Get Your Paci!

Judah’s brain hemorrhages greatly affected his vision; not only his ability to see, but his ability to understand what he saw.  For instance, when I’d show him his pacifier he’d sometimes notice it, but could not recognize what it was.  It held no meaning to him so he did not reach for it.  But if I shook the pacifier, he’d hear the sound of the handle clicking and look for it with his right hand.  And if I’d rub the pacifier on his arm he’d recognize it by touch and find it.  It’s truly amazing how his other senses made up the difference where his vision lacked.  For almost two years we’ve practiced holding the pacifier in front of Judah’s eyes and asking him if he wanted it.  We knew that some day he’d SEE the pacifier, KNOW what it was, and REACH for it.

That day came this week!!  Praise God for His healing power!!  We’re having so much fun holding Judah’s paci in different places to test where he can see it and whether he’ll reach for it.  We are watching Judah’s healing unfold right before our eyes!

Then will the eyes of the blind be opened and the ears of the deaf unstopped.  Isaiah 35:5

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I love his laugh!

Then our mouth was filled with laughter
And our tongue with joyful shouting;
Then they said among the nations,
“The Lord has done great things for them.”

Psalm 126:2

Eyes that can SEE!

Once upon a time, little Judah suffered two spontaneous brain hemorrhages.  The bigger of the two bleeds left him unable to see anything but light.  Gradually, Judah’s eyesight began to return; yet we were reminded that the bleeds also damaged the part of the brain that enables Judah to understand what he is seeing.

But today, I can boldly say that Judah CAN see!!  And he is understanding more and more of what he is seeing!

Check out this video from this afternoon:

One of my favorite parts of my day is sneaking up on Judah and watching him recognize my face and say, “hi!”  I absolutely love it!  After months of wondering if he’d ever see my face, these moments are true treasures to my heart.

Thank you, Father!

Jesus replied, “Go back and report to John what you hear and see: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cleansed, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is proclaimed to the poor.” Matthew 11:4-5

Rolling To The Right

Recently I posted a video showing Judah intentionally rolling from his back to tummy and ENJOYING tummy time. At that time he used his right leg to push off the floor and roll himself over. This morning, however, he rolled over 6 or 7 times using his left side to roll to his tummy!

Initially, after his brain injury, his left side was considered paralyzed, yet today he used it like a pro. Praise God for all He has done, all He is doing, and all that is to come!

Here’s a video clip from this evening.  He’s enjoying his new ability to roll in any direction he pleases.  I love it!

A Mover and a Shaker!

Judah is making great progress!  He’s showing more and more desire to move.  Check out this picture!  Yesterday I laid him next to his toys so I could do the dishes.  When I finished I found him in a whole new spot!  And still moving!  In fact, after I took this picture he moved another 5 feet!  This blesses my heart SO MUCH!  Thank you, Lord, for working in Judah!

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Tummy Time!

We are so excited to share another victory!! Ok, first off, please ignore the messy home (the girls are building forts) and ignore the two kids bickering in the background. But! Look at this!! Judah has not liked being on his tummy! At all! For months and months, when we’d put him on his tummy he’d resist, cry, and roll right back to his back. But today when none of us were near him he decided to experiment – he rolled to his belly and stayed put for awhile. You can see him start to roll a few times, but decide to stay on his tummy awhile longer!! This is such a big deal! Happy tears here!!

“It’s Easy”

I love hearing Judah imitate words.  Blesses my heart to the core!

Today Chad was helping Judah practice sitting up and said, “It’s Easy!”  Judah copied him over and over!

We love you, Judah!  You bring such joy to our hearts!

P.S. Please excuse how messy he is! ha!

For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. – Matthew 11:30

100th Dive

Last night we completed Judah’s 100th dive in the hyperbaric oxygen chamber.  What a great feeling!

We continue to see improvements every single week.  Glory to God!  The most noticeable improvement has been hearing Judah imitate sounds.  He’s giving kisses and imitating the sounds animals make.   The other night I said, “ha, ha, ha” and Judah copied it perfectly.  It’s so much fun!  And it shows just how much potential Judah truly does have.  All things are possible!  We believe it!

Another improvement – Judah is not as sensory defensive in his mouth.  He’s putting his toys and fingers into his mouth.  One of our therapists recently gave us a little vibrator used in speech therapy.  This morning he grabbed it out of my hand and put it in his own mouth.  He allowed it to sit on his tongue for about 5 seconds and then giggled.  This is a huge improvement!  And a necessary one for him to be able to tolerate textured  foods.

