Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Jubilee's Surgery

Today we had a lot of last minute testing
 to get done for Miss Jubilee.

She has been such a trooper.

But, no doubt, she understands something is up.

I have tried to explain everything as best I can to her.  

After her second CT scan today, she quickly picked two toys from the toy box at the surgeon's office {she had the privilege of TWO since she had sat so perfectly still while they scanned her head}.....

and the instant she had chosen two toys she was 
dragging me by the arm saying,

"Let's go mom!"

The surgery is set for 7:30 PST and 
we have to be there at 6:30 for prep...

so we are leaving our hotel just before 5:30pst.

Thank you to those who have said they will fast 
tomorrow for our sweet Jubilee Promise.

I will be updating Twitter on the sidebar.

Oh, and the surgery is usually about 3 hours,
 but her case is more extensive
 and so they are expecting it to be about FOUR hours.  

Showered, hair washed and ready for surgery in the morning....
{Isn't she just so beautiful? Such a treasure to all who know her.}


Please pray specifically that:
1.  The tumor has not penetrated into the brain.
2.  That it is not malignant.
3.  Ministering angels will minister to her as she 'sleeps'.
4.  The Lord would completely guide the skilled surgeon's hands each step of the way during this delicate surgery.
xo

A Yard Sale for the girls...

Saturday we had a yard sale in an effort to help 
bring Ruby Grace and Sarah Jane home.
{We had been going to have it in a few weeks, 
but having to head to San Francisco for Jubilee's surgery, 
we accelerated the timing.}

We truly sold everything that wasn't nailed down.

Having lost our home to a fire two years ago, 
we had tried even harder to not gather much.
Trying to live simply at our Place Called Simplicity. 

So we sold beloved furniture that we had bought since the fire, when we were setting up our new home. 

Like a beautiful antique hoosier barrel bottom cabinet 
and an antique bookshelf, chairs, kitchen tables and desks
and beds and two hope chests and a vintage toy chest.

The kids went through their stuff, too.

Elizabeth, Isaiah, Jubilee, Liberty and Elijah would say:

"Here mom, you can sell this for our girl."

or

"How about we sell this for our girl?" 



We sold books and kids clothes.

A bike.

Little Tikes toys.

And casserole dishes and pots and pans.

and 

My mom emptied her little apartment.
{thank you momma - xo}

And someone my mom knows had had a yard sale and 
asked if we wanted the leftovers to sell too.
So we sold that, too.

And then during the sale two different friends 
came by and brought a few things.
{One was a young mom who had only 
heard about us from our mutual friend Megan.}
Beautifully sweet.
The other was our friend, Sara.

We were able to have the sale at one of Dw's best buds 
{Jerry's} rentals that he owns....
which is on a very busy street....
completely thankful for that!
{Cause we knew no one would want to come 
out to the country road where we live!}
And Jerry fed us all breakfast and lunch from his restaurant across the alley from the house...

And many of you, and our FB friends, too, prayed with us that God would bring the right buyers for all the exact stuff 
we needed to sell.

And we prayed that God would hold the rain off too.

In the midst of the sale, Joe, 
who owns Durango Joe's coffee shops is a personal friend.
He came by and said, 
"Would you like to sell a chair and ottoman too?"

SURE.

He went and got it and delivered it to us.

The house where we were having the sale is a rental of Jerry's and the college students were moving in that day.  So Joe brought the chair and as Dw and Joe were unloading it off the truck, the girls moving in said, "Hey, we want to buy that."

So they literally carried it off the truck and inside for them.

{Talk about a fast sale!}

Then Durango Joe generously offered,  
"Have your kids all walk down to get free smoothies 
or coffees at the shop"...
So they all did.


And the Lord brought just the right people, 
until just about everything was gone.

And as the thunderous clouds moved in.....

We gathered up the few things that remained....

and pulled out as the lightening was heating up

and the clouds were spitting....

and dropping the remains at the thrift store

we headed for home and just as we pulled in our long country lane

the rain let loose like crazy....

and we went inside and counted the

money that the Lord had brought in....

Yippee Jesus!

He always provides above and beyond 
all we could think of ask!

He is entirely faithful.

And I have to say:

It was the easiest yard sale I had ever had.
truly

Start to finish.

Fun.

