Cameron is the biggest miracle in my life

It is so hard for me to believe, but my oldest turns 6 today. Time really does move faster the older you get.

 

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Cameron (in green) and his brother

 

 

All children are a blessing and a miracle from God, but Cameron has an especially miraculous story. Here is the story of Cameron.

If you’ve read my last two posts, you know I had two miscarriages. It was hard, really, really, hard. When I found out I was pregnant again, I cried. I was so scared that I would have another miscarriage, and I truly didn’t know if I was strong enough to go through that again.

God had a plan. The baby grew just like he was supposed to. I was amazed by the life growing inside me.

Cameron was stubborn even before he was born and wasn’t in any hurry to get out into the world. I was two weeks overdue (and scheduled to be induced) before he decided to make an appearance.

Labor was long and hard. Cameron’s heart rate started to drop. There was some nervousness around me. There was whispers of an emergency c-section. The decision was made to let me continue to push, and Cameron came into the world at 5:47 pm, May 9, 2008.

He wasn’t breathing.

Looking back on it all, it’s hard to know the order things happened. They took Cameron across the room from me and began working on him. There was panic and worry all around me. And no one was telling me what was happening.

Cameron was ten minutes old before he took his first breath. They moved him across the hall to the nursery to continue to work on him. My husband went to watch. My mother stayed with me.

I turned to my mom and told her that I needed her brother, she needed to call him and get him. (My uncle is a preacher.) She immediately pulled out her phone and started dialing. When he answered, Mom told my uncle that we needed him to come. He told her he was there. “No, Mike. We need you to come to the hospital. There are problems.” “I’m standing in the hallway with Chris (my husband).”

 

The phone call God made

 

A little addition background. The day Cameron was born my grandpa was in a different hospital having just had surgery. My grandma and aunt were with him and they all knew Cameron was going to be born that day. They wondered how things were going and why they hadn’t heard from us yet.

My uncle was at home with his family. His phone rang, and the caller told him that there was a problem and he was needed at the hospital. The first phone call we made was to my uncle when he was already at the hospital.

At the time, there was too much going on for me to even think about asking who made that call. Months later, I started asking. No one I talked to had made the call or knew who made the call.

May 9, 2008 God used an audible voice and a telephone to meet my needs.

(As I was writing this I learned of a second call God made that night. My husband’s parents were at home that night waiting to here from us. As everything bad started to happen, my mother-in-law turned to my father-in-law and told him they needed to go to the hospital. He told her they didn’t, that we would call them. She insisted and they got to the hospital just as Cameron was born.)

 

Newborn Intensive Care Unit

 

They got Cameron breathing and stable. He still wasn’t good. The cord had been wrapped around his neck twice. The hospital we were at was not set up to handle his problems so we had to transfer him to another one 45 minutes away.

At that point, I announced that I would be going with him. The doctor could either discharge me or I would just get up and leave. They agreed to discharge me.

At 9:30 that night, my baby got into an ambulance and I got into my truck and we headed to the new hospital.

We finally got there. My husband, my parents and I all finally got to where we were supposed to be. We walked (ok, I was wheeled) into the NICU and there was Cameron, surrounded by doctors and nurses.

It’s a moment I’ll never forget but find hard to describe. The lights were all down low except where they were working on Cameron. There were so many people standing around my baby, including the Russian doctor who would be Cameron’s doctor for the duration of his stay and who will forever hold a special place in my heart.

When it was clear that they would be working on Cameron for a while and I would be unable to hold him again that night, my family convinced me to go lay down and get some sleep. That night, my husband and I stay at the hospital in a room with a recliner and couch and got a little sleep.

 

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Cameron had a feeding tube and was on oxygen. He had an IV in his belly button and needles attached to his head to monitor his brain activity because he had seizures overnight. They were also monitoring his breathing, heart rate and temperature. He looked so helpless, but all I could see was how amazing he was.

 

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For the next five days we stayed at a hotel just blocks from the hospital. I sat next to him, holding him as much as I could for as long as I could. I would leave only when someone would force me to go eat, I had to pump, or shift change. In the evenings, my husband would make me leave to go eat supper and then we’d be back. Then he’d have to force me to leave again in a couple hours so I could get some sleep.

