Sunday, March 30, 2008

Hurt...and on my soap box!

Today I was going to post about all the activities we have been into over the past week and medical updates. Well, as I was on Renee's blog and read her post on "Why it Hurts" everyone should read this post! http://myspecialks.blogspot.com/ On another day this past week I read on Jennifer's blog "Are you feeling Shopworn" http://mistergavin.blogspot.com/ her story also hit home. I have such a great deal of respect for these ladies. They are great moms, who have tough jobs, but their benefits are priceless! I was already upset about this same subject so, I wanted everyone to see what families with handicap children go through ...or at least our families. Warning!!! I'm on my soap box!

I'm not sure that the word hurt can describe the way one feels when someone they love is being mocked, joked about, teased, or laughed at. Then there are the times that people call Jonathan retarded. The word retarded didn't start out as a bad thing, but over time and being miss used it's now looked at in a negative light. Yes, I have a child that would be classified as retarded...that isn't who he is!!! I often wonder if some people see him as a human being equal to them. Then again I sometimes wonder if they are equal to him...just kidding...or am I ?! It makes me frustrated, hurt, and defensive then, I want to shelter Jonathan. Why is it that people can be so shallow ??? You would think with the way technology has taken off over the past 20 or 30 years so would our view about people with disabilities. It's time that people wake up and smell the coffee and see the FANTASTIC people around them, people with disabilities.

Here is another reason the "R" word hits home. I went to get James and Jonathan out of James' Awana room last Sunday. Jonathan isn't in James' class but waits in James' class for us to pick him up. So, I go in and I ask James if they are ready, he turns and says "Yes", with big tears in his eyes. He walks very fast to the door, leaving Jonathan and I to follow. I grab James' arm and ask if he is OK, he says," NO please lets go." As we get into the hall I then ask what happened. That is when he puts his head into my stomach wraps his arms around my waist and begins to cry. I wasn't sure what had happened, after a little TLC he quit crying. He said that the other boys, his peers ask what was wrong with Jonathan. James said "I told them Jonathan has down syndrome" but, they didn't understand. Then he said I told them that God made him different "special" The boys then laughed and began to question why Jonathan can't talk and if he can hear. James said "he can talk it's just hard for you to understand him, and he can't hear like us that's why he wears hearing aids." Then they questioned why he wears diapers, James said "he doesn't he wears pull-ups because he has accidents." Well that just put James on overload....it would have most adults! UGH!!! We got everyone to the van and we had a mini sermon (I'm good at that) about what happened. It made Madison really upset, he also has to deal with this with his peers. Madison started to say, well they are all just ST_ P_D! I had to stop that fast we don't say that word, the little boys call that a bad word...oh' to be that innocent. Then, Madison said I know how James feels sometimes it makes me want to cry. As the adult what do you say to that...ME TOO!!! I then had to tell them that we need to pray for others that don't see people who are disable like Jesus and we do and, then I let them know it makes me sad also. I would much rather be hurt than to see my children hurt. They love Jonathan so much and want others to see him as they do. I get upset but, I'm glad at this point Jonathan doesn't know when others are talking about him. He does know when others don't like him and that hurts.

To me I think this shows that parents aren't helping their children learn about people with disabilities. I guess because most of them haven't taken the time and don't understand. I'll work on this part of Tennessee to help others see disable or developmentally delayed people for who they are. They are bright wonderful people with so much to give, if you take the time to slow down and notice. The Bible says we are created in HIS image Genesis 1:27 and it says 8 different times in the Bible to love your neighbor as yourself. This subject is one that brings me to sin from frustration and anger. I pray each time this comes up that God will take these feelings from me and forgive me for my thoughts. I cling to this verse, Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. I thank God for His love and grace. I want to praise the Lord for each of the children He has given us. And, thank Him for loving us enough to bless us with Jonathan, we feel honored to call him our child. I'm also thankful for my good friend Dianne she is Jonathan's Awana teacher and Mr. Mike Jonathan's Sunday school buddy for helping him each week. Jonathan is also blessed with a buddy named Caleb. He is in 6th grade and has taken Jonathan under his wing. Caleb is one of a kind. My prayer for those who have a special needs child is God give you peace,patience, strength, and understanding. Thanks for letting me vent. I don't do that to often...well Arthur would tell you different. HaHa

Update on James, it took him a couple of days before he let it go. He has talked about it a few more times and says it still hurts his feelings. I'm sure this won't be the last time James has to deal with someone talking about Jonathan, I know each time James will be stronger and a much better person because of it. Yet, it still may hurt:(

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Updates and pictures to come...soon!