And in the midst of the day,
 there was a extra special surprise from the Lord....
{the kind of surprise that you bloggy friends will love, love, love!}
and I will tell that story soon.  

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Jubilee Meets with the Surgeon....

Abi, Ryan and Finn had just moved to a different city and apartment on Sunday.  

Conveniently, her mom, dad, and 7 siblings and 
1 sweet 'sister' "S"
{one of the three sisters who lived with us this winter}
showed up on Tuesday.
haha.  

Poor Abigail.  I told her I was so sorry for the timing. 
 She was gracious and totally understanding
and actually glad we are here!

Anyway, her apartment is not big, so Emma, Graham, 
Liberty and S are staying with them.  
The littles are staying at the hotel with Dw and I.  
It works.  

I texted the big kids last night and asked if any were willing to go 
with me to take Jubilee to the doctor near Stanford University.  
I bribed them by saying that whoever went would get a Starbucks.

Emma, Graham and Liberty kind of wanted to hang out
 with their big sis and little nephew.
S said she would go with me.
So thankful for her being willing! 

This once-city girl is so not used to the freeways 
at a bazillion miles/hour. 

But we made it there and back...
it was a looooong day.

The doctor's staff is wonderful!
The surgeon?
Soooo kind!

Waiting between surgeons and testing....
Seriously! So hope whoever invented crayons and coloring books
 is living happily in some caribbean country sipping lemonade 
with those little umbrella thingys in it. 
 So thankful for them!

People fly from all over the world to have 
this surgeon care for them.
Today alone, after he saw us, he was beginning a 10 hour operation on a little girl whose parents had brought her from China!

The surgery will be Thursday.

Morning.

Exact time unknown.

Thank you for all who have been praying.
We can feel it.

And thank you for all the sweet comments on Sunday's post.
You guys always bring such comfort to my soul.

I laid in bed reading them yesterday and the tears dripped....

which when that happens, ya' know it means? 

Ya' get tears in your ears.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Here We Go {again}

The other day Dw came home to talk to me about what the surgeon had said.  The kids and I had been sitting on the porch talking and sipping coffee.  We try to sit together and talk everyday on the porch because summer is so short in our city.
Anyway, Dw and I went inside our room to talk.   
Jubilee's situation is very concerning. 

We finished up talking and he went outside to sit with the kids.
All of a sudden, it hit me.
I came outside crying.  

Hard.
Everyone was like, "Are you okay, Mom?"

I said, 

"Karl is in Rehab with a traumatic brain injury.

The accident alone was so horrible.   Autumn is so affected.
We all are.

Ruby Grace needs to be home yesterday, yet the paperwork in Africa is not moving at all.
Jubilee's tumors are more than concerning
and the surgeon said they should have come out yesterday."
At that point I sat down and started to cry even harder.
And through my muffled sobs I managed, "My head feels like it's going to blow up."  
Dw softly said, "I can't believe you didn't remember the other thing." 
I looked up at him, 'What other thing?"  

"If you don't remember, I'm not telling."  
I tried to think, but was unable.  
"Tell me now!"

"Tyler depl*ys tomorrow."  
Sobs and more sobs.

  

Yes, the yellow ribbon is up again. 

His 5th time over there.  

Someone once told us that it gets easier each time.

They were totally lying. 

So proud of you son, so very proud.
You could have chosen an easy path. 
But you didn't.
You love America way too much.
And we love you with all our heart.
Pleading God's protection over you and 
your fellow special forc*s team. 

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Karl's Update for Saturday

I just hung up the phone with Vicki.  We talked just about 45 minutes.  And while we talked, my kids cleaned the house cause it was pretty trashed from having the yard sale today.  
Not a bad deal, huh? 
I talked.  
They cleaned.  
And that would be why I had so many kids,
cause, ya' know, life is just sooo much easier 
with a boatload of kids.
{just kidding}

So here's the latest:  

In physical therapy, Karl is continuing to progress well.  

Speech therapy is going super good!

Here would be some prayer needs at the moment:

Vicki asked for prayer for the bacterial infection in his body. 

Vicki also asked for prayer for Karl's shoulder.  He injured it in the motorcycle accident and so as they do physical therapy it is causing him quite a bit of pain.  Would you pray with us that the Lord would heal it without surgery?  

