We’re home!

Isn’t that amazing?  That such a big thing could be accomplished in such a relatively short time? Avery is sitting on the couch watching Sponge Bob and bossing everyone around (very imperial) and I can’t find words big enough for how good it feels. 

The whole trip was filled with traveling mercies, and Tom said it best–he said it felt like there were lily pads we could jump to, one then another, all along the way, that saw us safely across to the other shore.

There was the nurse who removed Avery’s arm restraints when I said, “He’s trying to sign.”  As soon as his arms were free, Avery signed, “Ow” and “All Done.”  There was the nurse who listened when I explained, “Avery understands everything you say.  If you could talk to him, he’ll know why you’re doing what you’re doing.”  In the CICU, there was the family in the space next to ours, who turned out to be from Montana, too.  On the hospital floor, there was the child in the next bed, who came over and told a sobbing Avery that it would be okay.  And there were all of you–my lily pads of love and strength.

There’s so much more to say:  about how hospitals are the worst place to rest; how a gold ring given to Avery by a visiting clown became my talisman (Avery gave it to me to hold, right before they took him away, and I was convinced that if I took it off my finger something bad would happen); how I knew Avery would be okay when he looked up at a monitor, which resembled a television screen, and asked for a cartoon. 

But all of this will come later–for now, there’s a very brave boy who needs to be held, and cuddled, and kissed, and that’s exactly what I intend to do.

Thank you, from our house to yours. And if I can ever be a lily pad for you, say the word.


49 thoughts on “We’re home!

  1. oh how beautiful this entry is! perfect and pulsing with love. like you.

    like avery, sitting on the couch watching sponge bob and ordering everyone around. he’s a boy after my own heart.


  2. Truly amazing, isn’t it. How something so paramount, can be done, and recovered with monitoring to make sure all is well, and then you are on your way. I’m so thankful Sir Avery is home sitting on his throne and able to preside over his kingdom. I’m so thankful that you were buoyed along the way, but the gift of love, friendship, compassion and human connections. Truly an amazing journey, not only for a little boy whose precious heart was repaired, but a journey that his parents experienced that gave them each a greater sense of this life, and how incredible it is, especially by those who help to buoy you along in the journey.

    Today I am so thankful………that Sir Avery is home.

  3. Jennifer – you and Avery and the rest of your family are always my lily pad! And I am sure you are for so many others – thanks to Roadmap but especially thanks to your generosity to share with us. I am so glad you are home. The medical professionals today seem to talk as if OHS is ‘pedestrian’ but those of us who have sent our kids off to be operatied opn understand there is nothing pedestrian about it at all – it is miraculous and wonderful and we are forever grateful for the lives it saves. I wish Avery a speedy recovery.

  4. I am in tears, of course, with joy that all went well. I am still praying for a speedy recovery and return to normal family life for you all. Sounds like you’re on your way.

    Hugs to you and Avery and all the boys.

  5. So glad you and Avery are home, and doing well. Nash was fortunate to have healed without surgery, so I can’t imagine the stress, sleeplessness, and worry. Take care.

  6. Am so glad you’re all home and that Avery is doing well! Hooray!

    When Archie was in surgery I held a little brown bear one of his NICU nurses had given him. They’d lay it against the top of his head in the bassinet and it didn’t feel right to toss that bear into the plastic belonging’s bags they made us use to pack up all of Archie’s stuff before they wheeled him off to surgery. That bear was wet with the sweat from my hands by the end of the morning.

    We still have the bear, of course. It’s a little worn now, but the best teddy bear’s are. Just last night Jack pulled it from Archie’s bookshelf and took it to bed, tucking it under his chin.

  7. Hi Jennifer! So glad to see you’re all home and Avery is recovering so nicely. You have been a lily pad to many so I’m thankful to offer you the same. Yesterday was my birthday so your news was a wonderful present!

    Take good care and keep us posted on Avery,

  8. Im so glad you are home…my heart sings for you! Your back feels physically lighter doesnt it! it is true that saying, a burden on your back, when something this big is lifted it, you feel it!
    God is good!
    Im glad Avery is back to sponge bob and bossing everyone around! Look forward to seeing you in Kc!!!

  9. What a blessing! My 7 month old is going to have his ASD repaired along with a couple other heart defects in July. Not only did your book get me through some tough days, now hearing this good news gives me hope that the days ahead will also be ok.
    Thanks for your help!

  10. Avery, may you BE HEALTHY and STRONG ~ . You are so courageous, such a little hero. I’m sending you lost of LOVE and HEALING ENERGY your way. 😀

    I’m in tears, HAPPY tears :D. GREAT news!!!, BEAUTIFUL words!!!. Thank you so much for the update Jennifer. 😀

    Many blessings to you ~

  11. One day at a time, one week at a time, one month at a time until it all becomes a distant memory! The thin little zipper scar will be a gentle reminder of what you’ve all been through. When you look at it take a moment to be thankful but soon you won’t even notice it.
    Sending love skipping across those lily pads,
    Archie’s NaNa

  12. YAY Avery! so glad it’s ‘all done’ : )

    it’s great that you guys are already home and that Avery is recovering well. very thankful along with you for the way things have gone. and very thankful for all the lily pads in my life as well. welcome to the Brave Heart Club Avery – we’re happy to have you join us. wear that badge proudly sweet boy, aj & Janna

  13. Welcome home! So glad you had lily pads and that Avery is doing well. Can totally relate to hospital’s not being a good place to rest. It’s that vitals thing and that darn oxygen saturation meter. May I never have to hear it again.

  14. (as a writer and a person with a degree in English, I am cringing looking at my “your” up in my previous comment. You’re! You’re! So happy to hear YOU’RE home, safe and sound!)

  15. Great News!
    I am so happy to hear that Avery is home and doing well! He is a brave little man!
    I hope that everything continues going well!
    Best wishes from Loren & Malakai

  16. This is such an uplifting post. I’m so gad to hear that it all went well, that the surgery is behind you, and that you have your beautiful boy back home again.

  17. You have already been our lily pad Jennifer with your blog and your book. We are so glad to return the favor to you. I am so happy to hear the news and can’t wait hear all about it. Enjoy that precious boy!

  18. I’m so glad you’re home. You’ve all been on my mind. I can completely picture the regal ordering from the couch. Love the lily pads too.

  19. Oh it is so wonderful to read your words. Isn’t it miraculous that something so hard to endure can bring such happiness! Heal well, Sweet Avery, and family! ♥

  20. Oh, how wonderful to hear that you are home!! I am so glad that all is well and that the surgery is behind you now.

    Big hugs to Avery….and to you as well.

  21. Hooray for home! I like the lily pad analogy; it works. A soft place to land and gather strength of all sorts before taking the next leap into the unknown.

    Love and hugs to you all. xo

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