Baby Jonah Pics

Baby Jonah 2011-01-03

WARNING: the family want to share photos of their baby Jonah fighting for his life right now, but also are sensitive to the fact that some people may not be up to viewing his medical process photos. Others will find these photos a wonderment as they see the extremes that medical personnel are employing on behalf of this tiny little boy. Therefore, I have placed the medical photos as a link [med photo]- if you want to see for yourself. You decide. In any case, I will at least post his pre-surg photo to spur on your prayers <3.

Here is what Jonah’s parents said about the photos:

If you would be willing, we’d like to share more of our burden with you. If you are willing and able, we’d like to e-mail a picture of Jonah to you, we believe that a picture is worth a thousand words. We do not wish to offend or disturb any one of you. We are merely seeking to share our heavy burden and believe if you were able to see our little baby, you might be able to even better pray for us. The picture may be disturbing, so if you are willing and able to see it, just click on the link [med photo]. Thank you again so very very much.

Two pictures are of Jonah before he went for his first surgery (Mon. 1/3).  The other two are of him [med photo] 1 day after his first surgery (Wed. 1/5) AND [med photo] The next day (Thurs. 1/6) he was taken into surgery again to open up his vein to open up a blockage that was preventing him from fully draining the fluids from his body.  Even more lines and tubes and meds were placed at that time. (no pics of that).

Please pray that he would continue drain the fluids so that the doctors will be able to close his chest.  The original plan was to close it on Monday, but he had an episode on (Fri 1/7) – he was moved in order to take a CAT scan because his eyes were dilated and they were concerned about possible swelling on the brain.  When they brought him back to his room, his blood pressure dropped and his heartbeat was erratic.  So they had to give him fluids and more meds to get him stable again.  So that put off the surgery for at least one more day.  He has begun a round of antibiotics, because the longer his chest is open the greater his risk of infection.  So again please pray that they would be able to get the fluids out and the swelling down enough that they would be able to close his chest.

Thanks again for all of your love and prayers, Marty & Val

Additionally, here is a photo of Jonah’s Big sister with him. Let’s keep her in our prayers as well. God is at work in a mighty way in this tiny little one. Remember, YOU can leave comments to encourage them.

Winter Wonders

We are definitely in the throws of winter now. Twelve and a half inches fell on Indianapolis’ far eastside on Tuesday into Wednesday. I don’t know for sure, but I think we received more snow in that twenty four hours than we did all of last winter!

The snow was pretty to look at, but quite a chore to deal with. I shoveled one of our two driveways, the front walk to the house and the sidewalk next to the street, only to have it blow and snow it to the point where it looked as though I hadn’t done anything.

This first photo is of our lamp post in the front yard. With all the snow it reminds me a bit of the Lamp post in the Chronicles of Narnia.

Even better was the view of our picnic table on the back deck. Heaped up with pure mounds of snow I couldn’t help but ask “Picnic anyone?” and “Now, where’s that grill?”

OH DEER!! Here is a photo of a deer that I captured with my camera. She was all nestled into a thicket near Coffee Creek in Chesterton, Indiana. After we went to church, she was lying in an area where we had spotted her standing earlier.

As of this posting, there are still several thousand homes without electricity due to heavy ice damage in southern Indiana. I am so thankful that we didn’t have that mess. Kentucky has so many trees and power lines down that utility people are coming in from other states to help get them back up and running.

Here at home, I am thanking God that we have heat and no tree damage. Only 42 more days ’til Spring!! But then, who’s counting . . . I AM!!

Thanksgiving with a Soldier

Spencer FamilyThis is not your typical holiday greeting or a link to an online card. Rather it is a heartfelt “Happy Thanksgiving” from our WHOLE family. We are here in St. Robert, Missouri to visit with Michelle for a couple of days. We pray that all of you are enjoying your family gatherings and blessings of just being together, let alone the bonuses of yummy seasonal feasts : )
Yes, this was the first and only time she has seen us since July 1st. NO, she did not get to graduate. We just attended the graduation of most of her company because she wanted us to meet a lot of them, the sergeant’s and other cadre. Plus, we were able to learn a LOT about the daily basic training and see some of the drilling in action.

