Answered Prayer: Lindsay (Part 2)

Part 2: Growing Baby Paxton

Missed Part 1? Find it here!

I continued to pray over this baby everyday. We decided to have an early ultrasound at 16 weeks to find out what we were having. To my delight it was a boy. Matt was overjoyed. He wanted a boy so bad. And we both feared that the baby we lost was a boy and this one would be a girl. But once again God showed up. Not that getting the gender we want is something God is concerned about but for me it showed me he was listening. He knew the desire of our heart and he fulfilled that.

Fast forward 4 weeks, we head to our 20 week ultrasound at the doctor’s office. They are going to confirm the gender and do a bunch of measurements and just check on the little guy. It was great! We got to see him and confirm that indeed it was a him. He looked amazing. He was measuring right where he needed to be. During the ultrasound you can tell the tech can see something that isn’t totally normal and this is where our journey began. When I was 20 weeks pregnant I was diagnosed with complete placenta previa. This is a condition where the placenta has implanted itself low in your uterus and is covering your cervix. So the baby cannot be born any way except for a C-section. As your uterus grows usually the placenta will move and will no longer block the cervix opening. This can be a very serious and life threatening condition for the mom. If for some reason the placenta starts to break down you could start bleeding and it would be difficult to control. My doctor basically said that when the time came for the C-section I might end up with a total hysterectomy if the the bleeding gets to out of control. So we left that appointment a little nervous but overall optimistic that when I returned 4 weeks later it would have moved. Well we have our ultrasound and find out it has not moved. Still my doctor seemed optimistic it could still change positions and so were we, we went on with everyday life. 4 weeks later, on a Monday, we returned to have another ultrasound to monitor the progress. We were a little saddened to find out it still had not moved. Our doctor at this point said the likelihood of it moving was getting less. We left that appointment and again went about our day. My husband had the day off from work, thank you Columbus, so we decided to have a family day. We had lunch and then decided to take Cali to a pumpkin patch. She played and ran all over the place. We picked out a pumpkin for her and Paxton also. We left there and grabbed some dinner and headed to church. Our worship band was doing a live recording for a CD with their worship music on it. And they had invited members to be in the audience to provide the background cheering and singing. I was so excited to be a part of this. I love our worship band and could not wait for this night. So we sang praises and worshipped for 2 whole hours. It was amazing! We got home that night around 9:30 and put Cali to bed and finally got to lay down ourselves. I was pretty exhausted from the day and fell asleep pretty quickly. Around 11:15 I was suddenly awoken and realized I was bleeding. And not just a little bleeding……I had managed to get it all over the sheets. I was really bleeding. I woke Matt up and told him what was going on and said we needed to get to the hospital. Ask any mom that has been pregnant and she will tell you that seeing that much blood is very unsettling. I sort of went into shock. I was nervous and anxious and incredibly worried about our little boy. We called my parents to come and stay at our house with Cali and headed to the hospital. We got there around 11:45. After some paperwork in the ER we were taken up to the labor and delivery floor to get checked in. At this point it had been a full hour and a half since I felt Paxton move. I was starting to fear the worst. As soon as I was in bed the nurse grabbed the monitor and immediately found the heartbeat. I had never felt so much relief at one time! He was looking incredible on the monitor. He had a nice strong heartbeat and immediately started moving and rolling around. It was very comforting to hear him and see him moving around. They monitored me through the night. The next morning my doctor came in and said that Paxton looked good but they were going to keep me until the next Monday just to make sure everything was ok. He also said he noticed throughout the night I was having some contractions. So he decided I needed to be put on a Magnesium drip to help stop those contractions. I’m here to tell you, if you have never experienced Magnesium consider yourself lucky! It was torture and it lasts for 24 hours. Finally I was taken off that medicine and life kind of returned to normal, as normal as sitting in the hospital all day can be. So for the rest of the week we made the best of our stay in the hospital. We actually spent our 7th wedding anniversary in the hospital. People were sending flowers and coming to visit. It was so nice to see our village just surround us during that time. Well the following Monday my doctor comes in and says I can go home but on bed rest. I wasn’t on strict bed rest but was advised to lay down as much as possible. I lasted 3 weeks at home! Praise the Lord!!

