Wednesday, October 31, 2007

home again

Just a quick note to let you know that we're back home again. Delie did great today, and the doctor said the surgery went just like he expected it to. He said Delie should sleep a lot the next couple of days, but she should be doing good by next week. He even said she could go to ballet as soon as she feels like it. I don't think Delie knows that yet, but I know it will make her happy. She's really missed dance the past several weeks.

Our next appointment is a follow-up on the surgery in two weeks. And in about 6 weeks she'll be fitted with a prosthetic eye.

Thank you for praying for us. I don't think today was as hard as we expected. Please continue to pray for Delie the next few days. She's been dizzy and nauseous since the surgery. She also says it hurts to open her eye so we've been mostly leading her around as she got ready for bed. These are normal side effects of the anesthesia and surgery, so it's nothing to worry about, but we pray she feels better tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

surgery tomorrow

Hello, family and friends. I just wanted to ask you to pray again for us as Delie has surgery tomorrow (Wednesday) at LeBonheur in Memphis. The doctors in Tennessee agreed with the doctors in Birmingham that there was nothing they could do to restore her vision, so they'll be removing her eye tomorrow. This is the first step towards having a prosthetic eye. We think she'll have to wait 4-6 weeks to heal from this surgery before they can fit her for the prosthesis.

Delie's still doing great. She stayed up later tonight to eat "breakfast" (a bowl of cereal) since she can't eat after midnight until after the surgery tomorrow. I asked her when she went to bed if she was nervous about tomorrow. She thought for a while and said, "Ummm...not really. I've been there before so I know what to expect." I guess this may be harder on Beverly and me than it is for Delie - I hope so for her sake.

Thank you again for praying for us.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Delie's appointment

The appointment went pretty well today. In some ways it was anticlimactic because we knew what to expect. The doctor was pleased with the way her bones have healed and said she won't need any more surgery to correct that. There may be additional cosmetic surgery in the future, but that will wait until after her prosthetic eye is in place.

The big news is that we have surgery scheduled for next Wednesday to either remove the eye (enucleation) or the damaged tissue in the eye (evisceration). The doctor says there's not much difference either way. The prosthesis will move with the other eye and look natural.

We wish Delie could see, and we still pray for a miracle, but we are comfortable with removing the eye now. We're really glad that we didn't have it removed 4 weeks ago (when we were expecting to) because it was so soon after the accident that I think we would have always wondered if there was something we could have done to have her vision restored. Now we know that there is nothing the doctors can do, so we are at peace and ready to move forward.

This will also be outpatient surgery at LeBonheur in Memphis.

We also went to a local optometrist (in Brownsville) today to look at frames for glasses and sports goggles. It's really important to protect her good eye, so she'll need to wear protective eyewear whenever there's a danger of her being hit, poked, etc. The optometrist recommended that she wear glasses all the time for protection even though her left eye has perfect vision. We didn't get any today, but we probably will soon. Delie found some pink frames that she liked a lot.

Delie continues to handle everything really well. And the rest of us are doing good also. We continue to appreciate your prayers.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Beach Pictures

We wanted to post some pictures of the children for those who haven't seen them in a while - or ever. These were taken at the Moss reunion in Gulf Shores last June.

Anna (7), Joy (10), and Delie (8).

Samuel (2), George (5), and Thomas (2 months then, 6 months now).

Delie's next appointment

Thank you for the comments, emails, and cards that you have sent to encourage us. It is amazing how many people are praying for us - we truly appreciate it.

We go back to Dr. Fleming in Memphis on Thursday. We don't expect anything big to happen on Thursday other than making plans for the future. Dr. Fleming's office finally got the results from Birmingham, so we'll get to discuss that on Thursday. We also had the results sent to Dr. Priester (family friend and retina specialist in Jackson, TN), and we hope to talk to him on the phone sometime before Thursday.

We'll let you know what happens. Thanks again for your prayers.

Sunday, October 14, 2007


Sometimes it's hard to know why things happen. A woman who recently died of cancer (a friend of several of our friends) wrote about that more eloquently than I could on her blog.

We've been wondering why lately, especially why did Delie see light and have our hopes raised only to find out that she would not regain sight in that eye? We really don't know, but we do have peace. And we have some ideas of why God has brought us down that path.

If Delie did not see light on Sept. 26, then we would have had her eye removed that day. At the time, we thought that was the right thing to do since she had not seen light. Since then we've found out that our doctors in Birmingham have had success with eyes that do not have light perception. If we had the eye removed on Sept. 26, then we would have always wondered if the Birmingham doctors would have been able to help. Now we know. Thank you, God, for sparing us from that uncertainty.

If we had not gone to Birmingham but had followed the retina specialist in Memphis, Delie would have had surgery last Friday. She possibly would have had multiple other surgeries trying to restore her sight, and who knows how long we would have held out hope for something that the doctors could not make happen. Thank you, God, for sparing Delie from unnecessary surgeries.

We went to Birmingham with great expectations and came away disappointed, but we are at peace knowing that we tried everything that we could. And we are so grateful that Delie won't be undergoing surgeries that had no chance of success. We still wonder why, but we know that God has a purpose for all things. Perharps He'll show us someday but maybe not. We are at peace knowing that He loves us and that His plans are not just for this life but for eternity.

