You’ll never guess what it was!

March 28th, 2014


This post is for every friend who read the last entry and prayed.

Before and after that last blog post?  Before and after the prayers of so many of you?

Like night and day. 

There has been NO vomiting and NO diarrhea since then.


We are all systems GO for school starting Monday.


Many of you told us that you would pray for the cause of Tommy’s diarrhea to be revealed.  Oh my goodness, there have got to be thousands of possible causes of diarrhea!

Well, God in His sovereignty saw fit to answer that specific prayer with a resounding yes.  The mystery has been solved.

To sum up–

On the most recent suggestion of Tommy’s GI doctor, after other remedies failed, we stopped his feedings and gave him only an electrolyte solution for twenty-four hours.  We stopped all his meds and supplements except for the anti-nausea medication that had cut back on his vomiting.

Then we slowly added formula back in to his regimen in increasing amounts until he was back up to full feedings of formula.

As I carefully considered each of his meds and supplements, deciding when to add them back in, it suddenly hit me.

After months of striving to get ground up calcium-magnesium tablets into Tommy with only partial success, we’d begun giving him a liquid cal-mag supplement instead.

Some of you just had the same thought hit you as hit me that day.

For the rest of you–if you didn’t know it before, you know it now.

Magnesium is a laxative.

*knocking on head* 

We took the brand new bottle of liquid cal-mag with us on vacation.  We didn’t connect the two events at the time because the effects of the magnesium came on gradually, not immediately.  We were also thrown off the trail by the fact that there was a change in his formula right about the time his bowels grew noticeably looser.

His bowels are acting normally now that he is not being given a large dose of laxative in every feeding.



And little Verity?

I try hard to let the photos I post here be indicative of the greater underlying reality.  I want so much to give you eyes to see the beauty, personality, and value of our children with special needs…to see them as we see them…to come to see all children with special needs through eyes of love.

I try hard to choose the photos that best represent and communicate the greater underlying reality of what is happening here within our family.

The photo of Verity looking at me with sad, almost accusing eyes shows you the face that I saw across the room way too many times over the past months while occupied with the pressing needs of Tommy, Ben, or Katie.

So many of you let us know that you were specifically praying for Verity’s tender little heart.

Your very specific prayers for her could not possibly have been answered in a more dramatic way, starting on Monday morning.

It’s like the light switched back on inside her.  Like her heart has been freed.

This is the little face that has been looking back at me since Monday morning.  This is the answer to your prayers.



How can we thank all of you for your kindness and empathy, for your best words of counsel given from truly loving hearts, and for the intercession you pour out freely for our family in this calling He has given us?  I so wish it was possible to respond to each of you individually!  If you emailed, you will eventually receive a reply unless I accidentally delete your email, for which I apologize in advance!

We can’t help but think how marvelous it would be if every struggling adoptive family had such moral support and focused prayer surrounding them. 

Some of you made me realize anew that we Mussers are part of a wider family who love Jesus and do hard every single day.  I pray for all of us that we would see and know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ that is with us.  I pray that we would learn to suffer at least as well as we rejoice by learning to rejoice in our suffering.  And most of all, that the name of the Lord Jesus would be magnified through us no matter what.

“And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you.”





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84 Responses to “You’ll never guess what it was!”

  1. Barbara B says:

    Praise the Lord!  We’re still praying.  Thank you very much for sharing this good news!  May God surround you with peace.

  2. Lucy says:

    Hooray hooray hooray! I hope you have a fabulously restful week with lots of cuddle time with Verity.

  3. Dannette says:

    Beautiful post!  God is so good!  I am thankful you have such an amazing support system here on earth to pour forth prayers as you live life as God has guided you to live.

  4. Crysta says:

    What an amazing miracle. God is so good!! Continued prayers for your family. You are a beautiful testament to God’s amazing works.

  5. Tami Swaim says:

    Well, a mystery has been solved for myself as well, life is so funny that way!  HA, I added a high potency Magnesium capsule to my vitamin routine.  Now I know the possible source to an unpleasant GI symptom I’ve been experiencing <sigh> Well, I think I will leave it out for awhile and see if that helps!  Thanks Susanna and Tommy!

