When our son was three months old he had his first extensive surgery. The surgery was to remove part of his colon. It was over extended which caused him to be in great pain. He would swell up so large that the pressure would cause trouble for his breathing.
There wasn’t anything my husband and I could do but just sit and pray for the pain to pass. It was always sporadically, nothing made it better or worse. There was no preventing it. His extended colon would spontaneously wrap around his intestines which caused abdominal swelling and would overwhelm his entire chest and torso area.
We were constantly praying that it would not rupture knowing that there was no recovering from it, if it did.
The symptoms started at three weeks old but became severe at seven weeks. We consistently went to the hospital every time we noticed any swelling in the abdominal area, in fear that it will lead to the evitable.
After many pediatrician visits that consistently led to being referred to the children’s hospital 14 miles away; test results from a specialist showed we needed to be evaluated by a pediatric surgeon immediately.
At our first visit with the pediatric surgeon, the decision made was to have surgery. We sat in office for two hours debating the pros and cons of beginning surgery right always versus waiting for the three month mark which would be 5 weeks later.
Having the extensive surgery before then had similar risks as to waiting. Weighing the two options with the same possible outcomes was a nauseating decision to make; to say for the very least.
The surgeon was very consistent to getting x-rays and tests done for our son from seven to twelve weeks old to catch any early signs of rupture. He was cautious and would explain the importance of us being cautious till the surgery.
It was the longest five weeks for our family.
As we waited for the upcoming surgery, my husband and I was doing all that we could to be strong, uplifting and encouraging to another up. Without that; I can not imagine how we would have been.
As parents with a tiny baby taking turns each night to comfort him through the screaming pains of not being to lay comfortably due to painful bloating was the hardest thing we had to endure with one another.
Redirecting our minds back on the Lord each day after watching our spouse and child suffer is a must to overcome the fears and get to the victory.
It was time….
The day finally came that he was three months old. It was time to walk Malachi into the children’s hospital for surgery. Our 11lb, 22 inch baby boy got dressed into a gown three times his size and was taken out of my arms from the surgical nurse after the team of surgeons came into the room to explain everything step by step that would take place for the next four hours.
They all walked out with certainty of success and gave encouragement to my husband and I. Watching the double doors close as Malachi looked at me from the nurse’s arms was a moment of vulnerability for me.
As we sat in the surgery waiting room for four hours, we had a nurse come out twice letting us know that Malachi was doing great. As we sat there in the surgery waiting room we saw many different situations coming in and out those elevators doors. The waiting room was also a sitting area for young chemo and dialysis patients. My husband and I would connect eyes as we would see children walk through the double doors after their names were called.
All I could do was sit and pray!
After four long hours, we were finally called by the surgical nurse. She came to walk us back to recovery. She had let us know everything went well and the surgeon was on his way to explain the details.
Our son came out surgery with success. The surgeons were very optimistic. They had only expected to remove 3 inches which was common for a child of his size and age but once in surgery discovered they had to remove seven inches. They showed us pictures from the internal camera placed during surgery. Because of the length, they could not believe he lasted as long as he did without rupture.
My husband and I knew it was God. God had divinely protected our child during this time.
Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
We were scheduled to stay in the hospital for four days. Unfortunately about 18 hours after his surgery he swelled up once again, the growth was rapid. Within hours he was barely able to breathe on his own.
By the time they rushed him into emergency surgery he was at 70% percent oxygen and a 220 heart rate. There was no time for any explanations from the doctors or nurses. They rushed us at 3 am to the other side of the hospital.
As the staff elevator doors to level four opened, an on-call trauma surgeon, an anesthesiologist, and a nurse was waiting in a low lit empty hallway. That scene at that moment was a vision that had traumatized me for months afterwards.
The surgeon and anesthesiologist wheeled our son away without any formal goodbyes. The surgical nurse stood behind and told us we had to sign a consent form to immediately begin blood transfusions. As I flipped through pages to sign on the designated lines, the nurse spoke to us with an urgent and directive tone that our son will look different if and when he comes out of surgery and we need to be prepared for it.
Because of his current vitals , him being placed on a breathing tube was a must before surgery could even begin. She told us to answer the phone in the waiting room at the administrative desk for updates. She explained she would most likely not be able to leave surgery as they will have to work diligently. No one was expected to be in the surgery waiting room till 7 am. She asked us to just be patient.
“We are not yet sure what we will have to do and if he comes out…..” was probably the scariest words I heard at the time.
At this point, this was just the beginning of many trails during the 19 days we were at the hospital. But if it wasn’t for listening to what the Lord told me to do; how we got through the trials could have been much different.
Creating the boundaries…
One night as I was sitting next to my sons bedside reading the Bible out loud to him as he slept, the Lord told me to write scriptures and wrap them around his hospital crib.
I went to the nurses stations and asked for paper, pen, and tape. She handed me sticky notes, a pen, and tape from the other side of the wing.
I began writing scriptures that I had prayed for him and verses that had recently been spoken over him. I taped about 20 verses to his bed that night as he slept. Then I started praying over him. I prayed for victory over my sons life and praised God for making him a testimony. With authority I prayed that the enemy may not enter into the room. That boundaries had been created around my son. I loudly repeated the word of God is sharper than a two edged sword. I raised my voice to declare the word of Jesus Christ were written on those pieces of paper taped to his bed and the devil shall flee when he hears the name Jesus.
Then I walked out to the hall as my son slept to pray over every door on that floor. I placed my hand on each door I passed and prayed for the child in the room. I prayed for the empty rooms for the ones that had just left and for the ones that were to come.
For the rest of the time we were there with our son, I got up every night at 11pm and prayed for the boundaries that was created. I touched every door on level 6 ICU North Wing at that children’s hospital.
The night our son was discharged from the hospital was bitter sweet. I was so excited to take our son home but the moment we walked out of room 6123 my heart sank. Tears came streaming down my face as I looked into the rooms I had prayed for each night for fourteen days consecutively.
I looked into each room with compassion and heartbreak. Feeling spiritually wounded that they were not yet leaving too. I looked into a room with a child I had seen each night with two parents kneeling next to his bed.
One room had a mother preparing her bed with exhaustion. Another room with a father curled up on the hospital bed with his toddler child, crying uncontrollable. The last room I looked into had a toddler girl with beautiful natural curls that always fell into her eyes; with a nurse on duty sitting with her at her bedside once again. Not once out of her 10 days she was there, did we see a visitor in that room, that was not a staff member.
As we were escorted downstairs with help to our vehicle with a wagon full of items that filled our room for the past 19 days, I prayed silently for the patients and families. As we drove off I continued praying but with my husband out loud. We prayed the whole 14 miles home that night at 11 pm which was the same time I went door to door to pray for each room every night.
I prayed for the spiritual boundaries. That the minds of the children would not be overtaken by the enemy or weakened. I prayed that lies could not enter into the families lives that there was no healing or hope. I also prayed for the doctors, nurses, and staff; that the Lord would encourage them daily as they entered those hospital doors to care for the children.
We must believe earnestly when we are specifically praying for a situation. Pray the Lord is divinely wrapping His arms around His children. His arms creates the spiritual boundary from the enemy so he may not attack us in any form.
Pray for the boundaries that are needed in your life today and tape the scriptures the Lord has given you in every area of your life so the enemy can not take or destroy it!