Friday, October 12, 2007

back home

Hi, all. Sorry we couldn't update from Birmingham. We're back home tonight (Friday), and we did not have surgery today. It appears that our hopes for Delie's vision will not come to be. We met with the doctors yesterday, and they said that surgery would not be able to restore her vision. They were able to tell from ultrasound and from their exam that her optic nerve was severely damaged and the ciliary body was gone from the front of the eye. Although they can do many things, they can not fix either of these problems, and so surgery would not be successful. Dr. Witherspoon and Dr. Morris are two of the leading doctors in the world in eye trauma, and they have a reputation for operating on eyes that others would not attempt to save. So for both of them to agree that surgery would be useless was very convincing.

After finding out we wouldn't have surgery, we decided to stay in Birmingham to go to the zoo today, and then we drove home afterwards. We just got home and got the kids in bed, so we're finally able to write.

We are disappointed but not despairing. We wanted Delie to be able to see with both eyes again, but now we are just back to where we were two weeks ago. We are grateful that she was not injured more severely in the accident, and we are thankful that her left eye is perfect. Delie was fine with the news - she said she is glad not to have so many surgeries. She's been without her right eye for a month now, and I guess she's found out that she will be fine with one eye.

I'll post more to our blog later, but I'll stop for tonight since it's getting so late. Thank you again for praying for us.

George and Beverly

Monday, October 8, 2007

Change of plans

We've had some big changes in our plans since the last time we updated you. As of now, the plan is to go to Birmingham on Thursday to see a couple of doctors at UAB. They're supposed to be the best doctors in the world for dealing with eye trauma. After an office visit on Thursday, then hopefully they'll operate on Friday, depending on what they see Thursday.

We were strongly encouraged to go to Birmingham by a retina specialist, Brad Priester, in Jackson, TN - about 3o minutes from our house. Brad has done some work on George's father (Big George) in the past few years. Also, Brad's grandfather and George's grandfather were in medical practice together in Natchez, MS many years ago, and Big George went to high school with Brad's uncle. So Brad has been talking to Big George about Delie's case even though he hasn't seen her. He's recommended that we go to Birmingham from the beginning, and we finally decided that we should go just in case it might improve Delie's chances.

The doctors in Birmingham are Morris and Witherspoon of Retina Specialists of Alabama. We are excited and nervous as we wait to get their opinion. We continue to appreciate the prayers of so many, and we thank those who have left kind comments for us. I'm sorry we haven't been able to respond to all of the comments and email.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Delie's progress

Well we've made it home from a marathon day in Memphis, and the results look very good. We saw the retina specialist (Dr. Calzada at Charles Retina Institute) this morning. He did an ultrasound of Delie's eye and found lots of damage of course, but he said, "I don't see any reason to remove this eye." Praise God! He didn't and couldn't give us any guarantees about how well things might turn out, but he is hopeful that he can restore "ambulatory vision" so that Delie could see a wall but not be able to read with that eye. We've got surgery scheduled for Oct 15 to reattach the retina and perform a vitrectomy to begin repairing the eye. There will be many surgeries to come including a cornea transplant over the next months and possibly years.

This afternoon we saw the plastic surgeon (Dr. Fleming at UT Medical Group) who repaired her bones last week, and he thought everything looked good. There are other cosmetic issues that we will deal with in the future if they do not correct themselves, but nothing serious. We have a follow-up appointment with him on Oct 25.

It is hard to believe that we were prepared to have her eye removed only 8 days ago. God has been so good to us. We know that God has a plan and a purpose for all things. We believed that when Delie was about to lose her eye, and we still believe that. We intend to follow Him joyfully and submit to His will, and we pray that His gracious treatment of us will cause others to joyfully follow Him too.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Delie's appointments

I just wanted to remind you to be praying for Delie as she goes to the doctor on Thursday. We're seeing the surgeon just to follow up to make sure that her bones are lined up and that everything is fine from the surgery last week. And we're also seeing a retina specialist for the first time. Delie still doesn't see anything except light, but she believes that she can see light in our house - not just the bright light that the doctor shined directly into her eye. This seems like progress, if only a little. We believe the doctor will be doing an ultrasound of her eye to determine the extent of the damage and to see what, if anything, they can do.

We told Delie tonight that the doctor may say
- you've got some damage, but I can operate and you'll be able to see more,
- there's not really anything I can do to improve your chances of seeing, or
- because of the risk of damaging the good eye (sympathetic opthalmia), we need to give you a plastic eye.
Delie handled this (and everything else) amazingly well. She seems content knowing that God will take care of her no matter what happens.

We'll let you know what the doctors say. Thank you again for praying for our family.

George and Beverly

P.S. Today Beverly found a story Delie wrote a while back about six orphans. The oldest orphan is about to flee from the orphanage for fear of being sold and the other orphans quote scripture to her to encourage her before she runs away. These are the verses she uses:
"May the Lord answer you when you are in trouble. May the God of Jacob keep you safe." (Psalm 20:1)
"He gives me new strength. He guides in the right paths for the honor of his name." (Psalm 23:3)
"Here is what I am commanding you to do. Be strong and brave. Do not be terrified. Do not lose hope. I am the Lord your God. I will be with you everywhere you go." (Joshua 1:9)

We hope these encourage you as they encourage us.