Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Weathering The Storm

PSALM 36:5

We had another appointment with the doctors at Children's and University. Our baby is growing right on track and doing well in the womb. She is weighing almost 5 pounds and very active. Sometimes congenital heart defects can change or worsen in the womb and so far everything looks the same. Her heart is growing right along with her body, which is great! Praise God for those important details. Everything is going as planned...she will have the surgery a couple days after birth. We have to relocate to Denver in a few days to be sure I am there when she is born. At birth, her team of pediatric doctors will administer the prostaglandin through her umbilical cord for her little heart valve to sustain her. The valve that normally closes on healthy babies, at birth, needs to stay open for to live. I will be able to hold her for a short time before they take her to the NICU. After they stabilize her, she gets transported next door to Children's-to the CICU. Clark said, "It's going to be hard to leave you after the baby is born but sorry babe, I am going to Children's to be with Mia!" You go Daddy! She needs you. There is nothing like a daddy's love.
It has been a whirlwind of emotions and activities in our home the past few weeks. I have been so busy making plans to relocate that I have been preoccupied. Now that we have been told to go to Denver sooner, it is sinking in. Our life is about to change drastically. Some days I think, how will I ever handle all this! Our daughter will need continuous care through the next few months. Doctors visits regularly and another surgery in a couple months...a lot to think about.

We were met with bad weather again on our ride home from Denver. During the last appointment everyone was rushing around trying to get information on the storm coming so they could get us out in time. It was so helpful and loving. I am overwhelmed by the caring people at the hospital and so thankful. We chose to leave a day earlier to beat the storm but unfortunately we did not make it! We ran into the blizzard at nightfall..that was pretty scary. We only had 30 miles to our destination but we couldn't see anything. We thought about turning back but the storm was right behind us. I started praying with FERVOR for God to direct our path and be our guiding light. I prayed the entire hour that we drove. We came upon a truck in front of us that had a white light on the back. I prayed that it would not turn off and we could follow it. It did not turn off and we were able to make it to the town safely. I know God led us and protected us. An amazing thing happened while praying, I realized that we needed to PRAY more about our baby and the next "STORM" we are about to go through. And that if God is not at the center we will never make it! Sounds simple enough but it's easy to get stressed about things instead of leaning on God and turning to HIM. It was a wake up call to both of us that God is going to weather this storm in front of our family and we need to turn to Him and FOCUS on His faithfulness. During the most intense time on the road, my babies(5 and 7 now!) were eagerly watching and listening to me pray. Then they said, Mom, you know there are angels all around us right now. And they leaned back and put in a movie. Enough of this worry for them! Don't I wish I had faith like a child. It made me realize even more to turn my worry over to the Lord and have peace. About everything! I felt like God was telling us, He could get us through WHATEVER storm we were facing in life and to LEAN ON HIM. Isn't it amazing that even when we don't know the right words to pray, God knows us, he knows our needs. He knew what I needed, a boost in the confidence direction! Our life is just (and has already) about to get a bit more complicated. I will remember this snowy ride of faith in the future when we are weathering the next stage of life.
Even though it has been a long couple of months and an inconvenience to travel so far for all these appointments, I am thankful we have made it. God has prepared us in many ways on these trips to endure all that is needed for the health of our baby. We have made it this far and we are pressing on in FAITH, HOPE, and PERSEVERANCE. We will be leaving for Denver in about a week and are thankful for all the prayers on our behalf. We are praying for you too.

Monday, March 1, 2010

I've got confidence...

It's been a busy time for us at the Rathe house. Home educating, doctors visits, dealing with the sickies, making preparations for our baby's delivery..Whew! I finally have a moment to blog!

We had another visit with the pediatric cardiologist in Denver. Things are looking the same. The technician was able to get more great pictures of Mia's heart. She cooperated well. She is growing right on schedule and the doctors are going along with the initial plans for surgery. The warmth and support from people at Children's has been very encouraging and a huge burden lifter! I was reminded by a family member, we as Christians don't have to worry because we have FAITH. It is so hard sometimes not to worry about the what ifs but it is so wonderful we can pray and lean on God! And God is providing us many angels throughout this journey. We are so thankful.

The trip to Denver was long and snowy. We were driving along in clear skies and then drove directly into a blizzard on the mountain pass. Not so fun! We turned around and tried a different way but that was just as bad. We asked at a gas station if there were any roads we could take and we eventually were directed to a clear one! We did run into some snow and ice closer to Denver...we were driving very carefully noticing a couple cars in the ditch. I was getting nervous! I hear this little voice from the back seat..Mama, Can we sing that one song that gets quieter and louder?? My 5 year old used to ask for that song all the time...It was a request I had not heard for quite sometime. How appropriate at this time I thought! The song starts out softly with clapping one finger together then 2 then 3 etc. It ends with "zero" when you mouth the words. The words..."I've got confidence, my Lord is gonna see me through, no matter what the case may be I know My Lord is gonna fix it for me because..I've got confidence....." It goes on and on. I realized that I was worrying for nothing on the icy roads.God was in control. And my husband was driving soo carefully! We had been praying all day! Why would my spirit not yield to the peace God provides? I am human..Fleshy...Anxious! The song put me in my place and was certainly a little nudge from God. So we continued our trip with a bit more peace and trust! I am sure my husband was glad I did not ever give in to my fears
out loud:)

Now we are home SAFE and ready for whatever awaits around the corner. As we get closer to the time of Mia's arrival, I am aware of God's awesome presence and power.I know that He is in control and that whatever happens, He will be holding our family. We will travel back to Denver March 23rd for another check up and then in mid April to stay for the birth, surgery, recovery.. Could be a while! God is good. We are so thankful to my husband's employer. He can keep his job until we return! Praise God! The staff is willing to make things work until we return. What a blessing and wonderful support for my husband.
I am trying to take it easy as the doctor told me to, it is nice to have 4 helpers!
This pregnancy has been HARD compared to the others! I have a lot more pain and mini contractions! and at times I get annoyed with my physical body because I just want to clean my house!!! But I am reminded that it is only for a short while longer and I cherish my big tummy and all the joys of pregnancy. Even though my tummy is a boxing ring sometimes. She is a fighter for sure!
Galatians 6:9"Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunities, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers."

What a great reminder to press on and have a joyful spirit through this trying time. I am thankful for the Word.