A Reason For Our Hope
We have been quite busy the past few weeks at our house. January and February were pretty quiet. I tried to keep any medical appointments limited to once per week to allow the other days for time spent with the girls. Besides going to exercise and going to church, we have tried to stay at home most of the time to allow the 4 of us time for bonding.
I am quickly learning what makes Faith “tick.” It is a bit of a learning curve, because she is 180 degrees different than Jian and I. Even though her different personality is taking some getting used to, I think it is exactly what the Lord knew we needed in our home. For the most part, she is very easy going, happy, silly and playful.
She is generally not concerned with being in a hurry, with what will happen tomorrow, with holding any grudges, or with obsessing over keeping things neat and clean.
(Those who know me well are smiling right now.)
Every day is a lovely adventure to her. Riding in the car, she points out how beautiful and blue the sky is. She becomes excited every time she sees an American flag. She loves the sunshine, but creates fun by playing in the rain. She feels at home and puts her own personal touch on decorating her room and trying out all of her new toys. She loves fashion and likes to mix and match outfits and accessories.
When March came, our calendars suddenly became very full. Jian celebrated her 12th birthday by having a local pet shop come and bring several of their animals to our house. She loves animals and is planning to become a vet when she grows up.
Her actual birthday fell on a Friday. Faith was scheduled to have her heart catheterization earlier that week, but her doctor needed to reschedule it for Friday. So we all woke up early, let Jian open her presents, took her to school, then I took Faith to the hospital. She was totally fine until about an hour before she was to go back and be put under anesthesia. Let me just say that those poor nurses earned their paychecks that day. Our sweet, carefree girl is also a fighter!
Daniel came to the hospital after lunch, and I went to pick Jian up from school. She wanted to go see her sister, but on the way, we made a stop at the local police department for a final birthday surprise. She met Tank, one of the K9’s on the unit, toured the facility, checked out the motorcycles and learned to shoot a radar gun!
Faith had calmed down by the time we arrived at the hospital and was so glad to see her sister. She was required to stay on bedrest for 6 hours after her procedure, so Jian climbed into bed with her and watched movies until we were allowed to go home.
I must admit that there was a little part of us that was hoping we would find out that something in China had been overlooked, and that there actually was a chance to repair her heart. But no such luck. The doctor just confirmed everything we had been told before.
We will leave this Saturday to go to Baltimore where Jian will do 2 weeks of intensive spinal cord retraining therapy at Kennedy Krieger Institute. We are praying for nerve return, specifically to her left quads and calf muscles. This would eliminate the need for wearing her big brace while walking without her crutches.
When we get home from Baltimore, Faith will go back to Vanderbilt, where her pulmonary hypertension specialist will begin some medications to keep her symptoms managed and hopefully slow down her disease progression.
1 Peter 3:15 has been on my mind this week: But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts, and always be ready to give an answer to everyone who asks you a reason for the hope that is in you, with meekness and fear.
According to Faith’s medical reports, we should not have much hope. Each step of our journey, we take in the news, process it, and mourn about it.
But then we press on. And celebrate that we are all here today. For the most part, happy and feeling well. Enjoying the blue skies and the memories we are making together. Acknowledging that because He lives, we will always have hope.
Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. Hebrews 7:25
And we learn from our sweet girl to be full of joy no matter our circumstances.
In this world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. John 16:33