Tuesday, December 17, 2013

A Journey of Hope and Healing...

It has been just over a year since we admitted Mary to Hillside. The changes brought about in her are remarkable. In October, Mark & I were privileged to be a part of making a video at Hillside about our journey there. It truly is a video of hope and of healing...

Monday, April 1, 2013

Closing a Chapter...

If you had told me 6 months ago that I would be a weepy mess when it was time to say our final goodbye's at Hillside, I would have thought you were crazy... and I would have been wrong! It is amazing how attached we (I) have become to the people there. They have walked with us through some of the most difficult days we have experienced as parents. And they did it in such a way that made us feel supported, like we were part of the team, and they helped equip us to continue on the road to recovery.

Mary has been out of the inpatient program for almost 3 months. She has worked her way down from 3 days of intensive outpatient therapy per week to final discharge last week. She is continuing to be able to use the skills that they have taught her. She encourages us to use those skills as well and will be the first to point out when we need to practice some things. She has had moments of frustration and she handles it in proportion to the situation. We continue to see her growing and changing and branching out of her comfort zone to try new things. I could not be more proud of her hard work and all the changes that we see in her.

Here are a few pictures of the final discharge day...

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Coming Home!

It has been a very LONG 90 days. We are very happy to announce that Mary is set to be discharged from the inpatient program on Wednesday afternoon. She is a completely different person coming out than she was going in. The changes in her are remarkable! She went into the hospital a scared little girl and is emerging a mature young lady. I know that we still have progress to make, and there will still be bumps in the road, and at the same time I am deeply thankful for this place of healing!

Our next step in this process will be an intensive outpatient program. This will involve her being at home with us during the night and attending her school, then returning to the hospital 3 afternoons a week for 3 - 4 hours each day. We will slowly decrease this time spent at the hospital as she continues to improve her stability and integrate into the community. I have to admit that it will be hard for me to say good-bye to this place as we move forward. Each person that works there has touched our lives in numerous ways and has offered such great support.

I can honestly say that this was one of the hardest 3 months of our lives. It never got any easier to drop her off after a therapeutic home visit or to leave her after visiting her there. We would just pray as we were leaving, pray for the hospital staff and residents, pray for the community that the hospital is in, pray for Mary's light to shine in the darkness. We can't express enough gratitude for those who have supported us through this process. All of your prayers, meals, cards & letters, emails, hugs, and financial contributions did not go without notice. We have truly felt loved and cared for by each and every one of you. So, from the bottom of our hearts, we thank you!

Ways you can pray over the coming months:

- Pray for Mary's transition home, that it would be a smooth and peaceful one.

- Pray for continued progress as we enter the outpatient program.

- Pray for safety as we travel back and forth to the hospital more often during this transition time.

- Pray for good family relationships to continue and for healing to take place as a family unit.

- Pray for Mary as she leaves behind a place that feels secure. I think that for the first time she feels like she has a sense of belonging, that she is not "different" than everyone else.

- Pray that the skills that Mary has learned will continue to work effectively for her.

- Pray for continued medical stability. It is wonderful to see her stable after so many years of struggling.

- Pray that the insurance funding would come through for the intensive outpatient program. Praise that they did agree to pay for their portion of the inpatient program!