Tuesday, 4 June 2013

Update on Brittney's Pregnancy.

On our very first pre-natal visit to the hospital here in Buea, the advice given us was to go to the United States and have the baby, as the medical facilities available here in Cameroon are very poor. Having had Hannah and Jonathan in Ghana, we decided to stick it out and try and have the baby in Cameroon. Not only would this save the expense of international travel, but would also enable us to continue our ministering and would be an opportunity for us to show love to the people here in identifying with them.

Many challenges have come up during the course of this pregnancy- Brittney has had the Mumps, Malaria, a urinary tract, another infection, and a stomach virus. Though we now have a water tank we believe many of these sicknesses have been due to previous water problems. She has also had a hernia of the stomach which has progressively worsened. Through all these challenges we pressed on, as the baby was never in serious danger. However, several days ago, Brittney started waking up in the night with sharp pains which were pre-mature contractions. At first we thought they might be common Braxton-Higgs contractions, but the pattern, pain and placement of the contractions indicated something more serious- there was an indication that if things continued as they have been, progressively intensifying, Brittney would prematurely deliver. At 31 weeks, the chance of the baby surviving in the poor medical environment here is very very poor. The doctor advised us that anything less than 35 weeks is extremely high risk of having serious health issues and there is also a risk to Brittney herself. 

Yesterday, in an effort to bring the situation under control, Brittney was admitted to the hospital. There she was put on IVs to make sure that she is well hydrated, and administered steroids and muscle relaxants to try and both strengthen the baby's lungs and relax the uterus. Last night, after 18 hours of medication and bed rest, instead of seeing some relief, Brittney was awake from 1 am till 7 with the strongest contractions yet. The choice was to either stay in Cameroon and take a chance with the life of the baby and Brittney's life, or to try and make it to the United States where even if the baby came now, the medical system would be able to care for a premature baby and Brittney. It has been a very difficult decision, and a daunting task, but we have decided that to risk the life of our little baby would be irresponsible and effectively testing God. 

The question then was, can she travel? Is it too late? Many prayers were being offered up, and this morning, out of the challenges, we saw a prayer answered. What we were told is that if the cervix was 4cm in length (not dilation) and above, there was no worry, the baby would not come early, and we should be okay. If however, the cervix was less than 2, the baby would come at any moment, and it would not be possible to travel. When they measured  this morning the cervix was at 3... in the danger zone and indicating a premature delivery, but still reasonably to travel if it is soon. 

Tonight, if the space opens up, we will be on a plane to the United States. We will be there for 4 months, allowing enough time for the baby to come, recovery, necessary vaccines, and to get travel documents for the newest Hostetter processed.

We were not yet planning to go to the US for another year so this is a big blow financially- involving going into debt. We do not have any sort of insurance to cover our travel expenses, nor medical insurance for any expenses while in the United States. We know that God can provide, and we have been blessed with a number of people who have already offered to help. So many prayers have been offered up, so much encouragement. We are truly humbled that within minutes of posting on facebook, some offers of assistance started coming in. They are dearly appreciated, as this is a trying challenge. 

We could use your help, dear friends and family. We need continued prayers- that we can get everything worked out for our extended absence within the next 5 hours, that we can get space on the flight this evening, that we can travel safely without any further complications and make it to the United States with the baby intact, and that God will supply our needs through this. We know how much He likes to build our faith, and it has been quite something to see the last year and a half here in Cameroon- the trials have come in waves and droves, and through them all we've learned to trust. We are not afraid or panicked, nor overly worried, not because the situation is not serious, but because we know that with so much prayer and petitions on our behalf, with the people of God stepping up in so many ways, through prayers, through encouragements, through offers of financial help, we are resting peacefully in spirit and soul, if not in body. We've asked- God will answer and we know He will use you, our strength and support, to bring a perfect solution to this situation. God bless- now I gotta get packing! :) 

1 comment:

  1. Let us know where in the States you will be so we can get help to you ASAP. Call if you need anything 804.301.8578. Our prayers are with you guys, Jessie and Su Nguyen.