It’s an unusually warm fall which, at times, I am tired of the heat but nights like tonight I’m thankful for it. We ate dinner outside Saturday on the back deck, still in our pajamas from the day of alternating between cleaning and laziness. Andy grilled fish and I made quinoa and corn and black beans- basically the leftover/end of the grocery cycle crap I found in the pantry. Despite that, the food was delicious and our bellies are full.
Rory is climbing her tree that she calls her buddy. It’s a sycamore tree and has changed into beautiful orange and yellows.
She climbs high, too high for most parents to allow, but I know my Rory. She lives for this thrill and is an expert climber and strong as an ox. I remember the trees I claimed as my trees in my childhood and it makes me so delighted she has that same love of climbing and exploring outside as I did.
I could sit here forever watching her in this late evening sun. Her beautiful face peeking out proud amongst the branches with a gleeful, “look mom! Look how high I am now!” My heart swells with pride at the thought of it.
The past few months have been a blur of school and Rory has had to overcome and adjust to so much this year. She has made great progress, but even still she is struggling to make it through the day every.single.day. Last week we had an appointment to start her on medication for ADHD- and please do not even think of debating me about this. Medicines aren’t what they used to be and this isn’t a decision we came to lightly. We know the best for our child.
As a precaution from Ryder’s congenital heart defect, they ordered an EKG before starting medication for Rory. I never heard back from them and because of the way the EKG tech said, “you have a perfect heart” to Rory with a wink to me, I assumed everything was fine.
At the appointment to discuss medication, the doctor looked at her EKG report just to be sure as we were about to leave. She looked at me with wide eyes and said, “wait, so… the EKG came back abnormal, did you not know this?”
My own heart stopped beating, I am not even kidding. I let out the smallest gasp out of shock.
Somehow between the EKG and our follow up we weren’t contacted- fell between the cracks which so often happens in healthcare.
The doctor explained that it indicated a right bundle branch block on the EKG.
I started to cry softly, but that was enough to scare Rory. I felt, feel, so terribly guilty for letting her see that fear. That same night she would have nightmares and tell me she had a dream someone sawed her chest open. That is the problem with having a sister who has had open heart surgery- you just know too much.
We called and told a very small amount of family and I texted my closest friends. Everyone told me they would pray for her heart and that even if something was wrong they were praying God would heal her completely before our appointment.
That night after everyone was asleep, I went into our living room and laid on my face and cried out to God to please not let this be true. And if it were a heart defect, to please let it be something we can manage with medicine and is “no big deal”. I prayed for Rory’s heart just as hard and earnestly as I prayed for Ryder’s for all those months and years.
Meanwhile, God was working on Rory’s heart in ways more beautiful than I could have ever expected.
Several times over the last few months, Rory has come to us asking very hard questions about Jesus and sin. I’ve had open and honest conversations with her and was so thankful that she felt comfortable coming to me.
Last night she came downstairs and told Andy and I that she had gone into her closet and prayed for Jesus to come into her heart. On her own, without any prompting, she made that decision. We talked about what it meant to be sure she knew and we all prayed together. When we got to AWANA she told everyone that would listen that she accepted Jesus into her heart.
After church, we sat down again and talked and prayed. She was BEAMING. From ear to ear, so very proud and happier than I’ve ever seen her. She couldn’t wait to call her grandparents. Ryder cheered her one and was so excited for her sister.
As you can imagine, I cried and cried all night long.
You see, I had been begging for a miracle and I had our families and friends praying for her heart- who could have known the ultimate heart healing would happen instead.
Yesterday, October 30, 2016, was the very best day of my life. I know the day I accepted Jesus is also the best day, but there is something so much more beautiful when your child comes to that decision in her life. Knowing her eternity will be spent in heaven is the best gift of peace I’ve ever been given.
No matter what comes of her cardiologist appointment tomorrow, I know her heart is healed. God has already performed a miracle for her and has saved her precious heart.
God is so good to us. ALL the time.
I’m still praying for an outcome that determines the abnormal EKG was a fluke and there is absolutely nothing wrong with her heart (and would appreciate your prayers too), but even if it were the worse case scenario- my God is good and merciful and has given Rory’s heart the best miracle of all.
“He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.” – Matthew 18:2-5
“… for ALL have sinned and fall short of the glory of God…” – Romans 3:23
“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.” – 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
“And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.” – Romans 8:28