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Bonnie *UPDATED

July 24, 2014 | Prayed for 24 times

My nephew Ben is in a medically induced coma. He attempted to take his life today. Ben is in his early twenties and a sweet, intelligent young man. Neither my sister nor Ben are in relationship with Christ. Please pray for complete healing for Ben not just physically but spiritually as well. Please pray God will send one of His own to minister to Angie - Ben's mom at the hospital where she is in a state of shock and deeply distraught. This is her only child. Please pray for the doctor's and medical staff to be compassionate and caring, wise and discerning as they provide care for Ben. I pray someone or many of the team members are Believers. The diagnosis is not good at all - severe brain and spine trauma. Please pray God will heal the relationship between mother and son. I pray God uses this sad day in a mighty way to have these two lost souls embrace fall in love with Him forever. I covet your prayers for which I remain eternally grateful. Thank you and may God bless you with peace and joy.

  • Most Recent Update | Posted on July 26, 2014

    Ben's neurologist has him off sedation. Ben is no longer in medically induced coma. We are all waiting for Ben to open his eyes , to hear, to speak, to sense..........Please pray for the first signs of answered prayers and then for a full recovery. A grateful and sincere thank you to all who prayed for Ben. I don't know you, but God does and I have prayed for abundant blessings for your lives.

Paul T. Leidy *UPDATED

February 28, 2014 | Prayed for 598 times

Please pray for my grandson, Caleb Koppel, who was born on February 19th with the condition known as Hypoplastic Left Heart Syndrome. As a result of the condition, Caleb had open heart surgery on February 25th at Children's Hospital - Washington, DC. Caleb is a fraternal twin, and his brother Jonah is doing well. Please pray for Caleb, his parents - Ryan and Kristen Koppel, and Jonah, that the Lord continues to lift them up and provide his healing hands and grace on them. Additionally, pray for Ryan and my wife Mary Leidy, as they also use this opportunity to share the Gospel with other families in crisis, as well as the entire medical staff supporting Caleb. It is truly amazing what God can do through trials in our lives. Ryan provides updates, which I will post here for additional prayer and support - this is the update received on Friday February 28th: Good morning family, Caleb had another good night last night, praise The Lord. They have taken him off the nitrous oxide which was supporting his breathing. They have also reduced the amount of oxygen through the breathing machine to 50 percent (normal air is about 21 percent), so he is getting closer to being able to breathe without a breathing machine. His swelling has reduced a great deal. He is peeing a good amount which means that the heart is pumping enough blood to the kidneys. He also has had a couple bowel movements which is a good sign. All of the doctors continue to be amazed with his recovery. He will remain basically paralyzed until they close his chest back up, which is a 2 part process. Part 1 is this morning around 9am when the surgical team will come in for a 30-45 minute window to remove the arch that they put over his heart to let it swell. Then part 2 will be in the next 1-2 days where they will close the chest. Please pray for this to go smoothly and pray for wisdom for the surgeon and supporting doctors. Please pray for a sterile environment and that no infection would be allowed near his body. The nurses say that even in this state, he can hear us and recognize voices so I sleep at the hospital with him so I can talk to him, pray over him etc. Kristen and Jonah have been at Ronald McDonald house. I usually hang out with them during the middle of the day. We thank The Lord that both Kristen and Jonah are very healthy.

  • Update | Posted on July 20, 2014

    PTL ... Caleb and the whole family are HOME!! Here is the update and thanks for all of your continued prayers. Caleb was discharged yesterday morning and so far has had no issues at home. It was the boys' 5 month birthday so I hope you enjoy the picture (wish you could see the photo of both boys sitting on the couch at home ... a blessing indeed!). We will be condensing his feeds through the G tube over the coming week so that eventually his meals will only be 30 minutes long during the day and then can run continuous at night. Please pray that his stomach continues to handle this and that all else goes well. God is good!

  • Update | Posted on July 18, 2014

    The good Lord continues to provide blessings through this season of trials for sweet little Caleb, and by God's grace, he may actually be coming home ... PTL! Please see the update from Ryan and thanks for your continued support and prayers! Hi team Caleb! Caleb was transferred from the CICU to HKU on Wednesday night. Praise The Lord. The staff here thinks there is a good chance that Caleb should be able to be discharged tomorrow (Saturday). He seems to be tolerating his G tube meals well. He continues to be on room air which is great. They sent oxygen support to our house just in case he needs it, but Lord willing we will not need it. Please pray for all things to work out so he can be discharged and that our transition home will be smooth. Please pray for wisdom for us to make wise decisions regarding his care. Also, Kristen will not be going back to work for this upcoming school year so please keep us in prayer for this adjustment. We feel really good about Caleb's current health and our life situation in general. We are very blessed in so many ways. We appreciate everybody's prayers. Thank you Lord for carrying the weight of this trial for us all this time. Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

  • Update | Posted on July 14, 2014

    Thanks to all for their continued prayers ...PTL, "God is good all the time, and all the time God is good". Encouraging news about our little Caleb the warrior ... here is the latest from Ryan and Kristen yesterday, July 13. Caleb is starting to feel better. Smiles are back and he is talking to us again. He should get off his pain med IV drip today and then hopefully he can be weaned off of his oxycodone slowly. His oxygen support is also being weaned. Hopefully he will be out of the CICU soon. Thank you Lord Jesus for our sweet boy.

  • Update | Posted on July 11, 2014

    Not sure the previous update made it here but Caleb had the surgery and it was more extensive then planned but was overall the right thing for Caleb. However, God's plan and journey for Caleb was not over as you will see in this most current update from Ryan. PTL, God is good and your prayers are soooo appreciated. PART 1 Post: Good morning all. This morning the stitches were removed from the outside of Caleb's G Tube and a few minutes later it popped out of his stomach. The balloon that is blown up normally under the skin had burst so when he was upset, it came out. This created a flurry of activity around him because it becomes somewhat urgent to try to get something in the hole to keep it open so they can reinsert a new one. They were able to do this but needed to confirm if the new one was actually in the stomach. They took Caleb down to do a bunch of x rays and inject dye and it turned out not to be in the stomach. As a result, he is headed to the OR very shortly to have a new G tube properly placed. Everybody here seems a little shocked because it is very rare for it to fall out so quickly. Please pray for Caleb to handle the anesthesia well and for a successful surgery. They may do his circumcision as well when he is under. Tough start to the day for the little man. I will keep you posted. PART 2 Post All went well in the surgery today. The g tube fix was easier than expected and they were able to do a circumcision. This was great because otherwise we would have had to do this outpatient and the anesthesia would have been with somebody not at Children's. With Caleb's complexity, this could be risky. God was working all things for good today. Thank you Lord.

  • Update | Posted on July 09, 2014

    Thanks to all for the positive power of prayer and those that intentionally, and regularly, provide prayers for Caleb, the lil warrior. Here is the post-surgery (7/8) update from Ryan ... PTL Caleb's procedure today was a success, praise God. He went under anesthesia about 9:30am and the surgery was complete around 12pm. The surgeon repaired the left diaphragm by sort of stitching it to itself (almost like folding it over and moving it down). It had pushed his left lung up really high and Caleb's stomach and spleen had actually moved all the way over to the left side of his body and slid upwards. Basically, he was a mess on the left side of his insides which would help explain some of his breathing, pain and reflux issues. The surgeon also decided to do the nissen fundoplication where he wrapped part of the stomach around the esophagus to prevent reflux in the future. He helped ease some of our concerns of Caleb potentially not being able to burp or throw up properly when he is older. The way he wrapped the stomach was not very tight and the technique for the surgery has changed a lot over the years to help with this. Lastly, he put a G tube in Caleb's stomach which will give us more flexibility with feeding him (we can use this IF he won't eat by mouth and can give his meds through it) and he will be able to gain weight quickly. The great thing is he can still feed by mouth and if he is really successful, they can just take the G tube out. Caleb has been in a lot of pain post op. He is so used to the drugs that it took a while to find the right amount to get him in a happy place without going overboard. His heart rate went up to 215 at one point and was elevated around 180-200 for quite a while. He had a fever of 102 at one point which can be common after surgery. Thank The Lord he is doing better now, but please continue to pray for his pain management overnight. I am so grateful to God for the great anesthesia and surgical team that Caleb had today and his other procedures. In particular, Dr. Sinhah, Dr. Kane, Dr. Schwartz, and Dr. Slack. God can heal anybody miraculously (and has with Caleb at times) or can bless these people with wisdom, talent and a passion for helping children surgically and through modern medicine. James 1:17 says "every good and perfect gift is from above" and that includes all of the gifts that these people were blessed with and the medicine and technology we have. It all points to God, so I give Him praise. We feel like Caleb has gotten the best care possible and The Lord has orchestrated every part of it and used these people. We are hoping today is the last surgery for Caleb for quite a while. He has been through so much. But with all of these tests, an amazing testimony is being formed in and through his little life. Please pray for a smooth transition out of the CICU back to HKU very soon and a swift transition home shortly after. Thanks again for being there for us.

  • Update | Posted on July 07, 2014

    Here is the latest update ... we are praying for the least invasive surgery for Caleb, so we covet your prayers for healing and discernment for the entire surgical team. Here is the latest update from Ryan, as of 7/5. Hello team Caleb. Over the last few days, Caleb was able to be weaned off of oxygen and has been breathing on room air which has been a real blessing. We keep the nasal cannula on and next to him just in case we need to slide it over his nose in the event of a drop in his oxygen saturation. He is also pooping totally normally now without the help of any medicine which is another answered prayer. Yesterday we were able to speak with one of the surgeons regarding Caleb's reflux condition and what they would propose surgically since so far his eating has not improved and his reflux is still pretty bad. As I mentioned before, there is a good chance that his left diaphragm is moving, which can push the stomach up and cause reflux so that would be the first thing they would look to confirm and then fix. They will also take a look to see if there is a hernia in his esophagus, which would mean he would need the nissen fundoplication and a "g tube" as well. The thing Kristen and I liked to hear is that they will only do the second part if necessary and we are praying that only the diaphragm will need to be fixed (or nothing at all by then). Caleb is tentatively on the books for surgery Tuesday at some point. Thank you for the prayers and support! God bless!

