Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Praise and Thanksgiving

“Give praise to the Lord, proclaim his name; make known among the nations what he has done.”
1 Chronicles 16:8

        We are praising God today for the miracle he performed on our sweet Henry.  Mark and I had prepared our hearts for the absolute worst.  Doctors and nurses would say things like, “many children are able to live full lives with just one lung.”  Then there was the thought of, “what if he doesn’t make it through the surgery,” or “What if there is no viable lung tissue and the left lung never develops?”  To say that the past few months have been stressful would be the understatement of the year.  This past weekend I honestly thought I was about as close to a nervous breakdown as anyone could ever be.  Sunday, Henry had to have a blood transfusion because his hematocrit was too low for surgery.  Sunday night we were up most of the night with him because his PICC line kept getting blocked.  Monday morning the surgery was scheduled for 8:30, and at 6:45 they called and said it had been bumped up to 7:30. The surgeons told us the surgery could last up to 3 hours or more and that they would call us each hour with an update.  After an hour, the nurse called and said that the surgery was over and that they would be back with Henry in about 30 minutes.  Mark and I immediately thought something had gone wrong.  Why were they finished so fast?  Those 30 minutes that we had to wait were the longest thirty minutes of my life.  When they finally got to his room, the surgeons told us that the surgery was very successful and that once they were able to remove the tumor, which was a little smaller than a tennis ball, they were able to see viable lung.  The tumor was on the right side, and you have three lobes on that side.  They had to remove the lower lobe because it was too greatly affected by the tumor, but the upper and middle lobes were there and seemed to be ok.  They wanted to do a chest x-ray immediately to see if the lungs had expanded.  Remember, the tumor had displaced the heart to the point that it was pressing the left lung and keeping it from fully expanding as well.  The doctors were absolutely amazed at what they saw.  The x-ray showed that not only had the heart completely moved back into its correct position, but also the lung on the left side was FULLY expanded, and the top and middle lobes on the right side were fully expanded as well.  They said that comparing that x-ray with the one they took at 6 a.m. the morning of surgery, it did not even look like the same patient.  That is totally GOD! 

       Henry still has a very long road to recovery, but the doctors told us that once he fully recovers, he would be a healthy little boy.  Our son will be able to run and play without it hurting him.  The next step is to wean him off of the ventilator.  The doctors are hoping that could be as soon as the end of this week.

      How great is our God!!  I know I’m probably doing a terrible job of truly articulating the miraculousness of yesterday’s events.  I don’t think any of the doctors expected such a wonderful outcome.  Every doctor and nurse that has seen the x-ray has come by Henry’s room and said they are just amazed.  I am as well!  Yesterday afternoon, I was quickly reminded of how different the outcome could have been.  I was walking down the hall and I saw all the doctors crowded in another room.  As I got a little closer I saw the baby’s mother and I immediately knew that her news wasn’t good.  It broke my heart and I knew just how easily that could have been Mark and me receiving that news.  I am so grateful to God and I will never stop singing his praises.  I know that horrible things happen, and I know that even when bad things happen, God is still good.

      If I have learned any lesson through this, it’s that life is so precious and God has a great plan for each of us.  I believe his plan for my life was to be mom to Henry and Harper.  Their little lives have certainly changed mine.  I’ve also learned that in your greatest time of need, God will provide.  He has blessed Mark and me with precious friends and family who have been so faithful in praying for us.  He has blessed us with incredible doctors that have honestly become like family.  Henry and Harper even call two of them aunt and uncle!   He has blessed us with the FedEx House where I have been able to stay and be close to my babies, as well as Habitat for Hope, a ministry that has provided us with spiritual support as well as dinner.  In times where I have been rock bottom, somehow God has gotten me through.  My prayer is that I can somehow use what God has taught me through all of this to bring glory and honor to Him!  I pray that God will use Henry and Harper’s little lives to show people his grace and mercy. 

     Thank you all for your prayers.  I have not had the time to properly thank everyone, or reply to emails and texts like I should, but please know that Mark and I are so very grateful to each of you.  We are blessed beyond measure.  We humbly ask that you continue to pray for Henry and Harper.  The main thing now is that they remain infection free.  Our prayer is that we can all four be home by August.

Much love,

B.J. and Mark

“Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.  Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.  Know that the Lord is God.  It is he who made us, and we are his, we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.  Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name.  For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.”               Psalm 100        

Harper, fast asleep

Holding sweet Henry before surgery

Harper LOVES her bottle


tayc said...

Mark BJ Hen and Harp! haha I cannot wait to see yall! I have been praying for you over the last 6 months! Praise God! WHOAH! Henry...what an all star! Harper what a beauty! Congratulations to the cutest parents! Yall are so great! LOVE LOVE LOVE YALL!!!!!! Taylor Coombs!

Anonymous said...

I've never met you before but heard about you through a friend and I am amazed by your story and by your faith. God is good and we will continue to pray for your little angels!!

Selina Holley said...

I also have not met you; however also heard about your babies through a mutual friend. As I read you blog I am almost always in tears, as I am a mom of 3, and I just can only imagine how hard this is on you guys. But I am inspired by your faith in our amazing, gracious, & loving God! I have prayed for your family and will continue to! May blessings continue to pour down on you all!! I look forward to perhaps one day meeting you and your sweet babies. Selina

Amy Carmichiel said...

B.J. & Mark, We continue to be amazed by what awesome & wonderful God we serve! How great He is!! We will continue to keep you & your precious, precious, babies in our prayers and we will praise the Lord for his mercies,graciousness & wonderful works! Love, The Carmichiels

reed said...

tears tears and more tears! rejoicing with you and your precious family today! this is such amazing news! God is so good and you have been such a beacon of light reflecting all the glory back to Him. those babies are beyond blessed to have YOU as their momma! hang in there, dear friend! we are loving you and praying for you! the babies are so beautiful and i cant wait to watch them grow up! they are a bunch of tough little babies! love you so much!!!
caroline hogan

Allen said...

Well how good is God???!!! WOW WOW WOW!!!! I know that you all had many , many prayers from people who knew you and loved both of you. God is still in the miracle business!! Praise the Lord! Praise the Lord!! What a testimony you two have now.

allen woodhouse

Allison King (Matt Hutsell's sister) said...

BJ and Mark,
I'm praying for you & your babies. May the miracles keep on coming.

Lauren said...

You have been in our thoughts and prayers for weeks now... and to read this miraculous post just blows my mind! God is so good! We will continue to pray for these sweet children - that the Lord would keep them healthy and infection free. And that he would also give you continued strength, courage and patience to face the upcoming weeks. We can't wait to meet these little fighters!
Lauren, Wes, Will and Maggie Jones

Catey said...

Our God is an awesome God!!!! Praise the Lord this part of this long journey is over!!!
Still praying!
love, catey

Anonymous said...

Wow - look how far they have come. God is truly looking over those two sweet babies. You don't know me but I have been praying for those sweet babies and boy has it been working. Praise God for all he has done and will continue to do. You two are doing the right thing and are two wonderful parents. God be with you every step of the way. God Bless

Margaret Presley