Hello Friends and Family,
I can’t believe it’s November and that we’ve been here in Cambridge for 2 months now. They sure have been two very full months! Ever since Will and Amos got back from their last trip to California, we have felt the chance to catch our breath as we try to settle in. Waiting for the MRI was very unsettling so we were so grateful to put that behind us and focus on being here. Praise the Lord for the opportunity to do that!
Life here is very different from what it was in California (in case you may have wondered!) but we are all adjusting and enjoying most of the differences. One of the prominent features of life continues to be working with therapists towards Amos’s rehab goals. For the most part, we see therapists much less regularly than when we were in the States, focusing more on the homework assigned and then checking in periodically. So far it is going well with an expected variety of pros and cons. The wonderful part is that we are home and together so much more than we were before. The hard part is that I am now acting as Mom and therapist, which isn’t always easy. On a very bright note though, it’s amazing to see Amos be at this stage in the rehab process where he doesn’t need daily oversight from professionals. It is all about the work we put in at home each day to help him get stronger. Some exciting areas of progress include:
- Amos is 100% potty trained! We are so proud of him. Ever since this all began, we haven’t pushed the issue of potty training, feeling like he would take to it when he was ready. Thankfully, that seems to be exactly what has happened. He picked it right back up with no trouble at all about 5 weeks ago. On top of that, he’s in undies at night and has only had one accident! We are so impressed and it’s been a blessing to see him succeed with relative ease. Every victory is especially meaningful for Amos now, including trips to the potty 🙂
- Amos has also started dressing himself each day. This is pretty significant seeing as even three months ago, most attempts at this resulted in tears and frustration. Amos has had to work very hard at these basic skills that, when you think about it, require a good deal of problem solving, coordination, and strength (especially grasping and dexterity)! He’s very proud of himself each time and tells Will all about it when he gets home from work.
- Strength and endurance continue to increase as well. We work hard on these things and it’s nice to write these posts and think about how he is progressing even though we can lose sight of that in the day to day. We are specifically working on climbing stairs independently, jumping and hopping forward successively, and other exercises that challenge his balance and strength. A wonderfully kind family from church bought Amos a little trampoline that he’s been using nearly every day to practice his jumping. What a kindness !
We have also spent some time this month remembering and talking about this time last year, when Amos was just finishing up his first round of chemotherapy at CHOC. That first round was terribly hard in countless ways- from infections, breathing problems, and neutropenia, to losing his hair and spending about 15 extra days in the hospital beyond what was expected – 6 of which were in the PICU. We do not miss those days. And yet there is something special and even sacred about looking back, remembering the horrors, but also remembering how well the Lord cared for us. It is surprising how many of the bright and hopeful memories come to mind right alongside the bad ones. We value the memories of the wonderful nurses, doctors, therapists, friends, and family who helped us through these times, and continue to do so.
And of course we can’t help but remember Amos’s strength and mighty perseverance. As a parent, it’s shocking how easily I can forget, in the mundane moments of each day, all that he has been through. Amos doesn’t always seem to understand what he has been through either and he definitely doesn’t remember a lot of it! We are so thankful for the person God has made him to be. He has truly been equipped each step of the way to handle adversity with more grace than I would have ever expected from someone so small. We are abundantly grateful for the chance to call him ours and to see the Lord continue to work in his life through the unfolding of this admittedly painful experience.
In other news, we are busy preparing for the next few months, which involve two holidays, two trips back to the US (Will goes to TX for a conference in November and Amos and Will go back to CA in December for another MRI), my 30th Birthday (!!!!), and shortly after Christmas, a new BABY. We are trying to catch our breath as these last few months have fallen far short of restful or slow. We know these next two months will require a good deal from us as well so please pray for continued health, strength, and endurance. We are especially thankful for our community here in Cambridge and the many ways we have been encouraged and supported as we resettle here. And we praise God for all of you, those we know and do not know, and we thank you for your prayers and encouragement.
Love in Christ,
Kelli, Will, Amos, Luke, and Baby