I asked my dear friend and blog reader, Jamie, to share with us about the trials her family has been through. We have been blessed thus far to be a mom to two fairly healthy kids. I have much to learn from the strength Jamie has gained through the trials that God has seen them through with her sweet boy. I so appreciate Jamie’s openness and honesty about how God has touched their lives, and taught her to wait for His timing while begging for His healing of her son’s precious little body. Mamas, read this one with some Kleenex nearby, and if you are a mom whose child has been through medical trials, please know that you are not alone in waiting for God’s healing. Jamie, I love you so much sweet friend. Thank you so much for your openness and for being willing to share, knowing that you may help other Mamas whose hearts are breaking for their babies. And now, without further ado… here’s Jamie’s Words From the Heart:
Our Family had traveled through a long, hard season of trials. We had been through so much, but our faith had grown. We learned to trust God more, and we appreciated more. I could see the meaning for it all. Surely we were now due for God’s blessings.
I never expected what came next… it was our season of wait.
This was a completely different test, just when I thought I had passed them all. It was an agonizing one; one that I would fail at over and over again. I was at the mercy of time. It felt like the same suffering, day after day, with no end in sight. Just when we thought we found the answer, just when the doctors claimed it was over, the battle continued…
The waiting continued.
“Three different times I begged the Lord to take it away. Each time He said ‘My grace is sufficient for you. My power works best in weakness.'” 2 Corinthians 12:8-9
It was January 2014 and we began to notice our son, Dawson having dirty undies. We thought maybe it was a boy thing, and made sure to help him clean up after going to the bathroom. He was only five, after all. But by March, I was receiving at least one phone call a week to pick him up from school because of the accidents.
[When Dawson was born he did not have a bowel movement in the hospital. He was transferred to the NICU and after several days of testing, was diagnosed with Hirschsprung’s Disease, a genetic disorder where the ganglion cells in the intestine do not form. He had to have a colostomy because he was a preemie and didn’t weigh enough for the corrective surgery. At ten months old, he had the surgery to remove the part of the intestines that wasn’t functioning. The day before his first birthday his colostomy was reversed. He healed perfectly and never had any complications.]
Because of this history we decided to take him to his surgeon. We thought something went wrong, causing leakages. Dawson was taken to the hospital for a Gastrografin enema. The report said the intestines were healthy. He was just very backed up. The surgeon assured us it was normal and not related to his history. The Gastrografin would continue to pull fluid into the intestines and everything would pass. When the blockages were gone, the accidents would stop.
Days later, nothing had changed. The surgeon referred us to the GI doctor Dawson saw as a baby. He was started on Mirilax as xrays still showed blockages. He went three months without any change. In June, I received a call from the GI that the recent xray showed substantial back up; He would have to be admitted to the hospital. They ran an NG tube to his stomach which would pump medicine in to clear him. An xray was taken to verify placement. The staff was baffeled. His blockages were so bad that he should have been vomiting everything he ate; they should have ruptured; he should have developed toxicity. But even in our trials, God is faithful. He protected Dawson through it all, and Dawson’s bravery and positive attitude never ceased amazing me.
He was there for over two days and finally had a normal xray. Praise the Lord the blockages were gone! We even had a couple days of clean undies, but then the accidents returned. Dawson had developed megacolon from all of the blockages stretching his intestines. We had to continue the Mirilax, the pull ups, the pads, and of course, the waiting.
And I continued trying to control the situation. I was angry that God wouldn’t fix this. In November we went for a follow up. His GI advised us that if he didnt improve in three months, we would have to consider further, more invasive testing. This was the last thing I wanted him to go through and I was stressed. I gave up hope.
But in the weeks following, something changed. I finally surrendered; I stopped trying to change it. I prayed for God’s will and trusted Him, if that was the road we were meant to travel. I started a daily prayer journal, and I began to let myself hope again.
“But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength…” Isaiah 40:31
God showed me our minds were not developed to figure out the future. This waiting was a lesson in trust like no other. And all the while I saw a young boy full of unparalelled strength and grace. I had found peace. Regardless of the circumstances, I had a healthy boy and I placed him completely in The Father’s hands.
Then it happened; God showed me a reason…
My husband’s grandma fell and fractured her hip. After surgery the nurses said she would call out Dawson’s name in her sleep. She would yell, “Okay Dawson, I will do this with you.” Grandma had taken everything he had been through as motivation. It gave her the strength to recover. She told us, “If he can handle all that, I can do this.” She drew her strength from my darling young man, and I could not have been prouder. If that was the reason she could recover, it was all worth it. I didn’t know when his body would heal, but at least I knew all this had purpose.
After Christmas, I heard that still, small voice.
I felt God urging me to call the doctor. I explained to her that Dawson was showing no signs of improvement and I felt it was time to move on. January of this year we went to the GI. She had spoken about his case with the specialists that would perform the testing. Low and behold, they first wanted to make sure it wasn’t related to the Hirschsprung’s after all. They explained that some patients will develop a spasm in the colon, even years after surgery, that can be causing the accidents. It may have even caused the blockages in the first place. She stopped the Mirilax and prescribed an anti-spasm medication. We also scheduled a biopsy to make sure there was no residual Hirschsprung’s.
That was a Friday. Saturday morning Dawson took his first pill. Saturday after lunch was his last accident. Just like that, it was over. In God’s perfect timing, not my own.
His biopsy was a couple of weeks later and everything was normal. It was unbelievable, and I found God still teaching me to trust Him that Dawson really was okay.
“God is keeping a careful watch over us and the future. The day is coming when you will have it all, Life healed and whole.” 1 Peter 1:5.
This was our season of wait, and God taught us how to wait well. I had no end in sight, but when I was no longer looking for it, God ended it. He taught me to fully rely on Him. Our Father loves Dawson more than I ever can, and he is safe in His loving hands.
(If you have any questions about this condition or children’s constipation, I’d be happy to share my advice with you. [Of course, I’m not a doctor!]. We keep Dawson on a very high fiber, whole grain diet. His dairy is limited but not eliminated. Whole foods are best. He takes apple cider vinegar daily, fiber supplements, as well as his Levsin. I also try to implement coconut oil daily, and lots of fluids!)
Jamie and her husband live in Florida. They have two beautiful children – Dawson and Peyton.