Today we took Luke to The University of Chicago Medicine to see his plastic surgeon Dr. Reid. We knew after his one year post surgery check up that he would have annual check ups until age 5.
I previously wrote a post last week about the anxiousness I was feeling about this appointment coming up. But today I woke up ready to go! I kind of opperate that way....I am a ball of nerves prior to a situation but when it is right in front of me and I'm standing right at the gate I feel stronger (that's just God in me in that moment!!)
We had to wake up at 4:45 and leave between 5:45-6! Surprisingly I slept pretty well and only hit the snooze once! I am pretty good and being ready for Chicago appointments...even though they aren't as constant as they use to be....I have lots of experience having my clothes ready, makeup and jewelry out, the cooler, snacks, extra bag etc all ready to go and just need to be loaded up (a long with all of Lane and Lyrics clothes, shirts, snacks, breakfast, lunch, etc ready for my parents!!) My mom came over early this morning to watch Lane and Lyric and then my dad and mom were going to go play with them at their house after breakfast!!
Here he is in his bed (a little early) all snuggled up ready to read with mommy the night before his appointment! He looks so grown up in this picture to me! And in this picture I can so vividly see that beautiful sound asleep baby face the night before the surgery laying next to me in the hotel bed 3 years ago...
Lukie seemed a little surprised to be woke up but just said "mommy I had a goooooodd nap" (because IF we ever wake him it's because he has been napping for like 4 hours and I have to coax him awake nicely from his nap, since he is a bear to be woke up, by saying "Lukie it's time to get up you had a gooood nap":)
I got him dressed and ready and wrapped him back up snuggley in his blankets so we could get right into the car. After a sweet quick goodbye to Ammy we headed right to Casey's to get some donuts and coffee to wake us up!! Luke was super excited to get to ride in daddy's car instead of the van and he of course was in love with his donut!!
After about an hour in the car we all stopped in Rochelle to go potty and then finish the trip! We were in the car for almost 4 hours on the way there! We always have to sit quite a bit on the way there! I usually try to schedule his appointments for 10 or after but 945 was what they had and it was close enough! We got to the parking garage at 9:37 and we hurried in to the bathroom and check in!
Luke did great in the car!! We brought the iPad and I bought two new bubble guppies episodes for him to watch and he watched each one once but otherwise he just loved loved LOVED watching the traffic, reading books, and seeing ALL the construction vehicles and metro trains on the way in!!
He was so sweet in the waiting room and waited so patiently! He is such a sweet and fun boy all the time but I'm not going to lie...he is usually pretty bouncy and today he really wasn't surprisingly! He just soaked it all in with a smile, LOVED the elevator, the city, sky scrapers, and special one on one time with mommy and daddy!!
This was the first time we didn't bring a stroller in with us!! So big!! (And umm thanks for holding his hand so tightly daddy! It is a busy place!!)
The parking garage and elevators were his favorite of course! We parked in the exact same spot like always! (There is hundreds well maybe even a thousand plus cars plus in this huge garage...but ya know some how God just always has our spot at the very top reserved!!;)
The sky bridge between the two sides of the building of course was a hot spot for Luke!! Skid stears, police officers, ambulance, traffic....a little boy's dream window!!
We actually didn't have to wait too long for our appointment! We have waited almost an hour before but today was just 25 minutes!!
I know an hour seems like a long time to wait...especially after a 3-4 hour trip and an early morning and the stress of the city but honestly we both feel like we would wait 5 hours to have that 15 minutes with Dr. Reid!!
That 15 minutes total (about 5-10 with Dr. Reid) was some of the very best minutes of the whole year for us!! Granted the anxiety and worry leading up to them are the worst...God always prevails and we are so grateful!! Not only did Dr. Reid say that Lukie looked great and his head was perfect and just as it should be...he said instead of visiting on year 4 we can skip next year and just need to come to one last appointment when he is 5 years post surgery!!! (He was suppose to go annually each summer from when he had his surgery at 3 1/2 months old until the summer he was 5 years old!)
One of the billion reasons I love Jesus so much is because not only does He desire to give us what we ask for...His word says He will give us exceedingly, abundantly, MORE than what we could think of or even imagine! Of course we prayed for a perfect report...but I am learning...instead of sorting it all out...figuring it out just the way it should be...taking my worries, stresses, and finicky ways and piling it all up and then setting it before Him asking Him to bless it(ah-ah-ah noooo don't touch it God just bless it)....I am learning...to set it before Him prior to doing all of that and saying "here, it's yours-I trust you-SEE THIS-take my burden-your way is light-and the outcome will be better than I can think of or imagine." (Because of experiences like this!!)
Like I said...of course we came boldly...as you should...and were praying and believing for a perfect appointment for our sweet boy with every inch of our beings to a God that can do immeasurable things but I must confess...Even though I truly did worry his head may be too bumpy or something....I KNEW the doctor would say he looked just right and was perfect because I know that God has made Luke whole!! BUT I did not think or imagine that Luke would be sooooo perfect and so above average in this that we could SKIP an entire year and come one last time in two years instead of coming again next year!!