Karl continues to remember more and more.  The other day one of the doctor's was asking him how he and Autumn met.  He said, "Aunt Lisa."   And so Aunt Lisa, {just in case you are reading this from Kenya where you are now living with Uncle Mark, Tavin and Talia}...thought you would want to know that he remembers well our blind date set-up and hoping that soon he'll read what we wrote on the back of that Bible verse we wrote out.  
*giggle*   
Yes, indeed.  
Blind dates are not so bad after all!  

Friday, August 26, 2011

Orphan Wares - Artists & Shoppers - Both With a Purpose

Many of you will remember this post I did in June.

It was about feeding the orphan from our home.  

If you didn't read that post, it might sound impossible.  

But really, it's completely possible.  

Here's the next post explaining exactly how we're going to do it 
together. 

Ordinary people spending their free time making things that could be sold on a web site where
100% of the proceeds would go to feed the orphan.   So in other words, the artist/crafter would be donating their time, talents and treasures to feed treasures around the world.

Then people around the world, finding the Orphan Ware site, would have the opportunity to shop and have items shipped to them.

Imagine: Your sister is having a baby.  What better place to buy a baby quilt then to shop at the Orphan Ware site, knowing that someone who loves the orphans has donated their supplies, their time and their talent to make a quilt so that the proceeds of the sale could feed kids who normally wouldn't have anything to eat?  

Can you picture anything more exciting??

I can't!

Imagine when needing Christmas presents, shower gifts, wedding gifts, birthday presents or anything else the first place that's checked if the Orphan Wares site

knowing  

100%

of the proceeds from the sale for each product is going to feed orphans around the world. 

Seriously!  

We're buying gifts anyway - 
why not shop with a purpose?

Sooooo....

we are preparing to launch the site....
but we could use some more items to be shipped....

AND

some suggested vintage items

OR 

Gift Cards that are 
BRAND NEW but for some reason not wanted.  

So if Aunt Ethel passed away and left you her antique China tea pot and you have no desire to keep it, ship it to the site and have it posted and sold so that the money from it would feed the orphan.

Or if Uncle Ralph gave you a Red Lobster gift card and you are allergic to seafood....mail the gift card to the address below and someone who loves seafood can purchase it...
knowing that 100% of the proceeds will go to feed 
Almighty God's precious treasures!

 So where exactly are you shipping your items?

Well, a blog friend named Kala {whom I had never met} and her family purchased a home with a large metal building on it.  They were praying and asking the Lord what He had intended that building to be used for.   Isn't it so cool that they were asking Him what He wanted them to use it for? 

And then I posted about the Orphan Ware idea.

Kala wrote to me and asked if her family could use their metal building as the warehouse for Orphan Wares, donating their time to receive the items from the artists, keeping the inventory organized and then shipping the items out to the purchasers.  

We talked.  
We prayed.  
And we partnered together.
Kala is precious and her and her family have huge hearts 
for the orphan.   
This will be their family ministry! 

So here we are getting ready to launch {finally!} 

And now is the time to send your items to this address:

Shipping Manager
 IVO - Orphan Wares
11000 Brimhall Rd. Suite E
Bakersfield, Ca 93312

Kala will send you an email receipt 
that your items have arrived.  

Please include with your items this information:

Your name
Your email
If you have a blog, your blog address
Your item and the quantity
A fair price you would expect your item to sell for


All items donated will not be returned to the artist.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Mountains are Moving for Jubilee Promise

I knew you guys would pray!!

Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you!

And, literally, immediately the mountains started to move last night after posting!

When I first posted about Jubilee, a week ago, a sweet blog friend {Christie} came out of lurkdom and emailed me.  She said, "Could your doctor be concerned about such-n-such?"  I was like whoooa.  I had been so vague, but she had felt that that might be what it was {totally the Lord speaking to her, no doubt!}.  Sure enough, she was on the money. I emailed her and thanked her for caring.  

So yesterday when the surgeon still wasn't returning our calls, the Lord reminded me of her email.  Last night about midnight I emailed her again and asked about surgeons.

This morning an email was waiting in my inbox.  Christie is in a yahoo group that deals with this particular type of tumor.  There are only TWO surgeons in the United States that this group recommends - one on the east coast and one on the west.  The surgery warrants someone highly skilled as the brain could even be involved.   

In the email this morning, this sweet lurker-turned-friend put me in touch within a matter of hours with just the right person so that...

