Friday, February 5, 2016

Update and Prayers

Dear Family and Friends,

No news is always good news here on Joseph's blog. We are grateful for all the ways that Joseph is continuing to grow and development, especially alongside his little brother Damien. We are thankful to report that Joseph's hip surgery in November was a complete success!

As you might remember Joseph was in a hip brace for four weeks through Christmas after his surgery in mid-November. We had our four week follow-up appointment two weeks ago and everything looks great. His orthopedic surgeon continued to stress the importance of daily physical therapy with Joseph to strengthen the muscles surrounding his hips.

One of the areas that Joseph does need prayers in though is his recent double ear infections. In the last three months alone he has gotten two different sets of double ear infections. He is currently on a antibiotic (second go of it) to try and get rid of this second infection. If he is unable to kick this infection and receives another ear infection within the year, he will have to have tubes surgically placed in his ears.

Now in the grand scheme of Joseph's journey, this is a minor surgery compared to others but Rachel and I are asking for prayers for two reasons -

1. Anytime Joseph has to have anesthesia for a surgery it can put an unnecessary strain on Joseph's heart. Already in Joseph's little life he's been under more times than most people in a entire lifetime.

2. We don't ever want Joseph to experience a life of "just one more thing wrong." Our son already has never gone more than six months (or less) between surgeries and we just want to give him rest and peace.

In the end, we are asking for the Lord's will to be done and the strength to overcome challenges with Joseph's care. Thank you for your continued prayers for him.

St. Joseph, pray for us.
St. Francis, pray for us.

In gratitude,
Nick & Rachel


Sunday, November 15, 2015

Happy to be home...

...or at least at Grandma and Grandpa's, since we're staying close to the hospital for a couple of days.

Joseph was discharged on Saturday night after his hip brace was completed and fitted, thanks to all of the prayers. The doctors asked us to continue monitoring Joseph's fluids at home, but said that other than that, he was doing great!

Joseph has had a very good first day out of the hospital... Going for walks in his stroller, watching football on TV, kissing his brother, and reading books. He's not quite back to himself yet, but there were quite a few smiles and he is definitely getting better.

Joseph (and we) are so blessed by your prayers! Please continue to pray for a speedy recovery.

St. Joseph, pray for us.
St. Francis, pray for us.

In gratitude,
Rachel, Nick, Joseph, and Damien

Friday, November 13, 2015

Quick Update

Dear Family and Friends,

This will be another quick update, since the days are long and the nights are short in hospital time...

To sum things up, Joseph's surgery yesterday went remarkably well but recovery has been more challenging.  The orthopedic surgeon took out the hardware from his previous hip procedure, and deepened his right hip socket.The doctors measured him for a brace and decided that he would be okay with that instead of a spica cast.She told us that we couldn't have asked for a better outcome... Praise God!  Pain management has been more difficult, especially with Joseph's general anxiety with being at the hospital.  We've had good moments (such as a visit from Legend, the therapy dog) and not-so-good moments (finding out his hip brace is the wrong size), and are just praying that each day will be better for him and that soon we'll be headed home.

Please pray:

- for Joseph to be filled with peace and free from anxiety
- for effective pain management and wisdom for the doctors
- for the hip brace that Joseph needs to go home to be ready for him tomorrow, so that it doesn't delay discharge

St. Joseph, pray for us.
St. Francis, pray for us.
Sts. Damien and Michael, pray for us.

In gratitude,
Rachel, Nick, Joseph, and Damien

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Brave Little JoJo

Thank you all for the prayers! Surgery went incredibly well. Joseph is recovering and almost asleep...we are praying for a restful night and will post more details in the morning.
In gratitude,
Rachel, Nick, Joseph, and Damien

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Surgery Ahead... Please Pray

Dear Family and Friends,

Joseph will be having the hip surgery to deepen his right socket on this Thursday (Nov 12).  We dread the thought of Joseph having to undergo yet another surgery but, based on what all of his doctors have told us, trust that it's for the best... a short-term setback for a long-term gain.  

Please pray:
- for peace and grace as we prepare for surgery day
- for wisdom and guidance for the doctors, nurses, and anyone else involved in Joseph's care
- for a successful surgery, brief hospital stay, and rapid recovery

As has become our "Surgery Day Tradition," if you'd like to pray the Flying Novena with us, it can be found below.  Thank you so much for your support and prayers - we'll keep you posted on how everything goes.

