Sunday, April 26, 2009

My First Ever Giveaway!!!...


Hi!! I have reached my One Year Anniversary of Papercutting, and I thought it would be fun to do a giveaway!! Click on this link to find out more...

Hope to see you over there!!!


Monday, April 13, 2009

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Everybody Say, "Praise The Lord!!!"...

We just called in for the results of Dario's blood test yesterday. And... His white blood cell count is down to a normal 8,000... A long way from 60, 000! We are rejoicing and so grateful that the Lord has helped us. We still have to be careful with his interaction with people and sickness as his immune system is shot, and the results came back that he is very low in iron, but... Praise The Lord!!! :-)

Again, thank you to each of you whom have thought about and prayed for us! We felt God's presence, even on some of the toughest days, and we know that He had His hand on the whole situation. What a faithful and wonderful God He is!!!

If you are interested, you can go on over to my papercut and craft blog at as I have been adding some newer things.

Have a wonderful day and a blessed Easter. I am so grateful for the sacrifice Jesus made... to suffer and die on the cross and then... to RISE AGAIN!!! He is alive!!! I know it! Hallelujah!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Sick And Tired Of Being Sick And Tired, And Yet...

I like to keep this blog interesting, but, it seems that life keeps getting in the way of all the things I would like to do with that. Keeping that in mind, may I just say... I am so tired.

With everything that has been going on with the baby, you may understand. But then we have Antonio with on and off fevers and missing WAY TOO much school. And then... All day yesterday, Miranda kept complaining that she felt like she needed to "spit" (aka Throw up). Last time she felt that way, she came down with a yucky bout of diarrhea. Yup, that is what we woke up to this morning. Miranda is nauseous and has diarrhea.

Tired of being sick and tired... That is what I am. But, on a positive note... As someone reminded me a couple years ago when I was dealing with another such time as this... "The Lord inhabits the praise of His people." and Where He is is healing, hope, joy, strength, and all of His many other blessings. Praise His name!!

Today is Passover Sunday, and... I am overwhelmed as we approach Easter and all that this part of the season means. This last week, while Dario was sick and in the hospital, I have focused so much on how the Bible says that "By His stripes we are healed..."

My Jesus, you care about us so much. You desire that we surrender and trust You with everything that is in us, so that we can find True rest, True Peace, True Joy, True Hope, True LOVE.

So often, we lose our focus, becoming distracted by the circumstances surrounding us or our loved ones. And, You reach out Your arms saying, "Come to me, you who are heavy ladened, and I will give you rest."

Lord, I need Your rest. You know that without Your Spirit I am TOO weak, TOO hopeless, TOO discouraged, TOO full of what is not right. But with YOU, I am victorious even in difficult times! I am Strong! I am FULL of Your joy, Your hope, Your peace, Your love, Your patience, Your... many blessings. Thank You!!! My sweet, and most loving Lord!!! I do not know how people can live without You! For, even in my seeming distress, I know you are near, and I can find that quiet spot, just to rest a moment and find "strength for today, and hope for tomorrow." Sigh... Be with us always, Jesus. Amen.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

April 1, 2009 I Am So NOT In The "April Fools" Joking Mode...

A wall, the view from our window. Was interesting entertainment as we watched unaware people pass by across the way...

The horribly uncomfortable IV and splint thingy...

Makes my heart ache all over again...

The rest of a truly exhausted baby boy...

Friends looking on as Dario sleeps... With no IV and no icky splint thingy... :-)

Dario and Flat Stanley, who was very grateful to be a distraction for Dario's mommy...

Hospital room friends from home, and some new and/or borrowed ones...

Sleepy PapĂ  and a content Dario...

Dario pretending to write on Miss Elaine's card to him and I...

I love you, My Sweet Baby!!!

Doctor Ventola, Dario and me- she was the doctor who saw us that first day in the emergency room...

Grubby me with Dario

The card I made while in the hospital, for Dario's pediatrician, to say Thank You.

I am tired, and relieved, and praising God while also still feeling an urgency for caution and a slight nervousness. You see, Dario and I just got back from the hospital yesterday, Tuesday, afternoon after 6 days spent there. Last Monday we had an appointment with his pediatrician to see his healing progress after an antibiotic to take care of Bronchiolitis, which, if I have any idea, is similar to RSV, I think. Anyhow, he was not feeling well at all. He lost about 2 kilos (about 4 pounds give or take) in this whole, long sick time, and could not seem to get rid of a nagging fever. The pediatrician was very concerned but felt that we had to wait to do anything else until the antibiotics left his system. So, on Tuesday, we made a decision to go to get him a chest xray. He was uncomfortable and screamed the entire visit, but the results seemed promising, coming in "negative".

So, knowing that the fever persisted into Wednesday, we were given the okay to get him a blood test that morning. What a traumatic experience that was, I tell you!!! He screamed, cried, and had me, literally, in tears. He had not been sleeping well at all, and I was scared, tired, and very frusterated. I love my son, and to see him suffering with who-knows-what, well, it was not an easy time. I went home feeling relieved that it was over and all we had to do was wait for the results. So we ate lunch and as I was cleaning up I recieved a phone call. It was the secretary of our pediatric office, who is also a friend of mine and has family who goes to my church. She said that the Doctor had asked if I could please give her a call back, immediately.

DING, DING, DING!!!... You know that alarm that goes off when you know something is seriously wrong? Well, that is exactly what I felt.

Of course, I called her right back, and she said that the staff at the clinic had called her. They sensed that something just was not right about Dario and went ahead and put his blood test on top priority. They had not gotten to the urine test yet, but knew enough about the blood test to be alarmed.

