Natalia - Journal
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2 weeks have passed and we had to start all over getting used to a new "normal" and all of the challenges this surgery brings. It's a roller coaster of emotions as Natalia battles new and old challenges DAILY, coming to the feet of JESUS...DAILY presenting our requests to our Lord. JESUS is our true lifeline!! Taking it one.day.at.a.time. Having the confidence to know that the GOD we serve WILL supply all our needs, daily and is faithful to complete the work He started in Natalia and our family. In this recovery period, God has placed a strong support system of believers to uphold our arms in prayers and deeds.....such a humbling experience...we are in awe. From surprise parties, get-togethers, dinners, gifts for Natalia, messages, and the list goes on and on....THANK YOU! Our three month follow up to the Oncologist's office was today, and it was great to hear that all her labs and urine sample were normal! Her chest X-ray is NORMAL...No Evidence of Disease...NED!!! We are still waiting on biopsy reports next week when we visit the surgeon's office for the post-op follow up. It was amazing to hear the doctor rave about how great she looks!! Praise JESUS! Next time we visit the Oncologist, in three short months, it will be a year since she's been off treatment! WOW....time is flying by! Thank you, JESUS....it is so evident that you have carried us though this journey! Philippians 1:6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Ezra 8:23 So we fasted and petitioned our God about this, and he answered our prayer. Philippians 4:6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. Psalm 119:170 May my supplication come before you; deliver me according to your promise.
Life with a modified spica cast I can't believe it's already been a whole week since her surgery! Life with a spica cast..........AGAIN. :( Although the cast is half the size it was the last time, the fact that Natalia has to get into yet another cast, and be limited with her activities, and learn to walk a-gain is devastating to a 9 year old young lady, who wants to be a "normal" kid with a "normal" life. I mean, I know that our Lord, JESUS has a perfect plan, will, and purpose for Natalia, but this is extremely hard to watch. From the clothes she wears, to her everyday activities, it has been an extremely difficult transition. She feels helpless, hopeless, and discouraged. Simple things that she could independently accomplish are very complicated or impossible to do in her "temporary" condition. We all thought the spica, chemo, and radiation were in the past....never to be revisited. Those days were over, and she worked so hard to perfect her walk without the crutches and the wheelchair! She was determined and had moved on....and was not going to take any steps backwards. I now see a saddened soul who is trying real hard to make sense of all this. Praying for our Lord, JESUS, to fill her with his peace in this season of stillness. Jesus, wrap your arms around her and give her the strength that she needs to get through this desert. Lord, there are days that she gets tired, physically and emotionally......tired of fighting this battle....help her keep her eyes fixed on you FIRST to give her what she needs. She was chosen by you, for such a time as this....I speak LIFE into her circumstance...I speak blessing into her young life with a God-given calling, open her spiritual eyes to see what is hidden from her. Put a hedge of protection around her and cover her with the LIVING and STILL warm blood of our Almighty God, JESUS CHRIST who is her refuge and strong tower, a help in times of distress, HE is her healer, ALL POWERFUL Jehovah Rappha, her redeemer, her prince of peace, her encouragement, her protector, her Heavenly Father, her shepherd, her HOPE. JESUS, renew her mind and heart and give her the strength to soar above her circumstance, like the eagle. That she may not grow weary or grow faint, for she knows in whom she believes in. We thank you Lord for the Love, Grace and Mercy you have shown towards Natalia Sofia and our family! Thank you, JESUS that she is cancer free and her spica is smaller...we are truly grateful for the remnants of people that have rallied around us throughout this journey.....it is truly humbling..we recognize your MIGHTY hand in all of this...without it...we would have perished. We need you, JESUS. Without you, we are nothing. Isaiah 40:28-29, 31 Have you never heard? Have you never understood? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth. He never grows weak or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless. BUT Natalia trusts in the Lord and will find new strength. Natalia will soar high on wings like eagles. Natalia will run and not grow weary. Natalia will walk and not faint. I DECLARE THIS IN JESUS NAME....AMEN. END OF STORY.
