John 13:7 Jesus Replied, “You don’t understand now what I am doing, but someday you will.”
To eliminate some suspense, I’ll cut to the chase; in over two years of writing about Kennedy, this is by far the happiest news I get to share.
In January of this year, KC had a heart catherization that had two purposes:
1. Plug a hole (ASD) in her heart
2. Test her pulmonary pressures to determine if she has a disease called pulmonary hypertension
The results of that cath were:
1. Unsuccessful @ plugging her ASD
2. She has very dangerous levels of PH – to put it in generic (and very rough) terms, if 100 is the highest, and 20 is normal – she was at a 70.
3. Open heart surgery is needed
It seemed that day, the cath was extremely unsuccessful. (See John 13:7 above)
We had scheduled surgery for the middle of February, but on February 10th, Kennedy had to be admitted into the hospital with what would later be found out was double viral pneumonia. She gave us some of the scariest moments we have ever had as parents that week. During that 10 day hospitalization, there were two times when we feared for her life. After getting through the worst of the sickness, Kennedy was sent home on a strong dosage of oxygen, and sentenced to a LONG time of (as close as possible) germ free living.
This was all done in preparation to (attempt to) cure her weak immune system (among several other problems) by closing the hole in her heart that was not able to be plugged in the cath lab. So the goal was to keep her healthy for 6 weeks so her lungs were strong enough to bypass her heart and perform open heart surgery. This was pretty terrifying for Joy and I as parents.
We were able to keep KC relatively healthy for the next few weeks, and finally scheduled a surgery date of April 23rd.
When April 23rd arrived, Joy and I were prepared for the hardest day of our 17 month olds life. Our minds swarmed with a myriad of thoughts, and our hearts experienced countless emotions, but fear really wasn’t one of them, at least not one of the strongest. We saw on Facebook our family and friends with “Team KC” shirts on, we received tons of texts, and messages of people just letting us know they were praying for her. It was unbelievably comforting.
We waited in the waiting room from about 8-3 that day, before the surgeons finally came in. “Surgery was a huge success, and Kennedy is doing great.” The surgeons went on to explain why it was so successful. They had found (and plugged) a second hole in KC’s heart. We knew about the one hole in KC’s heart – the ASD. What we were not aware of was the other (and more dangerous) hole in her heart – the PDA. This was the hole that disappeared @ birth, and had not shown up in any of her dozens of echocardiograms.
When this hole was plugged her PH level, which back to my rough terms, was around 70, immediately dropped to a healthy range of 30.
This was a HUGE win for Kennedy.
If we had a successful catherization back in January, we may have never caught this other hole. She may have gone on living life, struggling with disease and illness, due to a weak heart because of a hole that no one even knew existed.
I don’t feel like it should be left up to the human brain to understand the reasoning behind what God allows, but if I have learned nothing else through the life of KC, I have learned to always trust him. In good times, in bad times – He love us, and He wants what is best for us.
Post surgery, Kennedy has been a different girl. She has healed beautifully. She has not had one sickness. Her appetite has doubled, and her energy level has tripled. We have kept her quarantined for the past 5 weeks, but that ends tomorrow. Tomorrow, Kennedy is going to get out of her bubble. Tomorrow Kennedy is going to resume her life as a normal baby, and hang out with other babies. Tomorrow, Kennedy gets to join a community – a family- @ Rise church, and we just could not be more thrilled.