Hey there and welcome to another edition of Make A Difference Mondays where we get intentional about starting our weeks focused on the positive and put our heads together to dream up ways we can make a difference in this world!
Today my beautiful friend Jacque is sharing about her daughter Hailey with the She Lives Free community. If you feel so led, right at the bottom of her story, is a fundraising button so you can support little Hailey directly in her time of need. Thank you!
As a mother, when you learn you are expecting a child, you immediately begin to have hopes and dreams for that child growing and developing in your womb. You begin to daydream what accomplishments they will have in their lifetime. That they will grow up, meet that special someone and have a family of their own, and so on. No parent ever dreams of their child having a disability. But having been on this journey now for nearly 8 years, I cannot imagine life any other way.
Our youngest daughter, Hailey, was born at 29 weeks. She suffered numerous, life threatening complications and actually flat-lined and had to be resuscitated 5 times. We were then given devastating news when she was less than a day old that she had a catastrophic brain bleed. On a scale of 1-4 we were told Hailey should be a 5+. We were told to expect the worst; she could be wheelchair bound and paralyzed needing to be tube fed the rest of her life. She could be non-verbal and never able to talk, communicate or show feeling. In a vegetative state or have severe learning disabilities and the list goes on and on. The picture that was painted was grim and unbearable to think about as a new mother. As I gazed at my tiny, 3 lb. 2 oz daughter, I knew then that God had something bigger planned for her. We have had the great privilege of seeing miracle after miracle performed in her tiny body that Dr’s just can’t explain. She brings a depth of joy to our lives that words cannot express. Hailey is now getting ready to celebrate her 8th that brings so much life and happiness into our home. She is in the first grade and doing amazing! She is reading and writing, walking, talking and constantly making up jokes and putting on “performances” for our family. Every time there is something good that happens in her day she exclaims “Best. Day. Ever!”. She is a joy to be around and I guarantee that she can put a smile on anyone’s face.
The thing that amazes me most is even though she faces challenges everyday such as wearing a brace on her right hand, seizures, debilitating headaches, an Ankle Foot Orthotic on her right foot, struggles to get up and down stairs, having to attend physical and speech therapy, can’t run as fast as the other kids and can’t understand why, no matter how hard she tries, she cannot walk without a limp, she has unexplainable joy in her heart. She will always find the good in something. She will look for the best attribute in someone and encourage them in that. She believes people can overcome whatever obstacle is in their life because she has and continues to do so on a daily basis.
Right now she is getting ready to face one of the biggest obstacles in her life. Her 4th surgery so far. She will be going in to have a VP shunt placed. I’m told this is a somewhat “common” procedure (As far as brain surgery goes), but that word never brings a mother comfort when it’s your child having it done. This is a scary time, full of questions. But we know that even through this, just as with everything else, God is in control and we are looking to honor and glorify Him in this. We are eager to see how He will use this for her good and in turn bring Him glory. I am often told that Hailey was born into the right family because we were strong enough to handle what we were given when God gave her to us. I say the opposite is true. God has given me the strength to handle the day to day struggles with a child who is disabled. He has given us the wisdom as her parents to fight for services, to know when we need to search for a second opinion and to ensure she is getting the quality of care needed. To push her and help her to succeed with whatever it is she desires birthday. She is a bright, funny and energetic little girl and biggest brain to do. But above all, He has blessed us with her. She has helped us to slow down and appreciate the smallest things in life and realize that what we have is the best thing He could have even given us. She is here by God’s design, His purpose, and we are not alone in this! He has a good and perfect plan for her life, it was not an accident and we tell her everyday that this life, though hard and full of trials, is short compared to the eternal and perfect life she will one day live with her Father in heaven.
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Sharing with the sweet community at holleygerth.com and with
these friends today!