This week Victoria celebrated her seventh birthday. Hallelujah! In all seriousness it is a major Hallelujah! when you consider what she has been through in the past few years. We are grateful to God that she is still with us. Victoria is truly a reminder of the grace God has shown our family.
Earlier this year the Starlight Foundation made a video of Victoria and our family about the impact of the granting of Victoria's wish to go to the snow. All the Starlight Fundraising dinners have finished for the year, and the video is now available on You Tube. If you want to view it, please click on this here and go to Victoria's starlight story. Having a box of tissues nearby might be a good idea.
Thank you to everyone who was praying for the success of the hand training Victoria was doing during the holidays. Victoria achieved all three of her goals with great success. She even had time to work on a couple of other goals, such as spreading icing on cupcakes! We are very grateful to the therapists that are conducting this research, for their creativity and immense patience!
The approach taking in this training is called CO-OP - Cognitive orientation to daily occupational performance (CO-OP). If you are interested, here is the blurb about it.
'CO-OP enables children to discover the answer to problems themselves. We don't give them the answers, however we can make it obvious to them by talking through the activity and bringing their attention to specific components of the activity. Rather than telling, we can ask lots of questions. Try to break tasks down and work on one thing at a time, so as not to overwhelm your child. Celebrate the successes your child achieves.'
The strategy they used for achieving each goal was called - Goal, Plan, Do, Check
GOAL = something you want to do
PLAN = how you are going to get the goal done - the steps you need to take to reach the goal
DO = carrying out the plan
CHECK = checking to see if the plan worked, it you reached your goal
This strategy resonated with me, coming from a background in Project Management. Victoria has been able to use the strategy at home with other activities, such as cracking an egg. Goal - to crack the egg without getting any shell in the cup. Plan - hold egg over cup, tap egg with knife until a crack appears, gently press on crack with thumbs whilst holding egg, don't push fingers through the back of the egg, using thumbs pull the egg apart so yoke drops into cup. Do - do it. Check - look in the cup to see if there is any shell.
It is a very practical way to teach anyone anything, but it does require a lot of patience, time and 'keeping your mouth shut' whilst they learn from the mistakes and continually refine their plan!
The whole learning experience, skills gained, goals reached and other children Victoria met was a huge blessing to her. And praise God we survived the 8am starts each morning in the holidays!
Part 3 and 4 of my strategies for dealing with Low level depression have been published on ABC Open in the past couple of weeks. If you want to read them, please click on these links. If you know of anyone who might benefit from these strategies, please pass the links on to them.
Part 4 - Making positive life style changes
As you know, Jesus is the Rock that I have been standing on throughout this entire journey. This passage of scripture best sums up the what I believe about Jesus and the trials we have faced. I pray that it is encouraging and gives hope to others who are facing trials of any magnitude in their lives.
Praised (honoured, blessed) be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah)! By His boundless mercy we have been born again to an ever-living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. [Born anew] into an inheritance which is beyond the reach of change and decay [imperishable], unsullied and unfading, reserved in heaven for you, Who are being guarded (garrisoned) by God's power through [your] faith [till you fully inherit that final] salvation that is ready to be revealed [for you] in the last time. [You should] be exceedingly glad on this account, though now for a little while you may be distressed by trials and suffer temptations, So that [the genuineness] of your faith may be tested, [your faith] which is infinitely more precious than the perishable gold which is tested and purified by fire. [This proving of your faith is intended] to redound to [your] praise and glory and honor when Jesus Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One) is revealed. 1 Peter 1:3-7 AMP
Thank you for everyone who continues to pray for Victoria and our family. We are thankful to God that Victoria continues to thrive and be a blessing.