Alveolar Cleft, Bone Morphogenetic Protein, and God
I cannot fully remember the day exactly that I realized my FAITH would move mountains but PRAISE God I KNOW that now. July 7th, 2009: almost seven years to the date of Ryan’s first surgery, I handed him, tears streaming my face, to a nurse to take him back for his 9th surgery. This surgery was markedly different. This was the day I had been prepared for—the recovery we were told was HARD, painful, complete with massive food restrictions, and physical limitations. More importantly, it was personally hard for me. A birth defect that had adversely affected my first marriage, had been all I could think about during Ryan’s first couple of years, had in many ways made him so different from a “normal” child, and a defect that had ENHANCED my walk with the Lord was going to be repaired. I have NEVER cried when handing my child over to the nurse until this surgery. I feared the worst, and even in my prayer time begged God that if he was going to take my child during surgery or recovery to prepare for Ryan a beautiful mansion, I had named specific people I wanted to meet him at the Pearly Gates of Heaven. I think about this irrational fear now that we are a week behind us and it makes me laugh, but I had to pray about it because I was thinking about it.
The entire process preparing for surgery was different. I normally ask a few people to pray for us, but this time I asked everyone I knew and every church I could find to cover my son in their prayers. God heard our cries! Ryan came out of surgery, sleeping like a baby. Let me explain why this is a big deal—normally he comes out of anesthesia acting like a bear—angry and starving. But not now, he was peacefully sleeping. I had prayed for recovery to begin before the surgery, and it had. I stood by his bed for the longest, afraid I would not be there when he woke, and the tears fell. Ryan had not gone to Heaven—he was here in the flesh and looking great. God continued to work. When Ryan FINALLY woke up the next day, the swelling was minimal and the pain was as well. We came home from the hospital early and other than food restrictions, life has continued quite nicely.
I am not the best witness of the life of a believer, but there are many days I feel like a newborn Christian. But there is one thing I want everyone to learn, Prayer works. I do not walk around claiming or thinking I am different or better. I am different than some, because I am saved. But I am saved because I was and am a sinner. God continues to move mountains on my behalf and bless me because I ask.
To those of you who read this, thank you for the prayers you offered on the behalf of Ryan. I am GRATEFUL!