Acorn's cardiologist is an interesting guy. Every time we've met with him, starting at only a couple weeks old, he's told us what a blessing Acorn is, and that "God willing" he will grow up to be a healthy, strong young man. The interesting thing about that statement is that he's a devout Jew, and the Jewish folk I've known over the years usually aren't so sharing about faith, nor are they so quick to use their Lord's name. I love the fact that he's genuinely excited when things go well and when he sees improvement, and genuinely sorrowful when things aren't so promising - so many of our doctors are detached and seem not to care. I love the fact that when Acorn is scared or crying, the cardiologist sings to him in Yiddish, which usually results in Acorn quieting up, with a confused look on his face, like "OMG, I have no idea what he's saying - what's up with that?"
This sort of openness about faith bothers my husband, but I'm actually really comfortable with it - this doctor lives his faith in a caring, genuine way. And that's the kind of faith I've always tried to grow within myself. Several people over the years have shown me that there are ways to live as a part of a religious community that alienate others, and ways to live and conduct yourself that speak to what faith is all about. I'm not always where I'd like to be on that front, but I'm working on it.
Back to that bit on blessings though - Acorn's cardiologist was very happy this week when it was revealed that even as we're reducing the dosage of his heart medication, the signs of pulmonary hypertension are still staying away. Less than a year ago, he was still having nearly daily pulmonary hypertensive crises, including one this time last year, where we called the ambulance because we couldn't get his oxygen saturation up out of the low 80's with all the tricks and equipment at our disposal - they decided just to throw him and I in the ambulance and go, full lights and sirens, because they didn't know what to do either.
The cardiologist again repeated at the end of our visit what a blessing Acorn is, and what a blessing this improvement is.
The same day, a document was posted on the tracheostomy message board I frequent. The poster's child had a fairly rare condition, and an even rarer "experimental" procedure to save his life before birth (the child is a preschooler now, or thereabouts, as I recall). The document posted showed a literature review for children with this condition, and found only seven cases, one of them being this particular child. Of the seven, only this child survived more than a few weeks (though the parent comments that they know a couple of others about the same age who survived as well).
Kinda puts it all in perspective, doesn't it?
20 years ago, not only would Acorn likely have died, I probably would have too. Instead, we're happy, mostly healthy, and moving forward into the future.
We are blessed, by every definition of the word.