A hymn of thankfulness

One of my favourite hymns is ‘Great is thy faithfulness’. It is written on the inside of my diary; the words helped me get through those difficult early days following Jessica’s diagnosis, her heart surgeries and the long days on PICU and the ward as she recovered. It continues to give me strength. There is one line in particular which speaks to me:


“Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside”


The music for "Great is thy faithfulness" with the text "A Hymn of Thankfulness" over the top


Strength for today…

There have been many times when my faith has given me that strength to take another step. Particularly on the day we were told that Jessica wouldn’t be suitable for surgery and would not survive long after birth. As we sobbed together in the chapel following that appointment, the only thing I could hold on to was my faith. Somehow God would get us through this; somehow we would endure.


…and bright hope for tomorrow

As I have blogged recently, that appointment was a very traumatic one for us, not least because of how that news was given to us. I also have a reason to be thankful for it too. It was that appointment that planted the seed of hope in our minds and led to Jessica having fetal surgery which gave her the chance to have surgery after she was born.


We considered travelling to Boston to have that surgery, but were very lucky to be offered it here on the NHS. Whilst the NHS has many flaws, I am immensely grateful that we have access to healthcare in this country that is free at the point of use. I shudder to think how different our story could have been had we had to find the money for each of Jessica’s surgeries or rely on whether an insurance company was willing to cover them. The surgeons who have treated Jessica have been amazing. We have also had superb care from all the doctors, nurses and other healthcare staff who have looked after Jessica. I am hugely thankful to them all.



Blessings all mine…

We have been hugely blessed with the love and support of so many people since Jessica was first diagnosed. Friends and family have walked alongside us and prayed for and with us. They have brought food parcels to the hospital, hugged us when we cried and celebrated the milestones with us. They have provided a place to stay when only one parent could be accommodated at the hospital. Many have shared their own stories which provided empathy, encouragement and inspiration many, many times. We have also had some wonderful support from strangers – people who just reached out and let us know they were thinking of us and praying for us. A huge, huge thank you to everyone who has been there for us.



…with ten thousand beside

And of course, I am hugely thankful for my husband and my two beautiful daughters. My hubby has walked alongside this journey, step by step, his hand in mine. He has been my strength and my support. He has seen me at my very worst moments (especially in this last year when I have struggled with postnatal depression) and still sees a person that he loves underneath – even when I think I have been very hard to love and have directed my anger and frustration at him. I don’t think I could have done any of this without him. He is an amazing daddy to our girls and a loving supportive and wonderful hubby to me. I am truly blessed to be his wife.


Me, hubby, Jessica and Sophie on Jessica's 3rd birthday

My daughters are the biggest blessing of all. I thank God every day for them. My miracle girl – what a wonderful gift it has been to be able to see her grow and develop. One of Jessica’s godmothers describes her as a ‘joy carrier’. It is the most apt description I can think of for her. She is truly a child who radiates joy – she has so much zest for life, is such a wonderfully sociable and friendly little girl with a smile that melts hearts. She has so much strength, has been so brave and I am so very, very lucky to be her mummy.


Sophie too – another little bundle of joy. The cheekiest smile in the world – she too is full of joy and happiness. It is wonderful too to watch her grow from a baby to a toddler (albeit bittersweet at times) and really begin to explore the world around her. She is so very loving and cuddly. It is a huge blessing to be her mummy too.


Linking in with mumturnedmom for this week’s The Prompt – ‘thankful’


Post Comment Love

24 thoughts on “A hymn of thankfulness

  1. Such a touching piece. I never followed long in the early days as ive just recently found you, I cant imagine what you must have felt and gone through as a family. But look at you all now… a lot to be thankful for. 🙂

    1. Thank you Stacey – it has been a tough journey but we have so very much to be thankful for x

  2. Oh dear I’m going to have to go and re-do my eye make up now! Such a rollercoaster you guys have been on but yes aren’t we incredibly lucky to have the NHS (even if some of its consultants leave a lot to be desired with their non existent bedside manner). You’ve got the most beautiful girls and Jessica sounds like a little ray of sunshine. Xxx #theprompt

    1. Ah so sorry for making you cry again Sam but thank you for your lovely comment. It has indeed been a rollercoaster and yes, I would describe Jessica as a little ray of sunshine too (and Sophie too!) We are very lucky to have the NHS and I am very thankful for the wonderful care Jessica has received and continues to receive x

  3. Such a beautiful post. You’ve been through so much as a family, and the positivity you radiate is incredible. I suppose that must be where Jessica gets it from 🙂 xx

    1. Thank you Sophie – I try to stay positive although there are many times when I don’t manage it. Jessica is definitely a very strong and happy little girl – she leaves me in awe sometimes with her bravery x

  4. This is gorgeous. Wonderful photo of little Jessica too, it is always a marvel how many wires can fit on such a small baby. The description of her being a ‘joy carrier’ is so beautiful xxx #ThePrompt

    1. Thank you Leigh – yes, it is quite impressive how many wires can be attached to a small baby isn’t it? It made changing nappies quite a challenge though! I love the description of Jessica being a joy-carrier too – it’s a lovely apt one just like Hugo Boss being the nickname for your little Hugo x

    1. Thank you Merlinda – it is good to forget about it all though and on the whole we do live life very normally from day to day 🙂

  5. I honestly had no idea! I read your post last week, and had no idea you had actually been through so much. But I am so glad you have all come out stronger on the other side. And your girls are a source of so much happiness to you x #theprompt

    1. Thank you – it has been quite a journey but we have come this far and have much to be thankful for. My girls are such a huge blessing to me x

  6. Wonderful post Louise, having already read so much about your journey, reading this amazingly positive summary of all that you’ve been through is inspirational x Thank you so much for linking to #ThePrompt

    1. Thank you Sara – there are many things I have to be thankful for so it seemed appropriate to summarise them for this week’s #theprompt. Lovely to link up as always and thank you so much for hosting x

  7. It sounds like you’ve had a tough time of it but I’m so happy to hear that both your girls are bringing you (and everyone else) joy. They are little bundles of happiness (most of the time) that make those tough times worth it. I love this post, I learned so much about you. #ThePrompt

    1. Thank you – it has been tough but worth it when I look at my girls now and we are so thankful for everything that has helped get Jessica to where she is today 🙂

  8. Beautiful post Louise. That photo has me sat here with tears in my eyes! So pleased you have such a little fighter on your hands and Jessica is now doing so well xxx #ThePrompt

    1. Thanks Reneé. She is definitely a little fighter and it is such a joy to see how well she is doing now x

  9. Oh Louise, this is such a beautiful post. I love how you have used the words of a hymn to help you through and count your blessings. And what a blessing your girls are. I really enjoyed reading this – completely welled up. Thank you for linking to #PoCoLo 🙂 x

    1. Thank you for your lovely comment – my girls are definitely a huge blessing and we have so much to be thankful for. Lovely to link to #PoCoLo – thank you for hosting x

    1. It was a very hard time but so glad she got through it all – we have a lot to be thankful for. Lovely to link up to #thankfulthursday again x

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