Tuesday, September 30, 2008

She made it!!

Irwin Update:
Susannah made it through surgery with flying colors. The doctors were able to repair her heart and her sats are get this...in the 90's!!! From 50something to 90something. She is no longer blue, she is pink!! Please visit their blog for full updates and some very encouraging posts from Leslie.

Thanks be to God for yet another miracle in this young child's life!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Praying for tomorrow

Irwin Update:
Tomorrow is Susannah's heart surgery day. Leslie said the surgery is expected to last 12+hours. Please pray for them throughout the day tomorrow and in the days ahead. AG had her surgery and it lasted only half of that time, of course she only had the first procedure done and Susannah is having them both done.
Leslie got a kiss today! Susannah is taking small steps towards bonding with her mommy. It is amazing to think that this time last week doctors will still unsure if she'd even survive the flight home.

AG continues to do well. She is once again eating everything she can get in her mouth. We still are not allowing her to eat hard things like chips etc...but she seems to be just happy to be able to eat again. She is back on her pasts kick, had if for lunch and dinner yesterday and dinner again tonight. Yummy...she should have been an Italian baby:)

The tummy bug hit our house this weekend. Jacob and I Friday and Sean yesterday and today. I am praying that nobody else gets it, I cannot imagine how Ag would react if she got it. Poor thing really would not be able to tell me if she felt sick or anything.

Not a whole lot happening around here at the moment. We have AG's post op next week and then we'll get her lip surgery scheduled. So, until that happens there really won't be a lot to post about. I will however keep posting an updating about Leslie and Susannah so please keep them in your prayers.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

She is home!

After 24+ hours of travel Leslie, Charlie and Susannah made it safely home. Leslie said Susannah did well on the flights and will be seeing the cardiologist ASAP. Please keep them in your prayers and visit their blog for updates on this miracle child.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Meet Susannah Irwin

Here she is! Miss Susannah Irwin, out of the hospital and one step closer to coming home.

Meet the Irwins!

Prayers have been answered and she will be coming home soon!

When Leslie and Charlie met Susannah last week it was uncertain if she would make it. Through the miracle of 1000s of prayers we know she WILL make it. She was discharged from the hospital and took her first plane trip to Guangzhou, she did wonderfully. The plan is for them to leave China a bit early so that Susannah can get home and get to Vandy ASAP. The weeks ahead will include surgery and hospitilization for her but she will be able to receive the best care available.

I am so thankful to God for answering the countless prayers for this sweet child and for giving her the opportuinty to feel the true unconditional love of a family.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


Leslie and Charlie made it safely to China and had some wonderful time sightseeing and taking in the culture of Susannah's birth country. They finally got the opportunity to meet their sweet girl but it was not as they had planned. Susannah has fallen very ill and is hospitalized at this time. For complete details please visit her blog. Leslie and Charlie were able to visit with her at the hospital but due to China's strict government they have been unable to legally complete her adoption. They are hoping to have her discharged from the hospital and have her pictures taken which would be one step in having her adoption complete. The government still has custody of her until the paperwork is complete. These are a few things we need to be praying about:
* Pray for Susannah's health. May her heart be strong enough!
* Pray for the paperwork to be expedited so that Susannah can come home quickly and get the medical attention she needs.
* Pray for the Chinese officials- May they understand just how much this child is loved. May they grant the needed documents so that Susannah can become Leslie and Charlie's legal daughter so that they may bring her home.
* Pray for flights to be available on a moments notice so that Susannah can get home and get the necessary surgery at Vandy.
* Pray for Leslie- She is quite a woman of faith, she has not once said "Why me?" how many of us could say that in her situation.
* Pray for Charlie- He is Susannah's father and I know he is hurting too.
* Pray for their boys- O don;t know how much of what is going on they truly understand. And even though they have not met Susannah yet they love her very much.

Please visit Susannah's site and leave some encouraging words for Leslie and Charlie!

Friday, September 12, 2008


Our first picture with Abby Grace.
Our pre-surgery picture with Abby Grace.
Wow it has been 5 months since we landed in the good ol' USA with sweet Abby Grace. 5 months! Sometimes it seems like we've had her forever in our family, and yet other times it seems like just yesterday we met her. I am just so blessed to be given the opportunity to be her mother:)
She has grown so much in the past 5 months. She finally grew our of her 18 months and most of her 24 months cloths. Her shoe size has gone up a half size and her appetite is getting pickier. Yes, our little one who would eat just about anything has learned to be a picky eater from her big sis and brothers. She can't really be picky at this particular point because all she can eat for the next week and a half is liquids. Today she managed to each 3 things of yogurt, drink some milk and a milkshake. Tonight I blended up a can of chicken-noodle soup and she ate a little bit of it. I feel so bad about eating I won't do it around her. This morning I snuck a few little donuts in while Owen occupied her with the Lego's. I even let him eat in his room so she wouldn't see him eating. I cannot wait until this liquid diet thing is over. But then again, we've got to do it again when her lip is repaired next month.
Back to the reason for the post. She just amazes us! She does not know a stranger, she waves and greets everyone. The man at Lowe's, the mailman, people walking their dogs by our house, she says hey to them all. She loves to dance and tries to sing along to familiar songs. Wow...I can't get over how much she has developed in the last 5 months. I cannot wait to see what the future holds for our sweet little one. She truly is a blessing!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Surgery and Abby Grace