I spent 25 minutes talking with this highly specialized surgeon's office a bit ago and it was confirmed...
"the tumor needed to come out yesterday".

Soooooo......

We have an appointment with the surgeon on this coming Tuesday morning.  Jubilee's surgery is already scheduled for Thursday 
{a week from today}.

The surgeon is in the San Francisco Bay area.  

Miracles abound!

I told Christie - you are one of God's ministering angels!!

Please don't stop praying.  

Much lies ahead for us. 

Saturday is our yard sale to raise necessary funds to 
go get Ruby Grace and Sarah Jane, 
so the kids and I are grabbing everything 
that isn't nailed down and 
putting it in the ever-growing pile! 
We pack up and Sunday we are ALL driving to San Francisco after Dw finishes preaching. 

*sigh*

And lastly, if you have nothing else to do...{haha} here's the link to the wild fire 
whose flames we can see burning from our upstairs windows.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Jubilee & The Surgeon

Many, many, many of you have inquired about Jubilee. 

Thank you all for caring.

Well....

It has been one week {tomorrow}.

So here's the situation.

Our pediatrician here is completely dumbfounded...

but we have not heard one word from the surgeon's office although our pediatrician has called him repeatedly and I have called.

Seriously?

If ya' google the problem, it's no doubt very serious.

The tests already show it is very serious.

And not one return call from even his office staff??

It is on my mind continually...
I am absolutely preoccupied.

The growths are extremely concerning.

I talked to our pediatrician's partner at the end of the day and she and our pediatrician are actually getting more than frustrated.

Well then it dawned on me!

If this particular surgeon were to do the surgery and there was a complication, would we even be able to get ahold of him?

Hmmmm.

Then I wondered, "Lord, are you preventing him from scheduling because he is not the best person for this intricate, delicate surgery?"

So all that to say, that we really need wisdom, discernment and direction.  We live in a small city, hours and hours and hours away from any major medical facility for delicate and rare surgery. 

 Dw and I are going to go tomorrow and meet with our pediatrician.  She is such a precious woman and we look forward to having the Lord direct our steps, with her help.  

Would you pray with us, please?

And lastly, there is a wild fire not far from our home.  {Of course there is.} We can see the flames from many of our windows.  The smoke is pretty intense.  

I keep shaking my head....seriously? 
I think I might just run away from home.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Seven Bible Verses

Rejoice with us!

Guess what Karl did?

He read SEVEN Bible verses that were posted on his wall!!

Oh, yes, he did!!

Isn't that awesome?

We are over the moon!

He is communicating more and 
remembering more on an almost daily basis.

The road from a Traumatic Brain Injury {TBI} is long.

Please do not stop praying!

Yes, rejoice with us -

But please don't stop praying!

PS.  Ooopsie, I messed up.  
It was FIVE weeks Sunday.  
I thought it was six.  
So think about it....that's even more amazing!

Monday, August 22, 2011

Our Holy Ground: Part 2

To comprehend the magnitude of the miracles that only Almighty God brought forth each to preserve the life of Karl Hujus the day of the tragic motorcycle accident, we are compelled to tell this 
very personal, sobering and traumatic story.  


If you have missed Our Holy Ground: Part 1, 
we kindly ask, out of respect and love 
for each of the persons involved 
 that before you read Part 2 {below},
you would first read the pre-story
entitled 
{click on red to read}


Our Holy Ground


followed by  


Our Holy Ground - Part 1
{and then come back and and read part 2}

Thank you so much!!


*******


Our Holy Ground - Part 2
{This is lengthy, so again, please don't skim.
 God's attention to exacting detail is just too amazing to miss!}

As Liz and Denise and Mike worked on Karl, he was a nameless stranger whose life they were fighting to save, 

until 

they cut off his shirt.

Suddenly, Liz {the ER nurse} realized 
that she recognized the tattoo 


on Karl's chest.

Liz, ER nurse and longtime friend of Vicki and Bob and their family, seeing Karl's tattoo realized that this must be Karl they were working on.  Liz, who also knows Christ as her Savior, was praying for Karl's life to be 
spared that day as the team worked. 