This has been a very busy week for the Munck Family. I have lots to tell about and bunches of pictures to share....just not tonight I'm to tired!!! I have missed not getting to blog much this week, it's great therapy LOL! I have been so crazy that I had a choice, read other blogs and keep up with them or post on my blog....I choose to read others. Plus I'm still going through pictures of Easter that I want to share, I have so many it's hard. I'd love to do a slide show just don't know how....remember learning as I go. I'm always open to advice! So, I hope to do a marathon post this weekend and catch everyone up.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Easter Morning


Easter morning before church, it was really cold outside.

Boy, that Bunny must be strong!



Is this shiny green thing suppose to be fun?



What did you get?



I am thankful we serve a risen Savior! HE LIVES!!!!!!

Friday, March 21, 2008

World Down Syndrome Day


Today, March 21st is World Down Syndrome day. They choose this day because people with down syndrome have an extra chromosome 21. So, that gives them 3 instead of 2, hence 3/21. What a wonderful thing to set aside a day for those who have down syndrome. (Thanks Renee for reminding me what today is!!) Even with all the ups and downs in life with Jonathan, we don't see the down with this syndrome. Jonathan has shown us how to slow DOWN and enjoy ALL of what we've been given. I'm so thankful to have a child who was blessed with and extra chromosome, I consider it a honor.






Thursday, March 20, 2008

First Day of Spring

William Easter 2006

The flowers appear on the earth;
The time of singing has come, And
the voice of the turtledove
Is heard in our land

Song of Songs 2:12

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Monday, March 17, 2008

Back to the land of the living....




Over the weekend our family came back to the land of the living. It so nice that we all could get out of the house...and we have stayed well!!! Friday Elizabeth and Amanda went to a Steven Curtis Chapman concert, they said it was great. Arthur, the other kids, and I stayed in ate McDonald's and rented some movies..we loved Mr. Magorium's Wonder Emporium. Saturday we finally got to celebrate Elizabeth's 16th birthday. We went out to eat at Kanpai of Tokyo, Japanese is her favorite. The boys had a ball watching the cooking, they had never been there. Then we went to the mall to get Wesley some walking shoes from Stride Rite. The boys also wanted to go see the new animals at Build a Bear. We looked at Build a Bear, walked through the pet store, bought Wesley's shoes and got out of there...it was a mad house. It was a Saturday, the weekend before Easter, and had 9 kids with only one in a stroller....it's easier to get around Disney World than the mall...not to mention much more fun. Going to the mall on a week day with our family is much easier! That evening the boys stayed with Arthur and the girls and I went to see the movie College Road Trip. It was very cute, funny, and clean...not something you find to often any more, as we say " it's a buyer." Sunday we ALL made it to church for the first time in 6 weeks. Arthur didn't have to go as a single parent or keep the nursery by himself again. This was another sign that we are back in the land of the living...WooHoo! After church Arthur and the girls left for Nashville for the day. The went to the Winter Jam concert, it had a mix of christian singers like Mercy Me, New Song, Barlow Girls, Skillet, and a few others. They had planned this in January, I'm so glad everyone was well enough to go. They stopped in Murfreesboro and picked up Arthur's sister Karen. Her son John was also going to go but, he had baseball. The girl were disappointed, they enjoy him so much. They had a blast, and didn't roll in until around 2AM. Yes, they have all been tired today, but they would do it again. As for the boys and I, we went to Awana at church. We came home and the boys ate their snack and went to bed. I had alone time, something no one gets to often in this house. I don't like to be alone and I like noise. So, I watched the movie Becoming Jane...I love Jane Austen novels. I guess you could say in one weekend we tried to make up for all the weekends we missed being sick. It was nice to finally use our Blockbuster and UEC movie gift cards from Christmas. This is not a typical weekend for us, it was a lot of fun. We have all had cabin fever and this really helped. I am soooo thankful for good health and happy kids!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Fever FREE!!!!

Today we are fever free after 6 weeks and 4 days. I hope we are well on our way to being flu free, too. The fever and flu wrecked havoc on all 11 members of our family over the past 6 weeks and 4 days. Some even had the joy of getting a second strain of the flu after the first, as if the first time wasn't enough. Wesley had his last dose of antibiotics today for his ear infection,too. To think it is Thursday night and we are all well. Could it mean church for everyone on Sunday....I can't believe it. Today is the first day I didn't spray Lysol all day. It was 76 degrees here today and we opened our windows and aired out the house. I hope if there were any flu germs left they went out the window. It's just a few more days until it's officially spring but, if today was a preview...I can't wait!!!! I'm so very thankful for sunny days!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

