Today marks three years since Mariana's liver transplant - glory be to God!
We offer prayers of thanksgiving for Mariana's good health and these three wonderful years of life, and we offer prayers for her sweet donor and the family who mourns him still.
This week, we traveled to Houston for an anniversary check-up (for the first time ever, a year passed between visits to Dr. Fishman -- wow!), and Mariana continues to do well.
There are some exciting developments in pediatric liver transplant. An ongoing study is seeing good results weaning kids off of anti-rejection medication. They're finding that many people who receive transplants very young (and our Mariana is among the very youngest) may not require these medications to prevent rejection. This is wonderful news, as the medications suppress the immune system, putting patients at risk for various cancers and other ailments, and risk causing kidney problems. Two years ago, there was talk of weaning Mariana when she reached adolescence; now they're talking about beginning next year. Weaning is no small thing, and becoming a part of this exciting study means taking three liver biopsies and biweekly blood draws, but escaping the risks of this medication would be well worth the pain and effort.
We have news on the book front as well -- the official title is, In God's Hands. I love it, because we are always in God's hands, but we are most aware of it during difficult times. A child's illness in particular reveals that the control and power we think we exert in this world is all illusion; we confront our own weakness, our powerlessness, and we turn to the only One Who can help.
Lord of the powers, be with us! For in times of distress, we have no other help but You!
We are always in God's hands, and I hope we will grow to trust Him to lovingly care for all of us.
Thank you for your prayers!