For the week after that we went home at night. First thing in the morning my mom would come and pick me up and take me to the hospital. We would spend all day there and then she would hand me over to my husband, who would meet us at the hospital when he was finished at work.

Cameron spent 13 days in the hospital. During that time he had all sorts of tests. He was poked and prodded. We learned he did not like a bottle. He “failed” every test the first time around. They talked about transferring him to Riley Children’s Hospital.

Our doctor believed in the decisions we made and in Cameron. 13 days after he was admitted, Cameron was sent home.

Before they would release Cameron, we had a meeting. They really wanted us to apply for disability. They told us that he would probably have developmental delays and mental disabilities from going so long without oxygen. They all but said don’t have hope.

 

I never lost hope

 

There’s one thing that we were told that I will never forget. After Cameron came home we had follow-up appointments at the hospital. My mom went with me and we stopped to see our Russian doctor while we were there. The doctor told us that he will never forget that first night either. He was so sure Cameron would die while we were standing (sitting) there watching.

Wow. That shocked me. It had never occurred to me. I was shocked by the idea that Cameron could have (really, should have) died.

He was born not breathing. I knew he would live.

It took 10 minutes for him to take his first breath. I knew he would live.

He had seizures, bleeding on the brain, wouldn’t eat from a bottle, and I knew he would live.

From before he was born until the moment it was said to me, it had never even crossed my mind that he could have died.

That’s how strong my faith was. I knew God had a plan. I knew we wouldn’t have gone through two miscarriages just to have a baby die at birth. I simply knew that Cameron would live.

I had no idea how strong my faith really was until it was said that someone thought Cameron would die. It really did shock me. Through all of it, I knew Cameron would live. I knew that God hadn’t let us go through all we had to lose the baby at the last moment.

 

Six years later

 

Those doctors were so wrong. Cameron isn’t normal. He’s better than normal. He is one of the smartest kids I’ve ever been around. He always knows a better way of doing something and will show you how it’s done. He is funny. He is sweet. He loves his brother and pretty much everyone else. He makes friends with people everywhere. He pays attention and picks up on everything.

Six years later, I have to laugh at all the things they told us would be wrong with Cameron, all the stuff they tried to prepare us for. They were just so wrong. My God is bigger than all their doubts.

All of the first year milestones, from rolling over to first tooth to walking, Cameron did them early. He is truly amazing and a miracle from God. The only sign today that Cameron had any problems at birth are his hearing aids. Cameron has moderately-severe hearing loss due to nerve damage due to his birth.

I can thank God every day for Cameron’s hearing loss. Knowing everything that “should” be wrong with him, hearing aids is an easy fix. There are so many more people in the world who deal with things that are much, much worse than hearing aids.

 

The big plan

 

I’ve said repeatedly throughout this blog that I know God has a big plan and it’s bigger than I can ever know. And every time I look at Cameron, I know Cameron plays a big part in God’s big plan.

I don’t know what Cameron’s part is, or if we will ever know what Cameron’s part is. But what I do know is that God has amazing things planned for my little boy.

Science can’t tell you why my boy is able to turn six tomorrow. I know everyone thought he was going to die. He went ten minutes without oxygen and has no brain issues.

My God is bigger than any of your thoughts or doubts.

My God heals amazing injuries.

My God has an amazing plan.

Happy birthday, Cameron. I love you and I can’t wait to see the amazing things God will do through you.

 

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Cameron at about 9 months old
 
 
 
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Cameron (age 3) has always loved babies

Jesus is hurting with you Part 2

In my last post, I talked about emotional pain and how Jesus not only experienced those same hurts, He is experiencing them now with you. So now lets talk about physical hurts.

Jesus knows about physical pains. Matthew 27:29-30, “When they had twisted a crown of thorns, they put it on His head…Then they spat on Him, and took the reed and struck Him on the head.” He was beaten and whipped. He was nailed to a cross. He died a horrible death. Jesus knows about pain.

Along with the hurts that Jesus himself experienced, Jesus was also surrounded by people with hurts. The sick, the injured, the weak, the blind, the deaf, the mute, the lame, the lepers. Matthew 15:30 says, “Then great multitudes came to Him having with them the lame, blind, mute, maimed, and many others; and they laid them down at Jesus’s feet, and He healed them.”

Jesus saw the hurts in the people around Him. And through their faith He made them whole. Jesus felt His own physical hurts, and then rose above them and conquered death to make us all whole for all eternity with God.

