Praise God for the very different Christmas experience we are having in 2013. This very day last year, 2012, Victoria was in hospital with a high temperature and we were utterly exhausted in so many ways!
This year we are still utterly exhausted, but for very different reasons! For reasons of celebrating and enjoying life in so many wonderful ways! God is so faithful.
Victoria had the opportunity to help out with the training of some hippotherapists a couple of weekends ago. She couldn't wait to get out there on the horses.
This time she was riding Susy, quite a bit bigger horse than Wedge and Sprinkles. I still marvel at this program and how it makes the exercises so much fun for the children.
Riding in the outdoors arena is always a great experience, especially when are facing backwards! As one of the therapists said to me, this girl is full of spunk!
I sat and watched, and of course cried again, at the kindness and generosity of these people.
And if you are wondering about the physical value of this therapy, well here is a tiny insight into what it can do. Before getting on the horse, the distance from the floor to the Victoria's finger tips when she bent over with her legs straight was 30 centimeters. After the therapy session on the horse, the distance reduced to 20 centimeters!
During this weekend we also celebrated Alexandra's 4th birthday. God reminded me of what a blessing she has been to Victoria. A lot of time in the last three years of Alexandra's 4 years of life have been spent accompany Victoria to therapy sessions, chemo treatments, and many different doctors appointments. She has been an absolute blessing, being the best playmate to help Victoria pass the time. Only a handful of times in those 3 years has she lost patience with the attention Victoria has been receiving, a testament to all the wonderful medical staff we have come into contact with who have included Alexandra where possible, and to Alexandra's maturity well beyond her years. We love you Alexandra Fay!
Last week we had the opportunity to be at Sydney at 7am (yes, left home at 4.15am) to participate in the Starlight Foundation's Christmas party. The early arrival meant the children had the added bonus of being on the Sunrise TV program.
There were a couple of other families from the Hunter region there too. So the children all had fun hanging out together, racing from ride to ride.
To see the joy on the children's faces, made the early morning start well worth it!
Last night we had the privilege of attending the opening of the Special Olympics in Newcastle. It was again an amazing night, seeing the joy in the athletes faces as they were being celebrated! Another event to broaden our children's appreciation that we are all different, and we are all God's children, loved unconditionally by Him.
In amongst all these activities too we have attended the Camp Quality Christmas Party. I have said it before and will say it again, I do so love this organisation. Through Camp Quality Marshall and Charlotte have had the opportunity to start building another set of friendships with children they share a unique bond. These children understand the impacts of living with a child having chemotherapy. They understand the impacts of having one parent and their sibling in hospital for nights at a time. They understand the chaos and stress it brings into the family. They also understand the need to make the most of these wonderful opportunities to escape and have fun. Without Camp Quality Marshall and Charlotte would not have had the time and place to build such an important support network.
So we are definitely making the most of this time with Victoria not having treatment, and a believing for it to be a long time! Last week, God drew me to this scripture, Psalm 91 v 14 and 16. At the weekend, one of my amazing Christian friends encouraged me at the weekend to claim this scripture specifically over Victoria's life, by inserting her name into the scripture. Please stand with us and claim it over Victoria's life as she lives out each day in victory in Jesus Name.
Because Victoria loves me, says the Lord, I will rescue Victoria. I will protect Victoria, for Victoria acknowledges My name. Victoria will call upon Me and I will answer Victoria. I will be with Victoria in trouble. I will deliver Victoria and honour Victoria with long life. I will satisfy Victoria and show Victoria my salvation.
Thank you for standing with us and upholding us in prayer.