Wednesday, July 25, 2007

I saw her smile first through the eyepiece of the camera. I knew I had to capture the exact moment when she heard with both ears. We weren't quite sure what to expect based on her last reaction, so we prayed for the best and prepared for the worst. But, she smiled. And with that smile, in that instant, it was all worth it.

We watched her change before our eyes. Our Rhyan was back and all the words she didn't speak for all this time came pouring out (and haven't stopped yet). All day long yesterday I took notice of memories being made. I would see something happen and take it as a treasure to my heart. She took off one ear to adjust it and I watched as the realization sank in. She smiled and looked up at me and said, "I can still hear!" We went to a crowded restaurant and I leaned over to tell her something. It occurred to me that I didn't have to turn her around to talk to her.

We had every intention of making it a special day for Rhyan and wanted to spend the whole day alone with her, but all she wanted was to get back to Nanny and Paw Paw and Evynn. She was missing Evy so much and I could see a love growing between sisters that will be the longest bond of their lives. When they saw each other they hugged and I watched them play in silence. Rhyan leaned close to Evynn and said, "Look, I have two ears now. It's very exciting."

Once the girls were tucked into bed, I prayed with Matt and tried to thank Jesus for what He had done. It was so difficult to say the words without breaking down, because I don't really know how to thank Him. But, I said the first of a lifetime of 'thank yous' for her two ears and we praised Him for our promise come true.

This morning, Rhyan hurriedly put on both processors. I told her I loved her, once in each ear. She hugged me tight and told me she loved me all the way to heaven and back. What more could a Mama want.

Last night while talking alone with my Jesus, I envisioned turning around and looking at this path that spans back over months and years. The path is straight, but along the way I see obstacles of fear and despair constructed with my own two hands. Then I see where my Comforter stooped down gently, quietly, and pushed them away. I see where I walked dangerously close to the edge, threatening to forge my own way, not realizing until now the cliff I narrowly avoided. And I see where He took my hand and led me lovingly back to the Center. I see where I was on my knees, weeping. Now I hear when His cries echoed mine. When I felt completely dry, I see where His tears rained down on me. Where I thought there was silence, I can hear Angels singing. Where I thought it was the darkest, I now see the most brilliant Light. And all the while, Rhyan remained cradled in His arms.

Today, I envision turning around, beginning to take the footsteps on the new leg of our journey. Our backs are straight and our hearts are strong as we cling to the robe of the Healer. With Rhyan still cradled in His arms. It's been a painfully beautiful journey. Thank you for coming along.

We love you so,The Bakers


Thursday, July 19, 2007

We are nearing the end of our journey and I can't describe what I'm feeling. Overwhelmed, overjoyed, just plain over. I've told several loved ones that this has been harder than anything we've been through to date. It has been sad, frustrating, lonely, emotionally torturous, and gut-wrenching.

And then... Monday, I told Rhyan I loved her without her looking at my mouth to read my lips and she said immediately, "I love you, too". It was a turning point that I desperately needed. It has just been over the last few days that she's been responding more and more and I feel so comforted.

This coming Monday, she'll get her old ear back and have the old and new ears 'synchronized' She will hear with both ears for the first time in her life. I heard this song today and I feel like I've had a chance to catch my breath. I have felt these words sometimes every second of every day over the last month. But He has given us the promise of a lifetime. So, in case you've ever felt the same. Remember His promises.

* Kutless - Promise of a Lifetime *

I have fallen to my knees
As I sing a lullaby of pain
I'm feeling broken in my melody
As I sing to help the tears go away
Then I remember the pledge you made to me

I know you're always there
To hear my every prayer inside
I'm clinging to the promise of a lifetime
I hear the words you say
To never walk away from me and leave behind
The promise of a lifetime

Will you help me fall apart
Pick me up, take me in your arms
Find my way back from the storm
And you show me how to grow
Through the change

I still remember the pledge you made to me
I am holding on to the hope I have inside
With you I will stay through every day
Putting my understanding aside
And I am comforted


Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Vacation Bible School had proven to be pretty difficult for Rhyan. Yesterday, she just couldn't handle the noise. Today she went in with Evynn and did great. There were only two other little ones in there with two teachers. She was a helper and she was able to concentrate and focus.

I've noticed since yesterday afternoon that she is responding quite a bit to things that are being said where she can't see the person's face. Whether it's Matt reading a book with her by his side, or if I'm in the kitchen answering a question to her on the couch. I've been very excited to see the strides she's made so quickly. It gives me so much hope for the coming days. We have less than two weeks before she has both ears turned on. I'm just excited for her to have her old ear back. The thought that things will not only return to her normal, but be even better, feels like a huge reward for all that we've been through the last few weeks.


Thursday, July 05, 2007

Rhyan responded to my voice today more than she had since turning on her ear. She really heard me. She knew her name, but she still had a difficult time understanding what I was saying. I'll take her turning to my name. It was a very special gift.


Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Rhyan at the 4th of July parade.

I'm finding it hard to blog about this process. Not much has changed and it continues to bring my spirits down. We went to Jacksonville yesterday and spent the 4th of July today with my sister and her family. We had fun at the parade, but I couldn't help noticing how Rhyan seemed lost and distant. My 5 year old nephew said, 'I want Rhyan to not have her ears so she can hear me'. I know how he feels.

She was up to Program 4, level 10 today. I am very grateful at her progress with her levels. And she did respond to me a few times, and that makes me happy in those moments. I'm simply expecting too much. I realize that. But it would be much worse to not expect enough.