He had a respiratory infection that was so bad it produced fluid which accumulated in his lungs, preventing it from fully pumping air. To get it out, we had to hold our crying baby still, while he laid down on his side so the fluid would settle. Then the doctors used the biggest needle and syringe we've ever seen to extract it. It was painful to see our son’s tiny, severely underweight body go through that.
After a few days, the fluid was back. The doctors wanted to operate so they could insert a small tube which would directly drain the water from our baby’s lungs while they treated him with strong antibiotics for possible Primary Complex. There was no guarantee that he'd get better.
All too quickly, one day at the hospital turned into two, then five, and then we were counting weeks and not days. With our health insurance maxed out, our hospital bill rose through the roof. But more than the financial worries, we struggled to keep a positive and hopeful attitude. How could we hope for the best when we couldn't see even a single ray of light at the end of the tunnel? We had an infant crying almost all day for weeks, struggling to breathe, and we couldn't do anything. It's the most painful thing for parents - to see their child suffer and not be able to do anything to help him. Our hope and hearts were faltering every single sleepless night that passed.
As a young couple and first-time parents, we tried our very best to keep our temple covenants and always thought we were going to be okay, until we weren't. We were not angry with God, but we were extremely sad. We thought we were already faithful but we realized doubt has crept in.
'The rush of comfort and assurance brought by the Spirit was incredible.'
We had to remind ourselves that if we had perfect faith in His plan and the blessings of Jesus Christ's atoning sacrifice, we should know we were all going to be okay, even if that meant our child needed to leave our side sooner than we imagined. Finally, we poured our hearts out in prayer, asking for help to feel the power of the atonement in our lives and letting Heavenly Father know that we were ready to accept His will.
The rush of comfort and assurance brought by the Spirit was incredible. And it only happened right after we recognized that we had to help each other show stronger faith in Heavenly Father, in His plan, and Jesus Christ's atonement. We started smiling again, no longer bound by the shackles of fear, grief, and pain. We felt Heaven's love pour out on us through visiting friends, families, co-workers, and members of the Church. Through each of them and through each other, we were reminded of Christ's loving arms. Eventually, our son's minor operation turned out successful, his meds worked, and he started to really get better. We got out of the hospital a few days before Christmas and we were ecstatic.
Now almost 5 years old, our son bears a scar of the tube on his left side. Every time we look at it, and at him, we are reminded of the power that faith brought to our lives. We feel that God is mindful of us and we are humbled by the infinite blessings of Christ's sacrifice.
“How can we show our faith this time? The answer came almost instantly. We had the faith that he can be healed if that was Heavenly Father's will. But we had to have faith that he may not be healed and everything will still be okay. We tried to envision a future where we would be happy again, even without our precious little baby in our arms.”