Wow, these last 9 months have been a whirlwind.
Here is a kicker, though... So, my understanding is if your child has high muscle tone, they will always have high muscle tone. If your child has low muscle tone, you can strengthen the muscles to improve it. Tone can change in the first few years, but becomes stable between 2 and 3. So far Myra has had high muscle tone since she left the hospital. It used to be higher in her arms than her legs, then her legs seems to get worse. She couldn't raise her arms up over her head without crying and couldn't lift her leg at a 90 degree angle without crying. I was stretching her muscles multiple times a day to ensure they wouldn't get worse from constantly being contracted. My therapist told me that high muscle tone is actually harder to overcome than low muscle tone. Not great news to hear.
In the last month I have seen some changes! Myra's arms and hands aren't straight/stiff constantly and she is moving them more. She is not bothered by any stretching exercise anymore. I asked her therapist if she had noticed a change and she had. She said she has NORMAL muscle tone! And she assured me that in 15+ years of therapy, she has never seen high muscle tone just disappear!
PRAISE GOD! PRAISE GOD!
We've known all along that God has special plans for Myra. I have believed from the beginning that God wanted to heal her and use her story to impact the lives of many. But, to live through miracle after miracle is actually quite overwhelming.
Another thing I've noticed recently is these precious curls forming behind her big, floppy ears. That is exactly how Angelica Pickles' hair came in! I was excited thinking about another little curly top, and then remember the vision God had given our pastor about Myra.
He saw a three-year-old little girl with dark, curly hair dancing in the isles of the church. This was just a day or so after she was born, when they kept telling us she would likely die. I knew she wouldn't, but God confirmed that with the pastor's vision. I can already see a glimpse of that vision coming true! And it still seems so far off, such a stretch from what the medical world is telling us. But, my faith will not waver. I will not put my trust in doctors and specialists. I will only put my trust in the One who is capable of truly changing circumstances and truly healing!
I have my moments. I saw a precious little girl at a NICU reunion this past weekend, Bailey. I guessed her to be around 3 or 4, but she was in a stroller and not very verbal. She kept motioning for me to come bring Myra over to her so she could see her. She would pat Myra's back or touch her head. Then she would pull the sling tail or my hair until her father stopped her. A few moments later, it would start over again. Love on baby, smile and then pull on Myra's bonnet strings or pull my shirt. I wasn't bothered by it. I would kneel down each time she asked and talk to her. Her mother eventually told me she was six. I never asked why she was delayed. But, as I walked away I asked God to bless that family and to touch Bailey. And my heart hurt for her. And I selfishly asked God to allow Myra to have greater abilities. And my heart turned toward the "what ifs" that are way to dangerous to visit. I still have those moments.
But, then later tonight I was watching the International House of Prayer webcast (at 4am with Myra) and watched a teenage boy be healed of vision issues. And I wept and prayed for Myra's vision. And God gave me a peace about her development and abilities. A promise that He has a greater Plan. A reminder that He loves her more than I could fathom. And empathy for my aching mother's heart. And I had peace and love and joy. And my whole body yearned to just praise Him and sing to Him. So I did. Those are much better moments.
So, we are 9 months into the two greatest journeys of our lives, the one with our miracle baby girl and the one with our Heavenly Father. And we have so much to battle, so much to defeat within ourselves and, also, so much to gain. It's the gaining I must focus on. And the battles I don't have to fight alone.
Myra enjoying Tummy Time
I am still a little rattled since Myra's birth. It took me 9 months to get back to full working order after Boo Boo - menu plans, cleaning routine, spiffy house, kids in line, brain in order...for the most part. At nine months post with Myra I feel like I'll never get there. My house is a mess, I struggle to get more than macaroni and cheese or quesadillas on the table, the cleaning can't come until the clutter is gone, my brain is spinning constantly and the kids, well...they aren't too bad. Everything affects something else and it's a domino affect. I can't pick up the office until I get rid of half of the book in there. I can't put extra unused toys away until we clean out some old toys from the totes in the basement. I can't put away my clothes until I buy a new maternity tote. There is always something else to do before I can move forward. A vicious circle. Vicious. Such is life, right? Ugh.
Despite the house and current routine, I MUST get school up and running as soon as the two older kids are home from Clubhouse. My plan is to finish the current history/science curriculum (MFW Adventures) by December so we can start our Galloping the Globe study in January. By then all the math and language we are behind on should be done and we'll have Jan-Aug 2011 to catch up for the 2011-2012 school year. I'm looking forward to creating that curriculum, but also not. It will be a TON of work. But, my kids are worth it. =)
So, my next two weeks are full! Hoping I'll still get some time in the sun with my 3 littles that are home right now. And, I need to go visit my new niece again soon! The onesie I got for her said I was her "BFF" so I gotta act like one!
Myra and my niece Avery, 9 months apart
Here are some random photos from Father's Day, the NICU reunion we attended and Mr. Prince and the kids iceskating at Clubhouse:
Mr. Prince and the Klan on Father's Day
Cheesy Boo Boo lovin' him some icecream
Happy Summer Time!