(Editor’s Note: The following is a guest post from my sweet wife, Jen. I continue to be encouraged and amazed by this woman, and hope that you will find this piece informative, encouraging, and uplifting. She will be able to see (and hopefully respond) to some of the comments posted here.)
Week 33 Update: Ponderings, Plans, and Prayer Requests.
Fall will be here in two days and it’s looking like God will answer our prayers for a fall
baby! It was still spring when I started bed rest on June 8th. I still can’t believe that I have completely missed the entire summer even though it was nothing but hot outside! No pool, no beach, no traveling, no garden, no getting to all the many plans I had for the summer to nest and prepare for baby. God had other plans. He asked me to give up all my plans and desires for the life of my unborn child. I know that God has been and is using this time to teach me things I would not have learned otherwise. Patience is probably the number one lesson here for obvious reasons. Tied with that is constantly being reminded that I am not in control of anything, never have and never will be no matter how much I try. I must constantly surrender my will and this baby’s life to God which is a daily struggle. Among other things, I am also learning humility, graciousness, gratitude, and the power of the faithful prayers of God’s people. Even though this has been the most difficult and uncomfortable time of my life so far, I am grateful that God has chosen this journey for me so that I can be refined and molded to become more like Christ.
God has also given me opportunities to live out I Peter 3:15 “…always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you…” Many of the nurses, doctors and other hospital workers constantly comment on my positive attitude, patience and how I’ve handled things so well compared to other patients who go crazy and get very crabby after just a few days. I cannot take any credit for this. I know I have bad attitudes and impatience all the time. It is humbling to hear these comments and I try to tell people every chance I get, that it has nothing to do with me but it is only because of Christ in me that I can smile and have hope.
So the plan is to go home next Monday when I hit 34 weeks as long as baby and I are behaving. I am so excited to get to go home for a few weeks! I miss my hubby, my pets, my bed and being able to step outside into the sunshine and get some fresh air. Of course I am a little nervous about being far from the hospital. I will still need to be off my feet most of the time, but I will have a little more freedom to get up and move around more.
We will travel to Augusta once or twice a week for ultrasounds and monitoring. If something doesn’t look right I will be admitted again. We have decided it would be best to deliver here since the doctors and nurses here all know me and are aware of my high risk conditions. I will return to Augusta at 37 weeks to have the stitch removed (sometime during the week of Oct 18th). I might go into labor right away or I might not if there is a lot of scar tissue from the cerclage. After talking to the Dr, there is a good chance that they might induce me at that point or keep me in the hospital till I deliver because of my unique situation. Generally, they send people home the day of removal if they don’t go into labor after a few hours. The plan is for a normal delivery, but they are always prepared for a c-section if necessary. I told them that I don’t plan on leaving the hospital at that point if the baby is still inside of me! Of course these plans could all change as I can still go into labor anytime.
- Continue to pray for health and safety of me and the baby.
- Pray for safe travels as we go back and forth to Augusta.
- Pray for David as he continues to balance work and time with me. Things at church will only be getting busier as we get closer to the holidays.
- Pray that I do not go into labor at home and that I will not be discharged from the hospital after the stitch comes out.
- Pray that the amniotic fluid level will fall into a normal range before delivery and that my frequent contractions might let up a bit.
- We have also been having more trouble controlling my gestational diabetes as the baby and placenta keeps growing. My placenta is a little larger than normal anyway because of the chorioangioma. The hormones produced by the placenta cause the pancreas to have a hard time keeping up with insulin demands. My oral meds have been increased twice and make me drowsy. I still get crazy sugar levels at times even though I am following their diet which seems to consist of lots of foods that spike your sugar like fruit juice, white bread, rice, potatoes and desserts. It’s so confusing. Being sedentary doesn’t help things either. Pray that I will be able to keep my sugars in control, especially when I go home and that I won’t need insulin shots.
- Pray for wisdom for the doctors as they make decisions regarding my care.
Thank you for taking the time to read this lengthy update and for rejoicing with us that God has brought us safely to this point in the pregnancy! He has certainly exceeded our expectations! We so appreciate all your prayers, visits, calls, cards and encouragement as we have journeyed through this trying time.
No news is good news. That is always a welcome saying in our house these days. But it is especially nice when it comes from the doctor.
Here is what we know right now.
- God is answering prayer. Our baby is still inside his Momma, which is exactly where he needs to be at this stage in the game.
- This past week was very hard… even the staff at the doctor’s office recognized this. As such, we were on many peoples minds after the last ultrasound. Apparently, the tenuous nature of our latest development was more than we realized, and the fact that nothing happened between then and now gave everyone (including the doctor) a small sigh of relief.
- No change means that things could go at any moment, still.
- He is head down at this point… this is OK, but if the head starts to go through the funnel and rest against the stitch, it could prove troublesome… and as our doctor said, that could be the signal that the end of gestation could be drawing nigh.
What this all means in reality is that we are begging the Lord to get us to July 19. 10 days. 10 days from now. 10 days opens the door (medically) to a shot at life for our son. 10 days means that medicine and faith meet, and together (for the first time) agree that there is hope for our son to be viable outside the womb.
Would you pray for July 19th? Would you pray for us as I (David) take some time off work this week to try and refocus my heart? Would you pray for Jen, that she would continue to rest, even though at this point, she is about to go stir crazy? Would you pray for our son, that he would stay stubbornly put where he is?
We have seen God moving in powerful ways all over the world because of our circumstance. People have been brought in to our lives, our’s (and other’s) faith has been stretched, and Jen and I have been brought in to new relationships with people we have not known well. So that leads us to the final prayer request. Would you pray that God would use this to lead others to the beauty, grace, and peace of the gospel, and that the non-believer would be brought to their justification in Christ, and the believer would be stirred towards love and good deeds because of this?
10 days. God can and does indeed work miracles. Thanks for holding us up in prayer. We couldn’t do this without you.
Love to you all, David & Jen