Yesterday afternoon we traveled to Mott Children’s Hospital for our second appointment. Each appointment starts with an ultrasound of Owen and includes pictures and measurements. We were thrilled to see that Owen, now an almost 2-pound baby, is growing well. And the mass in his chest–praise God–appears to have stopped growing! This means his CVR, the ratio that measures the size of the mass in relation to his body, is going down. On Tuesday it was 1.6; on Friday it was 1.5. Because of this positive change, the doctor changed our schedule from appointments twice a week to appointments once a week.
During the ultrasound, Owen’s heart was beating strong and showed no signs of distress. Though his heart is out of place, we hope it will move back to the proper position as he grows bigger and the mass either shrinks or becomes smaller in proportion to his body.
Our prayers from here are that:
- Owen’s heart would stay strong and return to its proper place.
- The mass would shrink and Owen would grow.
- The mass would disappear and Owen would never need surgery.
As long as everything continues to go well, it looks like Owen should be able to have a normal birth with no need for a C-section or induction. He’ll need to be born in Grand Rapids or Ann Arbor to provide access to a Level IV NICU and pediatric surgeon. Hopefully he won’t need either of those. Through scanning and monitoring after birth, his doctor will determine the proper time for surgery. CPAM surgeries are typically in the first year of life, but sometimes they’re not needed at all. We’re praying that’s the case for Owen. We know God is able!
Whatever the outcome, our desire is that God would be glorified in this situation. In the first few days after learning about the size of Owen’s mass and the danger he was in, I was tempted to ask God why this happened to us. But I’ve walked with God long enough to know that demanding to know God’s reasons for things like this doesn’t really get me anywhere. Instead, I accept that all people go through trials in life. God hasn’t chosen me for all of life’s trails, but He did choose my family and me for this one. Whatever His reasons, I can already see good things that have come, such as:
- We’ve received an outpouring of love from family and friends. We’ve been blown away by how much people care and by the way people all around the world are praying for us.
- God is using this to grow our faith and our courage.
- We are more grateful than ever for the simple, sweet family times we can share together. We had no idea how much this trial would affect our normal family life. While there are extra appointments and extra things to do, we’re lowering our expectations for how much we can accomplish during this season and simply enjoying being together.
I have a dream of one day dressing my sweet Owen in these dinosaur pajamas (see the picture above). While we’re still unsure of what the days to come will bring, our hope and prayer is that Owen, our sixth child, will be the perfect completion to our family.
You are so loved, little guy. Loved so much more than you could imagine.