Life is so delicate, the balance must be perfect for it to work. Think about it. Perfect ratios of water, air, minerals and amino acids among many other things. If even one component is out of balance you get at the very least genetically flawed specimens. Or, just lack of life.
In August I lost my childhood best friend of 32 years. He had some imbalances that were unsustainable. Jessica and I came home earlier than expected due to this loss and ended up setting us on a path that I actually am quite thankful for now. Not long after we got home Jess started having a lot of itchy symptoms on her feet and hands. This is a symptom of Cholestatis, which is a condition that can cause infant demise if taken full term. Cami was not due until Oct 24th, so being that we were home almost 3 weeks early, we decided to take the advice and get induced at 37 weeks to avoid any risk to Cami. The month of September was very stressful in regards to the pregnancy. We had multiple trips to the ER and doctor appointments to monitor Camila’s heart rate. It had dropped to dangerous levels a couple times which is scary. By the end of September week 37 couldn’t come fast enough. We wanted to wait to make sure her lungs were developed enough to survive without the NICU.
On Saturday, October 5th at 8:45 exactly 24.5 hours after being induced, Camila Jean Carlile was born at 5lb 6oz and 17” long. The amazing thing was, she was born with a true knot in the umbilical cord. It was white in color suggesting it was being pulled tighter as she grew. This also, if baby goes full term is likely to end in infant demise. We had all the cards stacked against us. However, in John 14:6 Jesus said “Jesus said to him: "I am the Way, and the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father, except through me.”
Life is of God. JESUS is life. Even, in the worst case scenario, had Cami not made it, as many children do not make it every day, Jesus is still life. We must have faith and trust that this little life is what the Lord wants in this moment in time. If He chose to take her home before she was born, however heartbreaking this may be for us, ultimately, it’s His child. We’ve dedicated, and will continue to dedicate all of our children to the kingdom of God. I do have faith that the Lord almighty has our families interest at heart. No matter how bleak or devastating life can be, we always have to remember that. We may never understand, but that is the essence of faith.
My heart sings with joy that we were blessed with the outcome we were given. Now, being a family of 6, we start our journey of into the balancing act of ministry and family. At the top of our to-do list is raise money for a new vehicle. Our 2010 Jeep Patriot is on it's last leg -- a dying transmission and leaking oil -- a dangerous combo on mountain terrain. We've been talking with MATS international, a nonprofit that helps missionaries find good vehicles for significantly reduced prices, about the type of vehicle needed for all of our responsibilities: the volunteer program, medical clinics and our family. More to come soon about what we find out! Here in the States we are blessed by my parents allowing us access to their second vehicle. Knowing that our family no longer fits in a traditional 5 passenger vehicle, they traded in theirs for a 7 seater - talk about blessings!
Please continue to pray for our family as we settle into our new normal with baby Cami and prepare for our return to the Dominican Republic.
We are Catholic lay missionaries serving along the border of Haiti and the Dominican Republic.
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