  • Update | Posted on July 02, 2014

    Thanks you, thank you for your continued prayers as our little warrior Caleb continues to face trials and still blessings. Here is the most recent update from Ryan: Hello team Caleb! Today was Caleb's best day in quite a while, praise Jesus. He was smiley and happy for about 80 percent of the day. He did have some occasional reflux and back arching fits and desats but he does appear to be getting better which is really encouraging. Thank you very much for the prayers. Caleb's main doctor and surgeon came by this afternoon and said he would like us to wait a few days to determine our next move for Caleb. He thinks he will probably need surgery of some type. He thinks a laparoscopic Nissan fundoplication is likely necessary where the top of the stomach is wrapped around the bottom of the esophagus to prevent throwing up. They would also put in a stomach "g tube" in this procedure ( to help feed Caleb when he goes home). The downside to this procedure is that long term it can cause issues as you can feel bloated or not able to throw up properly in the future. The mysterious thing to the doctors is why Caleb is just now getting this bad reflux. Most babies have it earlier or from the beginning but he has always been a great eater. They have also noticed that his left diaphragm moves abnormally when breathing which could be impacting the stomach and causing the reflux. This is a newer issue that seems to correlate with the reflux. So in theory you could take care of the Nissen procedure and the diaphragm in the same procedure but you may be unnecessarily doing the Nissen part if it is only the diaphragm that is causing the problem. If you fix the diaphragm and hold off on the Nissen, then you may have the risk of needing to do another procedure under anesthesia to complete the Nissen later, which they really want to avoid (because of anesthesia risk). The good news is that it appears to be our decision and we are not being pressured to make it right away. We are praying that Caleb is healed by God without the need for anything surgical at all and that he just continues to get better. Please join us in this prayer and pray for wisdom for us and Caleb's doctors for clear direction. On an encouraging note, it is amazing to see how much God is using Caleb to impact everybody around him here. We are grateful to be walking in God's will for our life. Thanks for your love and support. James 1:12 "Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him."

  • Update | Posted on June 22, 2014

    Update from Ryan from Saturday June 21. Thanks for your continued prayers! Good evening team Caleb. Caleb has improved over the last few days but still has his mountains and valleys. The best news is that his Cath lab procedure seemed to have really helped his profusion to his lungs so his color is much better and overall his oxygen saturations are much improved. The biggest issue right now appears to be bad constipation. Most would think bad constipation would not keep you in the CICU but when you are a baby with a special heart and the constipation makes you so upset that you desat to below 30 consistently (even as low as 5) and have to get an oxygen mask boost to get you back up, then there is a problem. It seems when less food is forced down, he is happier, yet he needs the food for strength and nourishment. So this may be the first time you have received a prayer request for consistent bowel movements but there is a first time for everything and God cares about all of the small details of life:) Thank you Lord Jesus for your perfect plan and answered prayers!

  • Update | Posted on June 18, 2014

    Thank you for your time and prayers for Caleb and our entire family, and the indulgence of sharing his story and the faith journey so beautifully provided by my son Ryan. As we covet your prayers, we also hope that these updates provide inspiration and strength to those enduring similar trials in this life. Our God is great and nothing is beyond his reach and it is all in His hands, by His grace and according to His will, as it was from the beginning and will be for the rest of our time on THIS home. We are blessed by all of you! Here is a long two part update. PTL ... Update from the Weekend and Monday June 16: Caleb has done really well in the CICU since his "code blue" incident where he stopped breathing briefly on Saturday morning, praise God. He started in the CICU on high flow oxygen but has been reduced to low flow. His bottle feeding was halted for about 48 hours but is now being slowly reintroduced. There are a lot of potential reasons why he may have had the episode on Saturday, but the doctors want to evaluate every possibility before assuming it was just reflux. The neurologist came by today and is going to do a head ultrasound and a one hour EEG, although she doesn't think they will find anything. Caleb is also having a Cath Lab procedure today so they can get an inside view of his heart and it's function. They did an echocardiogram and his heart looked good for the most part, but the Cath Lab will give more details. In particular, they want to see how his left pulmonary artery has healed since his last open heart surgery (where it was patched). Please pray for Caleb to handle the anesthesia of the procedure well and that the doctors involved work precisely and efficiently with a great deal of wisdom. Please pray that his left pulmonary artery has healed well and that his tricuspid valve in his heart isn't leaking very much (he has had a slight leak in this for a while). I have spent a lot of time recently in 1 Samuel and Caleb's journey lately reminds me of David's journey when Saul sought after his life relentlessly. Saul, the king of Israel was insanely jealous of David and his fame after he killed Goliath and saved Israel from the Philistines. Saul knew that God had given David great favor and he would be Israel's next king so he longed to kill him. David spent a very long time in the wilderness, hiding in rocks and caves from the pursuit of his enemy, and although Saul nearly had him many times, David was always protected. There was no stopping God's plan for David no matter how grim the circumstances looked for him. And so it seems with Caleb at times- that there is an enemy that constantly lurks for him and the pursuit of his life and health. But as we march through the wilderness times here, we know that nothing can take Caleb's life unless God says its ok. Like David's wanderings, our journey has been much longer than expected and there are things that we don't understand. It isn't surprising to me that the book of the Bible that has helped me most at the hospital is Psalms (much of which David wrote during his challenging times running and hiding from Saul). The words are so raw and authentic. Such honest prayers to God. We pray that Caleb's time after his hospital "wilderness wanderings" be filled with tremendous blessings like David's were (David became King of Israel and ultimately the earthly family line for Jesus Christ, messiah, Savior of the world).  You never know what blessing God may have in store for you if you remain faithful during the "wilderness times", so we are excited to see what is next for Caleb and our family as we lean on the strength of Him who is able to do any and all things. Psalm 54:1-7  "Save me, O God, by your name; vindicate me by your might. Hear my prayer, O God; listen to the words of my mouth. Arrogant foes are attacking me; ruthless people are trying to kill me—people without regard for God. Surely God is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me. Let evil recoil on those who slander me; in your faithfulness destroy them. I will sacrifice a freewill offering to you;I will praise your name, Lord, for it is good. You have delivered me from all my troubles, and my eyes have looked in triumph on my foes."  From Tuesday June 17th: Caleb's Cath lab visit today had its ups and downs, but overall was good. He did really well with the initial anesthesia. They discovered that his aorta had a small bit of tissue that could effect blood flow and his left pulmonary artery was narrow which was impacting blood flow into his left lung. This would explain why he has been having some difficulty breathing and his left lung has looked funny on x rays for a while. They ballooned both (to remove tissue and open them up a bit) the aorta and the left pulmonary artery successfully which should help him quite a bit. The Cath lab doctor wanted to put a stent in the LPA but it isn't quite big enough yet so he will likely do that in 6 months or so. He also found a small collateral blood vessel that formed after Caleb's last surgery which was taking a little bit of blood flow from the lungs and this was clamped shut. All great news, praise God. The concerning part of the day came when the anesthesia team was trying to take Caleb off of the ventilator after the procedure. Over the course of an hour he stopped breathing many times, some stretches as long as a couple minutes. They said he would stop breathing when he was awake and angry, when he was relaxed with eyes open and when he was sleeping. They think that anesthesia may have amplified these episodes so that they were more intense versions of what we experienced when Caleb stopped breathing in the Heart and Kidney Unit.  They think it is possible that there is something neurologically that has triggered this response but they aren't sure. The good news is that he had a team around him to bag him and the ventilator that they could start again to make sure that he was safe. So in a sense this could be a blessing because although Caleb's heart and artery function needed to be improved (which it was today), the issues of stopping breathing may be caused by something else and we were able to discover this in a stable environment. He is hooked up to an EEG machine for the whole night to monitor his neurological activity and make sure he isn't having seizures. We will be speaking more with the neurology team tomorrow.  Thank you for the continued prayers for our boy. Please pray that there is nothing long term damaging neurologically going on.  Praise you Lord Jesus for your sovereign will and your love for us, especially your love for Caleb. 

  • Update | Posted on June 16, 2014

    Being patient and prayerful in understanding, yet accepting God's plan for our little warrior Caleb. Was a trial filled weekend for my son Ryan's 1st Father's Day but through his faith and God's strength, he is being a "rock" to his son and his family. Please continue to pray for Caleb and our whole family. God Bless you all ... here is the update from Saturday. It was an eventful morning for Caleb. Here is what happened: they had just taken off his oxygen and his NG tube out bc he was doing better. I was trying to feed him but he was fussy. We thought it was just bc someone had been messing with him. When I went to arrange his cords, Caleb immediately arched his back and turned blue and stopped breathing. My mom (who thankfully was holding Jonah at the time) and Kristen ran out and yelled for a nurse. Every HKU nurse rushed in within 10 seconds. Meanwhile, I laid Caleb on his bed and he took a short breath. The charged nurse hit the code blue button which means that they need cardiac docs, IV, crash cart, basically everything in the room asap. Within two minutes there were close to 30 people in the room, including the CICU attending doctor and two fellows. They started bagging him (just to help him breathe). Within the next couple of minutes the CICU people were giving everyone in the room a report on who he was and what he has been through. Then the security guard started to clear the room of all unnecessary people. They brought him over to the CICU to monitor but what they think is that is was just a very bad case of reflux. He has been eating but not pooping much through the night. We feel like everything happened for a reason. Thank God this did not happen when we were at home because it would have been even more intense and we would not have known what to do. Caleb is now awake and smiling at his CICU girlfriends. We will let you know more if things change but for now we are good, just reflecting on what happened, thankful that God is working all of this for good. Please pray for that this was just bad reflux and not any issues more serious. He will likely spent the night in the CICU.

  • Update | Posted on June 12, 2014

    We continue to thank you and bless you for continued prayers as God continue to work through his servant Caleb. Here is the recent update from Ryan: Good morning, the last couple days for Caleb have shown slow, steady improvement, praise God. His methadone dose is finally at the appropriate amount where he is not withdrawing or in pain. Instead of planning a slow wean, they are planning on letting Caleb just outgrow the dose to eventually get off if it. What's keeping us here right now still is the oxygen support that Caleb needs which has gone from 2 liters down to .6 liters. Please pray he can get all the way off of the support. Also, he needs to take just a little more of his meals by bottle vs. NG tube. Once he takes close to his goal of 70 ml per meal, they will take out the tube. He has been pretty close to doing this at times. Please pray this can happen very soon. On a side note there have been a lot if very meaningful conversations during this stay at the hospital which is always encouraging and energizing each day. Praise The Lord. Thanks for your continued prayers. Psalm 20:7 Some trust in chariots and some in horses (or anything else), but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.