William....our eigth child


Christmas 2007

William's Mickey Mouse birthday party

William helping mix the Valentine's Day cake

William is 3 and, his birthday is September 8th. William is 1 year 11 months younger than Stephen. William was a special blessing for Arthur and I at a very hard time. This was when Arthur was getting ready to go through chemo. Arthur had colon cancer and surgery on December 1st, 2003. Followed by chemo which started on January 6th, 2004 and didn't end until July. Arthur's fist day of chemo we ask about having other children and they told us we may want to wait so we could bank sperm. Arthur ask them to give us a minute to talk because, he knew how much having more children meant to me. In my mind all I could think was Stephen is going to be the last baby I have. Arthur who has such strong faith, positive attitude, and is so together was the one thinking clearly.....yet, he was the one getting ready to start chemo. He pulls me aside and ask me one question... " who have we let plan all our children?" I had to answer... "God". That is when Arthur said ..." do you want to be the one in control now?" and I had to answer ..."No". Then Arthur said... " I know how much this means to you and, I might think about it if we didn't have seven blessing already." He was right and from the day we said I Do, we ask God to be in control of our family.... this wasn't the time or place to want to take back control...nor did we want to. Arthur then told the nurse to go ahead and start the chemo, she ask if we were sure. Arthur then shared with her about our decision. In my mind as we sat there that day I felt like our lives would never be the same...not just because of the chemo. In some ways I was right but, I'm thankful the God we serve has much bigger plans than my mind could ever see! One week later I didn't feel so well, I'd felt this way before....seven times before. I took a test and yes I was pregnant. This meant I got pregnant before Arthur started chemo, in Gods timing! We were so excited. Arthur had so much already to live for but, now it gave him even more to look forward to. I remember him saying the day I told him "I feel like this baby is my gift for the end of my chemo." William was and is a special gift, he looks so much like Arthur. He is positive, funny, full of energy, and loving... all things I think of when I think of Arthur. William loves to be outside and playing in the sandbox. He has a collection of stuffed dogs that he sleeps and does everything with, his two favorite are Blu and Rosie. He enjoys his train set, coloring, Lego's, and play dough. William is allergic to cows milk, he loves soy milk. Every morning eats a bagel with peanut butter on it and has big glass of soy milk. He has a sweet tooth and loves icing. William says all his brothers are his best friends, and tells them he loves them all the time. He is a big time mama's boy and is always hanging on me. He likes to sit in my lap and, hug me as hard as he can and say "I'm squeezing all the love out of you." William loves to wrestle with his daddy and tease him. He likes to dance around the house and make you laugh. Being around him can help make a bad day good again, he is so sweet. When he gets older I pray he grows to be a man after Gods on heart.

Sunday, March 9, 2008

Stephen...our seventh child


Christmas 2007

Stephen is ....Spider Man

Stephen, Jonathan, Stitch, James, Lilo, and William

Stephen is 5 years old and his birthday is October 16th. He is 1 year and 11 months younger than James. Stephen is very quite and can be a loner. He is a literal thinker...which can be hard in our house and at times keeps him questioning us. I'm sure some of it has to do with the fact he is 5 sometimes, I think he may be smarter than the rest of us?! He is a bright boy and always thinking and amazing me. Like the other day when James and I were working on school and James who is 1st grade couldn't give me the answer. Well, there sat Stephen who I didn't think was listening and he just spouted out the answer. Yes, he had the answer right and that made James upset..James really didn't know the answer. Glad I have another year before he starts school, I'm going to have to get ready for this one. He also loves Awana at church and learning the memory verses. He can learn his verse after telling it to him once. He always wants to learn more than one at a time but, they can only say one a week. He just doesn't understand why they can't say more. Then , there is Stephen's other side the BLONDE side, he can be so ditzy. We laugh at the fact he just sails through life as we all look out for him..... like wearing his socks into the tub, taking his plate from the table after dinner but walks on it into the playroom with it, and asking him to hand you something he is holding and then he says "where is it?" Duh! These things happen often. You just got to love him because then he can laugh at himself...he thinks he is so funny and he is! He is so much fun and keeps me on my toes. Other things about Stephen he loves to build Lego's, play football with Madison, his favorite animal is the Cheetah, and he loves Spider man. Stephen is also very good at the PlayStation and game boy, like way to good. He can master a game and beat all levels in know time. We have to limit the time he has on these games, more than we do the other children. He would play them all the time, the other children just play once in a while. He gets to play several times a week, his favorite games are Lego Star wars and Sonic. When we are out people ask if Stephen is a twin with James or Jonathan. Stephen is tall and when you put them together they are all about the same size. Stephen also loves to watch movies with the family, all piled up under blankets to cuddle with me or one of his sisters. He has the biggest blues eyes and sweetest smile. I wonder at times what Stephen will be when he grows up....last week he said a policeman. I know he will be great at whatever he does. Maybe, he will do something to make a lot of money and take care of his Mama and Daddy in their old age.....if not I hope one of the others will...hint-hint KIDS! Just kidding! God has always taken care of us and we are so thankful for His many blessings! We have been given more than we deserve. Matthew 6:26

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Snow...well a little


We have all been waiting for it to snow. It wasn't much but we enjoyed watching it come down.