You see... His white blood cell count was beyond "off the wall". Normally it is a good rating to be between 4,000 and 11, 000. Dario's was at 60,700
She said that we needed to settle up loose ends with the other kids and get immediately to the hospital.

Anthony and I quickly went into action. I packed some things, and we were on our way. Of course, you know that in an emergency nothing goes perfectly right...

Of all days, that was the day we got stopped for a random police check. Actually, I was crying from the moment I got off the telephone with the Doctor, and when we pulled over for the police, Anthony's first reaction had me laughing HARD, afterward, in the midst of tremendous stress. As soon as we roll up to the guy he goes, "Um, can we take care of this another time?" to which the police man was very taken aback and almost at angry. Anthony quickly explained... "we are on our way to the hospital with our baby boy." It registers and he immediately looks at my tear-stained face and asks us if we want an ambulance. "No, thank you." And he let us go on our way. Funny thing, we both KNEW we were going to be the ones pulled over as soon as we saw them ahead of us. What a moment!

So... Here is where I may just have to shed some more tears...

To make a very long story shorter... as soon as we got to the emergency ward, we were asked all kinds of questions, and he was checked for fever, had more blood taken, and weighed. Of course, he did not look well, and they began prepping him for admission. That meant, an IV, of course.

I cannot fully describe the horror of watching Dario pricked over and over while the nurses attempted to find a vein to stick the needle in. No kidding, they must have tried about 7 or 10 times. Oh aching heart! They even started to see if he had any good veins on his head. He fought them the entire time, and got extremely angry and upset. You better bet he was literally screaming his poor little head off. At one point they kicked Anthony and me out and called in another nurse to help. Finally, after quite a while they came out. One nurse made a point to tell us, "You have an extremely strong son there!" And that was being extremely sick! He sure seems calm, but boy does he also have a super strong will.

The result of the blood tests and another xray... Pneumonia in the left lung. Just beginning, but hitting so very hard.

Anyhow... Finally with the IV in he would be hydrated, and given meds to help the fever, start him on an antibiotic. He hated it. They put a splint on his arm to keep him from dislodging the IV and then tied his arm to his bed. Poor kid! It took quite a while to adjust. Actually, when he finally did seem to begin getting used to it, this happened...

One night, at about 3 in the morning, I woke up to find the splint thing had weakened and fallen off while he was sleeping. I got nervous that the IV had fallen off and called one of the nurses. She checked it and said that it was fine. So, then, about 5 am I wake up again when the baby starts to complain, and find him laying in a huge puddle. I think, "oh, no, he has peed out and needs to be changed." Again, I call the nurse, who, this time, exclaims that the needle has fallen out, and he is surrounded by saline. Oh no, I thought.

Mind you, this is on Friday, after he has begun to show improvement, no more fever, more eating, no more diarrhea, and some more almost normal behaviour. I was terrified for Dario, as I kept thinking that the nurses were going to insist on putting the IV back in. Oh! The trauma of having to go through that again had me in a bundle of nerves.

What ended up happening was that I had to, once again, trust and surrender that the Lord would take care of my baby. You see, I wanted what was best for him, but I had NO IDEA what that BEST might be. So, I prayed that the Lord would give wisdom to the Doctors to make the best decision possible. As it turned out, because he had showed so much improvement, they decided that he could do without the IV but would need his antibiotics in shots, which stinks but that is the sacrifice for getting better. He was so grateful though, that I could hold him and that I could cuddle with him. sigh...

Once he was off the IV, I saw him improving just a tiny bit every day. At first, he would not smile, would not laugh or play, would only lie there, looking betrayed and hurt, and weak and tired. He was not the Dario I know and love so much. When I began to see him reaching for me, attempting to include some humor in our day, eating, and begin playing with some things, well, I kew he was doing MUCH better.

Around Friday, his levels went to 34, 000. Improvement but still too high. Finally, to skip over some stuff... On Tuesday morning we did another blood test and the levels had dropped to 27, 000. They informed me that we could go home even though his status was still not where it should be. I asked them if they were sure, and they said that they did not know how long it would take for him to go back to normal. We could be there for quite a while since he had taken such a hard blow to his immune system. The germs floating around there had them concerned for him. Though, I had Antonio here at home with a fever and that also had me concerned. Still does.

Anyhow, they just said to be VERY careful. So, that is what I am doing.

It is a challenging time. Please continue to pray with us for his complete healing. We go back on April 8 for a recheck of his status. He will get another blood test and xray.

To God be the glory!!!

Oh, a big note of thanks goes to Anthony and my mother-in-law, and sister-in-law, who visited, took care of my home and kids, and encouraged in any way they could think of. To Kathy, who brought me lunch a couple of times and thought of great things to keep me and Dario busy in our room- toys, an MP3 walkman, and other doodads. To Elaine, for visiting, bringing a care package and reading material, encouraging, and sharing your nursely wisdom. To Doctor Nigro and Susanna, for caring enough to keep tabs on Dario's progress, and stressing the urgency of the moment. To the staff at the "blood clinic" (what are they called?) for their quick response and kindness. To our church and biological families and friends, who PRAYED so hard that it was tangible love to our hearts. AND ABOVE ALL ELSE... TO YOU, JESUS, BECAUSE "BY YOUR STRIPES WE ARE HEALED", AND YOU KEEP YOUR PROMISES!!! I love you, Lord!!!

And, yes, I AM just weird enough to take a camera and take pictures in a hospital. They are memories, important ones I do not want to forget. I need to remember so I can alway have in mind God's blessings, strength, and help in times of trouble. We were in trouble, and He helped us. I need to remember that!