During my at home bed rest, I was having 2 doctor’s appointments a week. One was an appointment with my doctor and an ultrasound to measure my placenta and check to see if it was moving at all. The other was for an NST. Its a non-stress test, it’s actually pretty awesome. You get to sit in a comfy recliner and watch tv while strapped to a monitor and listen to that beautiful heartbeat for 30 minutes! I really enjoyed these visits. I would get me a smoothie before the appointment and then it was just me and my boy for a solid 30 minutes. Well it was one of these appointments that things changed for me. I woke up the morning on one of my ultrasound days and I was bleeding. Now my doctor had given me strict instructions that if I started bleeding at all to head straight to the ER. Well seeing as how this was my 3rd bleeding episode, I was a little less panicked than all the other times. I knew it wasn’t a ton of bleeding and since we were heading to the doctor anyway I figured I would just mention it there. I see my doctor and tell him and he informs me to go straight home, pack a bag and head to the hospital. I wasn’t totally shocked because of the seriousness of the situation. I checked in the hospital on November 2nd at 32 weeks.

My stay in the hospital was so not what my doctor expected. He said I was able to keep Paxton in me a lot longer than I thought I was going to. The morning of November 21st was the day God chose I would meet my little boy. He came 6 weeks early and 2 weeks before my scheduled C-section. Just a little side story to show how awesome God is! I kept a quiet time journal the whole time I was in the hospital. Every morning I spent some time with the Lord. It was so awesome having that time each day. It’s hard with a toddler at home to really get 30 minutes of undisturbed time to just sit and study and read God’s word. Well the day before Paxton was born the verse God laid on my heart was Isaiah 43:2 “When you pass through the waters I will be with you, and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.” And also Deuteronomy 31:6-8 “Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you, he will never leave nor forsake you.” I always write down prayers I have for people or myself at the end of my quiet time. My prayer for me says, “I cannot say thank you enough for bringing Paxton and myself to this point. Lord just continue to cover us and protect both of us. Lord I know your plan is great and I know that you have already seen this ending. I just pray you continue to give me peace and know that you’ve got this.” He was preparing me that morning for what was to come, I just didn’t know it yet.

I woke up around 4 am on the 21st and instantly knew I was bleeding again. And also knew it was a big deal. This was now my 5th bleeding episode in 6 weeks. I called my nurse and she immediately paged my doctor and things got to moving rather quickly. I was told I would be having a c-section as quickly as possible. I’m scrambling because Matt isn’t even here, I’m all alone! I tell one of the nurses his number and they are calling him. But he isn’t answering and it hits me, he doesn’t answer random numbers and especially at 4 am. So I handed her my cell phone and told her to call him. He finally answers and rallies all of our family and everyone heads up to the hospital. It was very chaotic for a little bit. I was extremely nervous because I knew I was bleeding but there really isn’t anything they can do to stop it right now. My doctor was literally in mid-delivery of another baby. So he couldn’t just stop what he was doing but he reassured me he would be done very quickly because I needed to get to the OR soon. As I laid in the OR while they were prepping me, my mind kept going over the verse in Isaiah. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you. I knew God was there, I knew he was holding me and I knew he was going to watch over us. My doctor ran into some complications once he got in there. Apparently Paxton had flipped into breach position at some point. I had an ultrasound that previous Tuesday to confirm position and weight and check my placenta. So in 4 days he flipped! But at just after 6 am my baby boy was born at 4 pounds and 11oz. I was so excited and wanted to see him. When I was able to see him the nurse held him up to my face so I could kiss him. And then he was whisked away to the NICU. Matt went with him because I told him I was fine and I wanted him to be with our son. Little did I know what was ahead.

