New Blog for Nathanael

We recently started fundraising with COTA to cover Nathanael's medical expenses, so updates about him will be on his new blog from now on: Please check out the blog, pictures, and opportunities to help, and feel free to pass along the link to others. We appreciate your concern!

Friday, May 28, 2010

Settling in at home (by Bree)

It's SO GOOD to be home! I wanted to share a few pictures with you of life all together. The first one shows the boys at the table after a meal. Nathanael has become a lot more interested in sitting in his booster seat and feeding himself. In the past two weeks he has eaten green beans, sweet potatoes, butternut squash, rice, yogurt, banana and pretzels. He still doesn't really enjoy it when I try to spoon-feed him, but he LOVES to use a spoon - or his fingers! - by himself.

One day after lunch Jamison wanted to play with his cows and sheep - as well as his jungle animals! - on the cute!

Some of these pictures are from my two-week stint at home in April, so I'll post more recent ones in a few days. Joyce and I have been keeping busy unpacking, organizing and cleaning. It's great to have her help!

So these are the smiles that light up my day... and here's one of the sad faces that makes me sad...

When you pray for us, please pray that we would spend our days together in creative, fun activity and work. Being home so much of the time - and with so many restrictions - is not easy, but it keeps Nathanael as safe as possible. Please also pray for our weekly schedule, including our hospital day (hopefully only one day a week!) and home health visit, as well as medication delivery. Many details need to be coordinated, and I sometimes get tired of dealing with them. Also, please pray that we'll find ways to be a blessing to those around us, even those we can't see in person. Thanks for continuing to stand with us!

P.S. Regarding Nathanael's autoimmune hemolytic anemia, his labs show that he is still stable, and does not need a blood transfusion, which is great news!

Friday, May 21, 2010


After 18 hours in the car we arrived back at home around 11:00am on Friday. YAY! It was SO GOOD to finally hug Jamison again after being away from him for almost a month!

Thanks to all of you who prayed for a safe journey. We avoided the storms that were passing through Tennessee, but still managed to drive through driving rain - and even some hail! - in the Ozark mountains, just east of Springfield, MO around 1:00am. Thankfully the worst of it only lasted about 10 minutes (although, admittedly, I can say "only" because I wasn't the one driving). We were exhausted by the end of our trip, but so glad we didn't delay any longer, as it really is great to be home.

We had dinner as a family tonight, and both boys sat in their booster seats. I wish that I had taken a picture! Nathanael was going after his green beans and sweet potatoes like he hadn't eaten all day, and Jamison was enjoying the faces that Brad made at Nathanael. I just kept looking at both of them, amazed that we were finally all together again.

In the next week or so I'll try to get a few more pictures posted. Both boys have grown up so much: Nathanael is now 9 months old, and Jamison is 3 years, 3 months. We feel so blessed to have them in our lives, and wonder sometimes what we did before they arrived. ;)

Please continue to pray for good health for all of us, and for us to live for God's glory each day.


Friday, May 14, 2010

Love this picture of two of my boys!

Just thought you'd all enjoy seeing that beautiful smile that I miss so much. Pray that I'll be home in a week so I can spend time with Jamison and Brad again.
Nathanael continues to do well...but they want to watch him for at least a few more days to make sure he's stable before discharging us to go home. I'm so thankful for wonderful helpers both here and at home.
:) Bree

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

"Goodnight Mom" on Skype

Still in Cincinnati...

I'm not even sure what to write...there's so much to say right now, and y'all know that I'm not the best at keeping up with this blog. So here's the bottom line: Nathanael is doing fairly well overall, but we still need to get a better handle on his AIHA (autoimmune hemolytic anemia) before we can head back home to Texas. That means for now we'll remain outpatient (an answered prayer) and will have daily blood tests to watch his hemoglobin level, BUT we will probably not be released to go home for another 4 to 7 days. The hospitality and company here are wonderful, but I really miss Jamison and Brad, and would like to get home soon.

We could also use prayers for planning our return trip. One of our doctors (whose specialty is hematology) mentioned that flying in an unpressurized plane (breathing in air with less oxygen)could exacerbate any existing problems with Nathanael's hemoglobin level, however, when I asked another doctor about it she mentioned that she didn't think it would present a problem for him. So, is this just a difference of opinion? Is it an issue of degree (i.e. the degree to which it could exacerbate - and not cause - a problem) or a communication problem? Our dilemma now is to make a decision about whether to fly in three small planes (over the course of 9 hours or so) or to drive the 14 hours home, possibly overnight so Nathanael can sleep through most of the trip. If we choose to do this, we will also need God's perfect timing for travel, the helpers (my parents have volunteered, and can probably split the trip with Brad), and safe, clean places to stop for short breaks on the way.

So here we are, probably still a year or two away from Nathanael being a healthy little boy. This is a longer journey than I think I had anticipated, and it is wearing on us, so we appreciate your prayers and words of encouragement. Thank you for standing with us!


Friday, May 7, 2010

Update from Brad

I just received an encouraging call from Bree. Nathanael’s last transfusion was on Saturday and his blood counts have continued to hold in the normal range. His blood still tests positive for the antibodies that were chewing up his platelets and hemoglobin like candy last week but the rate at which it’s doing so has dropped dramatically. So, they’ve called Angel Flight to schedule a flight back to McKinney for late next week. Please pray nothing goes wrong between now and then. This thing is so unpredictable. Any change in his condition for the worse would cause them to cancel the flight. Please pray for someone to be available/willing to sit with Jamison on Sunday morning. Two weeks ago he got sick, probably on Sunday (symptoms started Tuesday night/Wednesday morning) and we can't risk him sharing his germs with others, or catching something new just before Bree and Nathanael are home again.

Planning to go home again (by Bree)

Good news! Nathanael's hemolysis seems to be slowing down (which means that his body is "chewing up" his red blood cells more slowly than before) so the doctors have given the green light to making plans to go home late next week! It has now been almost a week since his last transfusion of packed red blood cells, which is very good. Of course, we will have another blood test on Saturday, as the nurses and I are not comfortable waiting from Thursday to Monday without knowing how his numbers look. I still expect to have another transfusion before we leave town, but his hemoglobin was still over 11 yesterday, which is great. So while we are enjoying the company of friends here, we very much miss Daddy and Jamison, and are anxious to get back home. On a bright note we will get to see my parents this weekend for Mother's Day.

It's funny, because even though I miss my friends at home, my parents have been able to spend more time with Nathanael than any of their grandkids, and have been able to enjoy more of these early months of his life with me. We have also made lots of new friends at the hospital whose days have been brightened by my little boy's sweet smile and cheerful disposition. In thinking of this the other day I was reminded how helpful it is to count my blessings.

So please keep praying for Nathanael, Jamison, Brad and I, for others preparing for or recovering from their transplants, and for God to use these situations for His glory. You and your prayers are such a blessing to us!