Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Getting into the Groove ...






Summer has arrived and life seems,dare I say,normal. Or at the very least, a really great new normal. When Zoey was first diagnosed and the treatment plan was laid out, it seemed like the end was intangible. So far out of our grasp. So instead of dwelling on what appeared to be the unreachable, we adopted the "one now at a time" mindset, forget about even one moment at a time, one now at a time was about all we could handle. Here we are though and it feels, in some very weird, inexplicable way, as if the last 8 months never happened. I know they did. I see it in my aging eyes and I feel it in my weary body. I know it happened because I have scars that cannot be seen and I harbor feelings deep within me of resentment, bitterness and intolerance that weren't as prominent and on the surface, as before. So trust me, I know it happened. But there is a beauty that comes hand in hand with some difficult journeys. Not all journeys but I believe some. A blessing intertwined during some of life's most gut wrenching, "how will I ever get through this" moments and it is this: those moments that seemed insurmountable, those moments that took you out at the knees and left you unable to breathe, those moments, will begin to fade and if you allow it, you will begin to heal. I call this the gift of God's grace. That grace covers me and protects me during my weakest moments and I believe, prevents me from losing it completely. Which, to forewarn you ... could still happen. For today, this here and now, it's all good. The boys are in swimming lessons everyday. Zoey and I go and hang out in the shade. She is loving the freedom of going and doing. I am quite liking it myself. Taylor is doing her thing. Working here and there. Spending time with Brandon. Jess and Matt are busily setting forth their plan of action for the future. Jess began her Certified Nursing Assistant Program today and is gathering info on different choices for nursing schools. Having her BA already and the majority of the course requirements already done, will inevitability make the road smoother. As for boyfriend Matt, he has decided to do a 180 in career choices. He graduated with a degree in marketing and is now pursuing a career as a firefighter. EMT classes start in July and from there he will be applying to the academy and then possibly on to Paramedic school. And finally there is Caitlin... almost 3 weeks to her due date. She is feeling better and the doctors are not as worried about her as they were a few days ago. She is ready. Danny is ready and we are all ready to meet this new little life. Oh and yes, then there is Mark. He continues to work like a dog and maintains that rosy outlook on life, wearing that trademark smile of his. He is the best and I know for certain, I don't tell him that nearly enough. So, that is the news of the day. The Needham's are grooving and loving each and every moment of it.

*Changed Zoey's Button... again,at the urging of a few of the masses, they wanted to see a more smiley little Miss Z.So,Rebecca once again obliged and whipped up a new one and replaced the header picture. Thanks Rebecca and thank you to those of you who repost it... again.

*Zoey had a blast with this water bottle yesterday. I continue to be amazed by her ability to manipulate items, especially large ones like this, with one arm. She really has learned to compensate extremely well so far with the lack of purposeful movement of her left side, mostly her left arm and hand. She is something else my little one.

*These are the bracelets we will be selling in our fundraising for the marathon that will benefit The Leukemia/Lymphoma Society. Haven't figured out the logistics yet but we'll let you know soon, for those of you interested.

* And one final note ... if you have a minute please read the new little section to the right on my sidebar titled "Our Zoey Grace."Caitlin, our very talented, second born, churned that little diddy out in about 5 minutes flat. She has a gift with her writing. She in-fact will be published in 'Gift's Volume 11" coming out in 2010. Very proud of that girl. She's a keeper.

20 comments:

The VW's said...

So happy to hear that your family is doing well! God's grace is an amazing thing! And, Zoey is quite amazing herself! She looks great and, as always, ADORABLE!!

stephanie said...

You leave me with tears in my coffee again!!!Today, though they are "happy for you tears". It's great to hear about swimming lessons and "normal" summer stuff. Keep posting, about your typical days, I will never tire of it.
To Caitlin,that "little diddy" as your Mom put it, is so beautiful.It shows all the love you have for that sweetest Zoey.She really is just so amazing.

Hope said...

If you put the bracelets up for sale on your blog, we'll buy one (or two). Give Zoey hugs from Ava.

ABandCsMom said...

It so nice to read about how you are falling back into everyday life...with a more normal feel to it of course.

Isn't it great to be able to just go and do? Not having to stop and think, wait, what's her ANC today.

