This morning the twins and I went to the doctor to get a recheck on Natalie’s ear. I am happy to report that it is cleared up and that they each got the flu vaccine as well. I then wanted to talk to their doctor about an appointment card I had received in the mail for Natalie to visit a cardiologist. When the letter came in the mail I was shocked to think how an office could make such a mistake. When I called, no mistake had been made it is a three year follow-up from the NICU. My doctor was going to research why she needed to go and get back to me. Since this morning I have done my own research and discovered that she had a heart murmur in the hospital (the doctor does not hear one now) and that she had an echocardiogram that the best I can understand was consistent evidence of a heart murmur. All I can say, is I wish my Mom was here!!! She was a charge nurse for CCU and was so knowledgeable about many things, but really knew about the heart and all that it entailed. I got to talk to my aunt who is also a nurse and I am just going to fax the paper to Natalie’s primary care doctor to review to see if the appointment is still needed.
Having this come up has made me think back to the times in the NICU. It all seems like a bit of a fog. I do not remember any heart issues with either of them, but I know if I was told she had a heart murmur I would not have been too concerned since my family has them as well. I was not really worried about them in the NICU like most parents would have been. I think is because I was just so thankful they were alive. For me in my situation that in itself was a miracle being born at 30 weeks sure beats 18 weeks!
When I went to the Beth Moore conference a few weeks ago with the ladies from my church, the Director of Children’s Ministry told the story about coming to the hospital to see me right after surgery to have my cervix stitched up. In the operation room the doctor asked me what I had been doing the night before, since I was in so much worse shape than when he saw me the day before. Since I had been admitted to the hospital, he knew I had been lying in bed, but he wondered why I had not called for help. I told him I did not know anything was wrong. Apparently, my cervix had gotten much shorter and they did not have much to stich up and the doctor told me that they had done the best they could, but he just did not think the twins were going to survive. I was so upset I cried and cried while the nurses were telling me to stop that crying would not help the babies. Several doctors came in and out and by this time I was having preterm labor. They gave me IV medication to stop the labor, but the doctor told me that if it got worse and the twins were going to be born they would have to cut me open. All this great news was draining me and I needed prayers over me. So I had Brian call my sister-in-law Tracy to have the pastors of her church, where I grew-up, come and pray over me. Brian and I were not members of a church at this time and were going to two different ones, but had not made a commitment to just one.
The director, Sherry, shared that when Tracy called she picked up the phone and did not know what to do since the pastors were in a meeting that they could not be disturbed from. She did not know what to do and was fearful I would lose the babies before the pastors got out of their meeting. The youth minister told her that both of them could go and pray over me, but she thought she could not do it. On the way to the hospital they came up with a plan and that both of them would pray. Well when they got there I asked them to lay hands over me and the director laid her hand over my belly and then the rest of them laid theirs on hers. Brian said she had a beautiful prayer, I cannot remember it, but then the plan was for others to pray as well, but then the youth director said amen after the first prayer. Apparently he was so shaken up that was all he could do. Sherry said that when she went back to work every phone call she would jump and wondered if it was Tracy calling her with an update on the twins. Sherry said she could feel the twins moving and just knew they were healthy and alive in my belly. It was very touching for her and she shared the experience that night with others at church. She also said that at the end of the year she had to tell of the most moving things that had happened that year and she told the story of when she went to the hospital to pray over me and the twins. The church continued to pray for me and also bring me food since I was on bed rest throughout my pregnancy. I know it is those prayers and those of many others that got me and the twins through the next few months.
That story is so meaningful to me because not only did Alcoa United Methodist Church pray for me and my twins, but they also prayed for me when I was born at 34 weeks and had a volvulus that required me to have ¾ of my small intestine removed. I was the first baby to live from UT Medical Center (where the twins were also born) with this condition. In fact one of the NICU doctors came to see me when I was in the hospital with pre-term labor to just see that I was healthy and alive. He told me that babies are still born with a volvulus and are dying today. I told him my own Mother never gave up on me even though doctors and nurses told my mother I was going to die. So I also was not going to give up on my twins no matter how early they arrived. God performed a miracle on me and that He could do the same with my twins and that is exactly what He did. I am reminded of that as I read the twins’ report from the NICU.