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Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Wednesday Guest Post "Life" by Teddy N.


Teddy N.


Married
Mother of a 2 yr old boy
I enjoy reading. I chose to write a guest entry in Rose's blog about this particular subject because when it happened, she reached out to me.
She may not have realized it at the time, but her kind words touched me.
Plus, I devore her writings, maybe it was time she enjoys reading someone else's.




Life...




 When faced with a difficult situation, it’s so easy to say "May God have the last say." Do we really mean it? Do we know the real depth of that sentence? Or do we just say it because we wish deep down inside that God’s choice in that particular situation will be what we wish it to be? What if God’s decision is harsh? Will you accept it? Or will you question him? Will your faith be altered?

She was eagerly anticipated! From the day my husband’s niece came to our home to announce to us that they were expecting, we could not stop praising God! Especially due to how hard it had been just less than a year ago, when her parents had lost what would have been their first born son, at 5 months into the pregnancy. This time, knowing what the initial issue had been, all the precautionary measures were taken (cervical cerclage to avoid preterm delivery).
Despite it all, at 25 weeks, the water broke and she (the mother) had to be hospitalized for complete bed rest. This was to try and keep the baby in for as long as possible. 2 weeks later, she started labor and baby Logan was born. I was attached to her from the day I laid my eyes on her. She was beautiful! And strong, yes she was strong for a preemie. I felt privileged, to be on the extremely limited list of people that could see her at any time. I did not care about wearing nail polish anymore, as it was banned in the NICU. Whenever I could, I would run to Children`s hospital during my lunch break,  or on my weekends off, to comfort the parents. To the best of my abilities, I was there for them the way I would have loved for them to be there for me, had the tables been turned.
Since her birth, everything was going smoothly. She was a strong preemie…however, two weeks into her life things drastically changed.  She started swelling up, and was diagnosed with Necrotizing Enter Colitis (NEC). She had to undergo surgery, removing 50% of her intestines. I hate recalling everything she went through after that. It was a complete rollercoaster of emotions, one second at a time, every day that the sun rose, we praised God. Hopes were still up, doctors were giving us hopes, and prayers were keeping us all strong…

One day when I was at work, her mom called me, to come and say my goodbyes as she was doing really poorly. When I got there, they had decided to have her baptized. That was the first day I ever let a tear down. Up until then, I refused to let myself cry as if it was giving into the idea that she could just not make it. I told her parents that I did not come to say goodbye to her; I came to see her. Maybe it was denial, but I still hoped for the best.
Through it all I stayed strong, always telling her parents not to cry in her presence. Somehow, throughout all this, I always had the right words to say, the right jokes when laughter was needed. Many times I would come out of the hospital wondering about God’s will. How could he put this couple through such hardship more than once? Yes, I was strong in front of them, but it was all taking a toll on my relationship with God.

On Sunday September 2nd, I had picked up my friend for a quick dinner at my home, just for her to relax away from the hospital and for some fresh air.  A couple of hours later, after she left us, we received a phone call from the hospital, asking my husband and myself to head out there as soon as possible. This time, I knew it was the end...
It just so happened that our dear Logan had deteriorated so much, that there was nothing else the doctors could do for her. She had swollen up so much, the remaining 50% of her intestines were infected, she wasn't responding to her treatment; do I really need to go on? She was in excruciating pain and was kept alive by all the machines and oxygen.

There were three options offered to the parents:
1. To stop all treatment and let her slowly die (in pain).
2. To let all the plugs be pulled.
3. To walk her into her death.

Option 3 was picked. That's the reason we were all called to the hospital, at least the close family. We were given a private room in the NICU. Logan was brought in.
I had read and heard of assisted death before, but never in my life did I think I would witness one of a babe. We prayed, sang, showered her with love. We all carried her turn by turn and sweetly whispered to her. We prayed, prayed, and prayed, we sang lullabies. We all wanted her to have her last moments of feeling loved. We wanted her to know she was loved dearly. When her parents were finally ready and in the arm of her father, her oxygen was cut off. Within seconds, she took a last breath, but not without smiling so big as if to say "thank you."
It’s hard for me to put in words the emotions I felt that day. It’s hard for me to truncate in 1500 words the experience I felt with the life and death of baby Logan.
What I know is that, she has shaken my faith. Strengthened it at first, when I had all hopes that she would be alright, then weakened it so badly when she left us. I remember clearly my first breakdown in that room after I kissed her cold body. All I kept saying was why God does allow this? Over and over, I kept saying: "why, why and why?"

