As John and I drove to the airport last Friday to visit our daughter Amy and her family in Virginia, we received a frightening call. Our daughter, Jonelle,was headed to the hospital for an emergency C-section. And, sadly, the doctors said that even though we had thought Jonelle was 26 weeks along, she was measuring only 22 weeks along. They thought Jonelle would almost certainly lose the baby.
I was in tears as we made our way to the hospital.
Happily, as you may know, our granddaughter Grace Louise ("Gracie Lou") was born on Friday. She was, indeed, 26 weeks along, but half the size she was supposed to be. Gracie Lou has been valiantly fighting for her life—and, apparently, winning—ever since she was born. We praise God for this miracle.
Until yesterday evening, she was in stable condition. Last night, after a stressful day, she showed signs of stress: racing heartbeat, low oxygen. She may need surgery today to close her heart valve.
She has a long road ahead of her, but as the doctors keep saying, she is a feisty little girl. That feistiness is much to her benefit now.
Through these trying ups and downs, I am exceedingly grateful for your care and support. From the first moment we shared about Jonelle's situation last Friday, Sonlighters have been praying for Gracie Lou and encouraging our family. Your prayers and posts on the Forums and Facebook have been incredibly encouraging and sustaining for Jonelle and her husband Dave, as well as me and John.
Click here to see updates and lots of photos on John's blog. Several pictures show just how small Gracie Lou really is. In one photo, John's wedding band fits loosely over her entire left arm. At birth she weighed under 1 pound and was less than 11 inches longÑshorter than a Barbie doll.
With all my heart, thank you for your support. I am honored and humbled to have you pray for me and my family. We have truly felt upheld—what a privilege.
If you feel alone in a struggle today, please know that Sonlighters are ready and eager to join you in prayer. I think that prayer might be the most selfless "work" we can do on behalf of someone else—those you pray for may never know how you helped carry their burdens. You may post on the Prayer Closet Forum or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What a blessing to serve a powerful God who brings people together in community.
With sincere gratitude,
Want more encouragement?
Sign up for Sonlight's bi-weekly e-newsletter
You'll be encouraged by the words of founder Sarita Holzmann, inspired by real-life stories from other homeschoolers, pick up practical tips for the journey and more.