I could tell things were not going as planned. My doctor and the surgeon assisting him seemed a little frazzled and appeared to be struggling. I asked repeatedly what was going on but didn’t get many answers. I prayed and prayed and prayed. After having Paxton and an additional hour and a half of surgery I was taken into the recovery room. God had brought me through it, just like I knew he would. Now, I was in an excruciating amount of pain, but that didn’t matter. My little boy was doing ok in the NICU and I was still around, so I was happy. I was able to see Paxton the following day after much pleading with my nurses. He was beautiful and tiny and amazing. I was in awe of our God. I was sitting next to my rainbow baby and holding his little hand. We tell the story of Noah and the ark to our little girl a lot. We remind her that God always gives us a rainbow after a storm. Paxton is my rainbow. Isaiah 66:9 says “I will not cause pain without allowing something new to be born, says the Lord.” This is so true. Hold tight to the Lord during the storms and the painful moments. He knows what he is doing and he will see you through.

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Answered Prayer: Lindsay

 

I met Lindsay over eight years ago through her now husband, Matt. They have been married since October 18, 2008. They have a beautiful 4-year-old daughter named Cali and a sweet little miracle 8 month old son named Paxton. Lindsay has a huge heart and amazing faith. I pray you will feel encouraged by her story.  These are her words. . .


Photo Credits: Rebecca Kelly Photography

Part 1:

Have you ever felt like you are being attacked by the devil? It can happen at any time and without warning. Even the best Christians, with the best walks with Jesus can come under Satan’s attack.

When Cali was two and a half we found out we were pregnant….by total surprise. We had been trying for months but nothing was happening. And then randomly out of the blue we found out I was expecting. We were thrilled. So excited in fact that after only a week of finding out we told all of our families during Christmas. Everyone was thrilled for us. Well only a few short weeks after that we found out our baby had no heartbeat. We were scheduled for a repeat ultrasound in a week just to confirm. We prayed and prayed and prayed some more. I wanted a miracle, honestly I did. But I prayed mostly for God’s will. And that whatever his will he would walk me through it. It’s amazing how consistently praying can put you at ease. As we sat in the waiting room the following week for our ultrasound I knew what they were going to find. And I knew that God was there with me. In that moment, in that space, he was there holding me up and giving me this peace that surpasses all understanding. We had our ultrasound and exactly what I felt was confirmed. I was scheduled for a D&C just a couple of days later. We left and neither of us really said anything. It’s a strange feeling knowing that only a couple of weeks ago you were planning your baby’s future and now you are preparing for a surgery to remove this precious life God gave you. I put on the brave strong face. I didn’t want to upset Matt or Cali or our family. I was at peace with this and knew that God wouldn’t put me through such an ordeal without a reason. I fully believe this is when the devil crept in. I had the surgery and again kept up the brave face. I said all the right things to people when they asked how I was. I told them God had a plan and he knew what he was doing. But in the quiet of my house during my alone time, I cried out to God. I couldn’t understand what was going on. He knew how much we wanted another baby. Did he really think my faith was strong enough to withstand something like this? Did he think my faith wasn’t strong enough and so that was why he was letting me endure this, to draw me closer to him? All kinds of questions would run through my head. And some were not always accepting and loving towards Christ. I had moments of hurt and anger and sadness with God. I pulled away from my marriage. I didn’t want to be close to him because it hurt. I had one job, protect and grow a little baby and I had failed.

I had joined a group of ladies at church around this time. I had been leading a women’s small group for about a year and we were starting discipleship groups that fall. In order to lead a discipleship group you must first yourself go through the discipleship process. I was excited to get connected with some more ladies and really dig into the word. I just knew it would bring me out of my funk. So I joined and things seem to pick up. Matt and I became closer and eventually decided to start trying again. Well we decided we weren’t going to prevent anything. If the Lord blessed us with another baby then great, if not then we were ok with that also. So everything was moving along. I had an incredible support system of girlfriends who had experienced the same loss and we regularly chatted and shared our hearts with one another and it was awesome. After a few weeks in this discipleship class I find out I am once again pregnant. And because God is who he is, he showed up. I went to my discipleship class and our leader started out by sharing a verse that for some reason that morning God laid on her heart. It was Proverbs 3:5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding: In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” I cried…and everyone looked at me a little crazy. I apologized and said that verse just really speaks to me. After we were done with group my leader pulls me aside to let me know if I need to talk or to pray she is there. So I told her we had just found out we were pregnant again and I was a nervous wreck. How was I supposed to relax and trust in God when he took my second baby home with him? She said I think it’s crazy this verse was laid on my heart. She said it was truly from out of nowhere and that she felt God telling her to share it with us. I relaxed a little. God was there, he is in the midst and he knew my anxiety. Well I prayed and prayed and prayed during the weeks leading up to our first doctor’s appointment. And we went and I thought I was going to throw up I was so nervous while sitting in that waiting room. We get called back and there is a heart beat! This little one has a heart beat and I can see the beautiful heart beating away on the screen. Next to seeing Cali’s heartbeat the first time, this was an incredible day. I left that appointment a little more confident in this pregnancy.