  • Update | Posted on June 10, 2014

    Thanks for your continued prayers. I see that there are now two families on the Prayer Wall with children at Children's Hospital, Washington DC. In addition to our prayers for Caleb, we as a family will pray for baby Owen that is in the NICU. Here is the update from Ryan re: our little warrior Caleb: Thank you everybody for the continued prayers for Caleb. It was the right decision to bring him back to the hospital. After a pretty good Friday night here, he had intense withdrawal episodes all day Saturday. He would basically rage uncontrollably until he exhausted himself to sleep and then wake up and do it again. This really hurt his energy reserve and made his breathing a little more difficult. They upped his oxygen support a little bit to give him a boost and nearly doubled his methadone dose. This took a while to make an impact but yesterday was much better for Caleb than Saturday and today has been even better. An NG feeding tube was started because he was so exhausted that he had no energy to eat. Yesterday was better with some good sleep and nutrition building back up, but he is still not quite himself. They have done a bunch of tests to rule out other causes for his struggles and we are pretty sure that we have it figured out, now it is just finding the right balance of meds and getting some fluid off of him, so he can breathe easier and then eat properly. Please continue to pray. He is improving and I know God will carry him through. Thanks again!

  • Update | Posted on June 07, 2014

    Please pray for Caleb as he was returned to Children's Hospital on June 6 ... please read Ryan's update and pray for his continued healing. After a strong start to coming home, Caleb started to struggle over the last couple days. The main concerning thing is that he started taking less and less from the bottle during his meals. He was also uncontrollably fussy at times and clearly in pain. Sometimes he appeared to be working harder than normal to breathe. This was likely caused by withdrawal from his pain medication weaning. Other factors that may have contributed include possible fluid on his lungs, and an upset stomach from all of the meds he is on. Kristen and I made the decision to bring him back to hospital when we knew he was not going to meet his minimum hydration goals and Caleb was looking a little more grayish than usual. He was pretty quickly admitted back to the Heart and Kidney Unit last night and seemed to feel immediately better with some IV fluids and oxygen. He has struggled on and off throughout today with withdrawal fits so the doctors have upped his methadone dosage and they are hopeful this will help him. Obviously we weren't crazy about going back to the hospital, but when we prayed about it, we knew it was the right thing. No point in risking anything. We know there is a purpose for us being here still and it is all part of God's plan so we will remain encouraged and stay faithful. Please continue to pray for Caleb's pain, his eating, and our endurance. God bless! Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

  • Update | Posted on June 06, 2014

    Caleb is HOME!! PTL ... here is the update. Hello Team Caleb! Yesterday was a pretty monumental day. Having completed two out of three of his open heart surgeries and recovering fairly well in the hospital, Caleb was discharged. God willing, he will not be back to the hospital for anything major until he is 2-3 years old for his final surgery. The doctors do want to monitor him closely over the next few months since his heart repair is a little different than normal. Please pray that he heals well so we have no major events until his next surgery. The transition home is really exciting but also really challenging for the first few days getting adjusted back. Caleb is on 13 different medications that we have to give orally throughout the day and night. He basically has to take meds from us this way about 30 times a day. He is being weaned off some meds now and there are others that he should be able to get off in the next couple weeks. Please pray for us to properly manage his pain while weaning. It takes wisdom to know when to give him extra pain meds and when to let him push through the weaning process. Also please pray for Caleb's body to fully heal over the next few weeks. Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ for helping save our boy. Thanks be to God for the staff and caretakers he used to help with Caleb. Thanks to each of you for your prayers along the way!

  • Update | Posted on June 04, 2014

    Newest update. Thanks for your continued prayers ... God is moving through Caleb's amazing life journey! Update from yesterday, June 3. Hi everybody! Good news to report. Praise God Caleb has been on room air (no oxygen support) for the last 2 days and has been doing really well in terms of his breathing. He occasionally "de-sats" (pulse oxygen level drops) whenever he gets mad or upset, but this is normal with his new heart structure. Basically, blood flows to his lungs passively from his head now, so when he gets upset and clamps down, blood doesn't really flow down. As a result, he can get very blue and even a purple color until he relaxes. All of this is normal but is definitely something for us and him to get used to. The only thing really keeping him at the hospital at this point is strong eating and gaining weight. Please pray for him to drink all of his bottles and to gain weight. Please pray for strength and endurance for us, and for Christ to be glorified in our time here. Thanks for all of your support. God bless. Psalm 21:1-7 The king rejoices in your strength, Lord. How great is his joy in the victories you give! You have granted him his heart’s desire and have not withheld the request of his lips. You came to greet him with rich blessings and placed a crown of pure gold on his head. He asked you for life, and you gave it to him—length of days, for ever and ever. Through the victories you gave, his glory is great; you have bestowed on him splendor and majesty. Surely you have granted him unending blessings and made him glad with the joy of your presence. For the king trusts in the Lord;through the unfailing love of the Most High he will not be shaken.

  • Update | Posted on May 30, 2014

    We continue to covet and thank you for your continued prayers for Caleb ... especially as he adjusts and heals after his second open heart surgery. Here is the most recent update. Hi everybody, Caleb could use your prayers today. He has struggled a bit in his first days in HKU. He has been in pain and as a result has not been eating enough. They upped his pain meds which then constipated him, which further agitated him so that he didn't want to eat. This caused him to become a little dehydrated so he is back on IV fluids and if he does not pick up his feeding, they will have to give him an NG feeding tube. He is also on a laxative to help his stomach. Lastly, he needs to drain some fluid off of his left lung so he is given a diuretic to help him pee and lose fluid. So he is getting fluid through IV but given medicine to lose fluid at the same time which can dehydrate him. It can become quite a game and balancing act. Please pray for the right balance of all of this. Christ holds it all together. God bless!

  • Update | Posted on May 29, 2014

    Praise the Lord as he continues to work in wonderful ways with the healing and progression of Caleb. Thanks for your continued prayers and your :love from afar" that resonates as Christ's love for us all. Here is the update from yesterday to today, 5/29, from Ryan. Good morning! Caleb was moved from the CICU to HKU (heart and kidney unit) yesterday. Praise God! It was a long day for him because he had to have a bunch of his "accessories removed" including a wire that was going directly into his heart and his arterial line in his hand. The arterial line made him really mad and it took about 20 minutes to stop the bleeding since he is on blood thinners (while he was squirming and screaming). Once he got to HKU it was discovered that his IV access in his hand was no longer good, so he had to be re-stuck for that. It was no fun for him but I was reminded how much of this is probably in the long run harder for his parents than it is for him. God in his rich mercy and love for children made babies not remember the early parts of their life and I'm often thankful for that in Caleb's situation. Getting to HKU is a big step towards being discharged. Right now some important next steps are making sure that Caleb's lungs aren't "wet" and he gets any excess fluid off of them. Please pray for his respiratory health and that he can successfully come off of his "low flow" oxygen support. Also, pain management and feeding are on his list of things to get under control. His first night was really good, so please pray this continues. Thank you for your support. Praise you Lord Jesus for this positive step. Habakkuk 3:18-19 "Yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength"

  • Update | Posted on May 27, 2014

    Thanks to all for continued prayers! Here is the most recent update ... PTL, God continues to show His healing hands and amazing grace! Good morning, yesterday Caleb started bottle feeding in the CICU and did a good job for the most part but was a little inconsistent. He has low flow oxygen support still and some lines in his hand and body so he is pretty uncomfortable at times so it can impact how he eats. There are several other reasons he could be uncomfortable or irritable (heart surgery might be one). We were almost certain that Caleb would be moving to HKU (heart and kidney unit) today but the doctors just said they want to keep him in the CICU another night. He still has some fluid on his lungs that needs to come off. Thank Our Lord Jesus for a strong last couple of days. Please continue to pray for progress, especially that Caleb's oxygen support could come off, that he could feed well and consistently, that he could get any remaining fluid off of his lungs, and that he could go to HKU tomorrow.God bless!

  • Update | Posted on May 22, 2014

    To our extended prayer team and brothers and sisters in Christ, thanks so much for your continued prayers and indulging the story of Caleb ... I provide updates regularly because not only do prayers help but the running messages are a testament to God's power to change lives through the trials of others, and appreciate the power of our Lord and savior ... and His supreme love for all of us. Hope these messages encourage and embolden you, as the running story has for my life. Here is the update from the last 24 hours (May 21-22); we continue to covet your prayers and ask that you lift up Caleb and our family. As always, things over the last 24 hours have been very interesting in the CICU. Yesterday morning was calm and peaceful for Caleb and it seemed that things had finally gotten under control in terms of his pain management and sedation. From 7:30am until about 3pm things were great. Then Caleb's blood gasses started coming back in poor shape with a high carbon dioxide concentration in his body. His oxygen saturation's began to drop. The medical team decided that he would need to be put back on the ventilator for breathing support. Before they re-intubated him, they wanted to make sure that Caleb was well sedated and not feeling any pain which took a while. He also needed to be given fluid to boost his numbers and a was given a blood transfusion. During this process his oxygen sats actually dropped to 13/100 which is obviously not good at all (you and I usually hang out around 100). At this point I stopped and prayed for Jesus to calm the storm. My friend (and doctor) Peter walked by as soon as I was done praying and he asked with a smile on his face, "how is everything going?!" I said, "Not great, look at his numbers." Right in the room with lots of doctors and nurses around the bed, Peter said, "let's pray." He and I prayed for healing for Caleb and his numbers to rise, in Christ's name and when we said amen, the oxygen sats went back up in the mid 60's...much more normal for Caleb. Peter showing up was an answer to my prayer. God is never early but always on time! The rest of Caleb's night included another blood transfusion and adding nitrous oxide to help expand what I later heard were 2 partially collapsed lungs. They adjusted his pain meds as well and gave him a paralytic, to keep him still for the time being. Please pray today that his nitrous oxide can be weaned and he can come off of the paralytic soon. Please also pray for his oxygen sats to remain high and his pain is properly managed. Thank you Lord for continued answered prayer in our time of greatest need. You are always faithful. Isaiah 40:28-31 "Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Lord is the everlasting God,the Creator of the ends of the earth. He will not grow tired or weary, and his understanding no one can fathom. He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. Even youths grow tired and weary, and young men stumble and fall; but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint."

