Monday, February 18, 2008

While Papa was gone....

Jeff will be home on March 1st!!!! You know I am counting down the days until we are reunited as a family! It also just so happens to be the day that Laurie Lorenzen is flying home (prayerfully)!! AND to top it off, it just so happens....HHHmmmm God......that when Jeff's company booked him a flight home 2 months ago, they routed him through Brussels because they found a good deal instead of the usual route through Amsterdam or London. So... guess who will be meeting Laurie and the kids in Brussels and flying home on the same flight to Denver? YUP! My sweet husband!!!! What a reunion that will be for us, and of course the Lorenzen family and for Osobie and Fatu to be able to see their friends Nyenna and Titus!! We are obviously praying hard that this will be the deal...but we also know Africa and how plans can change in an instant.

Anyway, I thought I would throw a few pics up of our last two months of life!!
Oh, and I guess I should comment on the kids, eh? Wow, I haven't really given any reports on their transition,our life together and how they are doing. I meant to do this a month ago but of course I find myself still exhausted by 9pm. I think I'll eventually get used to this right? Osobie and Fatu are doing great. Once again, I wonder if this is still because it's only been 3 1/2 months so far and they are still "on good behavior". Or if they really are easy going, happy kids that are super adaptable to whatever is going on around them. They are changing drastically in the sense of losing their Liberian accent and getting used to "American life". We talk about Liberia every day and I make a point to talk about their Liberian family, so we always have time to share their feelings about all the change they have gone through in the last couple months. When they first arrived home they were very shy and quiet when it came to talking about Liberia, but now I have found that when they want to tell me a story about Liberia, they just do it at their own pace and timing. It's been amazing to find out how much Osobie really remembers about his life before the AOH orphanage. I have been trying to journal what they tell me so I can write it in their life books. They have cried, pouted and grieved a bit but not as much as I had expected. They did have a season of difficulty a few weeks after they came home, usually right after they woke up from their naps but nothing too intense. We have spent most of our time just being in our home together, and I found that this helped all of us in our transition. There were days, and still are, where I have to spend a few hours working through problems, misunderstandings or explanations on how things work in our family and in our culture. It has been such a source of peace and relief to know that we have nothing we need to get to in a hurry, maybe except for church, and even's not a big deal if we come late. It's actually been really refreshing because Jeff and I have lived a life that has always been FULL! We were involved in ministry most of our single and married life and I think the Lord slowly started peeling away at our busy lives to prepare us for this time. I have learned to love the kids nap time. I sit with my coffee, my bible, Utmost for Highest and journal and just sit before the Lord. (Usually asking for patience, wisdom and energy...and confessing my sins and brokenness). Almost every day I feel like I totally screw up as a mama!! I'm so glad we can turn to the One who has all heavenly wisdom and gives it freely to us when we ask for it! Boy do I need it! So, aside from a few medical issues that we have faced, life in the Borchert home has been so incredibly sweet! I love my kids! They are hilarious! They are still a little stubborn when it comes to being silent but other than that, they really are great kids. I am also prepared for possible changes to come in the months ahead as they settle into our family. Or, maybe it won't happen. Either way, we are all digging each other and loving being a family!! So, while Papa was gone here is what we did! (Oh, this was inspired by Katy's video...I'm just not flowing with any creative energy right now, so pics will have to do. Thanks Katy!!)

We did a little cooking!!!

We hung out on mama's lap just playing...chilling....missing papa

because all that grease and lotion can sure add up!

We cleaned, cleaned and cleaned....does it ever end? And to think we live in a 980 square ft. house?!!! Yes,...I'm serious. It's tight but it's simple and it means less accumalation of "JUNK" that the world is constantly trying to sell us!

We played dress up...camoflauge with pink pumps!! WHY NOT!!!

We spent days in the hospital!!