God's hand had been moving the events in these three strategic and medically gifted Good Samaritan's lives so that they would be at the scene at just the right moment on that rural two lane highway in Colorado.  And it is no surprise that Almighty God had also been working the night shift on Karl's behalf days prior so that the rescue could include others who would also perform strategic roles in Karl's MIRACLE of life.

The second person behind the accident scene 
was a man named Monty.  
Although not a medical person, 
Monty ran to where 
Liz, Denise {former EMT} and Mike {the out-of-state anesthesiologist}were working 
on Karl and began to pray over this accident victim 
{not realizing that in a round-about way,
 he, too, knew of Karl, 
having attended church for years with 
Karl's Aunt Lisa and Uncle Mark}.

Monty actually laid his hands on Karl briefly and 
prayed powerful words of life over him. 
Monty stood interceding for the three medical 
professionals who were working on Karl.  

Behind Monty had been two motorcycles.  
A husband and wife team, 
{David and Christine} 
out for a Sunday ride heading from Pagosa Springs
 toward Durango.  
They had watched the single bike riding up in 
front of them for miles.  
{They had no idea that it was Karl, 
they only knew it was another motorcyclist 
in front of some cars that were in front of them.} 

Just before the accident scene the road takes a few gentle curves as it winds through the National Forest and suddenly, as David and Christine went around one last curve they came upon the accident.  


The very motorcycle that they had seen ahead and followed for miles was now in a tragic accident with a car.   This married biker couple proceeded three miles to Bayfield and pulled off the road into a parking lot.  This was all too reminiscent for them.  David had been in a horrific accident himself and been in a coma just 15 months before!  


They got down on their knees in that Bayfield parking lot, weeping, begging God to spare the motorcyclist's life. 
 Little did they know, that it was Karl they were interceding for.  
David and Christine had known Karl and his family for years!  

And as the Pine Valley first responders arrived, 
one of the young women who attends our church has a brother, Michael, who was in the group responding.  
He arrived at the scene and began to pray for Karl too.  

Oh, the prayers that were already hitting 
heaven's throne on Karl's behalf.

"Lord, spare his life and raise him up!"

While waiting for MedFlight, Liz, the ER nurse, after recognizing Karl's tattoo, called Vicki {who was at church} and said, "Vicki, is Karl on his bike today?"  Liz would be the friend to tell Vicki that Karl had been in a horrific accident.  

And it was at that point {10:36am} that Vicki called Autumn,
 who was now waiting, alone, on our porch for Karl to come. 


At the church we pastor, first service had just ended.   I usually have my phone {set on silent} in my hand at all times at church.  It is supposed to vibrate, but the vibrate part of my phone is broken.  

As the crowd was dispersing, friends moving out of state had come to say good-bye to me and while talking to them
 by God's divine orchestration, I glanced down and noticed Autumn's name come up on CallerID.  Liberty happened to be standing near me and seeing Autumn's name a thought flashed through my head, 

"She and Karl are supposed to be here by now, 
why would she be calling?"

I turned to Liberty and handing her the phone said, 
"Honey, it's Autumn, could you see what she needs?"  

Turning away to answer it, instantly Liberty
 turned back to me with a 
horrified look on her face and 
shaking her head in complete disbelief, 
Liberty said, 

"Mom, I can't understand what she's saying, 
she's screaming so bad."  
{Even just typing that I want to throw up.}

Every parents worst nightmare.

Normal life.

Until one phone call changes everyone's world forever.

Grabbing the phone, all I could hear were guttural screams from Autumn.   I screamed back into the phone as loud as I could,

"Autumn!! 

 Autumn!

  I can't understand you. 

 Pleeeease!  

What's wrong?

Stop screaming!!

Just tell me!!


Just!


Tell!


Me.!"  

And at that point I heard through her terrified screams, 
only three things:

"Karl"

"Not Breathing Well"

"MedFlight"

followed by her even louder guttural pleas:

"HURRRRRRY MOM"

"MOOOOOM"

"HURRRRRRY"

"HURRRRRRY"

Knowing that Autumn had had her first boyfriend killed 
in a car accident as he headed to baseball practice 
on a sunny Sunday in July a few years back,  
I could not get to our precious blue-eyed girl fast enough! 


The day that Quinton was killed we all were forever changed.  I would describe Autumn as fragile in many ways.  Yes, she had moved on, but always looming not-so-far was the reality of her young life:  


someone you love can be gone in an instant.  