Friday, March 7, 2008

HAPPY 1st BIRTHDAY WESLEY


Wesley Philip Munck March 7, 2007


He is a mess, as you can see with his bruise and scratches.


Wesley's first Christmas.

I would have posted these pictures this morning, I'm a little behind. I spoke to soon the other day when I said Wesley and I didn't get the flu. Well, we both have the flu and Wesley has a double ear infection too. Arthur is also sick again. Ugh! Burning down the house is looking better and better...just kidding! So, Wesley's first birthday has come and gone. I don't think he cared since he has had a fever of 102 most of the day. The whole no party or presents really upset the other boys. We have reassured them that we are going to have a party and when we do I'll post some pictures.
On this day sick or not, Wesley is one of my 9 special blessings. He makes my heart melt with his big blue eyes and the way he cuddles in my neck. How blessed I am to be his Mama.

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

HAPPY BIRTHDAY ELIZABETH


Happy 16th Birthday Elizabeth, we love you!


Elizabeth standing by her car with her driver license, she
passed the test! Another driver in the family.

I wanted to share the story about Elizabeth's car. Elizabeth helps work at our family business. She has been saving her money for a few years, to put money towards a car. Well in the fall right before she left on the mission trip to Nicaragua Elizabeth shared with me that she didn't want to use the money she saved for a car. She would rather use the money to go on more mission trips, than have her own car. Then she said I can always drive the van if I want to go some where. By saying that it didn't mean just any van , it means a 15 passenger van....not a cool ride for a 16 year old! Anyway, we said OK that is fine, since missions is where your heart is. While Elizabeth was on her mission trip a family friend called us and ask if they could give Elizabeth their old car! They didn't know what Elizabeth had told me. They said they were just following their hearts and this is what God had laid on their hearts. WOW! What a true blessing. When Elizabeth came home from Nicaragua we picked her up at the church in her new car, she couldn't believe it. She cried the whole way home. Goes to show you can't out give GOD!





Monday, March 3, 2008

Sick and tired of the...FLU!

On January 28th Elizabeth came down with the flu and it has passed around our house. Next Amanda and Rebekah had it 7 days each, then Jonathan and James got it. Everyone in the house has had it except Wesley and myself. Last week Elizabeth came down with it again..UGH! She had a fever for 8 days straight running from 103.8 to 101. At the same time William, Stephen, and Arthur had it. It has taken the rest of the family 5 to 7 days to get over it. Saturday Madison came down with it, another week in the house. In the mix of all this Jonathan has had an Endoscopy, sleep study, allergy testing, 2 sets of x-rays, blood work, ENT play therapy, and several doctors visits.Now 18 doctors appointments later.... this has made us all tired! Jonathan is still a work in progress with the ENT and the GI doctors, they are still working on answers. I'll keep you updated on him. As for our house and the flu well.....we have used so much Lysol in our house it isn't funny. So, at this point we think the germs are in our carpet and walls, Arthur thinks maybe we should just burn the house!!! LOL
We have been very dull in the house since they got sick lots of movies, chicken noodle soup, gatorade, popsicles,temperatures taken, hugs, covers, and medicine. The kitchen computer area now has the dry wall mud on. I tried to keep the little boys out of it all day today, Paul(he's like a granddad to our kids) came at 10:00am and put a second coat of mud on. Well at dinner time it was still wet so we really watched to keep the boys off the walls. After dinner Elizabeth was standing in the kitchen talking to Arthur and I, and she leaned right into the wall. NOOOO!!!! Just had to laugh it was our biggest kid who touched the wall. Paul will just have to fix it tomorrow. Hope to have my computer in the kitchen by the end of next week. Rebekah started the High School Musical play on Friday, they had 3 this past week end and 4 more to go. The ones that were well went Friday night, the others are going this Sunday. I really wanted to go all together, I like to do things as a family...it was sad not to share it all together.
I am still working on the blogs about each of the kids, thanks for hanging in there with me it has been a slow go. In February I wrote about Elizabeth, Amanda, Rebekah, Madison, Jonathan, and James surely in March I can get Stephen, William, and Wesley done.
Thankful for my kids and the joy they bring to us each day.