|Doing her big girl test...|
Today Ashlea had her last ever NICU follow up appointment (our hospital follows children until age 8). I can't believe our nursery journey is officially over.
At these appointments they typically do full IQ testing among other things. Obviously they couldn't do the full assessment with Ashlea but they did a verbal intelligence test and Ashlea scored highly enough that she made it onto the graph! She scored on the 3rd centile - actually on the charts - giving her the official claim to 'mild' intellectual impairment! Considering her first few follow ups saw her score at least severe for most things I don't think they were expecting her to do so well. The assessors also LOVED seeing Ashlea walking - don't think we were going back there without showing off that party trick!
The NICU was a life changing, life defining moment for me. It's not just that it was a Big Deal - which it was - it's that it was also a spiritually defining moment. The first time the question was put to me personally - will you trust Him when the going gets tough? The NICU very clearly showed me that I am NOT in control at all. God is the one who is in control - and if He is the one who holds our very lives in His hands where else is there to turn? Where else have we to go when He alone has the words of eternal life?
Sometimes I am hesitant to say I am thankful for the NICU experience as it is not me personally who has to live with the consequences. It is predominantly Ashlea's journey, she is the one that lives with the NICU fallout everyday. Maybe it's not enough for her that I am a better person for the experience? I can't speak for her but at the moment she seems blissfully unaware that she is any different to her sisters so I will continue (for now) to say I am thankful for the way the NICU shaped and changed me.
Today I am thanking God for:
366. The lessons learned from the NICU journey and the glimpse of what's really important that it gave me;
367. Smart assessors who work out Ashlea's currency to encourage her to work hard at the IQ test. For those of you who are wondering what her currency is .... batteries.
1 Chronicles 29:13
Now, our God, we give you thanks, and praise your glorious name.