WOW! Thank you ALL for your AMAZING prayers, love and support! Our family is grateful for each and everyone of you! Thank you sooo very much! May our Lord, JESUS Bless each of you tremendously!!! Our family's prayer for you: Colossians 1:9-14 So we have not stopped praying for you since we first heard about you. We ask God to give you complete knowledge of his will and to give you spiritual wisdom and understanding. Then the way you live will always honor and please the Lord, and your lives will produce every kind of good fruit. All the while, you will grow as you learn to know God better and better. We also pray that you will be strengthened with all his glorious power so you will have all the endurance and patience you need. May you be filled with joy, always thanking the Father. He has enabled you to share in the inheritance that belongs to his people, who live in the light. For he has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness and transferred us into the Kingdom of his dear Son, who purchased our freedom and forgave our sins. Natalia is home, resting and doing A-mazing! NOT needing her pain meds at all, and using the walker and wheelchair as she was taught! If her therapist and Dr. Cheong could see her now! It is truly a BLESSING to witness the Lord's hand upon her!
Home at last....PRAISE JESUS!! DEAR FEAR: BE GONE. NATALIA CAN DO IT, THROUGH CHRIST, WHO GIVES HER THE STRENGTH TO DO IT! Last night, Natalia slept through the night without her nighttime dose of meds! In the morning, we spoke to the pain management team and decided to keep her meds on an "as needed" basis versus around the clock. Physical therapy came by and we were hopeful that this was it...she was ready to conquer the hurdle, and go home! We prayed A LOT, and talked things through with scriptures. Jesus gives us the scriptures to speak to us through our present situation. Natalia started out her therapy session great, she was cheerful, and willing.....but when she got to the edge of the bed....fear showed up. She kept saying that she "can't do it" and she ended up (after 1hr) NOT doing it. The therapist was ready to call it quits, she called the parents out of the room...I stayed with the child life specialist, and looked at her in the eyes and said, "Natalia, if you keep telling yourself you can't, then your brain will take the message and act on that....and you won't. Tell yourself, I CAN do ALL things through Christ Jesus, who gives me the strength to do it...because you CAN. I know you can do this...." She looked up at me and said..."I'm ready." I quickly opened the door and called the therapist back in, and before we knew it, she was standing in front of her bed...saying out loud: I CAN, I CAN, I CAN, I CAN....she used the walker to take baby steps with the non-surgical leg to the wheelchair....and then sat on the wheelchair!!! She did this a few times!! She conquered fear. She jumped over the hurdle. Everyone in the room was silent, with their jaws wide open!! Lol! I'm sooo proud of her! Afterwards, her brother took her for a stroll around the floor! She was ecstatic to be out of her room!! What.A.Victory! She spoke LIFE into her circumstance...she BELIEVED the word of our Lord, Jesus Christ! HER FAITH WAS IN THE POWER OF JESUS CHRIST! The word of our Lord accomplished the purpose of which HE sent it! We got our ticket to go home!! We are home at last.....thank you, Jesus, for giving us your word, which is ALIVE and ACTIVE...it sets out to do what it says it will do! It is the sword of the spirit to use in our daily battles.....what an awesome God we serve!! 1 Corinthians 2:5 that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the POWER of God. Isaiah 55:10-11 As the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return to it without watering the earth and making it bud and flourish, so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater, so is my word that goes out from my mouth: It will not return to me empty, but WILL accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it. Psalm 115:11 You who fear him, TRUST in the Lord—he is their help and shield. Psalm 46:2 Therefore we will NOT fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea.. Psalm 34:4 I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he DELIVERED me from ALL my fears. Psalm 27:3 Though an army besiege me, my heart will NOT fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident. Psalm 27:1 The Lord is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid? Psalm 23:4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. Ephesians 6:10 Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty POWER. Psalm 66:3 Say to God,“How awesome are Your works! Through the greatness of Your POWER, your enemies shall submit themselves to You.
