Monday, September 15, 2008

A Hint of Clarity

Where do I begin??? Just this past week, I was speaking with my oldest sister on the phone. It came up how I just want to share this journey but I lack the words to describe specific significant moments (seriously, I used to read a thesaurus for fun because I lack descriptive words....weird, I know...sshhhhh don't tell). I lack accurate consistent descriptive words that will clarify this amazing journey. I am wishy-washy....not with what has happened, but just in how I explain things. I use words like "ridiculous" to explain lots of events with Jacob and then I have to then go further to explain what I mean by that......I want words that just say it....and this is something that after speaking with my sister, I realized it will be the work of the Lord. Why? because I am praying God would use this story in even bigger ways. But I realize that this is a ministry from the Lord and I HAVE to give this beautiful story, of how Jacob brought me closer to the Lord, time to be sorted and clear and strong....it is not about me, it is about the work of the Lord. So I have been sitting back and trying to dissect certain profound moments and trying to figure out accurate descriptive words.

Along came our church's pastors. They contacted Jason and me to be group leaders of a church family Bible Study. We accepted the invitation....the study is "Experiencing God." I chuckled inside because I have experience God more these past 10 1/2 months than ever before in my 13 years of knowing Jesus as my Savior. But I prayed that this study would help me clarify how I have experienced God and how to share it with others as to experience Him more and more.

One of the events I struggle to find accurate words to relay God's amazing work is October 3rd, 2007....that is a profound day in my walk with Christ. This day was the day I went to get a routine ultrasound and found out my baby boy would struggle for his life once out of my womb. All you blogger friends do not know this story because we met you the day Jacob was born and once we knew of our journey with T18....this is some of the story prior to a T18 diagnosis. So here is the letter I emailed our friends and family on October 7th, 2007:

Hello everyone~

I am writing this from a position I have prayed to never be in but yet God has given us a joy in our circumstances for He is the giver and creator of all things and there are no mistakes under his watch and care. I wish I never had to find joy in my children having struggles but here we are faced with our biggest chance to experience God's love even among times of pain and uncertainty.

On October 3rd, I went for an ultrasound at the Regional Perinatal Center at Children's Hospital to get a better picture of the 4 chambers of our baby's heart. There, the sonographer (with 9 yrs. experience) could not get the picture she wanted from the angle she wanted. Suspicious of complications, she volunarily called a magnificent OBGYN who works with high risk deliveries to take his own personal time and take a look at her findings. After observing for a while, he determined that our little baby's heart is not functioning the way a normal heart should. I am not a doctor, just a mother who listened and may have some things mixed up at this time but I will do my best and correct myself later. His left ventricle is very small and shows signs of congenital heart disease. His right ventricle in enlarged (probably to compensate for the left side) and the two major arteries are connected to the right side parallel (there should be one connected to each ventricle criscrossed). He has developed a hole between the two ventricles which allows circulation to go to the left side....this is a GOOD THING....the heart is a muscle and needs to exercise and the way it does that is by pumping blood so the hole allows it to have something to pump. He needs surgery.

On October 5th we met the baby's pediatric cardiologist....he holds up to his fabulous reputation from many I know in and out of the medical field...he is a blessing. After his observations of the baby he is very positive in the success of surgery after the baby is born. Depending on the development of Jacob's heart in these next 4 months in the womb, one of these 2 possible surgical procedures could take place:
1) Jacob's left ventricle continues to grow at a steady rate and is salvageable, he will have a surgery correcting his 4 chambers at about 5-7 days after birth.
2) Jacob's left ventricle does not grow, they have to make his heart into a 3 chamber heart with a series of surgical procedures: The first procedure would be at 5-10 days after birth, the second at 6-8 months, and the last at 4-6 years.....as the heart grows the materials (tubes and such) have to be lengthened.

The preference is the first surgery so what we need is for his little heart to grow and make the most of the left ventricle....please pray for this growth!

