Psalm 139:13-16

"For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother's womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be."

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Restoration Hope, Easter, & Update

I had several things I wanted to blog about, so I decided to write about them in the same post.  :)

First of all, one of my dear friend's brother Jason and his family (wife Brandy and three children) will soon be leaving to minister to the poor and fatherless in South Africa.  They founded a non profit organization, called Restoration Hope.  Jason and Brandy write about their calling and work on their website,  One thing that stood out to me was what Brandy wrote in a post about starting Restoration Hope.  They had visited South Africa, and while there, God spoke to them.  She wrote: "Our hearts were full, not of pity, but of a deep sense of responsibility to be better stewards of the life God had entrusted us.  God led us to a place where we could no longer sit in the comfort of our normal life while the cries of this people echoed in the darkness."  Anyway, their writing and vision for this organization and their love for the people of South Africa has touched my heart.  Please support them through prayer, and possibly financially as they serve Him and others in South Africa. 

On to Easter...Grace went to church for the first time Easter Sunday!  We were so excited!  She was so beautiful I almost cried when I dressed her!  We also went to PawPaw and Nanny's house after for lunch.  It was so good to have the family all together again after so long of being apart.  One of my favorite Easter songs this year was by Casting Crowns...I love this part: Living He loved me, dying He saved me, buried He carried my sins far away, rising He justified freely forever, and one day He's coming, oh glorious day!!!  Here are some pictures from our Easter.

 Beautiful, smiling baby girl!
 The Golden family
Family of three

Grace updates...
We had an appointment with Dr. P, Grace's neurosurgeon, Monday, and after her CT, he said Grace has hydrocephalus and needs a shunt.  She will have shunt surgery May 18.  Even though this means another surgery, we are thankful that it happened in a non-emergent way, and that I'll still be home on maternity leave.  If she was going to have hydrocephalus, this is the best way it could happen.  
Also, First Steps came to evaluate her on Tuesday.  They were really nice!  A PT and a ST, along with our case manager, came to evaluate her.  They determined that she needs PT once a week, OT once a month, and another ST evaluation.  They were mostly concerned with her motor development (she scored 0-1 month in her motor development).  She had the highest score in her social development (2-4 months)!  They also are referring her to have her vision tested.  Basically, their concerns are: Grace favors turning her head to the left side (they want her to be able to turn it 180 degrees), she cannot track an object well especially to the right side (they want her to be able to track objects 180 degrees), she has her hands in a closed fists position most of the time (they want her to have them open more), she can't really hold objects (they want her to actively hold objects and look/attend to the objects), she has head lag (they want her be able to be pulled to a sitting position without head lag), she doesn't have great head control (they want her to have better head control and to look at us during tummy time), she rarely puts her hands to her mouth (they want her to have more hand to mouth motions), and her leg muscles are tight (they want us to stretch her legs out daily).  It may take up to 30 days for her to receive these services, so they taught me how to work with her until she starts PT/OT.  I was honestly surprised that they had so many concerns, but I am thankful for the First Steps program!  Our goal is early intervention, and over time, hopefully Grace can overcome these things...she's certainly overcome so much already! 


  1. Karen You are so uplifting! I am glad Miss Grace had a wonderful Easter, we did too at Mur's house. Ethan even egged a Shelby McCullars times. Of course he and Ms. Donna just laughed. Ethan was so embarrassed.
    I was wondering about the shunt surgery. What exactly does that entail?
    love you, and praying for y'all,

  2. Will keep Miss Grace and you in my prayers. God made us each unique and special, and we are none of us at the same developmental levels on anything. Be open to all the help offered. ♥♫

  3. Sending lots of good wishes and healthy vibes to Grace and your family.

    She looks beautiful in her Easter dress xx

  4. Karen thanks so much for the updates and pictures! The one of her smiling in her beautiful Easter dress brought tears to my eyes! She is such a happy baby! The First Steps program is wonderful. You'll be in my prayers as Grace's shunt surgery approaches. We hated for Gianna to have another surgery experience, but we really saw some improvements after the shunt, so I truly believe this will be the case for Grace also. God Bless, Amy

  5. Karen,

    I am so happy to see this news about Grace...I will be praying for you and asking God to continue to hold all of you and make each day full of smiles and hope. So thankful for the gift of her life. Snuggle her for me!