Upon hearing Autumn's terrified screams, although I had worn the highest high heels I own to church that morning, I grabbed my purse and Bible and started running down the aisle toward the back of the sanctuary, dodging people. 

I ran with as much speed as a grief-stricken 52 year old 
in stupid high heels can run.  
My eyes were darting about looking for Dw.  
As I approached the back of the sanctuary, 
I started to yell very loudly to no one in particular,

 "Where's Dw? Has anyone seen Dw? 
Where's Dw? Do you know where Dw is?" 

 I have no clue who I passed, all I saw was a sea of faces, also now wearing panicked looks as their eyes met mine for an instant and seeing my terror and hearing my loud pleas.

Someone said, "He's over there...." pointing in the direction of the hallway that leads to the outside door.  Running through the foyer, I turned toward the outside door and saw him.  When he saw my expression, his own turned to terror....
{I will never forget the look on his precious face.} 


I cried out, running right past him to the parking lot, 
"It's Karl! 
Motorcycle! 
Accident...
Not breathing well....
MedFlight"  


I didn't stop....
I ran across the parking lot
 crying. 


{Dw said he watched in disbelief as I almost got hit, 
I never even glanced for cars cruising
 from the road through the parking lot}

I had to be with our Autumn
and
I could not get to the hospital fast enough.


She could not be alone when the chopper arrived.

Emma got to the van and opened the passenger door 
as I climbed in and said, 
"Mom, do you want me to go with you?"

All I said was, 
"Jump in." 

One of our dearest friends, Justin, 
{and former police officer} 
was standing beside my car, 
he said, "Do you want me to drive you?" 
In hind sight I wish I had let him, 
but my only thought was that it would
 take longer for him to get in and me to move over...
every.second.mattered.  

Autumn 
could not be alone 
when MedFlight arrived. 

Justin made sure that no one was behind the van as I backed up.  I sped toward the hospital as Emma and I prayed aloud sobbing...

"Jesus, please, Jesus, please, please, please, 
please oh please Jesus spare Karl's life.
Heal Karl Lord, Heal him!"

The normal 15 minute ride from our church 
to the hospital seemed to take hours.
From our church the road snakes along the river....
I swear, it took an hour to just go along the river
{when in reality it is only about 3 minutes}
Time seemed to be standing still.
  
As I stated in an earlier post,
 the police stopped me on College Drive.  
I jumped out and ran to their car sobbing and
 telling them about Karl and 
I told the two officers that I was one of 
their police chaplains too.  
They motioned to me yelling, "Go!  Go!  Go!"

After the police stopped me,  I suddenly remembered that Stuart had been waiting with Autumn.  I phoned him.  He was on his way to church.  Through sobs I told him that Karl had been in an accident and was being MedFlighted.  


Stuart was beside himself with his own grief: he felt such tremendous guilt that he had left to head to our church and 
Autumn was alone when the life-shattering call had come in.  


Stuart is no stranger to horrific car accidents.  
When Stuart was in his early 20's his own mom and dad
 {who were my treasured youth leaders at the church
 I attended when I was in high school} 
were in a tragic car accident when a drunk driver 
had come up the off ramp of the freeway. 
Stuart's mom had died from a traumatic brain injury {TBI}.  
Stuart said he would meet us at the hospital.

When Emmy and I pulled into the ER parking lot next to the helicopter landing pad, there was Autumn, alone, bent over sobbing.  The helicopter was there on the pad.  
It had just landed.
{another miracle, she was not alone when they got Karl out}

Emma and I ran to Autumn who, sobbing out of control, 
lifted her arm pointing toward the helicopter, 
"That's him!  Inside!  That's him!"

Seriously sweet friends, this is every parent's nightmare.  But having lived through this with Autumn once before with Quinton, it was almost more than one could bear.  
I thought it must be a cruel dream, it was so surreal.  


This could not be happening again! 


We could not fathom that the precious young man we all know and we ALL love was inside the helicopter fighting for his life. 

Emma, Autumn and I held each other sobbing in the parking lot.  It felt like forever till they brought Karl out of the helicopter.  I had never seen someone come out of the MedFlight chopper, but I thought they would go to a hidden elevator or something.  Instead they walk the patient right along the sidewalk where we stood.  {Really?  I am still sooo dumbfounded by that.} We moved for them to get passed.  I could see his face.  His coloring was not good, but his face looked so perfectly handsome.

