Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Joseph is growing up!

with auntie Clare and cousin Olivia on the river Seine boat trip this Summer

with Mummy

..having fun at lunch-time, sitting in his special seat

Feeling proud of my special orthopedic seat!

Dear Friends,
We have been very busy since we last posted news about Joseph.

His therapy involves regular visits to the physiotherapist, speech therapist, hearing specialist and neurologist as well as days out at the park and visiting friends!

He turned one on August 18 and he is now bursting out of his age one clothes and fitting more comfortably in 18-month clothing! His growth is the first in a series of miracles.

After being diagnosed as profoundly deaf in May, the diagnosis has now been reduced to "moderate deafness", which means that he can hear, even without his little hearing aids, and also that he can chatter, which he does a lot. At church if we are holding him standing up on our lap he sometimes waves his arms and "preaches" to join in with the congregation!

He is very lively and aware of people and we were advised to take him to a playgroup a few hours a week, which has so far been a success. He laughs a lot, especially when his big brother, Gabriel does funny things, and the two brothers enjoy each other's company, which is wonderful to see.

We are very pleased that he is starting to control his body better, and is nearly rolling over from his back to his front. Babies born full-term often manage this at the age of 5 months, so Joseph' s timetable is clearly different (he is 13 months), but the physiotherapist is delighted with his progress and even admires his strong will and capacity to do the exercises without complaining. (We know, of course, that Joseph has been sustained and strengthened by a loving God since he was in an incubator, between life and death). He can be held (briefly) standing up, which he loves, and one of our big prayers is that God allows him to walk!

All in all, we are excited and so proud to watch Joseph grow. He is such a strong-willed, fun-loving little boy that there is no doubt in my mind that God is intervening in his life, and in his body, and doing him good. We know that God does good, and is good, and we thank him all the time for having saved Joseph's life and for every step forward he is taking, every day.

We pray for all those who have prayed and are praying for Joseph, that God will bless you for your support. Please continue to pray, that Joseph manages to control his body and legs, and also opens his little fists more and more freely (when he is excited, he clenches his fists and stiffens his legs, but he can relax them at other times).

Thank you again for your support and prayers.
God bless
Michelle for the Fleck family.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Update on Joseph

I have been meaning to update the blog for a long time, I'm sorry it's taken so long. In the meantime we have been trying to contact all our English-speaking friends directly by "snail mail".

The news about Joseph is both marvellous and uncertain...Marvellous because his personality is becoming more apparent, and I thank God that he brings a smile to everyone's face, and is interested in people and the world around him. I also thank God that he loves being cuddled by our friends and I always say "he must know that you've prayed for him" as he seems so delighted to look into friends' eyes and give them his cute little crooked smile!

The news is uncertain, because we are becoming gradually aware of his physical difficulties, as his brain is supposed to start taking more control of his limbs but it isn't doing everything it should. Joseph sometimes gets frustrated because his little hands form a fist instead of opening up to grab a toy, so we have been told to coax his hands open as often as possible. His hips and legs are very stiff and won't let him roll over, although he is trying hard. Again, we have been told to try to relax his legs. He will soon be fitted with a special seat to support his back as he can't control his backbone properly yet, and the seat will help him to do more things, like sit with us in a high chair at the dinner table, otherwise he would slouch and this would be bad for him.

I thank God for the wonderful team of doctors, physiotherapists and pediatricians who are visiting us and seeing us regularly. They seem to have real affection for Joseph and want him to develop well. My prayer is that God rewires Joseph's brain, so that he overcomes the problems mentioned above. We pray that God allows him to develop as much as possible, and even beyond all expectations. The doctors can't be sure of how much control Joseph will eventually have of his limbs, as every child is so different. But we believe that God allowed Joseph to live and we also believe that He has a plan for his life. And His will is good, acceptable and perfect.

Thank you for your prayers for Joseph. I will update the blog the next time we have some significant news. We are awaiting a diagnosis regarding his hearing, as the last test was not good, but we have been told that his brain needs to mature, so they will retest on May 30.

God bless all of you, dear Christian friends.

Gabriel and Joseph + Mummy

Gabriel and Joseph + Mummy

Joseph, Papa + Mummy

Joseph, Papa + Mummy

Joseph smiling!

Joseph smiling!


A cuddle with mummy