  6. Holly D. says:

    Praise the Lord. So happy you have figured this out.  Do you suspect this magnesium has been the cause of all the earlier diarrhea, too.  This is such wonderful, amazing news.  I cannot believe the doctors didn’t connect this right away because I give magnesium to my daughter and the loose stools is one of the first things I was told to watch for.  Praying for a nice relaxing weekend for you and your family…and cannot wait to see Katie’s bday pics and update, and hear about Tommy’s school day. Yay

  7. Amy says:

    Praise the Lord for answered prayers!  Love seeing Verity’s smile back and so happy you have found out what was causing the “Big D” as we called it in our house when our first child had this issue from undiagnosed gluten intolerance.

  8. Holly says:

    So thankful, Susanna!  Thank you, Jesus!

  9. teresa says:

    Praising the Lord for answered prayer!  What awesome changes your sweet family has experienced this week.  Thanks be to God.

  10. Carolyn says:

    So thankful!  Thanks be to God!

  11. Susan says:

    So happy for you and Tommy, Susanna!  And precious little Verity too!  This is such a good reminder for us all.  If we are humble enough to openly ask for prayer for our struggles, the church will rise up and pray.  And our ever-faithful God will answer.  Once again, thank you for your transparency.  God has used it to serve so many outside of your household in addition to your wonderful family.

  12. Rachel M says:

    Oh WOW! Amen!  Praise the Lord.    Susanna, i just realized this morning after reading your post that liquid Magnesium is causing my 6yo’s diarrhea! I’ve been so worried about her the past 2 weeks. Stomach pain and diarrhea. Her Vit D is low and I had bought a Cal/Mag/D liquid supplement to give her. haha. Going to stop that right now. 

  13. Sarah says:

    I am so glad to hear of the answer to the prayers. I was praying for your family. One thought I had – maybe it would help for Verity to be in preschool? I know of some stay-at-home moms who put their kids in daycare one or two days a week just to have a break.

  14. Lois J. says:

    GOD IS SO GOOD!! You know, I believe that had you not reached rock bottom, these answered prayers would not mean so much to you. Like another reader stated, it’s always darkest before dawn….also, God is almighty and uses the best ways to build our faith in Him, even if we don’t see it at the time. I am so happy for you, Tommy, Verity, and the rest of the family. :’)

  15. cassandra says:

    Woo hoo!  Does it sound bad for me to say that I’m glad you can look forward to a few hours of respite on Monday?  Just as Katie has enjoyed her school experience, I believe Tommy will, also. What seventeen year old doesn’t enjoy a little independence?:) As you mentioned in another post, it is good and right to seek help from those who can be part of healing our child (or the family). 
    Thank you for reminding us that prayers do matter.  Anybody so inclined on this website is welcome to pray for “Cassandra’s ” family :) 

  16. Cheryl says:

    I am so happy for the turn around in Tommy’s needs and Verity’s smiles.  I am looking forward to the future posts about the wedding and more adorable photos.  As a mom of a special needs child, I know the frustrations of setbacks and being overwhelmed.  Continued prayers and good wishes for you.

  17. julia says:

    Maybe this tip will help increase mag levels without the diarrhea side effect. Disolve epsom salts in hand lotion (any kind) and rub anywhere on body.

  18. Tiffiny says:

    What happy news, Susanna! The mystery of Tommy’s diarrhea has been plaguing me since your previous post. What blessed relief to know the cause was only a reaction and the cure so simple and immediate! Thank you, Father, for this blessing! 
    The return of Verity’s sweet smile and knowing she has ‘returned,’ as it were, is the loveliest gift. Thank you, God, for this prayer answered!
    Tommy is such a beautiful boy and he truly does deserve and need all the love and compassion he has received since joining your family. His needs have never been met until God introduced him to you, Susanna. I think of all the challenges you’ve faced in adding Tommy to your family – from needing to move quickly in the adoption process before his next birthday, to learning you were expecting (and then traveling with a newborn!) to all the adjustments everyone faced when Tommy came home and the added work and worry that his health concerns have brought to all of you – and I can understand why many would lovingly suggest that you consider finding another home for Tommy.  You and your husband and children have known suffering since Tommy came into your lives, certainly. But I think maybe the biggest source of your suffering was alluded to in your last post, and it had nothing to do with diarrhea or vomiting or even Verity’s withdrawal from you. The real suffering you were enduring seemed to be in the sound of silence following your pleading with Our Father. And that, to me, is so beautiful. Your faith in Him, your longing to remain connected to Our Lord and to please Him is grace in suffering, Susanna. He gave you a calling that included using this blog to share with the world the work He is doing with your family as His hands and feet. It is all for His glory, Susanna! We pray for all of you because we have come to love all of you! We are grateful to bear witness to His many acts of mercy, compassion and love we see happening through you and your family. What you thought to be silence from Our Father was, perhaps, His way of prompting you to share your struggles with all of us, so that we may know of His mercy. I cannot understand His ways, but I am certain He is using you and your family for His glory. What a blessing it is for all of you – and for all of us to witness! The name of Lord Jesus IS magnified through you all, dear Susanna. Truly!
    Tomorrow Tommy will have his first day of school! How wonderful is that? Please take lots of photos and let us know how he does with this new experience. It’s going to be a big change for everyone! 
    Praying for peace and joy to be in your home always,
    P.S. — We have emailed (months ago) about our adoption of a two year-old little girl with Ds in China. I want you to know our dossier has been translated and we expect official approval within 30 days; hoping to bring Addie home by July. This adoption would not have happened if I had not been led to your blog by Our Father. Thank you for your obedience to Him. ❤