 

Riding On Faith…Of Others?

I Get By With a Little Help From My Friends. --John Lennon:

This morning I was preparing my thoughts for our first Seeds of Hope meeting and praying for God to show me what He wants me to share. Mid prayer I felt Him lay this concept on my heart: Riding on the faith of others. Isn’t it crazy how He does things like that sometimes?  It seems so appropriate for today especially since He has given us ( Kayla and me) this opportunity to witness to some amazing women. He has entrusted to us these women who are in a dark season of their lives. He is trusting US… little Kari and little Kayla to encourage, give advice, listen, and pray with these women. I do not take this task lightly, and I pray daily that I am fulfilling God’s plan in a way that is pleasing unto Him.

 

Romans 1:12 – “When we get together, I want to encourage you in your faith, but I also want to be encouraged by yours.” 

♥Share from your heart. Share with love. Personally, I feel so encouraged myself by the women who have been placed in my path the last two years. Their faith is remarkable.

Ecclesiastes 3:4 – “A time to cry and a time to laugh, A time to grieve and a time to dance.”

♥Don’t shy away from a “God Moment”. I know there are women who are afraid/ shy/ embarrassed when it comes to talking about infertility. I realize not everyone will fall into our laps, send us messages, or come to us. I realize I need to look for the women who are crying in the corner. It isn’t always going to be comfortable. God didn’t ask me to be comfortable though, did He?

It is a little less painful to go through infertility when you have someone in your corner. We are sharing the moments of tears, heartache, and doubt with these amazing women. You better believe we will be rejoicing when each of them have a pregnancy announcement!

2Corinthians 5:20 – “So we are Christ’s ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us.”

♥Actions speak so much louder than words. Sometimes I’m guily of shying away from reaching out or speaking to someone because I fear I do not have the words. I don’t know what the right thing to say would be. Anyone else feel that way? No. Just me? As an ambassador of Christ- As an example of God’s love, I shouldn’t do that though! Each opportunity He gives me to show His love to someone in need, I should take that opportunity and run with it. Actions carried out in love will send a stronger message.

2Timothy 1:8 – “So never be ashamed to tell others about our Lord. And don’t be ashamed of me, either, even though I’m in prison for Him. With the strength God gives you, be ready to suffer with me for the sake of the Good News.”

♥You cannot do life alone. Sharing your struggles with others is a way to open the door for God to use your struggle for something beautiful. I’m not suggesting you air all of your struggles via a Facebook status. Please. Don’t be THAT person. I will tell you this though – by me opening up to just a few people about my own struggles, it allowed God to show me people who could shine a light for me.

 

Listen. Sit down for a second. Come close and let me whisper these words to you – It is OKAY to be a little weak. It is ok to feel a little defeated at times. You don’t have to put on your superhero mask today, ladies and gents. If your are in a dark season, I can assure you someone is waiting to hold the light to help you through. As Christians, we are called to step out on faith and encourage others. If you are in a season of life where you are needing encouragement or you are needing a hand to hold, that is ok. One day you will be able to hold the light for someone else during their own dark season.

“Honor each opportunity [to witness] as a moment created and planned by God.” – Elise Cleary

 

If you would like more info about our faith-based support group, please send me a little message, fill out the form below, or find me on Facebook – http://www.fb.com/dearbabybell .