Sunday, May 23, 2010

Bethany Update

I'm gonna head to bed in a minute, but I wanted to give you a quick update on Bethany's health. For those who were unaware, Bethany was taken to the hospital at around 4am this morning. She had been suffering an intense pain that spread from her back, around her left hip, and down to her groin. She woke me at 1am when the pain was becoming more intense, and a couple hours later I called Béa, our midwife, and asked her to come have a look.

Béa brought Beth K with her to assist in what we thought might have been pre-term labor. An internal exam revealed that her cervix was still closed, but this certainly looked as though it may be the beginning stages of labor. Bethany is only 34 weeks, so a home birth was out of the question (you need to be 37 weeks for a safe home birth) and a trip to the hospital was the obvious choice.

I called our friend Sherry and asked her to come help. She and her husband Rick were here in a flash, and while I went to start the truck, the gang helped Bethany down the driveway. Oh, did I mention that we just moved yesterday. So trying to pack a bag for her was a bit of a gong show. I didn't know where anything was. Truth be told, I was having trouble finding light switches, so I was groping in the dark. We had literally only been living in the house twelve hours.

Anyways, Beth offered to stay at the house while Promise continued to sleep unaware. Meanwhile, Sherry and Béa and I went to the hospital. Béa had already made arrangements with the doctor at this hospital a few months ago, just in case a home birth became a problem. The doctor that Béa had chosen was amazing. Amazing. She was so attentive. She was there very quickly, despite the 4:30am wakeup call. She stayed with Bethany for so long and made sure she was getting the best of care. She let the three of us go into the birth ward even though it was against hospital policy.

All of the staff in that ward are fantastic. Each of the doctors was very communicative, telling us exactly what was going on. They did a great job of listening to Bethany and meeting her needs. Her need was simple: Pain Relief. She was screaming bloody murder. The pain was unbearable. Job number one was to relieve the pain, job number two was to find the cause.

It took a while to find a strong enough drug to stop the screaming. Eventually they called in an anesthesiologist who got a tramadol IV drip going, with the occasional shot of morphine to battle the sudden onset of even greater pain. Meanwhile they were doing regular checks on the baby to make sure that he was not getting stressed. Each check confirmed that he was largely oblivious to his mother's agony.

The first suspected culprit was kidney stones. An ultrasound ruled that out. The next thing on the list was a possible blockage in her intestines. This hospital doesn't have an MRI machine, so we took an ambulance to the nearby hospital where they scanned Bethany for over 45 minutes. Of course, she was asked to remain as still as possible so they could get a clear picture. She did amazing. I sat with her in the room while Béa sat with the tech and saw some very cool pictures of my baby boy. After the scan we were told that it had not revealed any trouble.

This left us with only one other possibility, and that is where we are now. Bethany has been referred to a neurologist who will check for some sort of pinched nerve. She was signing the papers for that referral when I left this evening, so we expect to get some word later tonight.

I sat with Bethany while she slept for a couple hours this afternoon while Béa went home for a quick nap and a shower. She returned at 6pm to send me home so I could tuck Promise into bed. I can't tell you how excited I was to see Promise. Bethany and I really missed her today. What was she up to during our adventure? She was having fun with her friends!

Beth, who had arrived in the middle of the night, stayed for the entire day with the Bird. Kendra and Bethany W. were here as well. They had a great day with Promise, and I can't tell you how much they blessed me. I came home to a super happy kid who had already eaten dinner and was already bathed. After a big hug, we waved to the girls as they left and then we went to my bed to play.

What a privilege to play with my kid. We spent about 45 minutes together doing our regular evening activities of "horsey" and "woah". "Horsey" is the one where I lay on my back and Promise sits on my belly facing me while I jiggle up and down. "Woah" is a similar setup with her facing the other direction while I hold her arms and pull her in every direction before finally flopping her on the bed beside me.

We then read our nightly bible story and went to her room to read "Tiger Can't Sleep" and sing our songs. She went to bed perfectly happy. That, my friends, is the grace of God. Imagine, she awoke on her first day in a new house, to find that her parents were missing. She spent the day with the girls, got an hour with me, and then went to bed with a smile on her face, never having seen her mom. And she's not even two years old. God is good. He really is good to us.

I know I've said this dozens of times on these pages, but we have some incredible friends here. They helped us pack up and move house over the course of two days, and then on day three went the extra mile and took care of us in yet another crisis. Beth, Bethany and Kendra—thank you for being such awesome babysitters. Sherry, thanks for being there and loving on Bethany when I felt like I had nothing left to give. I don't know who was working to cover Béa's shift today, but thanks to all who arranged that. Rick, thanks for doing what needed to be done and taking care of those who were taking care of Bethany. And Béa, thanks for all that you do. I don't know how you can so graciously take such good care of Bethany and I when our world seems to be crumbling around us. Thanks for the wisdom and peace that you bring with you everywhere you go.

I'm gonna sleep at home tonight and Béa will stay the night at the hospital. She has a shift in the morning, so the girls have offered to watch Promise at the orange house while I go see Bethany first thing. I hope to bring the Bird with me for another visit later in the morning. I'll try to update this blog late tomorrow when I have more news for you.

In the meantime, if you'd like to pass on a little message for Bethany, leave a comment on this blog. I'll be brining a computer to the hospital tomorrow so she has some tv shows to watch or something. I'll be sure to open up the comments window before I leave with the computer so she can read your get well wishes. I know that would really bless her.

It feels awful to hear her in such agony. I feel so helpless. Please continue to pray that the doctors will find the cause of her pain and find a solution. Thanks for all your prayers.