  • Update | Posted on May 21, 2014

    We continue to covet your prayers for our lil warrior, Caleb. Please read the update from Wednesday May 21st. Good morning all. Caleb was able to come off the ventilator last night which is a huge step. Thank the Lord. He did have a rough night after that though. The doctors described him as a "wild man". At times his oxygen saturation dropped to as low as 33 percent which definitely got everybody's attention. With his new heart structure, when he is agitated or holds his breath, Caleb's oxygen sats can drop. Last night he was extremely agitated. It's hard to tell if he was in pain from his surgical wounds, mad about all of the tubes and cords, had a headache, or something else. He was given several different types of narcotics and Tylenol which initially did not help much. Things seem to have finally leveled out this morning a bit but he is still extremely unhappy any time he wakes up. Please pray for a smooth day with pain under control, and weaning of medication so that he might be able to start bottle feeding again. Please pray that he will not need to be put back on ventilator support. Thanks for everything! God bless

  • Update | Posted on May 20, 2014

    Please pray for healing and God's hands guiding the hands of surgeons and Caleb's medical team this morning, Tuesday May 20th. Please read Ryan's message from yesterday. Hi prayer team. We spent the most of today at Children's getting ready for Caleb's open heart surgery tomorrow. He had blood work taken (it took about 6 different needle pokes), an EKG, and an x ray. We met with the surgical team to review what they plan on doing tomorrow. They are anticipating about an hour of anesthesia and then a 3-5 hour surgery. We will arrive at the hospital at 6am and Caleb will go back with his medical team around 7:30am. The plan is to completely open up his chest cavity for this surgery and to put him on bypass to help his heart and lungs work throughout the surgery. They plan on removing the shunt in his heart and the stent placed in his left pulmonary artery as well as rework some plumbing in his heart to make it a better system with more passive blood flow to the lungs rather than through the shunt. The surgeon expressed a little concern with the stent in the pulmonary artery because he isn't sure how complex it might be to take it out. Please pray for total healing for Caleb either all at once or through this surgical process. Please pray for wisdom for every person involved in his care. Please pray for a quick recovery without complications. We trust your perfect will to be done all for your glory Lord Jesus. Please give Caleb and our family sustaining grace and strength!

  • Update | Posted on May 14, 2014

    Here is the update after the Cath Lab procedure on 5-13-2014. God is good ... praise His name! Good morning all and thanks be to God for another day. Here are some details from Caleb's procedure yesterday. Caleb went under anesthesia around 8:30 am for his Cath lab procedure and was completely done around 10:30 am, which was faster than expected, praise The Lord. During the procedure, they put him on a ventilator and went in his leg with a tiny video camera to look at his heart and lungs. They also were able to monitor the pressures in various places and inject dye to see where and how blood was flowing. They were extremely pleased with how well Caleb did through the whole thing and with the way his heart and arteries look. All of the information they gathered showed them that he would be ready for the next heart surgery on May 20th. Once he was done, he was taken to the CICU to be monitored as he woke up and started trying to resume bottle feeding. Caleb should be discharged today, Wednesday May 14th. Most people wouldn't like to be in any ICU but returning here has been kind of special. We get to be with the friends that we spent such difficult days with and see their amazement of Caleb's healing and progress. His room has been full of people coming in and out to hold him and talk to him. Some nurses have cried with joy. What a blessing and what wonderful people that have such passion for caring for these kids. Praise you Lord Jesus for your healing work, for a recovery that has grabbed the attention of all involved, and for putting a heart for serving and loving into the CICU nurses. Please pray for continued healing and complete recovery in God's perfect timing for his glory, for a good stretch at home between now and the 20th, that his upcoming surgery would go well, and for baby Michael who is still in the hospital and would love to go home soon. Isaiah 40:11 He tends his flock like a shepherd:He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart;he gently leads those that have young.

  • Update | Posted on May 08, 2014

    Here is the early May update. We continue to covet your prayers and praise our loving , healing, all powerful God that he would continue to use Caleb as an instrument to glorify His name. PTL - Good morning everybody. I pray all is well with you and your families. On Friday, Caleb has a doctor's appointment at Children's to do an echo-cardiogram of his heart and do some blood work. Assuming the blood work is good, he will then have his appointment in the Cath lab on Wednesday the 14th to get an in depth look at his heart and lungs from inside his body. The medical plan from that point would be to schedule his next open heart surgery towards the end of this month most likely. Kristen and I are so thankful to God for the many miracles that we have seen during Caleb's journey so far. There were several times when things did not look good at all and Jesus showed up in an incredible way, just in time. We are so thankful for this! I can recall praying the night before his Norwood surgery (first open heart surgery) saying, "Lord, I don't know how you could get any more glory than if you performed a complete healing miracle on Caleb's heart." God has shown me time and time again through this process how He has received much more glory through what has happened by not healing him that way and the long journey, so we don't question that He knows best moving forward. With that being said and with another open heart surgery on the horizon, we are still asking Jesus to do what the world would call "impossible" and completely heal Caleb's heart in a way that could only be explained that He did it, without another surgery. Kristen and I both fully believe that if God is willing, He is able. So we ask that you join us in asking Jesus for this, at the same time modeling the prayer of our Lord saying not my will but yours be done, Father. At the end of the day, it's all about God and his glory and He knows best, but with our limited viewpoint, it sure would be great and amazing for full healing without surgery. As parents, the thought of your child's chest being opened back up just isn't the most appealing. It would be undeniable if The Lord healed Caleb's heart to look and function like a normal heart. God is good and is sovereign in all things so we will worship Him regardless of how He wants this to play out. God bless you! Psalm 145:8-21 "The Lord is gracious and compassionate,slow to anger and rich in love. The Lord is good to all;he has compassion on all he has made. All your works praise you, Lord;your faithful people extol you. They tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might, so that all people may know of your mighty acts and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,and your dominion endures through all generations.The Lord is trustworthy in all he promise sand faithful in all he does. The Lord upholds all who fall and lifts up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to you,and you give them their food at the proper time. You open your hand and satisfy the desires of every living thing. The Lord is righteous in all his ways and faithful in all he does. The Lord is near to all who call on him,to all who call on him in truth. He fulfills the desires of those who fear him;he hears their cry and saves them. The Lord watches over all who love him,but all the wicked he will destroy. My mouth will speak in praise of the Lord.Let every creature praise his holy name for ever and ever. "

  • Update | Posted on April 30, 2014

    4/30 Update: Good afternoon, Just a quick update to let you know how things are going. Caleb continues to eat well and gain weight, praise The Lord. He was having some nasty withdrawal issues over the last couple days so the doctors agreed to slow his wean from methadone. He seems to have liked this change. We also have found he will sleep more if we let him sleep in our arms at night. We figure we can wean him off of that once he is healed. He has several doctors appointments slated for May, the most important of which are with the cardiologist on May 9th and then with the Cath lab on May 14th to look at the blood flow and pressure in his lungs. If things look the way they hope, Caleb would likely have his next open heart surgery the last week of May. We are praying for full healing in God's perfect timing. May Christ be glorified. In the mean time, it's nice to be a family at home. Thanks to ‪#‎TEAMCALEB‬

  • Update | Posted on April 28, 2014

    Here is the latest update: Home Update - Good morning all! The last few days have been quite an adjustment but so far so good, thank God. Caleb has a very regimented schedule which includes eating every three hours, and taking meds at 6am, 8am, 2pm, 8pm, and 10pm and a total of about 8 different meds. Kristen and I have to measure out each medicine into syringes and then orally give them. Kristen has done a really amazing job managing this process so far. We report the amount of Caleb's feeds, pulse, weight, and blood oxygen to Children's National every other day and a nurse stops by the house for a quick assessment 3x per week. The challenging part on top of managing Caleb's schedule is morphing it with Jonah's already established schedule. Praise God for some of the family we have that is close by and able to help us some. Caleb's methadone weaning continues while he is at home and he has had some withdrawal struggles. We have seen everything from not being able to sleep well all the way to all out crying nonstop without a way to console him, but we have been given permission to give him oxycodone in a one time dose if things get really bad for him. We have only had to do this one time. Besides this, Caleb's eating has been pretty good and he is gaining weight. Thank you for the continued prayers and support! Thank you Lord for the chance to be home as a family.

  • Update | Posted on April 23, 2014

    Praise the Lord, the entire Koppel family is now home in Leesburg, arriving back from Children's Hospital / Ronald McDonald House on Monday April 21st! Home sweet home with both babies. Thank you Lord Jesus!

  • Update | Posted on April 21, 2014

    Update from Ryan as of 4/20/14: Happy Easter team. A very special thanks to you for all of your support to our family on this all important day of celebration of the reason for our hope, the resurrected Christ. Caleb has had a really good weekend and tomorrow looks like it will most likely be his discharge day. The morning will consist of an echocardiogram to look at his heart, a final x-ray, getting his PICC line removed, Kristen and I passing an infant CPR test and some meetings with his medical team and case manager. Assuming all of that goes as planned, tomorrow afternoon we can go home. Please pray specifically for a good night of rest and good feeds for Caleb, all tests to go well tomorrow, wisdom for us and the staff, a peaceful car ride back to our house, and a smooth adjustment to being home tomorrow night. Caleb is part of the single ventricle home monitoring program which will require us to report his vital signs several times throughout the week and there will likely be a nurse that comes to our house several times a week to assess him. He will also need to see a pediatrician once a week. Our home will basically need to be a germ free "bubble" for the next month until Caleb's next surgery is scheduled since he is considered pretty fragile still between surgeries 1 and 2. We trust The Lord with that and will not worry too much about it. We are still praying for the miracle of a whole heart healing, but are good with God's will throughout and we are not overlooking the many other miraculous things that have happened in Caleb's recovery. It is certainly another Easter gift to be able to write this message to you tonight with the joy of tomorrow ahead! God bless you!