As for how we are doing, it is times like these that God's presence is so evident in our life. God has blessed us with the right doctors going beyond what they are required to do and we recognize God's goodness in that. He has given me the calmness and trust that only He can provide. All the medical professionals we have come in contact with have commented at our reactions and we praise God for giving us the strength to be a witness of His love through this. At weak times we allow our concerns to get the best of us and the hardest times are yet to come (like allowing doctors to open up my newborn babies chest to operate!) but God has shown us His love through the shock of finding this all out and He will never leave our sides....we trust Him. Please pray for us as parents to make the best decisions with what is put into our hands to decide.....there are not many things we have to decide but there can be great stress in what we do have to choose.

We will keep you updated on progress as we find things out....we have another appointment with the pediatric cardiologist in 4 weeks and I have my regular OB appointments so if there are changes I will be sure to let you know.

For those of you who have known and prayed for our little one, we thank you so much and ask that you continue to pray for his strength to grow in the womb so that when he is born, he is strong and ready for the procedures that need to take place. Please pass this along....we need as many prayers as we can get!

Thank you and God Bless.

The Fahmers ~ Karen, Jason, Joshua, Jonathan & Jacob

You see, on October 3rd, there was this "ridiculous peace and calmness" that was supernatural....it was the Lord. Up until tonight, I lacked that single clarifying word to describe this significant turning point. I tried my best but I just fell short and struggled through and people patiently listened and tried to get it but I just knew that my words were not accurate enough.

So after doing just the first lesson in this Bible study, God gave it to me....finally!....here is the statement I read that made it click, "When you get to the point in your life where you trust Jesus to guide you one step at a time, you experience tremendous freedom." THAT'S IT!.....FREEDOM! That day, I had a nightmare come true and I had nothing to lean on.....that day, I trusted Jesus to guide my steps one at a time and I experienced freedom. Did things go great from there on out? Nope....not according to the standards of this world. But this freedom I have in Christ, gave me the strength to get through a living nightmare with joy and peace. I love it!...freedom.

I am just so excited to have this clarity to describe that day. I know it is just one word but do you know how significant that day was? I know what happened and what I felt....and I just want to share that with everyone.....and when I am trying to relay it to others especially those who do not know Jesus, I want people to know that a walk with Christ is REAL....it is not just a religion I practice....it is a real relationship where there is true freedom.

So this is just one step towards clarity....I am just so excited! God's work is so exciting....get on board.

Jacob being used by Christ.....what a journey?!?!?.....one well worth taking.

"It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery." Galatians 5:1

8 comments:

Francois said...

Karen, I am completely blown away by your testimony. I am currently going through a situation too, although I can never ever relate it to what you guys went through.

Your words with regards "freedom' really hit home.

Thank you for the blessing that your words brought my way today.

I hope you don`t mind but I am going to add a link to my own blog.

God bless....

Kathy said...

How very blessed the members of your Bible class will be to have you two teach it.

May God continue to bless and to use your amazing family. His love and FREEDOM shines through! Thank you for bringing Him GLORY in all that you do.
Kathy

Bonnie P. said...

Karen, again you never cease to amaze me. I am always amused when you say you can't find the right words as I find all your entries so eloquently written.
You and Jason are remarkable in your faith and I thank you for sharing it with all of us. We are so blessed to know the Lord's goodness in our lives and it is so important to share it every chance we get in this crazy world we live in.
I think you did find the perfect word in Freedom and I plan to share your entry with a few friends who are going through some trials at this time. Keep on Keeping the Faith! You continue to be in my prayers.

Randi said...

Beautiful.
Love you and am still praying,
Randi

Kim (marygracesummons.blogspot.com) said...

How marvelous Jacob's life is and how wonderful it is to see him continue to be used. It's also nice to see the blessings from his mommy. You're something sweet Karen!
Love you friend,
Kim

Beav's Wife said...

That was amazing. You always make a mark on me with your posts. Thank you for letting us into your life. You and your family are such a blessing.
Still praying...

Steve & Marie Douglas said...

Been checking in... hope you are doing okay and just too busy to blog. PRAYING FOR YOU~~~

Steve & Marie Douglas said...

Still checking in on you - PLEASE KNOW I'M PRAYING!!!