to have an ECHO (a really long sonogram for their heart) done.
The doctor that did it was so nice, she had a great bed side manner and was just so sweet. We got a ton of information about their heart, however, none of it was good.
As you know, they are sharing a heart with one ventricle, and now it looks like the baby on the right has a better connection to the heart. I don't know all the technical terms but basically this babies arteries have a better connection that goes from the heart to the lungs.
Regarding the baby on the left, her arteries may not even go from the heart to her lungs. In fact she may not even have lungs.
The next step is to have a CT/MRI done to see if the baby on the left has lungs. After they figure that out then there are three options,...none of which are good.
1) Do nothing after Melody and Madison are born (granted that they are born alive) and just spend time with them and see how long they will make it. The baby on the left has a heart defect that with in a few hours to days after birth will be fatal for both babies if they are left together.
2) (If they both have lungs and are born alive) Do open heart surgery to put shunts into their heart to help it pump better. Even if they do this they are not sure how long the girls will live because a heart with one ventricle will eventually give out. It's not strong enough for one baby let alone two.
3) If the baby on the left does not have lungs (and the other is still alive) then separate them after birth and give the baby on the right a chance to live. The life expectancy is still unknown because the baby will still only have a heart with one ventricle, and a donor heart will not work since each baby does not have the right connections (or artery hook up) since their heart and what is connected to it is currently malformed.
Please understand that we would NEVER in a million years separate our babies and allow one to die so that the other one could live. They only way that we will separate them is if the baby on the left does not have lungs, because neither one of them would make it at that point if we left them together.
Please be praying for Melody and Madison and that if it is the Lord's will that He would heal their heart.
Please be praying for wisdom for the doctors in the up coming weeks.
Please please be praying for Jason and I we have some very hard ethical choices to make in the next few weeks, choices which we hope to answer with wisdom, the council of others, and prayer. As the situation stands, it seems like they all result in death which breaks our heart. Jason and I are deeply grieved by all the news we heard today but we still say, "Blessed be the name of the Lord who gives and takes away!" (Job1:21)
After we heard the news and the doctor stepped out of the room I (Vanessa) just started singing the first part if this hymn
Praise to the Lord, the Almighty
1. Praise to the Lord,
The Almighty, the King of creation!
O my soul, praise Him,
For He is thy health and salvation!
All ye who hear,
Now to His temple draw near;
Praise Him in glad adoration.
Here are the rest of the words. (Verses 2 & 3 kept running though my [Jason] head)
2. Praise to the Lord,
Who over all things so wondrously reigneth,
Shelters thee under His wings,
Yea, so gently sustaineth!
Hast thou not seen
How all your longings have been
Granted in what He ordaineth?
3. Praise to the Lord,
Who doth prosper thy work and defend thee;
Surely His goodness
And mercy here daily attend thee.
What the Almighty can do,
If with His love He befriend thee.
4. Praise to the Lord,
O let all that is in me adore Him!
All that hath life and breath,
Come now with praises before Him.
Let the Amen
Sound from His people again,
Gladly for aye we adore Him.
This was one of the harder days I (Jason) had, it was impossible for me to be strong for my wife at this time, I had a lump in my throat for hours and was trying so hard (with tear stained eyes) not to breakdown. But once Vanessa went to the bathroom and came out she found me even unable to speak cause I could do nothing but cry. One verse that kept going through my head was:
"Though he slay me, I will hope in him;..." Job 13:15
Though we know the theology of God's sovereignty and suffering (which I hope to blog about soon) and I am glad we do (otherwise we may wind of cursing God rather than hoping and trusting in Him), it is times like these when you just need to weep in your wife's arms and be still and know that God is God. I am so thankful for the body of believers who are standing with us and even weeping with us. I am thankful to God for saving me,...I can only imagine that I would be in utter despair at this time if I was not a Christian with a living hope. There is no other sufficient answer but Jesus Christ and his great name and renown.
Have you thanked God lately for giving you a heart that works properly? And for you Christians, have you thanked God lately for removing your heart of stone (the heart which is deceitful and wicked above all) and giving you a heart of flesh (a tender heart that loves Him and finds your highest joy in serving Him)? This alone is possible with God. Praise Him!
Thank you for all the love and support, we will continue to seek God's face and His will during this time.
We love you all,
Jason, Vanessa, Destinee, Kenya, Melody and Madison.