One thing I knew for sure was that she wasn't here for nothing. She taught all of us a thing or two. For me, it was endurance, the many facets of love and Faith.
Do we have faith strong enough to be at the edge of a cliff and know that if we let go, God will catch us and not let us crash? That day, I felt like he had let all of us down, all of us crashed. It took me a couple of days, to realize that He always has the last word and to accept that whatever he chooses, I must bow down. What I saw Logan go through, I will never forget. The many sick babies I saw in the NICU this past month, will not leave me.  Her beautiful wide smile as she took her last breath will always make me smile and accept that God takes as he gives.

Life goes on, yet that experience has changed me. Clearly, it has made me re-evaluate my relationship with God, but it also has made me realize that nothing in life should be taken for granted… Nothing.


‎”There is, I am convinced, no picture that conveys in all its dreadfulness, a vision of sorrow, despairing, remediless, supreme. If I could paint such a picture, the canvas would show only a woman looking down at her empty arms.”
-Charlotte Bronte

12 comments:

  1. Teddy,
    Thank you so much for having the strength and courage to tell this story and share it with us, when I first her of the news it pulled me to pieces and when I couldn't only imagine how you all were feeling, this somewhat walked me thru you all's pain and courage!
    Loss is a process...with a great support system it becomes bearable.

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    1. Thank you Rose, for allowing me to share and for being there for them, through me.

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  2. It's hard to even leave a comment to this. But I'd first like to thank you for sharing. It's not easy to share such a hardship, and especially so openly and candidly. So thanks again for sharing.

    Indeed, one's faith is shaken when dealt hard blows. "Why does God allow hardship?" I don't know how to answer that question. The answer differs with situations, in my experiences. Sometimes, it's to remind you that He is indeed still God (I had such a reminder when I went and elevated a man more than I did God). Sometimes it's to remind us to lean on Him for strength and sustenance (again, I got such a reminder when I thought I could do it ALL on my own). Other times, it's to strengthen us and place us on the right path (again, there's a story to that one)..

    But the bottom line for me is to remember the keyword ALLOW. God doesn't give us the hardships...but sometimes, he allows them. They say "what doesn't kill you only makes you stronger". I'd like to borrow that line of thought for faith...what doesn't break our faith should indeed make it stronger. "I saw, I suffered, but in the end, I conquered".
    And then it's a matter of "how can I use this experience - as hard and undesirable as it is- to help other people?". Remember that God's ways are not our ways, so understanding why some things happen is at times much harder than simple logic.

    In the end, as awful as it seems when we're going through the problems and trials, there's a story out of it. There's a "calling", a greater purpose and even a greater good that can come from struggles. I have a friend who's child was born autistic. The end story is that after years of struggle and pain, he was indeed healed. Now, they moved on and though they questioned God as to why he allowed so much pain, they realised that they are now equipped to help other families cope with the issues. They are raising awareness and educating families on autism and what to expect. I know of a woman who was raped. There's no going back from that...but she now works to help other women who have been raped and abused, and is even now studying to expand her work into other aspects of gender and development...God didn't cause her to be raped. But in the end, the situation was turned into a "positive", as she now helps other people come out from the devastation of such abuse and other hardships that life deals one with. She strongly believes this is ultimately what her life purpose is.

    Now, I'm not urging you to jump into NGO work, but it's just an example of how undesirable situations are turned around and instead used to bring some positive. You sharing this story is a start.

    So, I've rambled enough. Thank you again for sharing, and for being there for your friend. I pray that God continues to strengthen you all and keep you close to His love, showing you how to overcome and use the trials of life for good.

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    1. Wow, thank you. Your words about God and faith went straight to the heart!
      What you said about NGO work, I have myself been thinking about it. It really made me take this issue at heart. Just this past week, a cousin of mine lost her new born baby.I felt heartbroken! I do want to change this into a positive.Thinking of it, and will seek guidance through prayers!