  • Update | Posted on April 19, 2014

    Happy Easter weekend to all ... HE IS RISEN and HE IS ALIVE! Here is the encouraging update from Ryan ... Caleb soon to be coming home! April 19th update:Since Thursday, Caleb has had incredible progress, praise The Lord! On Thursday night he hit his goal of 40ml on a feed on back to back feeds so Friday morning his NG tube was pulled so that he could try feeding from a bottle 100 percent. When switching from NG tube to bottle feeding, it also means that all of his meds and vitamins are given orally as well. Caleb didn't like his meds given orally on the first try but seems to now be tolerating it. In order to stay properly hydrated (and avoid IV fluids) Caleb needs to have 175 ml of milk every 12 hours, or roughly 43 ml per feeding. In his first 12 hour stretch, he hit that number on the dot. On last nights 12 hour stretch, he consumed 214ml and he started today out with a 63ml feeding (which is great!). Even better news is that it looks like there is a strong chance of Caleb being able to come home on Monday, which is so much faster than expected (our cardiologist told Kristen earlier in the week to hope for Mother's Day). Thank you Lord Jesus. The next couple days are a bit hectic as Kristen and I have various forms of home and travel training for Caleb, meetings with staff, as well as doing all of his care here. Please pray that things continue to progress so well and that Monday will be the day Caleb goes home. It will be great to be home, even if only for a few weeks before his next procedure. Have a blessed Easter weekend everybody. He is risen.

  • Update | Posted on April 13, 2014

    Thanks to all for their continued prayers for Caleb and his family. Here is the update from Sat April 12. Good evening all. We wanted to let everybody know the latest with Caleb. He has graduated to taking feeds from a bottle every 3 hours and whatever he doesn't take down in 20 minutes is put through his NG tube over the next hour. He averages about 20ml per feeding from the bottle right now and that number needs to be closer to 30-35ml for him to get to the next step which would be removing the NG tube and seeing how he does on just bottle feeds. For kids with heart disease like Caleb, eating is a lot of work at first and you really have to take it very slow and pay attention to signs for stress because he can end up either burning more calories working to eat than he consumes or throwing up which creates setbacks from loss of important calories. He has taught us and all the staff here NOT to swaddle his arms or he wrestles nonstop and gets really frustrated. To keep him from pulling the NG tube out of his nose with his long fingers, we have to put socks on his hands which look like his boxing gloves (his fingers are too long for mittens) Please continue to pray that his feeding can progress, that his stomach can handle the meds also without making him sick (and that they can be weaned). We are praying that we could be home with him before Easter so that we could get about a month at home before his second major open heart surgery. Also, please pray that God grants Kristen and I (mostly me because she usually has it) graceful patience, enduring strength, and a loving compassionate Christ like spirit while in this unit. As I have said before, it is very different from the other unit Caleb was in for 47 days and it can be easy to get a little frustrated at times as a parent with some of the differences. Over all though it has been good so far and we thank Jesus for progress, however big or small. Thank your for all of your prayers. We thank The Lord for his faithfulness. Our verse for tonight is: Romans 15:13 "May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."

  • Update | Posted on April 08, 2014

    4/6 - 4/7 Updates: Good morning everybody! There is so much to rejoice in The Lord over today! There has been some wonderful progress for Caleb since my last update. If you recall, on Thursday late afternoon he came off of the ventilator and was put on "high flow" oxygen support. Since he no longer has the breathing tube down his throat, it has been easier to hold Caleb (something that he LOVES). Any time he is upset at all, it just takes somebody to hold him and he instantly falls asleep. The nurses love to take turns holding him and he loves it too. Some babies that have been through all Caleb has, have a difficult time adjusting to people holding them, but it is the opposite for Caleb. The night before Caleb came off the ventilator, a doctor told me that if everything went well (best case scenario), he might get out of this unit by this coming Friday (4/11). On Friday night (4/4) when I was holding Caleb, I prayed that God would make him well enough to leave the CICU by Monday (4/7) if He was willing. I am happy to say that as of mid day yesterday (Saturday 4/5) the doctors said that Caleb was well enough to leave the CICU and go to the HKU (Heart and Kidney Unit) but because of his history, they felt it would be best to wait until Monday (the day that I prayed for) to move him, so they can be totally sure that he is stable. Praise you Lord Jesus for answered prayer! You will now notice (in the picture) that Caleb is breathing room air without any oxygen support, praise God. Everybody around here is pretty amazed at this. It usually takes babies a lot longer to gradually wean off of the oxygen support (especially those on a ventilator for more than 5 weeks). That is a lot to be thankful for, so please join us in prayers of praise and thanksgiving. Caleb's feeding tube (for his milk) has been moved from ND to NG which basically just means that it will be delivered higher up and in the stomach. Please pray that his stomach handles this well so that he can continue toward the steps for normal feeding (which will be worked on in HKU). Please continue to pray that tomorrow is the day that we get to leave the CICU, for a smooth transition to HKU, for his brain to be healed from any effect of seizures and strokes, and that God continues to accelerate Caleb's recovery process beyond normal human comprehension, and God's will above all. I am humbled and amazed that God loves us so much and has every detail of this journey planned out for our good and His glory. Psalm 8:1-9 "Lord, our Lord,how majestic is your name in all the earth! You have set your glory in the heavens. Through the praise of children and infants you have established a stronghold against your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger. When I consider your heavens,the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is mankind that you are mindful of them, human beings that you care for them? You have made them a little lower than the angels and crowned them with glory and honor. You made them rulers over the works of your hands; you put everything under their feet: all flocks and herds,and the animals of the wild, the birds in the sky,and the fish in the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas. Lord, our Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!" 4/7: After a night of not sleeping well because of some possible upset stomach or withdrawal issues, Caleb ended up having a great day and I am so happy to say that he was transferred from the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit to the Heart and Kidney Unit this evening. Praise The Lord! He has been given a nice big room with a bathroom that includes a shower. He also was put in a much larger "big boy" bed. At the HKU, instead of 1 to 1 nurse-patient ratios, there is usually 1 nurse to 3 babies. Thus, parents are a little bit more involved in the care, which will help us get used to caring for the needs of a child leaving the ICU and prepares us for home. While he is here, Caleb will work on physical and speech therapy (for eating properly) and will learn how to bottle feed, which can be a challenge for kids with HLHS. Caleb's nurse tonight asked for the following prayer requests, "That he would tolerate his feeds, sleep tonight, and that his transition to a new unit would go well." One really neat thing is that Jonah can occasionally stop by Caleb's room. We didn't put them in the same bed for the official "reunion", but it was pretty special to have our family of 4 together in one place. Thanks so much for the prayer in the CICU. Please pray that Christ would be glorified in our time here and that we would be able to go home soon. God bless you all!

  • Update | Posted on April 02, 2014

    Thanks for your gracious and loving prayers as our little warrior Caleb continues to improve. Here is the update from Ryan for Wednesday April 2: Good evening and thanks be to God for another day! Today Caleb made the big trip down to a different floor of the hospital to get an MRI. This involved about 5 people transporting him with all of his accessories and took about 2 and a half hours total. We should get the results in the next couple days. He also received another blood transfusion to help boost him a little bit. The plan was to potentially also take him off of ventilator support but the MRI visit took a little longer than usual and required a little more sedation than expected so it will likely be tomorrow morning instead. Please pray for that process to go well and for him to be able to function on his own. They will still give him some extra high flow oxygen support but being off the ventilator would be a huge step being that he has been on it for more than 5 weeks. Please continue to pray that the results of the MRI show no serious damage to his brain from the previous seizure activity. Thank you for your prayers and we praise The Lord for His incredible faithfulness and goodness to us and particularly to Caleb.

  • Update | Posted on March 29, 2014

    Continued thanks for your prayers for Caleb and his parents, Ryan and Kristen, and for Jonah who continues to look forward to being with his twin brother again. Here is the update from Ryan for today 3/28: Thank you again for the continued prayers for Caleb and our family. He threw up stomach bile a few times last night and did so once this morning but overall it was a good (boring) night and the rest of the today he has done better. He did well on another pressure support trial run to exercise his breathing muscles. He will do one more tonight. The main issue Caleb has had over the last 24 hours has been withdrawal struggles, but he seems to be doing better than he has done in the past with this and it is really just something that he has to go through. They have upped his anti- withdrawal medication but everything else has been weaned more. Overall, everybody is thrilled with where he is. The plan is to wire his chest on Monday and when all goes well (God willing), take his breathing tube out on Tuesday or Wednesday. Prayers tonight would be for a smooth run on the pressure trial run, a calm stomach, and continued strengthening for Monday. I hope you all have a good weekend! God is good always!

  • Update | Posted on March 26, 2014

    Continued thanks for your prayers and may He be glorified in all we do, and may words of thanks be on our tongues and in our hearts always! Here is the update from Ryan from yesterday/today 3/25 and 3/26: Good morning team! 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 is Caleb's verse for the day. We have much to be thankful for. I will start with Caleb's nurse yesterday being so impacted by part 1 of his story that on her walk home, she passed a homeless man and felt the Spirit of God tell her to go back and help him. He ended up being in need of toiletries and essential personal care products and she was able to take him to CVS and bless him. We have the same nurse today and she told me that Caleb's story reminded her the importance of faithfulness and responding to what God calls us to. To God be the glory! Her prayer requests for Caleb today are "That we have given enough methadone (helps with withdrawal) to wean down his narcotics and that we can continue feeding him while being able to manage his vomiting. Also pray for clear wisdom for the exact right timing for timing and execution of closing his chest since this is a very important step to Caleb's recovery (this may happen tomorrow or Friday) Lastly, please give prayers of gratitude for all of the answered prayers." It really humbled me that the nurse asked for prayers of gratitude and thanksgiving for all of the answered prayers! Wow! Speaking of answered prayers, a couple days ago I mentioned fluid starting to build up on his right side and possibly needing a chest tube to be put back in to drain things. Well, the doctor this am said, "that fluid on the right side just seems to be gone. I'm not really sure what happened to it." Praise you Lord Jesus! Thanks for praying for Caleb, "Katan lokhem" (little warrior in Hebrew) Have a blessed day! 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 New International Version (NIV) 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

  • Update | Posted on March 24, 2014

    Continued thanks for your ongoing prayer support. God is doing amazing things and we continue to covet your prayers for Caleb's continued progress through God's healing powers and His plan for Caleb. Here is the update for Monday 3/24: Good morning all! Caleb was ramped up to his goal of 15 ml of milk an hour overnight. He threw up at 5am and in an x ray it was discovered that his nd tube had curled up to the top part of his stomach, which is likely what caused this. Feedings were paused for about 5 hours until a new tube was put in and an x ray was done to confirm proper placement. Caleb's right side is having a little bit of fluid build up so he will need to have a chest tube placed back in his side to help drain some of it out. The doctor this morning commented that Caleb's sternum seems to be coming together on its own despite not being connected anywhere. As a result, there is a chance they will not need to open him back up to wire thesternum together. Caleb would certainly prefer to not be opened up again so please pray for this:) The doctors will wait a couple days and see how it looks, then make a decision. The neurologist met with me this morning and said his second head ultrasound did not show any new activity in his brain which is good. We will still need to wait to see if anything comes from the small spot that they see in the center of his brain. Please pray today for his new chest tube placement to go well, for his heart to function well enough to resume feedings without him becoming sick, and for a comfortable day for him. Please also pray for baby Michael and his family today. He has hypo plastic left heart syndrome and is undergoing his Norwood procedure (first major open heart surgery) as I type. Lord, while I ask for physical nourishment for Caleb today, help me to remember that it is your very word and your will that have sustained and strengthened him to this point. We praise you that today you have given Caleb and each of us life. Matthew 4:4 Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man shall not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’”

