God is so good! Stan and I went to the doctor yesterday (Tuesday), and while our spirits were completely different than last Thursday, the news was the same. When I say that our spirits were different, I mean that we felt such an overwhelming, perfect peace and trust in our God who is in complete control and who is able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine. I want to catch you all up on the details of what is going on so that you will know how to specifically pray for Anniston.
The diagnosis we were given last Thursday and that was confirmed yesterday includes two issues with her heart, a VSD and an Interrupted Aortic Arch, which I will try to explain as best I can with my limited knowledge of anatomy.
VSD, the first issue, stands for Ventricular Septal Defect which is basically a hole separating the left and right ventricles of the heart (or the lower chambers). Our doctor told us that there are some VSDs that are small and actually are able to close up within the first couple years of life, but that this particular type of VSD is not one that closes up. (We pray and know that God is more than able to show her different!)
The second issue, Interrupted Aortic Arch, is more rare, and it means that this artery is not sending blood to the lower part of her body as it should be functioning. Therefore, her pulmonary artery is having to work extra hard causing the lower right chamber to be larger than the lower left.
How is she doing so well inside of me? That is the incredible part. We learned yesterday that every child has an extra vessel in utero called the ductus arteriosis that does the job of sending the blood to the lower part of the body! This shunt dissolves a few days after birth! Isn't it so amazing that God has supplied exactly what she needs to be completely healthy inside of me?! The doctors keep commenting on how much she moves during the ultrasounds...we have a fighter! Her heartbeat is completely normal and seeing her so active is very encouraging.
This situation, looking at it with our human eyes, means that Anniston will be born in Jackson instead of Hattiesburg and that immediately after birth, she will be given some medicine that will make that extra vessel continue to work without dissolving right away as it would otherwise. Then, on the second or third day after she is born, we will fly on a medical jet to Pennsylvania to have one surgery immediately on her heart. The recovery would take about 2 weeks, and after that recovery period, we would be able to bring her home and return to life as normal.
Now, obviously, we are not God, and we are not in control, so we are daily placing our lives as well as Anniston's life in His hands, and we truly believe that God is going to heal her! I just wanted to tell you exactly what the doctors said because we want us all to be able to look back on the divine hand of God in this story He is writing.
We want everyone to know again how much your prayers and words of encouragement have blessed our lives. I cannot express to you the peace and faith that we have experienced because so many of you are on your knees for us. Thank you again, and I just want to end this particular post by sharing with you a few verses that we have been praying, and we would love for you to claim these as well. We love you!!
Lord, we pray and believe that you "will perfect what concerns us" (Psalm 138:8) and that you will "create in Anniston a clean heart and renew a steadfast spirit within her (Psalm 51:10)." We thank you, Lord, that you "hold our right hand" (Isaiah 41:13) and that "every decision is from you (Proverbs 16:33)." Thank you for "hemming us in behind and before and for laying your hand upon us (Psalm 139:5)." We know above all that it is "by your stripes that Anniston is healed (Isaiah 53:5)" in order to bring glory to your name (Ephesians 3:20).
PS: Please know that we realize that we are not the only ones going through a testing time, so if you have anything that you need prayer for, please do not hesitate to let us know because we would love to lift you up in return!