It’s not a cake walk.

Sarge has been on Zantac and a prescription formula and there has been no change to his level of pain associated with eating. It’s quite disheartening to see this baby continue to suffer, and to know that his issues stem from being exposed to drugs in the womb. If this was just a reflux or sensitive stomach/allergy issue, the Zantac and prescription formula would have helped by now.

I spoke to a woman yesterday who gave me the name and number of a doctor who works with babies and children that have been exposed to drugs in the womb. I called this morning to get Sarge an appointment. I am waiting to hear back when they can fit us in. The doctor is booked out months in advance but when a case like us calls in, he does what he can to see the infant as soon as possible. Please pray we can get in as soon as possible.

Speaking to this woman yesterday, who is a mother to three children exposed to drugs in the womb, was a big source of encouragement yesterday. To speak to someone who has walked in my shoes and validated every single feeling I am feeling as we walk through this was just what I needed yesterday.

I am pretty much homebound with Sarge as I learned the hard way on Friday night. Every fall, the family takes a trip the mountains to the family cabin. Since we got the phone call about Sarge while there in early August, I desperately wanted to go there this fall. It was going to be full-circle to take him there. After speaking with his birth mother in the living room of the cabin and then the family immediately going to prayer when I hung up with her, I wanted to take a picture of Sarge in my arms after asking the Lord to place him in my arms during that time we didn’t know where Sarge was going to end up.

My parents asked to take the girls up to the cabin with them, and because I am relying so heavily on their help these desperate days, I had no choice but to say yes even though there was a tinge of Mommy Guilt thrown in there about sending the girls away for a week after having been away from them for four weeks while Sarge was in the NICU. But, I knew I had no other choice but to send them.

And then I thought, Why not go up for a long weekend? And that became the plan. Dave, Wesley, Sarge and I would drive up on Friday after work and stay through Monday! Perfect! I was so looking forward to a bit of “normal”.

We pulled out at 4:45pm. Sarge was due to eat between 5-5:30. We made it to the north side of town and stopped to eat dinner and feed Sarge, so we really didn’t get on the highway until 6pm and we had a 7-8 hour drive ahead of us NOT counting the stops we were going to have to take to feed Sarge along the way! It can take anywhere from 45-75 minutes to feed him. That’s a lot of lost travel time on the road. I was beginning to second guess our decision in trying to make this trip.

But I just chose to make it an adventure…until Sarge was extremely uncomfortable in the car seat. After eating Sarge writhes in pain. We hold him until the pain passes and he can relax and fall asleep. This takes anywhere from 1-2 hours after he eats. If I held him until his pain had passed before putting him in the car seat to continue our travel we would literally NEVER make it out of our state, much less all the way to the mountains! So I tried to comfort him as best I could with him in the car seat, all the while thinking this was going to be a LOOOOOONNNNNGGGGGG night.

Then, around 7:30pm, after we had only been on the road 1.5 hours and would need to stop again to feed Sarge around 8:30pm, my dad called to tell us that Sweet Pea currently had a 102 temp and had thrown up. Say what?!?!

I felt SO defeated at this point! Little Bug had been plagued with a horrible stomach bug that had lasted 4 days the week prior and now it appeared it was Sweet Pea’s turn! Sarge could not be around those germs. We started talking about our options, one of which was to just turn around and go home.

After 15 minutes of talking it over, we decided to just go home. We were asking too much of Sarge to make this trip in his condition. Later I was kicking myself for even thinking this trip was a good idea! I should have known better and had I thought about the logistics and the fact that being in the car seat for 8+ hours probably wasn’t going to be the best for Sarge, let alone being out and about while we were in the mountains, I would have realized even attempting the trip was a dumb idea.

Defeated we drove the 1 hour 45 minutes back home and we were home by 11pm. I was unpacked by midnight because I was so mad and didn’t want the chore of unpacking to hang over me.

God is teaching me much in this season of my life. One of which is the fact that we are so not in control of our lives!! It’s a lesson I’ve been taught many times before.

Life is NOTHING like I imagined it to be this past summer as I was preparing for our first official homeschool year! But- God is faithful and He is giving us the grace to move through these days in His strength. There is no doubt in my mind that this is God’s calling on my life right now. To love and nurture this precious baby boy to health. God made it abundantly clear that His Plan all along was for Sarge to be our son and it is one my highest callings in this life to be the mother of Little Bug, Sweet Pea and now, Sarge.

Once again, life has turned out to be anything but what I expected. As always, it’s a wild ride and as hard as life is right now, I wouldn’t trade this for anything.

I remind myself daily – if not multiple times a day – that all of these circumstances are temporary. This is all a season. A season that will pass.

