Sunday, December 28, 2008

Welcome to our Blog

After some thought and discussion, Jeff and I have decided to start posting information about Jacob Elliot Tuley and our journey of faith through this blog. We are not promising anything spectacular, but we figured this may be an easier way for others to hear about "our story."

Here's the background...

On September 10, at 20 weeks along in our pregnancy, we found out that our son, Jacob Elliot, was diagnosed with (Right Sided) Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia. This means that his diaprhagm on the right side did not develop properly and has a large size hole, thus allowing his liver to go into his chest and hinder lung developement. At that appointment, we were told that we had a few options. 1) to terminate the pregnancy, 2) to go as long as his body will last (which could be full term or not) and then deliver, 3) to look into surgery options, but with minimal survivability. To give you an idea...about 80 to 90 percent of people terminate the pregnancy when given this prognosis. Basically, he would not be able to take his first breath and would not come home with us, but that Heaven would be his first home.

Of course, Jeff and I were both devistated, and both of us can remember that day very clearly in our minds. We came home, cried, and prayed for wisdom to make the right decision for our son and for ourselves. At that time, we decided we could not terminate a life that God had given us. We decided, through much prayer and petition to God, that we were going to give Jacob the best life and love we could while we had him. We started looking at things quite differently.

At that point, Jacob had already gone to two St. Louis Cardnials games, served others and helped out at a Habitat for Humanity Build, been to the Nation's Captial,and spent time with his dog Jackson. Everything Jeff and I had done we began thinking as though Jacob had done it too. We decided that we wanted the family to participate in this too, so we asked Grampa Winkler to take Jacob on a Harley Ride, Uncle Biggie (Jim) to take him flying, and to have others read the stories to him and sing the songs to him that they would have wanted to if he was here. My mom made a tent (in what was going to be his room) and we read stories to my belly. In addition, Jacob has served the homeless on Thanksgiving with his Tuley family, and helped out one of Mommy's closest friends in Mexico.

So, Jeff and I began experiencing things for Jacob and showing him as much love as we could while we had him. So far, Jacob has already lived a very full life!

We have been toying with both the idea of delivering Jacob at Baptist Hospital and doing no surgery, knowing that he will pass from this life, or delivering Jacob at Vanderbilt Children's Hospital and doing everything we (the doctors) can, knowing that he "might" pass from this life. As a parent, it is hard to sit back and do nothing, even if the chances are "a long shot" so we decided to deliver at Vanderbilt and see what God can do.

This whole process has been trying on our faith, but also brought us closer together and closer to God. We know that Jacob is in God's hands and we are going to ask for wisdom and faith to continue to make decisions that would be best for him, but we are also asking every day for our Miracle, for total healing. And who is to say that these doctors are not our Miracle? God has always been in the business of the "glorious impossible" and we are praying for that!

I didn't mean for this to be so long...but it's hard to put hours and hours of doctors visits, research, and Jacob's experiences into a few paragraphs. We will be posting some of the pictures of Jacob's experiences later in the blog. For those of you that are still praying, we can't thank you enough. Please continue, it is what has kept us going in these past few months.