Anonymous said...

Kudos to Jessica and Matt - getting your new careers off to a running (pun Jessica) start. Cailin your creative abilites are awesome, and know that your immediate new career (momming is that a word?) will be awesome also. You have have been taught by the best - your mom. Yes, Heather you. Taylor just enjoy the freedom of this summer you deserve every minute of it. To the little ones (3) enjoy each other, enjoy the weather, enjoy the life you now are able to lead. And last, but by no means least Mark - awesome daddy/husband/breadwinner! Hope you get some free time yourself - Working all the time will make you dull and the Mark I have know all his life is by no means dull.

Hugs to everyone

(Aunt) Bluebelle

PS Thanks for the info on bracelets Heather, hoping for mega orders

Lacey said...

Oh, real clothes, she looks so beautiful. I definitly want a bracelet. I don't think I even need to ask my family, even my boys love Zoey and ask when we are going to see you guys again. Caitlin is a gifted writer, just like her momma!
Lots of love from our family.

just jean said...

I know what you mean by God's grace. I have felt (and continue to feel) it, as well. It's the reason we hope and never give up.

We all continue to learn and grow from Zoey's journey. She is just so charming, amazing, and a light.
Enjoy every single "now".

Ruby's Mom said...

I would love to buy some of Zoey 's bracelets.I love what Caitlin wrote,would it be o.k. if I share it with the people at the church I attend?We have been praying for Zoey at our Wednesday night prayer service.
Glad to hear you are all doing so well!

blogzilly said...

I like the new written section, very well done.

Denise said...

Oh sweet Zoey....I just love seeing her doing "normal" things...it just makes my heart melt every time I see it and truly makes my day. Bracelets.....Heck yea!!! We want some. We have to figure out when we can get together again.....we can come there or we can wait until you go to SD for Caitlin. I just know we want to see you!!!

Cammie Heflin said...

Such wonderful reading on the blog today! Zoey looks fabulous and I bet she is loving more freedom! Addy does have a tumbleform chair. We used to use it for feedings and breathing treatments. We usually put her in her high chair for feedings now but we do still use the tumbleform. It's on loan from First Steps so when she turns three in October it's going away but I'm hoping by then we will be doing more oral feedings!

Michelle said...

So glad you are slipping back into 'normal', even if it is a new normal, it's where you should be. Love the photos of Miss Zoey, love the happy, carefree smile on her...you can see that 'normal' coming back into her eyes. Enjoy the moments dear friend, enjoy the sunshine (enjoy it for me too, as we haven't had much of it) and hopefully before too long, we can all enjoy it together! xo

Denise said...

Me again.....first of all, I changed the blog button. The other one was cute but this one is much cuter with her big smile. Secondly, I just read Caitlin's writing....so beautiful!!! I continue to be impressed by your older girls whom I have yet to meet. By the way, tell Caitlin that I am pulling for her to name the baby Emma as I have one of those too!!!

Kele said...

Glad you groove is back! Love seeing the pics and reading Caitlin's beautiful words! I agree, a BIG smile on Zoey in the header and button are appropriate!!

Jeanette said...

I love to see the everyday activities on your blog now. What a gift to be home and back in the swing of things. I have put an order in with my husband to change the Zoey button on our website. (he is my tech support)

Sophie's Story by Elaine said...

Like mother, like daughter...you both have the talent of writing.

I am loving our new normal also. I am trying to treasure every moment.

Dawson said...

Just wanted to say a simple Thank you!! We love u guys and are so glad to see Zoey doing so well. You can put us on the list for a bracelet

sturpin said...

I am so glad that things are feeling normal and good! :)

scrappy quilter said...

You will never know how I needed to read this today. There are days when things become so overwhelming (especially with 3 children with special needs) that one needs, at times to read what others are going through or have gone through.

The sidebar write-up is extraordinary....beautiful words for a precious little one.

I'll be redoing Zoey's button on my blog. It's a priviledge to have it there, a reminder of courage and strength!!

Alyson said...

Oh My Goodness she is getting so big!!!! :0)

What a beautiful little girl :) I love her little flippy hair too :0)

p.s. Your new button is adorable.....Although I miss the old one....he he he