Thursday, April 2, 2009

Breathe

About 9 months ago, my 7 year old had heart surgery for a condition we knew about at birth. As far as heart conditions go, his condition was not a major one. But, the anxiety when his heart went into a rhythm of 200-300 beats per minute would send me into a ton of "what ifs" in my mind. He had been hospitalized twice, including having paddles used on him to restart his heart because medications were not working. We were looking forward to his surgery and dreading it at the same time.

We wanted this surgery, because we did not want him to deal with the condition any longer. The medications he had been taking since he was in my womb did not work very well for him. We felt like it also "fogged" his mind and it affected his motor skills and speech, not to mention the pain he went through when his heart beat twice as fast as it was supposed to.

At the same time, the "what ifs" would creep through my mind. Why risk the complications if it was not absolutely necessary? We knew the right thing, though was to get it done and over with. Give it to God, and let Him handle it.

There were so many hurdles we went through getting the surgery scheduled, but after prayers, each hurdle was resolved miraculously. Through all the logistics of scheduling the surgery, sudden insurance changes, and switch of doctors, my friend Laura kept telling me to "Breathe".

You see, Laura was not a stranger to tragedy. She herself lost a baby shortly after she was born due to a rare condition called Alobar Holoprocencephaly. She and her husband found out about the condition after the 20 week ultrasound. They knew the outcome of what was to happen to the baby, but they chose to carry the baby full term because they desperately wanted to meet their baby and hold her for the few hours they had.

Last year, she started a non-profit helping others going through the same trauma. I figured if someone who had gone through that type of agony, and get through it and tell others to "breathe", then I could "breathe". I did have a peace about the outcome of my son's surgery. A peace that surpassed all understanding, actually. The peace of God.

My son's surgery went very well. The doctors say if the condition stays away for a year, then it is most likely gone. The change in my son is so apparent. His motor skills have improved, his "brain fog" is no longer there, and his speech is getting better. Even a couple of weeks after the surgery, he actually caught his first baseball during his little league baseball game. We are so, so thankful.

My friend Laura continues to help others with mental and logistical support. All this while going through the nightmare all over again each time she comforts a family who will lose a baby. I'm sure she has to tell herself to just "breathe" every time. To read her story, click here. It will bring tears to your eyes.

3 comments:

Cote de Texas said...

Wow - what a story! I'm so glad it worked it out for your little boy. What a blessing. Puts everything into perspective. We're lucky to be living in these modern times with medicine. Thank you for sharing this.

Stacey said...

What a wonderful miracle for your son!

Susie Q said...

Isn't surgery wonderful? My 21 YO son goes in for pacemaker replacement surgery at the end of the month...I swear they told us that they could replace the battery and NOT the whole thing...and that is what hubs remembers to so...someone didn't explain it very well.

We have a different surgeon this time...a woman. But she is really on top of things. We do need to call & check on the type of anesthesia they'll use on him...the last one was pretty hard to come out from under. But he seems pretty peaceful about it and I am calm...even though the doctor this time doesn't have a British accent. All his heart surgeons prior to this have had a British accent (God's way of reassuring me). I didn't go on the last appt., so Cabinet Man and son went...but they both like her so...I'll trust them and God on it. #2 son has surgery and his older brother comes home on leave that Friday...pretty exciting week then. ;D

I'm glad he's doing well.