St. Joseph, pray for us.
St. Francis, pray for us.
St. Damien and St. Michael, pray for us (calling on the little bro's patrons, too)

In Christ,
Nick, Rachel, Joseph, and Damien


NOVENA TO THE INFANT OF PRAGUE

(traditionally prayed for 9 consecutive hours in a single day)

O Jesus, Who hast said,
ask and you shall receive,
seek and you shall find,
knock and it shall be opened to you,
through the intercession of Mary,
Thy Most Holy Mother,
I knock, I seek,
I ask that my prayer be granted.

(Make your request)

O Jesus, Who hast said,
all that you ask of the Father in My Name,
He will grant you. 
Through the intercession of Mary,
Thy most Holy Mother, 
I humbly and urgently ask Thy Father
in Thy Name that my prayer be granted.

(Make your request)

O Jesus, Who hast said,
"Heaven and earth shall pass away
but My word shall not pass",
through the intercession of Mary,
Thy Most Holy Mother,
I feel confident that my prayer will be granted.

(Make your request)

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Big Brother!

Dear Family and Friends,

We apologize for not being more regular with updates, but (thankfully) life has been fairly routine and very busy.  Here are some highlights from the past six months:

- Joseph is a big brother!  His brother, Damien Michael, was born on July 16th.  Damien is a wonderful, happy, chubby baby (he already weighs almost 15 lbs!!) and Joseph is a fantastic big brother.  He loves to give Damien kisses, share his toys, rock him in his car seat, and pop the little spit bubbles when Damien blows raspberries.



- Joseph is walking with a walker!  Several months ago, the physical therapist had given us a walker to use in the home and we have been diligent in working with Joseph each day. It is so good to see Joseph walking now with his own power!

- Joseph needs prayers for his hips.  He has a potential surgery scheduled for November to deepen the socket of his right hip, but we are seeking a second opinion and hoping that there might be non-surgical alternatives.  If he does need the surgery, he will be back in a spica (full body) cast for a minimum of four weeks.  Please pray for wisdom for the doctors as they help us to make this decision.

All in all, Joseph is doing remarkably well.  He has many follow-up appointments each month, and several therapy appointments each week.  He understands many words and can follow basic instructions (when he feels like it... he is a two-year-old, after all).  He loves books and baths and music.  He loves meeting new people and can't stand being ignored.  He knows the way to the library, the Church, the ice cream shop, etc, and makes his little will known on walks... We definitely know where he wants to go :)

Please continue to pray for Joseph and know that we are beyond thankful for all of you who continue to support our growing family.

Love,
Rachel, Nick, Joseph, and Damien

Monday, April 13, 2015

Take Two


Dear Family and Friends,



We can hardly believe that Joseph is two years old now! He started his special day on March 25th by riding his "Neigh Neigh" in the kitchen! Later in the week on Sunday he celebrated his birthday with both sets of grandparents, his Uncle John and Aunt Anna, and his new baby cousin Penelope!

We are also happy to report that Joseph is continuing to progess well in his eating habits. He regularly now eats cheerios, cheese, crackers and cheetos as part of his snack time every day. No worries though, he is also eating his fruits and vegetables too! 

As for areas of concern and continued prayers, Joseph (like many others we hear) had the terrible stomach flu that has been going around lately. He ended up losing 1 1/2lb and we are now working aggressively to get him back up. As all of you know, it is incredibly difficult for Joseph to gain weight with how quickly he burns up calories. We are hopeful that after his last heart surgery in 2016 he will be able to gain more quickly because his heart will pump more efficiently.

In Joseph's day to day he is continuing to improve his mobility. He is not walking yet but has begun being more interested in wanting to stand. He cannot stand on his own yet but the desire too is increasing. He also regularly communicates by saying...mama, dada, all done, and buh-bye. He is also able to point, fold his hands to pray (if only for two seconds), and sign when he is hungry...just to name a few.

We are tremendously grateful and blessed for all the ways the Lord has blessed Joseph. We continue to experience the graces of prayer from all of you and thank each of you for continuing to intercede for him and us as his parents.

St. Joseph, pray for us.
St. Francis, pray for us.

In gratitude,
Nick and Rachel