GOD IS SO GOOD!
He gave us more than we even hoped for!!!
(again....so why do I try to figure all things out when He has it all figured out even Better than I could think of!? Hmm??!!! Learning, learning, I am learning!)
And needless to say we were suuuupper happy to hear that!!
GLORY BE TO GOD....we happily carried those papers out to receptionist and said "We will call u to set up our next appointment"
(Ekkk...because it is TWO years from now) and we headed to the hallway to take our annual post appointment picture!! Year three in the books!!
We then headed to pay for our parking and go to the parking garage to get in the van and head for some lunch!
It's funny how the air seems so crisp when you walk out of that place!
Arriving there and getting out of the van...the walk in air is almost stifled...but the walking out is so fresh! It's a clean crisp breath of air that feels so different and almost hard to explain! Almost so good that you would think you were standing on a beautiful cliff in Colorado with so much nature and cleanliness around you...instead of a stinky, loud, polluted city, top deck, parking garage! Like literally it feels you aren't!! It's just amazing the release and refreshment we feel walking away from that place!!
Quick side note...but I remember thinking on one of our many trips to and from the hospital before the surgery that I couldn't wait to look in my side view mirror of our van and see the city buildings behind me and a balloon bouncing around in the back and being done with his surgery! Like a victory drive...it's over! Sometimes just to be able to not have to breathe into a paper bag on the drive in...I would picture in my head would the drive home would be....eventually. And after those many trips...that drive home was...beyond amazing. It was better... EXCEEDINGLY, ABUNDANTLY, MORE (and sooner) than we could have thought of or imagined.
God is just soooo good!!!
Sorry it's just so hard not to get wrapped up and lost in all of His love for me!
So anyways where were we.....oh yes...LUNCH!!
So we headed out of the city with a vengeance and were full speed ahead too....PORTILLOS!!! Luke's favorite place! Okkaayy not really! lol! But it is my hubby's favorite place and Luke like his momma is a sucker for milkshakes(he had his first one this spring and called it a "chocolate shakey milk!" Haha!!) so we told him all about it and knew he would love it!! Last year after his 2 year post surgery appointment we ate at McDonalds with hims and sweet little nursing baby Lyric that came along with that year!
We have been to this portillios before on our trip but he was too little to remember! I, however, distinctively remember us going there after one of his cat scan appointments and we walked in and I went right to the bathroom to change his diaper and when I laid him back on the koala care diaper changing thing he shook like I've never seen any baby shake before. The terror in his eyes....well I won't even try...it is just indescribable. He was a baby (and like thee. most. laid. back. baby. ever!) and totally was having a little baby style mini panic attack! I think he totally felt like it was the same ct scan feeling of the material of it and position he was heading into etc!! I scooped him right up and held him so tight!! After trying to compose myself I sat on the toilet (without a lid...with my pants on...gross I know but you would have too) and changed that precious little infant on the top of my lap! I was NOT going to put him on it again!! (Luckily he was so laid back that the next time I had to lay him on one...even though I was super hesitant to even do it...he was competely fine! I think it was only like a few days or even a week later and I was like oh man is he going to freak out!? but obviously no he didn't!) whew! Just a one time thing!
Luke was super excited to be having lunch with just mommy and daddy and he loved all the loudness of the busy and buzzing restaurant and he loved the decor! Cool old cars and trains hanging from the ceiling are right up his alley! My hubby has this amazing anointed gift of beating a line wherever we go...and as we walked in we did have to wait in a pretty good sized line to order but man the line after we got our food was huuggge! So thankful we got there when we did! And that almost ALWAYS happens! And my hubby almost ALWAYS looks at the line after we sit down and then looks at me and says "you're welcome" with a wink! I love him!! :)
We all got hot dogs and fries and Luke got chocolate milk!! (he loves chocolate milk...Lane does not...he is a white ice cream and white milk kind of guy) but Luke only gets it if we go out to eat which is not very often so it is a super exciting treat for him! And of course daddy and I got CAKE SHAKES!!!(which Luke tried mine and loooovveed of course!!)
Here he is enjoying his chocolate milk! Cheers buddy! YOU are defiantly something worth celebrating!!
And here is daddy finishing his cake shake on the drive home!!
The ride home was wonderful...it was a perfect 75 degrees and super sunny day! And we were basking in it!! And of course Luke was too!!
It didn't take him long at all! With an earlymorning and a fully belly he slept the whole way home!
We are all having a great and thankful summer! Luke is continuing on loving life as his strong willed, super funny, silly, and loving little self! He, like most little boys, is constantly keeping mommy and daddy on our toes and giving us lots of fun and teachable moments and we wouldn't have it any other way!!
New International Version
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us,
New Living Translation
Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.