Disheartening news.... Natalia is now completely off the Iv's and getting up to use the commode. She is still very tired and wears herself out. She is on oral meds around the clock, and her pain is overall well managed. Today was a tough day for her, she didn't move to the wheelchair as efficient as she should, and is extremely discouraged. We were scheduled to leave today, but because Natalia doesn't move with the level of confidence that they like to see, we have to wait....hopefully until tomorrow. Yesterday, the look in her eyes as described by one nurse was petrified because of fear.....the level of anxiety was through the roof. As we tackle the hurdle of fear, it is smaller than yesterday, but still very much present. Today, she worked hard and accomplished a lot.....but not enough to make the cut....:( To watch her work hard to make it to the edge of the bed and come thisclose to getting to her destination, then allowing fear to take over and shut her down is devastating......but GOD...HE IS BIGGER than this...there is ALWAYS tomorrow! The Lord JESUS is in control.... Please continue to pray for her bone to heal and grow, for Natalia to gain her strength, and her confidence. For her fears to be conquered in the name of Jesus! FOR GOD HAS NOT GIVEN NATALIA A SPIRIT OF FEAR...BUT OF LOVE, POWER, AND A SOUND MIND....IN JESUS NAME! Hebrews 13:6, 8 So we say with confidence,“The Lord is Natalia's helper; she will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to her?” Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. Psalm 118:1, 5-7, 14 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever. When hard pressed, I cried to the Lord; he brought me into a spacious place. The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me? The Lord is with me; he is my helper. I look in triumph on my enemies. The Lord is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. Psalm 3:3-6 But you, Lord, are a shield around Natalia, her glory, the One who lifts her head high. She call out to the Lord, and he answers her from his holy mountain. She lies down and sleeps; She wake again, because the Lord sustains her. She will not fear though tens of thousands assail her on every side.
Today, Natalia worked on sitting to the edge of her bed and she succeeded with her physical therapist, and a LOT tears. Jumping over the FEAR hurdle is no easy task. Fear of falling to the ground, fear of excruciating pain, fear of passing out.....she kept telling herself that she can't....but Christ said that she CAN DO ALL THINGS. With a LOT of praying, love, and affirmation...FEAR HAD TO GO. By the end of the day, she totally surprised ALL of us when SHE told her nurse that she was going to get out of bed and sit on the commode!!! Dr. Cheong would be proud! This was something that was supposed to occur TOMORROW, she promised Dr. Cheong that she would do her BEST! In order to leave the hospital, we MUST be able to get up and out of bed.......and we DID IT!!!! Thank you, Lord JESUS that you always listen to our prayers! 2 Timothy 1:7(AMP) For God did NOT give us a spirit of timidity of cowardice, of craven and cringing and fawning fear, but He has given us a spirit of power and of love and of calm and well-balanced mind and discipline and self-control. 2 Timothy 1:7(NIV) For the Spirit God gave us does NOT make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline.
Yesterday was such a loooong day. In the morning, Natalia delayed getting up and out of bed....when she finally emerged, she softly blurted out "Mommy, I'm scared"....as I talked to her about her feelings, I ended with...."give it to JESUS.." She answered, "but then HE'LL be scared!!!" We both ended up laughing.....THAT is Sofia's essence....right there!! Lol In preop, Natalia was surrounded by LOVE...it was a mixed array of emotions. She was entertained by the nurse with the vein finder...and her visitors! But when it was time to go back to the O. R. She broke down....."I don't want to go, mommy.." she cried out. It was heart wrenching to watch them wheel our baby girl out of preop into a restricted area. As the hours went by, a nurse would come out for updates every hour....I had to consciously keep putting my eyes back to JESUS...because the worry and anxiety of what was going on, and all the what if's were iso overwhelming, that I felt like I was suffocating. Lining my emotions in obedience to Christ and His word. What does HE SAY? That I CAN do this THRU HIM, who gives me the strength to do it...that he has commanded me to be STRONG and COURAGEOUS...even though I just said goodbye to my baby girl for a 4-6 hour risky surgery.....TRUSTING in HIM at ALL times. When these moments want to drown us with sorrow and heaviness, remembering that THROUGH Jesus, FOCUSING in who HE is in my life.....is essential for survival. I kept drawing my strength from him, Jesus, the one who is the great I AM. My strength, strong tower, refuge, shield, comforter, provider, hope, peace, and the list goes on. It takes a conscious effort from our part to actively do this...it is NOT going to come naturally. But GOD......while she was getting her modified version of a spica cast, the surgeon came out to inform us that everything went BETTER than anticipated! We are truly grateful for having an AWESOME surgeon! The cast is half the size of the last one! (Praises to JESUS!), there was ANOTHER broken screw...it was just a matter of time before the whole thing completely fell apart, BUT the bone appeared to be trying to heal...and now with the graft, we are praying that the trauma of the surgery and the grafted bone will stimulate bone growth. The "toolbox" from Home Depot with the hardware that he'd originally ordered was NOT needed, the incision was smaller than anticipated, and he was able to keep the original plate that she had since the beginning, while adding an extra plate for support. Thank you Jesus, because Natalia sofia is in your hands! Because you are in control of our circumstance, and your presence is with us...God is sooo good!! She's eaten well, no vomiting after the surgery....thank goodness! We tried to get her up to the edge of the bed....and to no avail. :( She's moved out of the constant morphine drip and into oral meds....the nurse noticed that she's barely used the demand button since she moved from recovery....amazing....she's always had a high pain tolerance! Praying that tomorrow is a better day....in terms of moving to the edge of the bed. Praying that the Lord's peace inundates her as she starts to face life temporarily with this new and improved cast...TRUSTING JESUS in this journey...... Hebrews 10:35-36 So do not throw away this confident TRUST in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised. Psalm 91:14-15 The Lord says, “I will rescue those who love me. I will protect those who TRUST in my name. When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. Psalm 40:5 O Lord my God, you have performed many wonders for us. Your plans for us are too numerous to list. You have no equal. If I tried to recite all your wonderful deeds, I would never come to the end of them.