  • Update | Posted on March 23, 2014

    Update from Ryan ... thanks to all for their continued prayers! 3/23: Caleb had a pretty good day yesterday and so far today. He did throw up one time yesterday afternoon which caused the medical staff to back off his feeding from 12ml and hour of milk back down to 5ml. They were not sure if it was related to feeding or just a normal baby thing but they want to be very cautious. Overnight, his oxygen saturation numbers were on the lower normal range so his oxygen rate (which had been weaned significantly) was increased a little bit. His feeds were steadily increased to 9ml an hour. Caleb's nurse did notice some of his vital numbers drop a little when she would pick him up to rotate his body to a new position every couple of hours. They are going to watch this carefully. The thought is with decreasing a lot of meds and then feeding him so much, it may be asking his heart to do a little more work than he is ready for, but we will see. Please pray for his heart and body to be ready to handle the feeds without dropping any vital signs or needing to increase medicine. God bless you!

  • Update | Posted on March 22, 2014

    Update from 3/21/14 ... we continue to covet your prayers and all praise and glory to our Savior Jesus Christ ... it is amazing what He can do! Hello team Caleb. Our boy had a stable night of steady improvement last night which has continued into the day today. We praise God! He has been weaned off of his dopamine which was a big part of being able to feed him breast milk through his nd tube. They started with 1 ml of milk per hour for 8 hours to see how he handled it. All went well so now we are up to 3 ml per hour. God willing, later tonight, Caleb will be receiving 6 ml per hour. Every ml makes him stronger. They were also able to start weaning his sedative a little bit and completely weaned him off of his nitrous oxide support. The room still has a fair amount of machinery, but looks almost empty compared to what it once looked like. Please continue to pray for better than expected progress, a well functioning heart and stable vitals with less support needed, and for his next head ultrasound to have good results (and no long term damage from seizures, lack of oxygen or bleeding). Please specifically pray for a continued increase in milk his body can handle and for him to "bulk up" and get stronger over the next 3-4 days so hopefully they can close his sternum properly, which will allow for the breathing tube to come out. Thank you Lord Jesus for answered prayer and thank you to you all for continuing to keep Caleb in your daily prayers. Jeremiah 17:7-8 “But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord,whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream.It does not fear when heat comes;its leaves are always green.It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”

  • Update | Posted on March 20, 2014

    Praise and prayer ... we continue to covet your prayers and thanks to all for their support and love! Here is the latest update from Ryan and Kristen: Caleb and Jonah turned 1 month today, March 19th. It is so hard to believe! Thank you Lord Jesus for a pretty much flawless procedure which involved taking Caleb and all of his many accessories to the operating room and successfully putting in the picc line, changing his breathing tube (which can be tricky), putting in a nasoduodenal feeding tube and changing to a new bed (with a scale to weigh him). His sedation and pain management seemed better today which was good to see. Thank you for praying specifically for this process. Next steps are over the next day or so are maintaining stability while decreasing meds and managing pain and slow steady withdrawal, losing just a little more fluid off the body, and then they will try to give Caleb one drop of breast milk at a time through the "nd" tube that he was given today. The goal would be to increase the amount of breast milk he could tolerate so that he can put on some weight for 4-5 days and then try to close his chest so that they can take his breathing tube out and eventually teach him to bottle feed. Up to this point, Caleb has been receiving his nutrition bag (almost like Gatorade with vitamins) through an IV. I was told today that head ultrasound results came back and the neurologist would like to talk with me about them, so she will be by tomorrow am to speak with me. Please pray that there is nothing serious or potentially threatening or damaging long term in Caleb's brain. We appreciate all of the prayers and support! Deuteronomy 31:8 "The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged."

  • Update | Posted on March 18, 2014

    We continue to covet your prayers for our brave little warrior Caleb. Here is the update from Ryan for 3/18: Sorry for the delay today on the message. Last night and today brought a few new challenges on the road to Caleb's recovery. He had been on morphine so long and at a pretty high dose that he had built up a pretty good tolerance and would not really rest. While it is great that he is moving and his eyes are open and responding to sound and touch, he continued to over do it and would get himself tired and drop his vitals, thus making him weaker. They switched him to a different narcotic for the pain and sedation but it is a challenge getting the dosage correct so he remained awake a lot more than we would like and has appeared at times very uncomfortable, in withdrawal, and even in a lot of pain. It was really difficult to watch and finally it appeared around 5pm, his pain got under control. They also put Caleb on a medication to help with withdrawal. Tomorrow, they plan on taking Caleb to the OR at 10am to put in a "picc line" for giving medicine and nutrition more effectively. They also plan on replacing his ventilator breathing tube because there is a leak on the side going to the left lung. We are hoping this may help with his partially collapsed left lung. This morning was the first morning that I felt pretty tired. I asked God to give me an extra dose of his sustaining grace and he answered immediately with the nurse who was assigned for today, who is a strong believer and really boosted my spirits. The nurse's prayer requests are "that the trip to get Picc line placement and changing of the breathing tube go smoothly, no infection now or after the procedure, that we can find the proper pain management- sedation, and continue maintaining blood pressure while weaning meds." Please give thanks to God through our Lord Jesus who has always provided the grace and strength sufficient for each day in the midst of this journey, and even provides the extra boosts needed when asked. 2 Corinthians 12:9-10 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong."

  • Update | Posted on March 17, 2014

    A blessed snowy Monday St. Patrick's Day. God is good and faithful. Continued thanks for your prayers and uplifting support! Enclosed is the update from Ryan for today 3/17. Good morning, praise The Lord Jesus for a good night for Caleb! Although still very sedated on morphine, Caleb is more alert than ever before, responding to voice and touch which is really neat. He has really made steady small progress each of the last 4 days which is really encouraging. Our new nurse today sends the following prayer requests: "Adequate fluid loss so they can consider closing his sternum at some point reasonably soon, we would like to be able to wean his dopamine down today also." The left lung is still partially collapsed, but it is doing better so please continue to pray for that. Also please continue to pray for all infection to be gone, Caleb's brain to be functioning well and no major long term effects from last weeks seizures, and steady strength for Caleb. "Caleb's story" is starting to spread around here which is neat to see. I tell everybody to imagine the day he will run up and give them a big hug (he may run from them haha). God bless and thank you for all you have done for us!

  • Update | Posted on March 14, 2014

    Thanks for the prayers and your loving support. Caleb the Warrior is stable but still in need of prayers for the long road ahead. Please see Ryan's update from last night, 3/13. Good morning all. Caleb remained about the same all night long which is a good thing! It was a very uneventful night in terms of his numbers. Thank God. Please continue to pray for the same things requested last message. In addition, Caleb's new day nurse would like us to pray that his blood pressure holds in the good place it is. There have been some amazing ministry opportunities throughout the night and this morning which has been a real encouragement and blessing.

  • Update | Posted on March 13, 2014

    Update on 3/13 from Ryan: Hello prayer team. After our very rocky night last night and start to the morning, we all prayed that the downslide would stop for Caleb and The Lord heard our prayer. Not ten minutes after the message I sent you from Judges 7, things stopped heading downhill and He has made some slight improvement in a few areas. The doctors did another echocardiogram of his heart and are pleased because they said his heart function is good right now so his issues are not mechanical problems with the heart. Other good news is that his right foot which was a scary dark purple has changed to a lighter purple and there is still blood flowing to the end of his toes. More good news is that it appears Caleb's seizures have stopped. They will continue to monitor for the next 12 hours or so. The doctors now think that Caleb might be battling an infection. They have put him on a bunch of antibiotics to fight it. This is not unusual with the amount of surgical procedures they have done on him. Basically the course as they see it is keeping him the way he is for a couple days to let his body fight off the infection. More good news is that Caleb is bringing the good news of Jesus to Children's. I had countless conversations today about Christ because of Caleb's situation. That has been an answered prayer. Caleb is extremely popular here and he seems almost like the "Rudy" of the unit that everybody is pulling and praying for. I asked my nurse tonight, if you had to pray for specific things tonight for Caleb, what would they be? He said "Let his right ventricle function enough to sustain him without increasing medication and for a night of rest for Caleb". He told me that although Caleb's numbers are stable, he is in a fragile condition still and we need to stay here or improve. We know God is in control and trust Him with the perfect result no matter what happens. specific requests I have are to pray for God to completely destroy any infection in his body, for continued good blood flow to his right foot and extremities, that he would be seizure fee and that his pain is managed properly in all of this. Please pray that I do my part letting God speak through me being Caleb's voice to bring God's love to staff and families here. Lastly please pray for little Emily next door who's heart needs to be able to work without a pace maker.God bless you and your families!