OK...so CL/CP surgery #1 is over but not completed as planned. Last month when Sean met with our doctor he stated he was going to do AG's lip and palate in the same surgery. So I've spent the last month crying and mourning the loss of her sweet little smile. Fast forward to Tuesday around 11:15 am. We're sitting in the pre-op room and AG, Sean and I are in the play area passing the time. In walks our doctor. He greets us with the usual hello and then says, "So tell me what are we doing today?" What??? You're the doctor and your asking me what we're doing today! I then said CL/CP. He gives us an odd look and then tells AG to open her mouth. (Sidenote: I did not go to the pre-op with Sean but I would have thought at that appointment he would have really taken a good close look at her mouth, wouldn't you?) Anyway, he then says, "Hummm.... We'll have to see about the lip once we get in there to do the palate. It looks like it might be a little more complicated than I thought." I about fell off of the little chair I was sitting in. He then walked off to do the doctor thing. We both looked at one another dumbfounded. Why would he tell us one thing then tell us another?
At 12:05 she was wheeled back in the little red wagon, happy on the drug concoction they gave her to settle her nerves. Sean and I grabbed a quick bite in the cafeteria and then headed up to the waiting room. So there we sat playing games on our phones, checking e-mail on our phones and making a few phone calls. A little after 3 out walks our doctor. He happily walked over and told us that her palate is closed:) But her lip would have to wait until next time. He said her palate was more than he thought it would be. Was I upset, in a way. I hate the thought of her having to endure surgery again in October, but God had blessed me with that adorable little smile for a bit longer. Maybe he knew that I was not ready, maybe he decided that I needed more time. Maybe he realized that she missed her school pictures on Tuesday and that they are having make-ups tomorrow:) Whatever the reason we now have 6-8 more weeks of that sweet smile...oh how we love that smile.

Leslie update:
Leslie and Charlie left this morning to get Susannah. I did not have a chance to talk with her yesterday because I did not have our laptop at the hospital. I did read her post from yesterday on her blog and according to an update she received on Susannah things are not looking good. Susannah has a complex heart condition and they are not even sure she will be able to survive flying home. They have gotten an oxygen request approved from the airline so that is a plus. Please lift them up in prayer throughout their journey. The Lord works miracles everyday and I know he can work a miracle and allow Susannah to come home to Tennessee to be with her family. Please visit their blog and offer support to Leslie and Charlie. I know they would love to know how even complete strangers are praying for them.

Sunday, September 7, 2008


Well the time has come for a sobby post. In a few short days the face we have grown to love will be forever changed. I have cried and cried as I have thought of this finally happening. Her face is so perfect in our eyes and in the eyes of her maker. My heart is just aching for the pain she will endure after her surgery. I have been busy getting tips from BTDT parents on what to feed her after surgery and how to care for her mouth. I had planned on only taking off the day of surgery and the 2 days following. Today I made the decision to take off Friday as well to really give her some time with me as she recovers. Not that Dads and Nanas aren't good caretakers, but mothers are always better. Please lift Abby Grace and her team of physicians up in prayer this Tuesday. Pray for her little body to heal quickly, pray for her spirit to be as bubbly then as it is now. Pray for the physicians hands, that they be steady and skilled in what they do. Pray for our family as we care for Abby Grace after surgery. For patience and gentleness.

:) Update
Leslie will be leaving this Thursday to get Susannah or "Zanna" as Abby Grace says. She has waited a very long time to bring Susannah home. Please lift them up in prayer as well. They are leaving their 2 boys home with grandparents. Pray for safety for the entire family and pray for the grandparents caring for the boys. Susannah as you know has a complex heart condition and CL/CP. I know the fear Leslie is experiencing at this time. Please pray for peace in her heart. Let her trip to China to get Susannah be one filled with only times of joy and happiness.
Please follow her on her journey by visiting her blog. And if you have time to leave her a little encouraging message that would be great. It was so great to know that we were being prayed for when we were in China:)