Michelle was granted an overnight pass off base which is unusual for non-grads, but the Sergeants ALL are very impressed with her. You see, she is top-notch, but cannot graduate until she is healed enough to march and run 15k. The most she was able to do before the hip stress fracture was 8k, and then they shut her down for fear of the fracture breaking on through. She sure knows her stuff and she’s very good at communicating that to others; civilians or newbies or being quizzed by the brass to explain to other groups.

We are so very PROUD. She is meeting with the adversity of an uncertain future and limitations that she has no control over quite well. She is a bit bothered by the way that medical holdovers on profile (physical limitations) are treated by the rest of the troop as a whole. There ARE fakers and wimps who pretend to be injured, and then there are the legit. We met a young specialist (like corporal) who is gonna have back surgery in January. But it’s those that are assigned to crutches that basically don’t USE them that gives everyone a bad rep.

After completing 2 cycles now, she is respected by most everyone. But it is the army way to shun the injured to encourage quick healing and compliance.

So with her off base overnight pass, she was able to come back to the hotel with us, eat PIZZA and then we went out to a movie. “BOLT” is a new computer animated movie about a dog that our family wanted to see. It was either that, or the new James Bond movie. The dog in the movie and his relationship with the girl made Michelle really miss being home with Spirit. But it has LOTS of funny lines and happenings in the movie, not to mention the different animation styles. So we thoroughly enjoyed it.

Then, there was the Scrabble game and LOTS of good conversation, and popcorn and junk food. Then she shared the bed with me. Then in the morning, decadence of all time, Krispy Cream Donughts! We’re talking lemon cream and raspberry jam filled deliciousness. That and milk was it prior to the Family Thanksgiving Dinner Event put on by the company on base at 1pm. That food was delicious. And the best part was that there was no cooking and cleaning on my part. LOL. Seriously, it was surprisingly tasty and there were an abundance of things I never even got to on the side bar.

Turkey, Ham and Beef, Mashed potatoes and gravy, yams, StoveTop OR Bread stuffing, peas and mushrooms, corn, shrimp cocktail, pumpkin pie, cheese cake, rolls, and more and more that we didn’t even go to look at. They charged only $6.15 for Steve and me, and Michelle just checked in. A few of the mess hall employees pulled me aside and said things like “we’re not supposed to develop close relationships with the privates, but Spencer is special,” and “She’s a good one,” and “we all like your daughter a lot around here.” The one lady (has Michelle’s number memorized) wanted a photo of all three of us together. And Michelle asked for one with her and the lady together.

There were a few tears shared between us. During graduation, when the graduates are repeating the Soldiers Creed as one, was very emotional for Michelle and I. Knowing that she has to sit there while they move on. I am sure it was even more emotional for her when her first cycle graduated. The ones in which she really bonded as they broke in together.

The best tears/conversations between her and I came when I spoke with her about how proud we are of her. She and I have a SPECIAL bond. Not just parent and child. Not even as a just good friends. She is not just my offspring, but a Sister in Christ. That is an everlasting bond despite physical place, time or even death. There is great security and thanksgiving in that respect.

But the one thing that we share that no one else can understand to the degree in which I do is : the incredible pain that comes along with having your plans dashed by an unexpected, bodily, limitation in which you have NO control. Physical pain is rough enough, but the emotional pain SUCKS! Now What?

One of the greatest things that I am thankful for in regard to Michelle’s situation is that she has a very strong faith. She is tough in dealing with the pain. Sucks it up nicely. BUT she is smart about not doing more damage or ignore that a problem really exists. Finding that balance is a hard, but very important skill.

Click this link to view photos

Current plans are for Steve and I to drive back out to Ft. Leonard Wood mid-December, spend a night, see a couple more museum places and then home for the holidays.

Right now, we believe that Michelle will have to report back to Ft. Leonard Wood at the first of the year and continue on’til they decide what to do next. She is due to get a promotion on January 1st, so that is at least something for her to look forward to.

Christmastime will also include a trip up to cousins and grandparents up in Northern Indiana at some point. Less presents this year due to economy, but more family valuing.

We have many, many things that we are thankful for at this time of year. You, our Dearly Beloved friends and family are chief among those blessings.