He Delivered Impossibility
Dulanjali Achintha recounts the many obstacles she had to face during her pregnancy and how blindly trusting in the God of impossibilities, made everything possible.
To expect a child is a happy moment for all parents and so was it for us. We were praying to God about this for a while and one day I had a dream that I would be getting pregnant the next day. I didn’t give it much thought since it was just a dream! This was on a Saturday, and the next day we went for Sunday Mass; coincidentally the Gospel readings were also about how Mother Mary conceived and bore a son. In my heart I claimed this Word and immediately after coming home, we did a pregnancy test. It turned out positive! It indeed was a dream come true!
My pregnancy wasn’t as easy as I hoped it would be. At the very beginning of the journey, during a scan I came to know that I had multiple fibroids. This caused many days of suffering during the first trimester with severe pain and uneasiness. There were several occasions where I had to be rushed to the hospital in the middle of the night, thinking that I had experienced a miscarriage. We were very scared and helpless and we began to seek God’s hand in this pregnancy. While seeking healing for the fibroids and protection for the unborn baby, during an adoration we attended, we heard this message spoken, ‘if God has blessed you with this child, he will make sure that everything goes well’. We claimed this promise and held on to it. But little did we know that it was just the start of a huge faith journey.
We went for our regular checkups as usual, and then came our 20th week scan that tells us more about our baby. Unfortunately, it was not good news. I was diagnosed with a rare condition, where the amniotic fluid (the liquid in the water bag) levels were critically low and the baby’s survival was at a huge risk. At first the doctors thought that the water bag may have had a leak and I was losing fluid. Tests were done but by God’s grace, there wasn’t any indication of that sort.
The investigations continued and the scans showed that the baby hadn’t grown as expected due to the low fluid level and that his development was far behind. Many organs such as the brain, abdomen, lungs, and limbs hadn’t grown for the gestational age. It was suspected that the baby had genetic disorders and chromosomal deficiency – which would result in a low chance of normal growth in the future. Many growth indexes that were supposed to have positive values by that time were severely showing negative numbers and this confirmed that the baby would be small and skinny. And all these factors pointed out to the baby having something called Intrauterine Growth Retardation (IUGR).
With this, my pregnancy was categorised as high-risk with multiple foetal abnormalities. There was a great chance of the baby being prematurely born at 7 months, which would require NICU incubation (that would cost more than SGD200, 000). I remember our doctor telling us to make arrangements for the funds.
Many blood tests and other procedures were performed on me to find out the cause of the baby’s underdevelopment. At one point the doctors insisted that we do an amniocentesis – a procedure in which amniotic fluid is extracted from the water bag but this risked the foetus being miscarried. This test could also confirm if the baby had Down syndrome or any other genetic complication.
It was a very tough call for us. But we prayed about it and in faith we rejected it, because we didn’t want to put our baby at risk of being aborted.
Within the course of the days, we were sent for multiple sessions of counselling, where we were told about the difficulties of raising a child with genetic problems. These sessions were devastating for us! After clarifying that there was nothing external that could be done to make the baby grow, the doctors suggested we terminate the pregnancy!
I couldn’t think straight; the only thing I was able to do was continuously cry and find solutions to what we were facing. But as the Word of God says in Exodus 33:14, My presence will go with you, we felt that we were not alone in this storm and there was hope at the end of the tunnel.
Days passed by, and we changed our doctor since we wanted to go ahead with this journey with some who was pro-life.
During the scans of the second and third trimester, there were always some issues found. Positive signs of our baby’s growth were less and we were told that he was not pulling enough nutrition from the placenta. The blood flow to my uterus was less at the same time and medicine was prescribed to stabilise the pregnancy to avoid a premature birth. To add to all these complications, I developed gestational diabetes and was on high doses of insulin injections and heavy diet restrictions.
With each week close monitoring was done on the baby’s growth. The doctor’s target was for the baby to reach 2kgs by the end of the 40th week. It was only a miracle that could change the situation and we knew that we needed to pray for one. As James 1:17 states, Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows. We visualised daily that our baby was going to be perfect and truly believed that God could move mountains for those whom he loved! We recalled the message we received at the beginning of the pregnancy, ‘if God has blessed us with this child he will see that everything goes well’.
Despite the fact that what medical science told us was a reality, we knew that the ultimate truth was that Jesus was above the situation and that God could heal our baby. So the first thing we decided was to refuse to believe in what the scans told us and dwelt on what Jesus could do for us instead. Each night, we laid hands on the tummy, thanked and praised loudly, claiming the Word of God that nothing was impossible for Jesus, that only he had authority over our baby’s life. I drank holy water daily in faith, asking Jesus to transform every drop of holy water into amniotic fluid so that the baby would survive and grow. My husband fasted and prayed and we read the Bible to our baby, offered rosaries and attended healing services almost on a daily basis.
The last two weeks of my pregnancy approached and we saw things were improving slowly. My amniotic fluid was increasing, blood flow to the womb had improved and the baby was gaining weight! The baby started to kick and I started feeling strong movements! Growth index values which were on negative curves were now turning positive and the baby was showing signs of healthy development! And on the last scan, just one week before my delivery, we heard those magical words from our gynecologist, ‘your baby is okay now’!
The day of my delivery approached, and I felt a strong sense of peace and hope. I knew that Jesus would not disappoint us. Throughout this journey, God had taught both of us to blindly trust in him and have faith. And most importantly to believe in the impossible, because our God is a God of impossibilities!
On the 24th of August, I delivered a healthy baby boy. I can’t explain the joy we had at that moment! When I held the baby in my hands, we figured out how perfect he was! A birth weight of 2.7kg, a full term pregnancy and a baby with zero genetic or chromosomal disorders unlike predicted! The initial screening revealed that all his organs were perfectly formed! Jesus invalidated all the predictions and issues that medical science threw at us! He saved our baby’s life and proved that he is above everything and nothing is too hard for him! Surely if God is for us, nothing can be against us!
We named our baby ‘Shamel’ which means comprehensive! And with this we thank Jesus who indeed performed a miracle and made the impossible happen! So let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful (Hebrews 10:23).
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