A fake brain what?

In 2000, I was diagnosed with an, let’s call it, interesting condition. Its scientific name is Pseudotumor Cerebri. Basically it’s a fake brain tumor. Yep, fake, nonexistent, not really there, you get the point. It is an incurable disease that comes on with little to no warning. So at any point my body could start reacting as if I have a brain tumor. Obviously this is not a common disease and those of you who know me in real life may not even know about it.

My first symptoms were extreme dizziness and trouble with my vision (which could best be described as sunspots all the time only in funny shapes. I had elephant shadows dancing in my vision most often.). I had CAT scans and MRIs and was treated for a number of things including ear infections before a doctor figured it out and sent me to a specialist.

Pseudotumor Cerebri makes your body believe you have a brain tumor, and then your body begins to fight against a tumor that isn’t there. Your optic nerves begin to swell (which cause the vision problems and can even lead to blindness) and it puts increased pressure on your brain (causing migraine like headaches and other pains).

I had a spinal tap to measure intracranial pressure (ICP). It is measured in millimeters and normal is 7-15. I don’t remember what mine was that first time, but it was very high. I had vision tests and learned that the blind spot in my vision is twice the size of a person with normal vision (although not big enough to affect my everyday vision.)

I was put on medication that made all food taste bad (great weight loss plan). I went through a time of deep depression where I was extremely lethargic (which I don’t actually remember but have heard stories from). And eventually the symptoms just went away. We called it remission because there isn’t a cure and the symptoms can come back at any time.

In 2004, shortly after we were married, my husband got to experience first hand the “fun” of Pseudotumor when my symptoms came back. I found a new eye doctor who then sent me to a Neurologist. I had another spinal tap. That time my ICP measured at 36 mm (again normal is 7-15). More pills and less depression later, I was in remission again.

Remission didn’t last as long that time. In 2006, around the same time as my second miscarriage, my Pseudotumor reared its ugly head again. Although I couldn’t get a doctor to say it, I knew in my heart the two were related. Weight gain and hormonal changes can bring the disease on, and when your body starts fighting a war, it fights everything.

Not only had I just been through another miscarriage, I was alone when the symptoms came back worse than they had ever been before. My husband was away on business and my parents and grandparents were in the Caribbean on a cruise. I could barely see because of the fog in my vision and the pain was unlike anything I had felt before. It wasn’t only a headache. This time the pain was in my neck, back and shoulders to the point where it hurt to move.

I laid on the couch and cried. I cried out to God. And finally I managed to get my phone with the hope that my mom would be somewhere that had cell service. Looking back, I’m not sure the exact order of everything that happened next. I do know that eventually I got ahold of my mom, and she then called my cousin who came over, took care of me and took me to the doctor.

Later my doctor said that he didn’t know how I was able to stand, let alone walk that time. With that much pressure on your brain, you shouldn’t be able to function.

Jesus is still healing the sick

Eventually my symptoms started to calm down again. There were so many people praying for me. There were churches that I didn’t attend praying for me. And I know that God hears and answers prayer.

It was my mom who said to me that maybe we were praying for the wrong thing. Maybe instead of me getting better, we should be praying for my healing.

That thought caught me off guard.

There were two parts to it. The first part is to only pray for things you believe can happen. If I didn’t believe that God would/could heal me, then there would be no reason to pray for it. Did I truly believe that God would heal me? Not just make me well but rid my body of this incurable disease.

The second part is knowing that sometimes God doesn’t answer prayer the way we want Him to. Sometimes He answers with a no. I know He has a plan that I can’t see and sometimes the answers don’t make sense at the time.

That may have been the day that I changed the way that I pray, the day that I started to be more exact and more aware of my words. We started to pray for healing over just being better.

I can’t tell you what God’s big plan for me is, and I can’t tell you the reason any of this happened. What I can tell you is that I haven’t had another episode since September 2006, and I absolutely believe that God healed me.

Today I have no problems with my vision. Today I rarely get headaches. Today I have 2 crazy little boys. Today I am healed.

I don’t know why some people are healed and some are not. I don’t know why some people struggle with pain and hurt every day and some do not. What I do know is that God has a plan bigger than you and me.

And someday all who believe that Jesus is the Christ will be hurt and pain free.