For The Least Of These You Did For Me

Welcome to our family's blog. We are the Duryea family and we have seven children. You might be wondering why we chose this name for our blog. Well, to begin with we have three beautiful biological children and three beautiful children from China. I'll share our journeys to China to bring home our beautiful children later. For now, I'd like to share why we chose this name for our blog. The Lord showed me this verse when we were first seeking adoption. The Lord chose to grow our family through adoption. However, the Lord has also opened our eyes to the needs of orphans , especially in China. We consider "...looking after the orphans and widows in their distress..." James 1:17, as a way of life for us, a calling.

As I read through the many stories in our adoption agency's storybooks, there are countless stories that begin with "...after many years of experiencing infertility, we started the adoption process and are now a forever family"

If you are one of the countless couples that have experienced infertility, let me share with you the wonderful way of starting a family and at the same time providing a home for a needy orphan. God loves you and cares about you. "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11. If you are feeling hopeless, let me promise you that the Lord hears your cries. If you haven't ever trusted in Jesus and put your hope in him, do it now. Your life will be better than you could ever imagine. I never planned or dreamed I would go to China (3 times) and have this wonderful family. My plans surely would have never been as wonderful as they are today.

I had endometriosis for many years, yet I was able to conceive and have three beautiful children. After Sarah was born in 1998, I experienced severe problems and had surgery. However, I was unable to conceive, probably due to the scars left by endometriosis. Like many of you I had emotional scars as well. Even though I already had three children , I still felt called to have a larger family. Many months, tears, and prayers later we considered adoption. I heard about the plight of baby girls in China and the one child policy that left them abandoned. As we were praying about this, David's family in St.Louis was having a first time ever family reunion. I knew this wasn't coincidence, because David's cousin, a single mom, adopted two girls from China. One was 5 years old and the other was 9 months. This gave us the opportunity to meet them and talk to his cousin about adoption. When we came home we saw an advertisement for an adoption seminar in our area. We attended and were ready to start the paperwork to begin our adoption for a baby girl from China. Our lives would never be the same again.

Sunday, March 10, 2013

I know it's been quite a long time since we wrote anything. So let me give you an update on Luke.

We met with the team of doctors at University Rainbow and Babies Children Hospital to discuss Luke's options and cochlear implant.  Once the doctors were able to determine which type of cochlear implant Luke had, they contacted the manufacture to see if we could get an outside processor for it so we would know if it works and if he can hear.

A representative from the manufacture was very helpful and glad tocome to visit us at the office with the software. Once they hooked up the processor they were able to program it in order to give him sound. Now every month we visit the audiologist in order for her to program the implant. This is called mapping. We want to reach a level that is comfortable for Luke.

The only problem we discovered with his implant is that only 5 of the 12 electrodes are working. Now we have to determine if  that will be enough for him to hear and discern speech sounds.

In December Luke received a hearing aid. The hearing aid is on loan from the manufacture. Just like the implant we need to decide if he is receiving enough sound in order for him to discern speech sounds in order to talk. Also, our insurance company requires a trial period of hearing aids before allowing implant surgery.

We have the hearing aid on loan to us until April 30. Then the doctors will need to make a decision if they should put an implant in the other ear. From what I have read about people who are profoundly deaf (which is Luke), they can not hear enough with a hearing aid in order to learn language. We're quite certain that we will need to put a cochlear implant in the other ear.

Luke is doing very well with bonding and attaching to us and the other children. It seems like he has always been part of our family. He fits right in with all the kids. He loves to play outside even when it's cold or gloomy. He is very good at letting us know what he wants.

He is also very smart and is learning his colors, shapes, and numbers. He is also learning how to write and recognize his name. We are teaching him new signs, but he sees a speech therapist who specializes in cochlear implant patients. We all want him to start learning to rely on his hearing and training his brain to recognize sounds.