As I was sharing my feelings with the woman I spoke with yesterday she validated the one thing that has just been nagging me from the beginning of all this. It goes against every grain in my body to not be capable of caring for all three of my children at the same time by myself. I feel like I should be able to. I want to more than anything, but logistically it is just not possible because of Sarge’s delicate state. I was sharing these frustrations with her yesterday, telling her I feel like a wimp or something. She said, “You are not a wimp! Adding a third child to the family is hard enough under normal circumstances. But you have a drug baby on top of all that! It is NOT easy. When my third came along, my two cousins moved in with us to help take care of everyone for the first several months because I COULD NOT do it alone. It was impossible to care for two little ones on top of a drug baby.”

Do you know how much that was music to my ears?!? I am not crazy. I am not weak. I am not being a wimp. I am doing the best I can do given the circumstances. And I am blessed that God has given me parents who are so willing and capable of stepping up and helping us through this time. And we will get through this. She told me, “Things will improve. Life will get easier.”

I know it’s true. Right now, life is hard. I feel pulled in twenty million directions 24/7. It is extremely difficult watching a baby suffer and knowing the reason was completely 100% preventable. I can’t dwell on that too much. It is what it is. This baby is right where he needs to be and I am going to do EVERYTHING in my power to get him the help he needs so that his body can heal and these drugs don’t have a lasting effect on his little body. By God’s grace, I know he will be healed. The alternative is not acceptable to me.

It is taxing and tiring trying to figure out what to do next to help him! I am praying this doctor is our God-send and will give me the tools I need to help Sarge recover.

This summer I had wonderful plans in place for our first year of homeschool! I was so looking forward to this season of our life. God had other plans and now my focus has shifted although we are still very much homeschooling Little Bug. (I just love the flexibility homeschool provides.)

I want to write a post soon about all that I have learned from everything we have gone through in 2014. Perhaps the biggest is a reminder that our lives are not our own. We make plans, which is a good thing to do, but ultimately we must keep our hearts attuned to God and His plan for our lives and be ready to surrender our plans for His plans if His plans are different from our own. God’s plan for our lives is rarely a cake walk because He takes us places to make us totally dependent on Him! It’s truly a good place to be.

In the midst of all the chaos, there is peace because I know I am right where God wants me doing exactly what He wants me to do in this season of my life.

It’s just hard and I truly appreciate the support and prayers during this time.

PS: Sweet Pea was sick that one time. She immediately asked for applesauce, ate it, kept it down and slept all night. She was perfectly fine the next morning and went on a long hike. I am convinced God used that to make us turn around because He knew the trip was too much for Sarge.

5 thoughts on “It’s not a cake walk.

  1. Tears fill my eyes. I am so very grateful God sent someone who has walked in your shoes and truly does understand to help you realize it’s ok and one day you will be able to take care of all three of your precious gifts from God, until then accept the help offered. “I understand” are words I have learned to avoid even in similar situations. This year I have learned that I must validate how someone is feeling too…I learned from you and Wesley. So thankful…I never want to stop learning. Mama/Grams

  2. I’m so sorry these first few months with Sarge are so hard. :/ I feel like adding ANY child to a home is hard and your friend is so right that it’s not possible to do on your own!

    These are probably annoying suggestions just because I know that as a mom you have probably tried EVERYTHING, but I think it was this blog that I saw you did a post in the past about essential oils? Have you tried them on Sarge yet? I’m thinking that lavender and Frankincense dilluted in coconut oil on the bottoms of his feet would be really supportive to his body during this difficult time. I’m sure there are other oils as well that would help, but those just come to mind first. You’ve probably already tried it, but just in case you haven’t I thought I would mention it. We are obsessed with oils in our house, so that’s where my mind goes to help bring healing to the body.

    I’ll be praying for your family in this difficult season. You have such a great perspective and faith, so I know God will bring you all through it!

  3. Oh sweetie! Please do not believe Satan. You are an amazing mom and you’re doing amazing. You are doing what is best for each of your kids all at the same time. Three small kids is hard when they’re all healthy so I can’t imagine what you are going through. Praying for all of you and for an answer for sweet Sarge.

  4. Longtime reader, infrequent commenter here.

    I’m so impressed with everything you are doing and the incredibly positive spirit with which you are going about it. You have the strength and dedication and support to get through this. Perhaps think of it as a period of illness, and that your entire family needs to put your life on hold to help Sarge heal, and grow, and get stronger day by day. It is a long-term struggle, but you will see a difference in 1 month, and then 2 months, and then 3, and then 6, and then Sarge will be up and running around.

    The girls are so lucky to have so much stability in terms of you and Dave as parents and to have their grandparents helping out. They will learn in other ways until you can get back into a regular homeschooling routine. Lots of thoughts and prayers coming your way from all directions!

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