Monday, December 15, 2008


True, the actual holiday of Thanksgiving was last month and I am very late with this post. But I did want to take a moment to take stock of the many blessings of the past year. One year ago I was not sure if we were going to get the chance to celebrate another holiday season with Austin. Since then many positive things have happened for Austin. He had seizures for a few months that were very concerning, but soon dissipated. One of our great blessings has been Austin's neurologist, Dr. Keating at Children's Memorial. She and her nurse Emily have been so helpful and approachable. She is really unlike any other doctor we have ever known and we are so lucky to have her as a part of Austin's team. We were fortunate that a Nevus Outreach conference was held this year and we were able to attend. I thank God that we are living in the age of the internet and have been able to connect with other people with Austin's condition through Nevus Outreach. I have thought many times how much more difficult this would have been years ago, and my heart breaks for parents who were faced with a rare diagnosis in the pre-internet age. Austin is catching up in motor development. He is now crawling and pulling up to stand on his own. His cognitive and fine motor skills are age appropriate. I can't begin to describe how wonderful this is to see.

I am so thankful for our many wonderful friends and family who have supported us in so many ways this past year. I am thankful for the opportunity to celebrate each day and realize that each one is precious. I always thought I was living this way, but I found out last year that I wasn't. I spent so much time worrying about things that I now realize are not important. It has given me perspective I never had before.

The other morning, Aidan and I went into Austin's room to get him up and dressed. He was standing up in the crib and babbling to us in such a way that I am sure he thought he was chatting with us. I told Aidan, it won't be long before he is actually talking and we will be able to understand. Aidan said, "Mom, I don't really care if he talks or not. I am just so happy that he is here with us."

Every night before I go to bed I quietly sneak into Austin's room and listen for his breathing. As soon as I hear it, a huge wave of relief comes over me and I thank God for one more day.