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  3. Wow what a sad story... just made want to go home and hug my kids!
    How are they coping?

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    1. Yes, it's sad. They are doing okay, as okay as one can be in that situation. We are just showering them with love as much as possible. Just keeping the faith alive..

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  4. Hello Teddy,

    Thank you so much for stopping by to share your heart wrenching story and although it's always easy to second guess why God does things he does; HE always has a plan. The only thing that comes to mind is that he has used you to help people that might cope with the same situation and also for others to never take life for granted. To love and cherish those around us that we love. I will pray for you and your family and I hope your faith in Christ doesn't waver. Through you I want to build a better relationship with God. God Bless and thank you again for sharing.

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  5. When faced with a difficult situation, it’s so easy to say "May God have the last say." Do we really mean it? The beginning of your message hit home, "Do we know the real depth of that sentence? Or do we just say it because we wish deep down inside that God’s choice in that particular situation will be what we wish it to be? What if God’s decision is harsh? Will you accept it? Or will you question him? Will your faith be altered?"

    I can identify with that. Often times we get caught up and we question our faith but we say things out of habit or even because we feel a sense of obligation.

    Well, my condolences to your friend and all the loved ones. That was a very sad story however in the short span of time, it stretched my faith. I can see how anyone's faith would waiver after something like that. But it's almost as if God said, "There's a bigger picture!" Despite this revelation, my heart goes out to all who have been affected by this loss. But I do believe that God is able to restore!

    Thank you for your transparency. Be blessed!

    Read more: http://www.rosiesandz.com/#ixzz28vmpN6gI

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  6. Thanks for your comment. I believe for me this experience made me re-evaluate my relationship with God in the sense that at the end, I now know what it means to Let Go and let God! to accept and really mean it when we say may God's will prevail. I enjoyed reading your guest post today. comments coming soon. very well written! keep it up!

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  7. Hi Teddy, I want to thank you for sharing your story. Although I can't begin to imagine the pain one feels losing a loved one so young, I do know what it is like to witness a premature birth. A few years ago, my pregnant friend and I took a roadtrip down South. I was on my way to see a concert, and seeing as I hate driving, she volunteered to accompany me so she could visit with her sister. Her sister and I had a blast at the concert. When we got home we found that my friend had been rushed to the hospital. Come to find out she was in labor. The doctors did everything possible to prevent the birth, but unfortunately nothing worked and within a few hours she gave birth to a two pound baby girl. The doctor's prognostic was very bleak and we were told that mother and daughter would not be able to leave the hospital for a long while. This caused a flood of emotions.

    As I stood in the hospital lobby crying, the first emotion that overtook me was guilt. I told myself that if it was not for my selfish need to attend the concert, my friend would not have made this trip; she would not have gone into labor; and her children back home would not have to be motherless for many weeks. In that split second I let go of everything I held true. I convinced myself that the Lord was punishing me through my friend. When I went into my friend's room her words brought me back to reality. She said she was not worried about anything because she had given it up to God.

    How many of us can hand a situation over to the Lord and leave it there? Not many! As human beings the first question that comes to mind when faced with adversity is why. However, I have learned over time that the answer is why not. If the Son of God, the Perfect One was made to suffer, then why shouldn't I. God has a plan for each and everyone of us and only He knows how it will play out. If we claim to have faith, then we should believe in our hearts that He will only do things for our good, regardless of how bleak a situation may seem. Our human side will always sow seeds of doubts, but our devout side should be able to wipe away these doubts. As another blogger mentioned, the Lord will "allow" certain things to transpire in our lives to show us the extent of our faith. He wants to get us to the point where we will continue to trust and praise Him even when we are going through. So when I am faced with adversity, I revert to the Book of Job; and instead of asking why me, I ask myself why not me!

    My friend's daughter has grown into a beautiful, strong, young girl. She is my daily reminder of how good God is. Although baby Logan is not with us today, I am convinced that she fulfilled the mission God had for her and impacted all of your lives.

    May God continue to bless you and your family.

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    1. I could not help but tear up as I read your story. Thanks for sharing it. I am glad that the baby made it as we need miracles as they remind us of God's greatness. I will remember the verse from Job, it stuck to me. God bless you too, You blessed me through your message

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