Welcome to the Natalia support family! This site is for family and friends, old and new, to organize our efforts to support this extraordinary person. This page will serve as your home base for rallying the troops, receiving updates , and raising dearly needed funds to support Natalia . Here's the plan:
Your First Step: Please take 30 seconds to click on the "Follow" button on the top right of this page. This will allow you to receive updates, read journal entries, make donations, share Natalia ’s story on social media, and help the family with week-to-week calendaring needs. Though not mandatory to follow Natalia ’s page, we encourage you to easily create an account with your name and email in order to be able to post photos, leave comments and sign up as a helping hand on the Calendar page. Feel free to upload a photo of yourself to your profile so we can get to know and recognize others on Natalia ’s support team. After clicking “Follow” above, read on to learn more about what you can do to help.
Journal: This tab is where you can read the latest entries posted for Natalia and our support team. You may see additional authors writing updates here to help alleviate pressure for Natalia and expedite information sharing. Each post is followed by a photo and name of the author of the entry. You can reply with supportive comments to any journal entry, or click on the name of its author to send a private message.
Posts: This is where you can leave an encouraging message for Natalia and family, and to read thoughts left by others! If you have something pressing you'd like suggest that everyone sees (e.g. a fundraiser or upcoming event you're spearheading), please don't hesitate to contact us via private message so we can consider sharing it more widely in the Journal sections. There will undoubtedly be many coordinated efforts and events ahead, and we want to make certain they’re organized and publicized through this site to help drive the greatest possible impact.
Calendar: Please see this important section to learn what the family needs NOW. This will be an especially helpful section for locals in close proximity to Natalia . This is an up-to-date calendar which will list the family's immediate needs such as child-care, rides, and meals to help most in the short term. If you see a need posted and can fill it, please sign up through the calendar page directly (i.e. not through private communication) to let us and others know that you've committed to that need. Please check back often to help out with the most recently posted needs!
Donations: The very most impactful way to help Natalia ’s is to make a direct donation right now. After insurance participation, bills and related costs are expected to reach several thousand dollars. This fund will be used at the sole discretion of Natalia and family to help manage all related expenses, and will give them the flexibility to take time off work as needed to directly support Natalia ’s. Donations can be made securely using credit or debit card for any amount. PostHope.org generously makes these donations free of any fees. All donations, large and small, come with the eternal gratitude. Thank you for your generosity in considering what amount you are personally able to give.
Perhaps more importantly, you will also find the tools to share your donation and Natalia ’s story with friends and family via Facebook and social media. After donating, please click the social media buttons to share far, wide, publicly and OFTEN! We believe that many kind strangers online will feel moved by Natalia ’s journey.
Notifications: After clicking “Follow” above, you’ll then see a tab to manage “Notifications”. If you feel you’re receiving too many or too few email notifications, please check this section to tailor notifications to your areas of interest. For example, if you want to receive journal updates but not new calendar posts, or any combination of notifications from this site, you can do set them to your preference this section.
Don’t Forget! If you haven’t done so already, please click “Follow” on the top right. It’s your very next step to showing your support!