Seriously. Marc and I can't get over all the changes we've undergone!
- The things we didn't know that we know now. Too many to list.
- Our views on food and nutrition. Seeing food as a function not of what is acceptable to eat, but what will be helpful to eat. Eating lots more whole foods now & very little "processed" foods, probably like our great-grandparents used to eat. Reading EVERY ingredient label & looking for those things with the fewest ingredients. Here's a tip: if you don't know what one of the ingredients in something even IS, (you know, the ones with the really long names?) you probably should think twice about eating it. :)
- Our understanding of the human body and the HUGE role of the digestive system in immunity. Got a health issue or want to prevent one? First place to look is your digestive system and the first line of defense & prevention isn't medicine... it's your diet.
- My ability to plan and prepare meals free of 28 (!!!) foods & food groups. My new ability to COOK. (today I was still in my pajamas at 3pm, but cooking up a storm in the kitchen!)
- The way we spend our time. I'm devouring all the reading on these issues that I can find. We're spending WAY more time in our kitchen, and whereas eating out used to be enjoyed often as a family, it's almost a thing of the past right now.
- Our understanding of the medical profession.
- My role as a mom, which has gone from how-can-I-fill-my-child's-tummy-quickly-so-we-can-get-on-with-our-day to pouring HOURS into planning what will be the best for her little body to heal.
- Our ability to ban together as a couple to take on such drastic lifestyle changes to help get our baby girl well. (It seems like literally every date we go on these days includes a fun trip to a health food store & we love it!)
And of course I still teeter between days of crippling worry and heartache and days of hope and determination. There are plenty of days I grieve over wanting to be able to say, "Do you want some ice cream??" and watch her face light up & hear her squeal with joy. But one thing has been clearer to me in recent weeks: a mama's love for her child is FIERCE. I have a love so fierce for Caroline now that I can't even begin to describe. I now know why it is that dangerous to step in the way of a mama bear and her young. You threaten my kid's well-being? We'll see about that.
I (Amy) can't tell you how many times people have said to me in regards to Caroline's diet, "Wow. I couldn't do that. I couldn't do all that you guys are doing." To that, I say, "Yes you could." I'm just doing what any loving mom would do for their kid. Sometimes, though, I think the fact that Caroline is adopted seems to motivate me all the more. She is a GIFT to us. She was literally HANDED to me and it is the greatest privilege of mine to defend and protect her sweet little life. She is simply an amazing little girl, and Megan, if there was some way you would've known what was coming & asked us if we still wanted her, it would've been a resounding YES. She is worth it ALL.
I worry too much about the future. What will she eat at birthday parties?? What will we do about Halloween candy now?? But I know there are lots of other moms out there doing these very same things and more for their kids. God will guide us. I know He will. As I'm able to take a step back and look at the past seven months, I can see that He already has. He is at work, both in my days of doubt and in my days of determination. All of these changes in us? Came from His fatherly hand for our good. He is so good.
As things this past week have continued to go really well in the diaper department, (yay!!!) we have been encouraged that we might be on the long road towards recovery. Caroline is still struggling with related skin issues and of course, the baldness. (though we still see lots of tiny little white hairs on her scalp just ready to take off!) But we are hopeful and still committed to doing everything we can with our doctor's help in figuring this all out.
Tonight my sweet girl turned to us as we were eating our dinner of roast, potatoes, & broccoli & exclaimed with a mouth FULL of food, "We are the Corbett family!"
Yes, we are. And we are crazy for Caroline.