Oh, yeah....I forgot to mention our crazy medical frenzy that came in like a tornado and wiped us all out, well, maybe just me. Fatu tested positive on her PPD skin test for TB. Well, not only that but also tested positive on her chest x-ray for supposedly active TB!!! Within 2 weeks of my husband leaving we were at Denver Children's Hospital for a 4 day stay for active TB!! The worst part of it all was that they didn't inform me that we would be quarantined
for the 4 days in one room! So, I left Osobie with the Lorenzens for 4 days while Fatu and I lived at DCH. They had to do 3 gastric aspirations where they pull the fluid out of her stomach very early in the morning for 3 mornings to collect it and see if they can grow a culture of the disease. If they can grow the TB disease they will test the 4 TB drugs against it to see which 2 are working the best at destroying it. Unfortunately, there is only a 30-60% chance that they can grow the TB culture from her fluids. (I wasn't told this until day 2 at the hospital). It was a horrible experience for us for various reasons. It was so hard to be there while they shoved the tube down her nose into her stomach. The whole time she's crying and screaming "mama please stop, please". I was quite the mess and exhausted. (you can see this in the photo of me below...I look a mess). So, by day 4 we were discharged and Fatu started the meds for a diagnosis of Active TB, even though we still do not know if she really did have it. The one indication that it may not have been active is that they did not find any live bacteria in any of her 3 gastric aspirations for the first microscopic smear. We are still waiting to hear if they were able to grow out a culture of the TB disease. I'll let ya all know!! Then 2 weeks after Fatu was officially no longer considered contagious, I took Osobie in for his 2nd TB skin test!! This time he tested positive! Go figure. The dr's did not believe he had contracted it from Fatu but that he had a false negative PPD skin test the first time. I had some dear friends come over and pray over him before our chest x-ray and days later the results came in as NO active TB!!!! Praise GOD!!! I was so scared, but somehow was able to release it to God with a real hope that it would be okay and it was. So, now Osobie is on the preventative meds for TB exposure. Then of course I had to get tested since I've been the closest one to her since November and I tested negative! Another reason I wonder if she ever did have "Active TB".

What a trooper!! That darn tube made her sneeze all day long!!
We made fun purses (Thanks Meeks!), watched videos and painted her nails for the first time!
Someone get this lady a latte!!!! HELP!!!
Isn't this the coolest? It's a photo holder that stands alone-accordion style. It comes with photo corners so you can replace the photos as often as you like. My mom gave it to me for a Christmas gift awhile back, and look ma, I finally found a use for it! I think this would be a great gift for any families that spend alot of time in the hospital for special needs kids or whatever.... it folds up into a compact book and brings some much needed love and a sense of home!
We dressed all our dollies many times, played Tinker toys for hours on end...
We met our new Uncles, Aunts and 2nd cousins!!!!

We rode our favorite Liebherr ride.... the Uncle Joe elephant!! Can you see Fatu? She is steering the elephant by the ear! Ouch!!

We hung out with our Aunt Lolo...enjoying our belated Christmas gifts!

We battled a couple of colds...notice the Rudolf Red nosed Osobie!! But, we also discovered our new favorite treat, Coconut.
We experimented with new hairstyles on Fatu...and decided we are going to do some extensions in the summer to give us all a break!!

We gathered with our friends for a Liberian reunion!!

Fatu and Kebeh...can you tell she's happy to have another girl around? ...I guess for Fatu and Kebeh both eh?

AND last but not least....enjoyed many a hug, wrestle; fall on the ground Liberian Lovin' session... Throw in there numerous trips to the store, reading books, going to church, making crafts, hanging with friends and family, home schooling, celebrating my 33rd birthday, and well, there you have it. The last 2 months of our lives without our beloved Papa.
We miss you!!!


Brandi said...


Thanks for the great update and wonderful pictures! Your kids are just great and you are a great mama to them.


Jocelyn said...

I love the photos...I am so happy that your hubby is coming home and you can go back to a two parent house...if only I could do that...the world would be an easier place! But it has been fun having you in the single mama club for a while...feel free to join us anytime!



Lisa G said...


Thank you for giving us a picture of "life" from the last couple of months. What a scary, difficult time in the hospital. As Mike and I prayerfully prepare for our upcoming adoption, it helps to understand others and their journeys. What a beautiful family you all make. Truly, the Lord had a marvelous plan in knitting you together. Yea for papa coming home. I pray he, Laurie, and the kids will be able to unite in Brussels - what a gift!

Lisa G.

Donna Barber said...

what a great update. you have been through alot in a short period of time. Loved the pictures to.

Johnson said...

Thanks for the update! Jeff is going to be home soon, YEAH!

The Adoption Of William said...

Wonderful pics! Poor awful. You guys are in our prayers. I know how hard it is when hubbys are gone. Mine is always traveling somewhere :(



Missy said...

Life is good and God is great. I love all the pictures of your amazing kids. Glad you're going to be reunited with Jeff soon.

I was thinking about you the other day as I was reading Tears of the Rain. They mention a sweetie named Fatu in the book and I couldn't help but picture your Fatu.


amber said...

First of all, I have to say "COME BOARDING WITH ME!!!" I wish we lived closer so you actually could... :)

Secondly, I LOVED all the pictures. I can't get over how cute your kids are. They have the best smiles ever.

Wow! on the TB and the hospitalization. You are really getting quite the initiation into mommy-hood... especially flying solo without Jeff for a couple months. You seem to be doing marvelously well; I am very impressed! I feel like a total screw-up many times a day -- I think it goes with the territory (or at least I HOPE it does!!! :) )

I'm so glad Jeff is coming home soon... and how cool if things work out so he can be on the same plane as Laurie and the kids. What a party at the airport THAT will be!


Tama said...

You have some seriously cute kiddos!
Sorry about the quarintine, that did not sound pleasent :o(