  • Update | Posted on March 12, 2014

    Wednesday 3/12 Update, we continue to covet your prays as we lift Caleb up to the healing powers of our Living God! From Ryan: Good morning all, Caleb has had a bit of a rough night. After initial stability, they have had to really up all of his meds big time to keep him stable. Now as they are giving him more medication in fluids, his body is having some trouble accepting it properly and it is making him puffy again. They may put chest tubes back in to help drain fluid. Please pray that all vitals would stabilize and, things would balance out and medication could decrease. Lord Jesus, you know every detail of Caleb's little body. You created and designed every nook and cranny. We ask you Great and mighty Physician, apply your healing touch this morning. In your name and for your glory we ask this

  • Update | Posted on March 11, 2014

    PTL ... good news on Caleb the Warrior - we contInue to covet your prayers and marvel at the power of prayer and all as evidence of the glory of God, and our savior Jesus Christ! 3/11 Afternoon Update from Ryan: I do have good news regarding Caleb. The surgical procedure to remove the wire from his sternum worked and although his sternum is not connected at the bone any more (by 1 cm at the top), they were able to stitch his skin back together. What's better is they were able to pull him off of the ECMO machine without his blood pressure or pulse dropping. They let his heart pump on its own for 45 minutes and felt that was enough to permanently keep him off ECMO and they then closed the wound in his neck. Getting him off of ECMO should help him stop having seizures (we pray) and should increase his blood flow to help his foot that was turning purple. The timetable for his recovery continues to be delayed with the wire coming out of the sternum but frankly we are just very thankful to God that He carried Caleb through another risky procedure. Because the sternum is not connected, Caleb will have to stay on a ventilator to help with his breathing. The surgeon said it could be another 7-10 days until he can get off of this. Thank you again for joining us in prayer yesterday and all day today. Things to continue to pray for: 1) A stable next 12 hours after surgery 2) swelling reduction tomorrow (as his swelling decreases, more room is created in his chest cavity and then they may be able to close the sternum properly) 3) continued weaning of medication 4) Endurance for us and opportunities to share Christ with families and staff, 5) Pray for the family that lost a child on ECMO in our unit today. Kristen and I love each of you. May God's grace and peace in Christ Jesus be with you.

  • Update | Posted on March 11, 2014

    Praise and Prayer Update for Caleb 3/10 - 3/11 - Thanks for your continued prayers and the lifting up of Caleb to our heavenly Father, who hears His children and provides comfort and healing in accordance with His plan! 3/10 Evening: They have decided to prepare for a weaning attempt from ECMO to begin at about 2am. They will decrease the use of the machine bit by bit every 2 hours (assuming all goes well) until 10 am when they would make the decision to "clamp" or to ramp back up with the machine. If they decide to clamp, they take him off of the machine for 30 minutes and see how he does on his own. If he does well, they surgically take the ECMO tubes out of his neck. If he doesn't do well they put him back on the machine. They said its worth seeing how he reacts because he can always go back on it and they can try again Wednesday morning. They feel right now they are at the point where they are not sure if the benefits of ECMO outweigh the negatives of ECMO (seizures, purple foot). The heart and making sure it functions properly are priority number one, but if he is strong enough to get off the machine, there is no sense in having the other side effects with it. Please pray that this process goes better than expected, that Caleb's heart is strong enough to do the work on its own, that the doctors continue to have wisdom and precision in all they do, pray for his purple right foot, and for the seizures activity to cease for good. 3/11 Early AM: Doctor just came in super happy and said this the best wean she has ever seen. Because usually they load with blood pressure medicine but they didn't want to do that bc I think it could hurt circulation to his foot, and they were getting concerned about it so basically he has been so strong he didn't need that. Praying for a strong finish! 3/11 AM: Just had medical rounds for Caleb and 20 people were there which is a new record. It lasted about 20 minutes. They discussed the process of "clamping" and "decanting". The clamping is shifting him off of ECMO and letting him do a 30 minute to one hour trial run on his own and the totally taking him off for good. Assuming that goes well, a few hours later (they are thinking 1:30pm or so) they will do the "decanting" which is more of a surgical procedure of taking the tubes needed for ECMO out of Caleb's neck and re-fusing the blood vessels that were disconnected for the tubes to be in place. Please pray for wisdom and precision in every step for the doctors, nurses, and surgeons in this complex process. Also please pray for Caleb to continue to show the strength he has in the weaning off ECMO process. I'm comforted that we serve a God of the most minute details and confident in His perfect plan for His beloved Caleb. We lean not on our own strength! God bless you!

  • Update | Posted on March 10, 2014

    Update for Monday March 10th: Monday Caleb update - If there is one thing we know about Caleb, he will probably like roller coaster rides when he is older. Yesterday evening the doctors discovered on a neurological report that Caleb was having small, 30 second seizures in his brain every 3 minutes since 4am Sunday. The seizures were not big enough to be obviously detected, thus they went unnoticed for quite a while. They all were isolated to one particular spot in the brain, which is better than having them everywhere. The seizures are a possible side effect of Caleb being on the ECMO machine, which is helping his heart and lungs function. Obviously no parent wants to hear that there child has been having seizures for roughly 14 hours straight, but the doctors said many kids have had similar issues and have no long term damage. After we found out the details of the seizures, I immediately sent a text message out to my 20 or so dedicated prayer warriors who I know will drop everything and pray in an instant. I sent a message out to them at 6:21pm to pray to Jesus for the seizures to stop. The doctors called me during their rounds at about 1030pm and said that all seizures had stopped sometime roughly around 7pm. We praise God for answering that prayer. We also praise God that although there have certainly been some low points in Caleb's battle, we have cried out in prayer and Jesus has been faithful every time in the darkest hour. There were no seizures again until Caleb had one more at 2am. He has been seizure free since. Today and tomorrow are big days as they will attempt to wean Caleb off of the ECMO machine and let him do more of the heart pumping and lung work on his own. Please pray specifically for that process to go much better than expected. Caleb's swelling has reduced significantly but please pray for that to continue and his blood pressure to remain high so they can wean him from ECMO. Please also pray that he would remain seizure free from this point forward and there would be no long term damage from the seizures that he has had. Please pray for strength for Caleb and wisdom for everybody involved in making decisions for him this week. Above all, please pray that God get his full glory in and through Caleb. Let us approach God with our prayer requests in humble adoration and respect, but also with the confidence spoken of in God's word below. Confidence not in ourselves, but in He who is able to do exceedingly abundantly more than we can ever ask or imagine. Hebrews 4:14-16 Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has ascended into heaven, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold firmly to the faith we profess. For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet he did not sin. Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

  • Update | Posted on March 09, 2014

    Thanks to all who have faithfully been praying for our Caleb ... we consider you all part of "Team Caleb" and continue to covet your prayers. Enclosed are the updates from the weekend and this morning. Saturday 3/8: Good morning all, today I woke up with psalm 118:24 on my mind and am so thankful to God for another day of life and especially that He carried Caleb through the last few days. Now that Caleb is on the echmo machine, his body can begin to heal from all the recent trauma. He had a good night where they were able to reduce some of his meds. He is obviously still on a lot of medication but the fact that he doesn't have to work so hard right now allows the doctors and nurses to reduce and even stop some meds temporarily. They want his swelling to reduce and expect that to happen over the next couple days. The current plan is to keep him on the machine until at least Monday and possibly longer if needed but on Monday they will try to wean him off of it and see how he does. The complexity of the surgeries, brilliance of the staff, and the technology of some of these machines amazes me and I am so thankful for them. At the same time, the complexity of the procedures shows me how intricately and incredibly detailed God designed us. The brilliance of the staff is amazing but of the things they know and have discovered, there are endless amounts that they have not discovered, again pointing to the brilliance of our great Creator. I'm so thankful that he has given us minds that seek to discover hidden treasure after hidden treasure of his amazing design work. I am so thankful for the machines that people have used their God given brains to create. The theme here is that medicine and God do not fight against one another. Medicine points to the glory and brilliance of our designer. As I sit and look at all of the machines and medications needed to keep Caleb's life in balance, I think of the miracle of the millions of things that have to go right in my body every single second to have life. Everything points to God. So today I am thanking God for the very breath I breathe and the true miracle it is that we can even function this way. All praise to you Lord Jesus, author of life. James 1:17 "every good and perfect gift is from above" Sunday 3/9: Good morning team Caleb. I pray today is a blessed day for each of you. As you know Caleb is on the echmo machine to help with his breathing and heart function while he heals. Yesterday we were told that the machine is doing 43 percent of the work, while he is doing 57 percent of it. They have been successful in reducing a good amount of swelling in his body and that is today's goal as well. Tomorrow they may try to slowly take him off of the machine to see how he does. Since he is relatively stable while he is on the machine, the staff encouraged us to get some rest since things would pick back up tomorrow. As a result, we were able to sneak home for a night (the first time so far in this journey). Please pray for a day of continued reduced swelling as they help get fluid off of Caleb and just continued overall healing and strength for when he gets back off of the machine. Pray that tomorrow when they attempt to slowly take him off, all goes well. Thanks you brothers and sisters!

  • Update | Posted on March 06, 2014

    PTL as the Lord continues to hear our prayers and we lift our thanks to the Lord who provides for all his children. Please find enclosed an update from last night and the one from this morning. We continue to thank all that are praying for our little warrior Caleb. UPDATE from my son Ryan from 3/5 late and 3/6: Sorry for the late text all but I just have to say thank you for stopping and praying when you did after my last text. When I got the phone call to say some levels had dropped, right after that and about the time I texted you he really wasn't doing well and most of the CICU staff was at his room figuring out what to do. There was even talk of putting him on the "echmo" machine which is a total assist for pumping the heart and breathing which is a last resort and obviously not a good place to be. The good news is he rebounded just when he needed to and his numbers tonight are back in a really good place right now. Pray that continues. Thanks for helping carry this load. You praying is not insignificant. It is very very impactful and I know Christ hears our requests. Update from 3/6: Good morning, thanks for the continued prayers throughout the night. After the scare yesterday evening, Caleb had a very strong night, we thank Jesus for hearing our heartfelt prayers. His vitals this am are strong. They want to continue to manage him in a way to keep the vitals where they are all day today. Stability is the goal for the day and I believe that after another stable day, then they will set some new goals which we can pray specifically for. Thanks again from Caleb and our whole family. May your day be blessed and filled with the love of our Lord Jesus.

