Saturday, June 7, 2008

My Dad

Dear Family and Friends,

The results of my Dad's angioplasty are not what we had hoped for, but we are seeing very clearly how God has protected his life this past year.

I will explain in bullet points what has happened/is happening:

-The results of the angioplasty indicated two blockages in his heart. One is 80% blocked and the other is 90% blocked. There is also concern that his abdominal artery and renal artery are blocked as well. He will have a CT scan tomorrow to better define whether these arteries also have blockages.

-He also has blockages in both of his legs which are not as serious as the others, but have contributed to the weakening he has experienced in his legs for the past couple of years. These will be attended to at a later date.

-The surgeon wanted to do surgery tomorrow, however, Dad's cre-a-tin (not sure how to spell) level is too high indicating that there is something going on with his kidneys. The level is at 1.7 and they want it to be down to 1.

-They will be closely monitoring him in the hospital through the weekend and have scheduled him for open-heart surgery at 10 am on Monday morning - given that his kidneys cooperate.

We are praising God for:

-His sovereign plan. My parent's would have left for a 6 week trip to Alaska this past weekend had it not been for my sister's surgery on the 17th. They wanted to wait until they knew what the results of her surgery were first before leaving. Dad had also just been in Parkersburg last Monday helping with clean up there; he's been working on building a deck for their house; and he had a very demanding weekend on Mem. Day weekend as a bunch of us were camping and hiking, etc. We never would have guessed . .

-For Dad's new doctor. Dad just switched doctors a couple months ago because the feedback that they were getting from previous doctors involved putting him on and taking him off a number of different medications to lower his blood pressure. This new doctor has taken a very aggressive approach and quickly identified what was going on through tests and procedures.

- There is no damage to his heart. He also has his age going for him (he is 64) and his heart is strong. The doctor calls him a "tough cookie" and the nurses tell him he has had guardian angels watching over him.

Please pray with us for:

-His kidneys. We are praying that his levels would be stable by Monday so that the surgery can be done.

- Continued protection of his heart. Risk for heart attack is high and we pray that he can go into surgery with a strong, undamaged heart.

-For the CT scan to clearly show what is going on with his other two arteries tomorrow.

- For peace of mind and heart for each one of us as we walk with Jesus through this. Pray especially for my sister who is struggling with being torn with wanting to be with dad and having her own surgery coming up the following week. Her plan was to come later this summer for a longer period of time. It is very hard for her to not be here - she lives in Texas. I told Mom to tell her that God used her to save Dad's life by scheduling her surgery in June. We love you Bren.

When told that he would not have surgery until Monday, Dad said to my Mom, "Well, that just gives more people more time to pray." So, thank you for your prayers for us, for your love, and for your concern.

Dan's sister Julie reminded us of the verse we focused on with the kids the week we were in Nicaragua . . . "Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go." Joshua 1:9 Thank you Julie for that reminder! Thanks too everybody for your emails and phone calls. I may not respond to you individually right now, but please know that we appreciate them very much!

We will keep you posted!