easy, but it is ours and we love it. The fact that she is still here is, at least in our minds, a miracle. For that we are wildly thankful...and anxiously awaiting our THIRD Christmas with Livi!

The second thing...It was the seizures that were the worst. They were debilitating. They took our baby away from us. She didn't move or have much (if any) facial expressions. She would just lay there, looking at nothing in particular. We were planning on being wild, camera-wielding parents who constantly had then lens of our recently-acquired camera focused on our kid, capturing her every smile, stream of saliva and jerky 8-month-old movement. That didn't happen. Our kid didn't smile or move around. She just laid there. Our response...put the camera away. The shots that we took made us sad. They weren't as exciting as those of our friends, so we deemed those moments not worth sharing. We wanted people to love our girl like we did and were afraid of producing any pity-inducing shots. We didn't print pictures as Christmas gifts or send out Christmas cards. We just put the camera away.

We realize now that this was really selfish of us, so forgive us. We think she is beautiful and want you to as well. We thought that if we hid the dark parts of our life, you would think our life and Livi was more beautiful. The truth is, it is dark at times, but it is beautiful as well. Through our beautiful little girl we have begun to be able to see the beauty of life in the middle of brokenness.

With that said, here is a little glimpse into the beauty of the past couple of weeks...

Pure wonder at a candlelit dinner with Nana and Papa

Story time before bed while at CMH

Sweet time before heading back to work on Sunday

Pretty eyes gazing out the window, plotting our escape


  1. If that's not eloquent, then I don't know what is.
    Thanks, dad, for taking a "crack" at it and for letting everyone see the joy and beauty! What's not to love about a girl that never, ever gives up? Bless you all!

  2. Just beautiful, Brian. Your little girl, your growing family, and your words. Love you all more than anything.
    Aunt Mal

  3. This post has me really teary eyed. Of course we want to see more and more pics of your beautiful girl... don't ever put that camera away again! You guys are such sweet, caring, inspiring parents. (And eloquent, both of you!)

  4. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of the journey. That Livi has some serious spunk!

  5. Good stuff man - always appreciate yours and Kelly's honesty and perspective - truly inspiring to follow your story and see God's peace and joy on display in your lives - we think of you and pray for you guys often!

    - Derrick and Anna