This morning we had a great appointment with our pediatrician.  Our Dr. commented he felt that Judah was at 7 or 8 months in development.  I was a little surprised by his remark.  For months and months Judah had been at about 3 months in development.  For some reason it hadn’t crossed my mind that he had moved up on the charts.  So the Dr. pulled up the checklist for 9 month development onto his computer.  Judah passed almost half of the questions.  He then pulled up the checklist for 6 month development.  I was able to answer “YES” to every question on that list!  It was such a fantastic feeling!  While this is still a 12 month delay, it is progress.  And for that, I am thankful!

Here are our biggest prayer requests right now.

*Judah will enjoy textures and be able to swallow them.

*He will learn to pick up food with his fingers and and to learn how to self-feed.

*He will learn to drink from a bottle or a cup.

*His balance will improve and he will be able to sit unassisted.

*He will desire to move!   He will enjoy being on his tummy and discovering how to scoot around the room.

*The movement in his eyes will cease.  His vision will improve.

 

“As soon as I pray, you answer me; you encourage me by giving me strength.”  Psalm 138:3

50 “dives”

We have officially completed 50 “dives” in the hyperbaric chamber.  It feels great!

Thank you, once again, to so many of you who helped make it possible for us to do these treatments each day.  We are seeing results!!!!  And it’s exciting!!

Here is a list of some of the progress we’ve noticed since beginning the oxygen treatments.

* More energy.  Not only does Judah seem to have more energy; but Chad and I feel more energized after our 90-minute sessions in the chamber.  With that energy has come a better mood.  He seems happier and is adjusting better to his surroundings and to position changes.

* Judah’s babbling more.  He’s making new sounds and new inflections in his voice.  AND he’s imitating our sounds!!

* He’s interacting more! He reaches for our faces and playfully interacts with us.  What’s even more exciting is seeing him interact with others outside of our family.  Yesterday during vision therapy Judah was hilarious… and he knew it!  He was in such a playful mood – it brought joy to all of us.

* His left side continues to show more movement.  He’s kicking with his left leg.  His left arm is loosening up.  And he’s doing a better job grasping objects with his left hand.

* Judah likes toys!  We’ve waited so long for Judah to play with toys.  He has had a couple of favorite toys in the past; but lately he’s become more curious.  Yesterday he was exploring a new toy – he’d pass it from hand to hand, then lift it up in front of his eyes to look at it.  YAY!!

* Judah’s eyes are straighter.  They still dart off to the left side, but this is greatly reduced.  (Please continue in your prayers for his eyes and his vision.  Doctors are still determining the cause of the darting we’re seeing in his eyes.)

* Judah is eating better.  His gag reflex is almost non-existent now.  Praise God!  He’s anticipating the spoon and able to swallow easier.  (Please pray for Judah as he learns to eat textures, learns to drink from a bottle or a sippy cup, and eventually learns how to put food in his mouth by himself.)

* Judah can roll either way from tummy to back.  And can now roll from his back to tummy!

* He’s tolerating tummy-time much better!  It’s fun seeing him realize that it isn’t so bad after all!

Thank you for your continued prayers.  And thank you for all of the encouragement you bring to our family.  We are thankful for each and every one of you.

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“I thank my God every time I remember you.”

Step by Step – a Miracle in Progress

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I am currently inside the hyperbaric chamber – our 39th “dive.” Judah does so well during his treatments. It’s the grace of God!

Judah continues to surprise us with new abilities. Yesterday I placed him on the floor near some toys and walked away. A few minutes later Chad was walking past Judah and immediately froze when he saw what Judah was doing.

Judah was about 18 inches away from where I had placed him. He rolled from his back to his tummy! He’s rolled that way a couple of times in the past; but every time he did it he immediately rolled back onto his back (his position of preference for sure). If we wanted him to stay on his tummy we’d strap him into an anti-roll device. But yesterday was different. He rolled onto his tummy, propped up on his elbows and happily played with toys in front of him. Chad and I watched him for quite some time and praised God for this victory.

We love seeing Judah intentionally make effort to move! We love seeing him play with baby toys! We love seeing him interact with us! We love hearing him babble! God is working mightily on Judah’s behalf!

“The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).”