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Monday, February 3, 2014

How are things really?

I've been asked quite a bit recently, 
"How is Cale really doing?"
"How are you really doing?"
"How is the pregnancy really going?" 
"How is life really going?"

I thought along with giving an overview of the last month, I would also give you a little more detail about how the Darling's are really doing. 

To start 2014 we dumbed a jar full of little notes of things we were thankful for from all of 2013. Cale, Mama, and myself sat at the table and read through every single one of them. We laughed and treasured all the days of thankfulness. We've already started our jar for this year! 

The very next day on the 2nd was my birthday! I was super spoiled this year…I had lunch out with Mama, complete with dessert that we shared. Later in the day I was given a prenatal massage (oh my goodness) and the next day Cale took me (as well as participated) in getting a pedicure!

He was very relaxed while the lady worked on his feet…and not only did he get a pedicure…but he had them paint on Go Red Wings :)

For Christmas I had gotten Cale a Bible that was giant-sized print. He struggled to read a normal print and would always end up frustrated. One morning he was up at 4am and reading it! It only lasted about 10 minutes before he quickly fatigued. Amazing! Reading is very difficult for him unless it's very simple reading with not many words on a page but he can struggle through it and this was so encouraging to me! 

The beginning of this month we traveled down to Palo Alto area and visited friends along with going to see the Red Wings play the Sharks. Unfortunately we lost, but our seats were awesome and we had a ton of fun! We also went to the VA for a quick visit to see the staff. The halls there are filled with so many memories…and surprisingly, even though it was a difficult time in our lives, most of the memories are really good. Thankful for that place…

While in CA, as Nora moved, we started to be able to watch my belly move! I loved sitting and watching my belly move this way and that! We also played corn hole which is a game Cale LOVES! He still gets frustrated easily when he's not making it but it doesn't change his love for it! 

Dave and Barb, our friends that we stay with when we travel that way,  also surprised us with a little baby shower! I'm kicking myself for not getting any other pictures with them except for the one above! Our whole visit was perfect. We went to bed every night talking about how great the day had been. I felt like we were able to see everyone and still have plenty of relaxing time. 

I've been having a blast working on little projects with Mama for Nora's room! We've made crib sheets and things for her walls. I find myself sitting in the rocking chair often enjoying all the sweetness that has already filled her room along with dreaming of the sweetness to come! 

On January 24th I entered into the third trimester and to celebrate the Mr. and I had a date night! 

While in church, Cale always has a hard time processing quick enough what's being said. He'll catch things here and there but just isn't able to follow along in our small group or service. With his new Bible though, the last couple Sundays he reads on his own! He did this during small group as well! I love that even though he can't follow along with everyone else, he's now able to focus on the Word himself! This is such a huge step in his healing! 

Friendship…it's a beautiful thing. Especially when you could pass as being pregnant together…in a manly way of course! ;)

How is Cale really doing?

I'll start off with praising God for the difference I've seen in Cale with appointments! First, in December we went to see a chiropractor. Neither of us have been checked since the accident, and finally had found a great one and made the time to go. The first appointment was smooth. I'll be the first to say that I was nervous because I wasn't sure how Cale was going to react. 

The doc did scans on me and then scans and X-rays on Cale. We discussed some of what to expect and  made the next appointment to come back and go over all the results. During that appointment we looked at the X-rays of Cale and discovered that his pelvic bone is severely rotated which causes his spine to be rotated all the way up his back. His left foot is also longer than his right which causes him to basically walk in a pot hole all day. We had no clue! In fact he let us know that this is the worst he's ever seen. We then talked about me and went over a plan-that was the point that Cale became angry. Hearing that he would have to continue appointments upset him…mega. Our meeting was cut short and there were lots of tears. 

The following week I spoke with the doc on the phone and we went ahead to make the first appointment. I dreaded this so much. It was a moment when I knew what was needed was important but seriously questioned if the result of it all would be worth it. 

After a few weeks of praying and others praying for us, we went to the first appointment…and then the next…and the next. It has been better than I could have written it out to be! I can't explain this in a clear enough way…God smoothed out all of the rough patches. 

We also made a dentist appointment which just happen to be the very worst appointment for Cale. We've had some pretty bad experiences and because of them, I've put off making another one since we've been home from Walter Reed.

We were prescribed medication to give him before he goes to the dentist, but I wasn't completely confident that it was going to be enough. The first appointment we went to I didn't have to give him anything! He did great! The second one he didn't sleep the whole night before and was very anxious that morning so I did give him one and he did great! Even when he was really anxious, the difference was his anger was absent. He was just really nervous. 

These are two amazing examples of how far he's come. Blows my mind. 

It doesn't just stop there though. Cale really is doing amazing. While in CA everyone was so excited and thrilled to see how different he is…and even those in our daily lives here at home will mention every now and then how wonderful he's doing. Music to my ears I tell ya! 

I'm very aware of his brain injury and very aware that we've had some really amazing seasons before that were followed up with some really devastating seasons. 

There is a fear that tends to want to invade my heart, the wondering of whats next and when will this good time with him end? In fact, the day that he exploded at the chiropractor wrecked me. I know hormones are a big part of it, but it was also because he had an explosion and those come far and few between nowadays so when it happened, I instantly went to the thought of us entering back into a really hard time with his brain injury. 

I read a few nights ago, Every word of God proves true; he is a shield to those who take refuge in him. -Proverbs 30:5

Yes, I'm aware that he may be doing great at the moment but with his disability, a moment is just a moment and can so quickly change…but as I read this verse in Proverbs, I'm reminded that I don't have to fear what may come or the loss of what is. Every single word of God is true and there is a book FULL of his promises that He stands with me and that I'm free of living in fear, no longer held captive to it! He is my shield to the bad days…the heart-breaking days…to the days of complete and utter loss.  

So, I fully rejoice in this time that Cale and I have while he's doing so good. I rejoice in how smooth it all feels right now and how precious our days and nights have been together. 

I rejoice in God's word being truth and the reminder that He's not just my shelter…but Cale's as well. 

Thank you so much for your continued prayers for my man. He's in a constant daily battle and it means the world to me to know you're lifting him up! 

Daddy to be…

Cale is SO excited for this baby girl to join us! He still talks to her all the time, reads to her every night, and prays for her in the most tender way. 

He's nervous some days and the others just as thrilled as could be! 

He loves to put his hand on my belly to feel her move. Many times in the middle of the night, he'll reach out his hand and find my belly to feel her. 

My heart already is mush watching him love her…I can't imagine when he actually holds her…


This is already a long post, so I'll finish up later this week about how other things are really going! :)


  1. Dear One, What JOY to read your entry. I think I recognize some of the staff from the VA, from previous blog entries. :) I thoroughly enjoyed ALL your pictures. Your thankfulness jar is GREAT!! I am going to start one. That's one thing I am thankful for...your jar. :) Praise God for the chiropractor. Father brought you this far, He IS NOT going to drop you now. If these appointments are from Him, you can be assured He has what is needed to go through it ready and waiting just for you. There I go again, preaching to the choir. I haven't said a thing you don't already know. "~"

    I love you,

  2. So wonderful to read this! I love the thankful jar and also the photo of Cale reading the Bible. That is wonderful! (I sent a comment in yesterday and it disappeared...not sure why!) You look great, Kathleen! So looking forward to all the photos we will see of Baby Nora soon!!
    Blessings in Christ,
    Emily (Grace) J.


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