  • Update | Posted on March 05, 2014

    This is the update from my son Ryan, afternoon of March 5th ... God is SO good and we continue to covet your prayers: Lift up praise to the Lord team Caleb, his chest is closed. They had to close it the nonconventional way so they didn't push him too much. The bone at the top of the sternum was wired together across the top and rather than connect all of the rest of the sternum they stretched his skin together and stitched the rest of the chest together. The remaining sternum bones that are not connected will grow together between now and the second surgery (4-6 months). The surgeon said his vital signs didn't flinch during the procedure which is great. Things to pray for...the next 12-24 hours are important as they watch to see if his body reacts to what was just done. So pray for stability. Also, the shunt from the big surgery sits a little funny in Caleb's chest so they need to make sure blood flows through it properly, and it isn't squished, so please pray for good blood flow. Please pray that the stitches in the skin hold without issue, as this is something that they will be watching closely. Overall, this is a big day! Psalm 145:1-3

  • Update | Posted on March 04, 2014

    Please find enclosed the daily update from my son, Ryan: Good morning team Caleb. Caleb had a bit of a delayed reaction to yesterday's procedure where some of his signs dropped a bit, but he regained lost ground overnight and seems stable again. It's almost like he lets everybody know that he doesn't enjoy being messed with. But we give The Lord thanks for him getting back to a good place. The surgeon came in this morning and was pleased with where he is this am and said they may look at doing the next procedure to potentially close the chest later today or tomorrow morning. So please continue to pray for the perfect timing of the closure, reduction in swelling to heart and body, wisdom for the staff here, and that Caleb allows them to close without major changes in his vital signs. Also, I previously mentioned our neighbor here, a little boy named Ronin and some of you have been praying for him and his family. It looks like he will be stepped down to the regular NICU. Praise God for that. Pray for continued open doors for ministry opportunities. God bless you and keep you today. Thank you for your prayerful support

  • Update | Posted on March 03, 2014

    Happy snowy Monday. Caleb had a solid day yesterday in terms of his vitals further stabilizing. He did receive another blood transfusion to boost him a bit (which is normal). He had a strong night last night with the vitals improving even more. They wanted this because they are going to remove the current sponge in his chest and evaluate how things look and either put a smaller sponge back in for the next couple days or if things look really good and the swelling is reduced in the heart, possibly close the chest. They want to make sure that when they do close the chest, Caleb will tolerate it, so they are not rushing him. Please pray today for a germ free environment as they open the wound. Please pray for Jesus to direct the hands of the doctors in all that they do and for wisdom for all involved to make the right decisions. Please pray for Caleb's vitals to remain very stable during and after the procedure. Please pray for Kristen and I to continue to trust God with his perfect timing with all of this and for us I be available to other things He is showing us through this process. God bless you all! UPDATE: They are performing the sponge procedure this morning, as I type this ... please pray for healing, no infection, and no complications.

  • Update | Posted on March 02, 2014

    Update from Ryan: Good morning, praise the Lord Caleb had a very stable night last night. His nurses were able to find him a special wound pad to lay on which makes it so they don't have to pick him all the way up to rotate him (to prevent bedsores) all the time. There is only one of these in the entire hospital and it is a very expensive piece of equipment so we count it a blessing that he has it because otherwise it can be risky every time he is picked up with all the cords in and an open wound in the chest still. The sponge vacuum system in his chest seems to be slowly pulling the edges closer together and, he is tolerating it for the most part. The plan for today or tomorrow is to take out the current vacuum sponge and replace it with a smaller one to continue to pull the walls of the chest closer. Please pray specifically for this process and for his heart swelling to continue to reduce. Also please pray for all vital signs to remain very stable today and a decrease in the amount of medicine needed to keep them there. Please also pray specifically for Caleb's neighbor Ronin who has hypo plastic right heart, a very serious condition. I have had a chance to spend a lot of time getting to know his family. Also for little Joey across the hall and all of the other 20 or so kids and their families that call the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit their temporary home. Many of them take on this battle without knowing Christ as their Lord and Savior which I simply cannot imagine.

  • Update | Posted on March 01, 2014

    We continue to covet your prayers for sweet Caleb as he is not quite yet ready to have his chest cavity closed on Monday, as planned. It will now be anywhere from 4 - 6 days before they are able to close his chest cavity. He is improving daily, God be praised, so please continue to pray for God's healing hands and providing discernment to the round the clock medical staff that are caring for Caleb.

  • Update | Posted on February 28, 2014

    UPDATE: Please add special prayers for Caleb so that the medical team is able to close his chest cavity through a smaller surgery on Monday, March 3rd. This is just one of the continuing steps towards his recovery, by God's will. Thank you to all who have prayed and will continue to pray for our little "warrior", Caleb.

  • Most Recent Update | Posted on July 28, 2014

    New update, please continue to pray for our sweet little Caleb! PTL ... Hi everybody. Today Caleb had a follow-up appointment with the surgeon that did his diaphragm plication and Nissen and G tube procedures. All looked good with his G tube wound healing, however over the last couple of days Kristen and I had noticed Caleb nostril flaring and retracting on his chest while breathing and also wheezing with some coughing so we asked the doctor if he could do an x-ray just so we could make sure the diaphragm and his lungs looked good. The diaphragm looked great, but his lungs did not. The surgeon said they looked "fluffy" or "wet". This would explain why he started to have more difficulty breathing. We called the cardiologist on call at Children's to make sure that they saw the x-ray as well and they strongly encouraged us to bring Caleb to the emergency room because having fluid on the lungs for a single ventricle baby is a big deal. It's the equivalent of having heavy weight on your chest when trying to breathe and it can make Caleb's heart work harder. One thing that may have caused this is before he was discharged last time, they took away one dose of daily diuretic and then sent us home. Perhaps he needs that extra dose every. Overall he seems pretty happy so we are hoping this is the case. As I type, Caleb is getting an echocardiogram to make sure there are no new problems with the function of his heart. We are praying for a short stay (hopefully just overnight). Today Kristen and I are reminded of the scripture in Proverbs 16:9 "In their hearts humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps." I had all of my work clothes on and was getting ready to head into the office, while Kristen was going to have her first solo day with both boys, but The Lord had other plans for the day and He knows best so here we are. Thanks for all the prayers and support.

Anonymous *UPDATED

July 09, 2014 | Prayed for 67 times

Please pray for a friend of mine who used to be on fire for missions and serving the Lord. She was recently diagnosed with bipolar and seems to have lost her way. She's very attractive, intelligent and effective in her professional life but seems to struggle with insecurity in her personal life. The way she meets her need for emotional security is destructive. Please pray God would give me another opportunity to be used by Him to reach her or use someone else. Pray that she opens her mind and heart to receive the truth about her situation and her need for God and Christ as Lord of her life. This prayer wall works. I can't wait to see God move!. Thanks in advance for your time, prayers and support.

  • Most Recent Update | Posted on July 28, 2014

    She sent me another text last week with another verse from a Christian song. I assume she's listening to Contemporary Christian Music again. Hopefully more but either way, it's a start. Please continue praying :-)

Jodi *UPDATED

July 17, 2014 | Prayed for 52 times

Praise God. Please pray for my husband Mark as he interviews for jobs at the end of this week. Please pray if it is God's will that we will have discernment and it will be very clear what decision to make. Also please pray for our year old Sophie who has chronic gastro issues and appears to have reflux returned. We have a specialist appointment in August and pray for wisdom and clarity for the doctor. Please pray that the Lord will guide me and strengthen me to care for our family as He wills. Thank you.

  • Update | Posted on July 23, 2014

    Woohoo! Mark was made an offer for the job he interviewed at on Friday. Praise The Lord and thank you for your prayers. Out 2 yo is still suffering from reflux but is on medication that is helping. Praying for a more permanent solution from her gastro in August.

  • Most Recent Update | Posted on July 28, 2014

    Our God is so GREAT! The job transition has worked out miraculously well. We were blessed with an extra month of insurance which means that 2 very important appointments/procedures for our children are able to proceed as planned. 'And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work.' (2 Corinthians 9:8 NIV)AMEN.

Rhonda *UPDATED

July 21, 2014 | Prayed for 37 times

My dad goes to MBC Loudoun, and he received a kidney transplant on Sunday, July 20. We are thankful he made it through the surgery well. Please ask God that He might allow the new kidney to work well and to protect my dad from infections. The donor passed away in a tragic accident. Please pray for the donor's family in their loss, especially as they were so generous to donate the organs to others in need.

  • Update | Posted on July 24, 2014

    My dad's new transplanted kidney is not working yet, but we are hoping it may start working soon. My dad also may have had a complication with the new kidney which may necessitate another procedure. We will know more today after further testing (Thursday, July 24). Please pray for him to have a good resolution of the complication and that the new kidney may start working soon. Please also pray for encouragement for my mom and him since this situation has been very difficult. Thank you very much for praying!!! We all appreciate your prayers more than we can tell you.

  • Most Recent Update | Posted on July 28, 2014

    Thank you so very much for praying. My dad did not need the additional procedure. His kidney function has been improving for the last three days, and it looks like the new kidney has started to work. Praise God! His kidney function is still worse than before the transplant, but we are hoping and praying that it will continue to improve and he can get through this well. He is supposed to be discharged from the hospital today. Thank you so much for praying and continuing to pray. My parents have had a really rough time through this.--Rhonda

Brenda

July 28, 2014 | Prayed for 7 times

My 4th eye surgery went well. Please pray that enough vision is restored so that I can safely drive to work. Full recovery could take up to 3 months. Thankful to God for walking with me during these past 2 years.

Dave

July 28, 2014 | Prayed for 7 times

Please pray for those affected by the Ebola outbreak in Africa, that it would be contained and not spread any further.

Cynthia McGee *UPDATED

July 03, 2014 | Prayed for 36 times

Please pray for my dear friend, Ken C., and his wife, Linda. They know the Lord and are people I consider the closest to a Christian role model that I have personally known. A short while ago, Ken was driving and was struck head-on my a car that crossed into his lane. He suffered a severe stroke and has not woken up since. He does, however, seem to respond to his wife's touch and a few other isolated incidents. As a believer, Ken and Linda are relying on our Lord and Healer. Please pray for Ken and his family for strength, God's comfort and, specifically, no infections, Ken beginning to respond to commands and waking up. Thank you so very much.

  • Most Recent Update | Posted on July 25, 2014

    Thank you so much for your prayers for K.C. He is gazing at his wife and family members, reaching up to touch his head (where there are staples) and putting his good arm around his wife. His wife, L.C., is staying strong in the Lord, but has difficulty at home without her husband. K.C. has had his Tracheotomy removed and is breathing on his own. Please continue to pray that his wife can find a rehab facility where she can have peace knowing that K.C. will be in good hands when she is at home with their special needs daughter. Family has been with K.C. around the clock, his son has been running his business. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR PRAYERS for this dear Christian family. May God use this situation to glorify Him.

Scott Orel

July 25, 2014 | Prayed for 7 times

Please pray for the Lord's super natural provision of my finances! And give him praise for his prior provision! I am studying to be a Pastor at a small Christian College in California and need help with my tuition! Thanks so much! God bless!

Cristina Pascual

July 25, 2014 | Prayed for 15 times

Please pray that the Lord will answer all my prayer requests & that i'll have financial breakthrough & that me & my children will be away fr harm issues & diseases.

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