Thursday, March 5, 2009

Seven more weeks . . .

Week 17
Waiting for time to go fast.

There is this four-letter word that we all hate:  "W-A-I-T"

Even when we're a child, if we don't get it our way quickly then we cry and scream as hard as we can, until the desire is meet. The sooner the better! We love the microwave; I mean you get instant food real quick. Or we like to go to the fast-food trough the drive-thru and in few seconds we get the food we ordered. You expect that everything in life should get to you almost at the same time that you think about it.

I've been waiting to be a parent for almost two decades.

"Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise"
(Hebrews 10:23)

As many of you know, Jess's pregnancy has been swarmed with difficulties, from trying to conceived, with moments of distress, trips to the emergency room, bed rest, and the list goes on. Last Tuesday we went to the routine ultrasound check, only to find out another complication: the cervix has shortened down to 1.3 cm. She got sent immediately to the section allocated for women whom are going into labor. They placed on her a monitor to check for contractions, and indicated she was having a little contractions. Few minutes later a nurse came in to place an IV in her, and failed to find a vein a couple times. Jessica started crying, the nurse stopped and a second nurse came to try again, but after an additional 2 tries could not get a vein either. So, at this point Jessica is crying in pain so hard. The nurses were panicking and called the anesthesiologist doctor from the delivery room. The doctor came and put some anesthesia, and the same doctor tried and additional couple times until they finally got an IV to work. So, I'm there watching all this trying to keep it together (without fainting), there is blood, needles, etc, and I'm unable to do anything to make this easier on Jessica. She's been so strong. I'm so blessed to have her as my wife.

Moments later, they performed an examination, and they move her to a room equipped with all the tools used for delivery. Then the doctors give her an injection mix (using some sort of dosage machine) to stop the contraction process. This medicine is really rough on the human body. She got really hot in few seconds; I was placing almost "frozen" towels on her neck, face and arms to cool her off. Nausea and vomiting was happening every half hour. She was so druggy that she could not stay awake, and she was so out of what was happening around her.

A stream of doctors would come every hour. And I will talk to them, and understand their opinions. They indicated that there is nothing they can do beyond the medication that was making her very sick. And this medicine can be provided only once. Also it could cause her to retain too much fluid in her body. It could be life threatening to her. By the end of the day after 15 hours of a rollercoaster, our doctor came in, and we decided to stop the medicine. And wait and pray that the situation stabilizes by itself. The medication was turned off around 9pm.

So, here I'm again, next to her bed waiting. Against all odds waiting for a miracle.

Two days have passed since then and the situation is now stable. An ultrasound was done on Thursday and all babies are in spite of everything still there. I look back and see all the complications that they have gone trough and are they are alive. A friend told me: "sure those babies are fighters!" If they are not quitting, we are not quitting on them either. Babies keep holding on in there. And now with a short cervix, we need to be able to make it at least 7 more weeks, for the babies to get a chance to live.

Baby-A and Baby-C are now 7oz (198grams). Baby-B is only 4oz (113grams) is still alive but now his lungs are getting filled with fluid, he is getting closer to go to heaven. So we need to continue to wait and see what happens. Only wait, there is nothing else we can do.

Waiting stinks.

And now I'm reading a recent devotional about waiting, trying to find hope and I want to share it with you. As usual I like to know and have control on everything.  I like to have a plan.  I like to be in charge and fix it, whatever "it" is.  But sometimes we just have to wait.  And I am learning slowly that God is at work even while you wait. The Bible has lots of cases where people waited and waited and waited.

Abraham and Sarah were told they were going to have a son, and they did... 15 years later!

Joseph was under the impression he was going to be a great leader and we was... after spending 17 years as a slave in prison.

It took Solomon 7 years to build the temple, and 13 years to build his house. That's a long time to be outside under a tent! (Or staying somewhere else)

Moses was to lead his people to freedom and eventually he did, but first he was a fugitive... for 40 years!

And do you remember the guy Jesus healed in John 5?  He was paralyzed for a long time. My guess is the dude prayed and prayed for a miracle and eventually the miracle came.... 38 years after the suffering began.  (By the way: that was 38 years of suffering when the life expectancy during those times was something like 30 years.  He suffered and prayed longer than most of his contemporaries lived).

Since the prophecies of the messiah were announced for the first time. We had to wait for almost five thousand years, until Jesus arrived!

Even Jesus waited 30 years to leave the carpentry shop and begin his ministry.

What I'm getting at is this: We need to trust God's timing.  He is never early.  He is never late.  I have heard this life lesson a million times, and yet I am still trying to learn it:  God knows what we need, when we need it, and we can trust him! That's true whether you are waiting on tests results or waiting on a job interview or waiting for some promise of God's to be fulfilled, such as having a child.

Thus, while waiting stinks and patience is sometimes a fleeting virtue-- just keep holding on to the promises of God.  Keep trusting as you wait. God is at work.  And one last thought just for the record, God is far more concerned about who we become in the whole waiting process than when we arrive at the final destination.

That's what I have been trying to learn today.

Here we are praying. Ahead of us we have a final stretch to be able to see, hear and celebrate when these precious babies would cry for the first time entering our world. Thanks to all your prayers, help and notes, it means so much to us. We would never get this far without so many compassionate people all around us, some around the world far away. It is another proof that God cares, and that He is there by our side when everything is so difficult.

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