PS. I was texting Darrell about the silly little shoes that I had to wear in the hospital room today, and he suggested I take a photo. I had my phone, so I leaned over and took a snap shot.


Joy said...

Praying for you all!!!! Praying God's wisdom for the doctors, for answers to be found soon, for safety of Bethany and new little baby, and for strength and rest for you all in Him!

Shannon & Darrell said...

Dear Bethany,
You have so many people praying for you right now. We know that you are in good care, so glad that Bea has been there with you at the hospital, and that Promise is doing well with everyone that is caring for her. Tim you are an incredible husband and Father and we are praying for strength for you as well. Praying Gods wisdom for the doctors too, praying for your healing.

Love and hugs,
Shannon & Darrell

Shannon said...

Tim the silly little shoes are just not your color. :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for taking such good care of our daughter. As a mom it is so comforting to know her husband loves her and is there at her side. Thank you for keeping us briefed on what is going on. Bethany, your dad knows how I long to be there with you. I feel so helpless,I want to hop a plane and fly there. But I know you have many around you that I regard as angles sent by God to minister to you. Dad and I are praying and believe you and baby will be fine. Tim, my remark I texted last night was an inside joke that Bethany would remember. Poor timing I figure now, sorry. You are loved a bunch though and the shoes....I hope you can re-gift them.
Mom Mc

Sheri Scott said...

Hi there you two! Sounds like you are surrounded by some very lovely people... This is a read aloud prayer: I speak blessing over you as a family and healing in your body Bethany in Jesus' name. I bless your pregnancy, labor and birth in Jesus' name and God I ask that you fill them (and baby boy) with peace and joy. I ask that you prepare a table for them in the midst of their enemies (crisis). I speak to the source of the pain and and say be gone and all the pain go now! and God, thank you for Tim and Bethany - I love them. Can you let them feel your hands holding theirs as you play 'whoa' on your bed with them? Let them feel as safe and protected as Promise is. I ask all these things in Jesus' name - thanks.

Love you guys - Sheri

Kate said...

I am sending my love and praying for you! Praying for complete healing in the name of Jesus! I am so glad that your beautiful boy is happy and safe inside.
Tim - praying for your strength and am so happy to hear you and Promise got to have your nightly routine in the midst of everything. What joy!
Sending my love to you 3 + 1.
love Kate

Uncle Jeef said...

Mom called me last night to give me a heads up. I was at a party with a bunch of friends from church, so I had a couple of them pray with me. I am so thankful that you have people looking after you. I'll continue to pray for the pain, and that the doctors will discover the problem. You are all loved very much.

Heidi said...

Hi my friends,

I am so grateful and thankful that God has surrounded you with a family of people that love you and care for you spiritually, emotionally and physically. We have been praying since your mom told us what was going on and we are praying for spontaneous resolution of all pain in Jesus' name.

I so wish I could be there with you guys - but I know that you are in good hands. Tim, praying for strength for you. (text if you need anything at all) btw - I love your shoes - seriously you should start a new trend when you come home!
B - I am praying for you to be totally wrapped in the arms of your father right now with peace and comfort and No Pain.
Little boy you are having quite the ride - you are being prepared for the awesome exciting life you have ahead of you.
As always - kisses for the Bird!
Love Hi

Emilie said...

Bethany & Tim,

How blessed you are to have each other and such great friends. Bethany, we'll be thinking of you and praying for the best.


chongville said...

Hi guys,
I just wanted to post a related testimony from last years' Nicaragua JOC. Hopefully this stirs up hope and faith within you...

"Yesterday, at the second medical clinic of the Nicaraguan Journey of Compassion, the team ministered the Love of Jesus in a barrio where the Sandinistas live on one side of the road and the Liberales live on the other in a constant state of division. A woman named Petrona was fast-tracked through the line-up of people due to the obviously intense agony that she was in. When she talked to the doctor, it was discovered that she had been in increasingly excrutiating pain for the last five months. The doctor told her that there was nothing that medicine could do to help her and called me over to pray. She told me that Petrona was suffering under neuropathic pain caused by a pinched nerve in her back that caused her to feel like "fire ants are crawling under my skin". We prayed for the Love of Jesus to cover her and I immediately felt the tangible presence of the Lord and my hand on her back began to get intensely hot. Less than a minute later, Petrona sat weeping with relief, speechless and in awe of the kindness and power of God! Jesus totally set her free and we told her that "freely you have received, now freely give" and prayed for her to be filled with the Spirit and sent her out to do the work of the Kingdom. Hallelujah! Gloria Dios!! His Kingdom continues to advance..."

Anyway, of course you know that He loves you with an everlasting love...
We ask You Father to fill Bethany full up with Your Spirit right now... flood her with Your Love; fill every organ, muscle, bone, tissue and cell in her body... Pain, leave her body now! We speak restoration to every system within her and command any pinched nerves to be released in Jesus' Name! Hallelujah!

We'll keep praying and standing with you guys.

Peace and Love,
the Chongs

pasivirta said...

we continue to pray for you all, but specifically for B and the pain.
sounds like a blast with Promise the other day, today zeke and I were playing in the yard at a friend's house, he loved the dirt. of course.


Heather said...

Oh B, praying, praying, praying for you. Sending love and strength your way.

Way to go Tim. You are a TROOPER! Way to care for your family, guy. You're a winner!

Much love to you four. Trusting God for your FAST healing and protection.


Arnica said...

I love you! So sorry to hear you've been going through all this! Praying for you and your beautiful family. Trusting God to care for you in every way, dear friend. You are His precious Bird, I know He will.

Love and prayers,