  19. Lorena says:

    Hallelujah and AMEN!!!!  God is so good – not just when he takes care of us in obvious ways, but I am so glad He chose to this time!!  :)

  20. Jodi says:

    Susanna, this news made my night!  I had just prayed for your family when putting the kids to bed, and then I read this and just had to read it again to my two biggest girls.  I love it, for their sake, when God answers prayers in big, obvious, faith-building ways.  And I’m so thrilled for your family to get some relief.  Praising the Lord with you!

  21. Deborah says:

    So thankful to read this report!  Will continue to pray for your family.  :)

  22. Laura says:

    SOOO overjoyed to hear this!  Thank you Father for answering the prayers of your feeble servants!  I am always inspired by your posts, Susannah.  Thank you for taking the time to write and inspire the rest of us to love better, to be patient, and to rejoice in hardship as we try to be like  Jesus in raising our children.  

  23. Andrea says:

    Oh Susanna, this is such wonderful news! My heart was so heavy for you and your family after your last post… What an answer to prayer!

  24. Jocelyn Scott says:

    Dear Susanna,  I believe when I was small, back in the late 1940’s or early 50’s, my mother used to dose me with something called milk of magnesia when I needed a laxative.  So glad God has answered your prayers.  I was afraid the only solution was for you to disrupt Tommy’s adoption, since it sounded as if his care was a full-time job in itself.  But it’s good that things have worked out the way they have.  But please don’t take on another child, however needy!  You’re only a human being; only God is all-powerful.  And I’m so glad to see Verity looking happier.  Love in Christ, Jocelyn Scott

  25. ERIKA says:

    Thank you sweet Jesus, Praise God.

  26. Molly says:

    Yay! praise God for this answer. I am so happy for all of you!

  27. Meredith_in_Aus says:

    So, so thankful to hear this news. God is GOOD!  So pleased for you, Tommy, Verity, and the rest of the family.  Will continue to pray. 

  28. Tami C says:

    Praising and rejoicing with you!!! So very thankful for the merciful “quick” answer to prayer.  (I know it wasn’t “quick” for you all these months; but “quick” as in after your post!) So glad to hear what a minor thing it was for Tommy’s sake.  We’ll continue in prayer that all goes well with school for Tommy.  Hooray!!!  Much, much love, best wishes and prayers from all my family!

  29. Jane says:

    HOORAY!  I am so thankful for all of these blessings and for your tender honesty with us Susanna.  I am so glad the culprit was found for Tommy’s distress and that Verity is returning.  God is good. 

  30. Rachel says:

    Praise God! I was so happy to read this message! I do indeed pray for you all, despite only knowing you through this blog, that God may continually bless your immense labor of love. Will keep on praying!

  31. Caroline says:

    I too have been praying for you and your family, and am so excited to read of this answer to prayer.  God is good.

  32. Abigail says:

    My heart ached and ached over your last post and I tried to write a comment a number of times the day I read it, but I had no words to give you, all I had was prayer, prayer and more prayer. How very thankful I am to see them answered!

  33. julia says:

    Maybe this tip will help …….. dissolve Epsom salts in any hand lotion and rub anywhere on body. Magnesium absorbs better through the skin… without causing nasty side effects. :))

  34. cindy says:

    PTL  what an amazing solution!  God is truely showing Himself to be working through this online family to help your family.  I pray school is going well.  Does the nurse come to the house to help get him ready and then go with him to school?  That’s how my clients manage. 

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