Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Twin Update: One Month Old!

One month ago yesterday two precious little boys decided to come to us eight weeks early in a whirlwind of excitement and fear. Even as I type this it's hard to believe they are already one month old. The last month has gone by so fast I can hardly remember all that has happened. And then, at times the days just drag on as we wait to bring them home from the NICU.

But I do know one thing, with each passing moment our hearts only grow fuller with love for them. They are growing and changing every day, it seems. They are much more alert now, especially before and after eating. We love watching their little eyes, facial expressions, and eagerness to eat. In fact, they are now eating every other feeding by mouth. We are hopeful that they will move to every feeding by the end of the week.

They have both gained more than a pound since their birth. Luke weighs 4 lbs 12 oz and Zach weighs 5 lbs 8 oz. They are looking more like newborns now and less like wrinkly preemies!

The other night I told my husband that it makes me sad that the first month of their life is over and we will never have their first month with them at home. He helpfully reminded me that technically I am still supposed to be pregnant, so in reality we are actually benefiting by seeing their sweet faces earlier than we anticipated. When I was pregnant I always talked about how I couldn't wait to see their faces and now I get to see them every day! I am thankful for his perspective in our not ideal situation.

For the most part the boys are keeping pace with every marker they are supposed to be hitting. They have not missed a beat their entire time in the NICU, and for that we are thankful. Right now we are praying they continue to eat well and that we can hopefully take them home soon. Until the day that I can see them face to face every night before bed, I will stare at these sweet pictures to keep me going.


Monday, March 4, 2013

God Hears Our Prayers

"Answer me when I call, O God of my righteousness!
You have given me relief when I was in distress.
Be gracious to me and hear my prayer!" -Psalm 4:1

This has been our prayer as we wait for the boys to come home. God has faithfully answered our prayers when we have been in distress before, and we have confidence that he will do it again. It's not our own strength that makes the desired relief possible, but the strength of his character and his righteousness. Left to ourselves we cannot do anything, but God is powerful enough not only to bring our boys home, but to conform us more into his likeness while we wait.

I have had to remind myself of his power and character over these last four weeks. I cannot make my boys ready to come home from the hospital. I cannot make them take their bottles and nurse well. I cannot make them gain weight. Only he can do it. Having them hooked up to monitors has only further reminded me of my helplessness and his power. He sustains our precious sons. He holds them in his hands. He orders all things. And he has been doing it since the very beginning of their lives.

So we cry out to him in these uncertain days. We are asking him to work and are depending on him for the ability to endure not knowing when their days in the NICU will end. And how do we know he will work? We know his character. We know he is good. And we know that he has worked in the past and he will work in the future. He has worked in abundant ways in our lives before, and as we remember we are reminded that he will do it again.

Will it always work out in the timetable we want? Not exactly. But he will act on our behalf. And that is how we can pray. In prayer we are crying out to the only one who can and will work for our good (Psalm 57:2, Romans 8:28). We daily fall on our faces before this great God knowing that he is good and will fulfill his purposes for us. That is our hope.

Psalm 77 is a great reminder for those wanting to remember God's faithfulness to his own. This is where we want to be--remembering God's faithfulness and mighty deeds. When we get discouraged, we want to remember. When we feel like we aren't making progress with the boys, we want to remember. God has done mighty things for us and he will not stop pouring out his kindness on us.

He has done great things and we are filled with joy. Oh Lord, help us to remember this truth in both the certain and uncertain days.