His feet were bloody and gashed
{and remember, he'd had cowboy boots on.}

I called, sobbing, to him, "Karl!  Karl! We love you." 


I will also never forget the expressions 
on the MedFlight attendant's faces.  
Reading their faces, 
I knew Karl's injuries were beyond serious.   

We were a crumpled ball, standing there, the three of us, clinging to each other, me praying aloud, Emma praying softly.
All three of us sobbing and sobbing. 

After they took Karl in a back door, we went inside the ER waiting room.  The place was full.  People were staring at us, no doubt, understanding that things were more than critical.  As I type this I just realized most inside the ER waiting room could see us through the windows.  Never thought of that till now. They could see MedFlight land, they could see the attendants bring Karl out of MedFlight too.  They could also read the expressions on the MedFlight's attendants faces.

Autumn sat down, shaking uncontrollably and sobbing.  
I huddled over her rubbing her back and 
desperately pleading for a miracle,
 wisdom for the doctors, 
life-saving mercy from Almighty God...
all while crying my eyes out.

How could Karl's life be hanging in the balance?
I'm sure I was in shock too.
This could not be happening.
He was on his way to pick up Autumn for church!
How could this be real?
We all love him so much.


One minute planning our extra-fun family day with all the big kids and all their significant others, the little ones...later that night all of us driving to Pagosa Springs to attend a party for Karl's Aunt Lisa and Mark who were leaving in 4 days for Kenya to serve the orphans.....and the very next minute 
wondering if Karl is even going to live.


How could this be happening to our Karl?
How could this be happening again to our daughter?

We sat there for a few minutes, but I began to realize I was going to vomit.  About that time Stuart arrived. 
 {Stuart and I have been friends for over 40 years.  
He is a neurologist in Phoenix with a huge private practice and dozens of employees and several offices.} 


 I could not think at all so I went to the desk to ask where the restroom was.  She pointed to an open door literally next to where I was standing.  And another one in the opposite direction some 10 feet away.  She didn't understand though.  I needed a different bathroom because I did not want the entire ER waiting room to hear me throwing up.  

Stuart said he would help me find the bathroom.  We went out in the hallway, and although I have been to the hospital dozens and dozens of times, I could not even think which way to turn.  

At that moment, the outside door opened and there stood a casual friend who knows Christ.  She was with her twin sister.  This friend saw my face and said, "Are you okay?"  I told her briefly through my crying....her twin said, "Let me hug you" 
{Remember I'm a physical touch girl, 
so I needed that hug so bad!} 
and my friend started praying for Karl's life.  

Back in the ER one of the ladies waiting with her husband to see a doctor came to me and whispered through tears, 
"We are praying." 
{I had never seen the woman before.} 

Those two people in the ER, {one a casual friend, the other a complete stranger} sent as ministering angels, 
 by Almighty God to minister to us
 and pray for Karl, 
that day in the ER waiting room.  














And little did we know at that time, 
but the chaplain on duty at the hospital that day 
was a firm believer in the Healing Power of Almighty God!  
When Karl arrived this Chaplain
 {who is also a friend of Dw's}
 immediately anointed Karl with oil
 and prayed for life and God's healing power over him!

Absolutely amazing- yet another ministering angel sent by the Lord.










All of a sudden a thought came to my mind....I went to the ER desk and told them that our friend, Stuart, was a neurologist and willingly was offering his services.  


Although our hospital does have a trauma unit, 
 it is NOT a Brain Injury Trauma unit - 
our friend Stuart could read all the tests
{God's ministering angels - coming from Phoenix, as well!} 

ONLY ALMIGHTY GOD 

Stuart had not come to visit us for a full year 
{he was the friend who was here last year when we were waiting for the click of the SiteMeter to go over a million visits from bloggy friends!  Remember that?}


It was definitely no accident or coincidence that he was here!

About four days before the accident, Stuart had texted us to see if we wanted a little company over the week-end.  He, literally, drove up from Phoenix {8 hours} to just spend 24 hours hanging out with our family {see how much he loves us?!} 


Stuart had thought it was his idea to come visit - but clearly God had something else in mind!!  


Little did Stuart know that the Lord God Almighty - 
maker of heaven and earth 
was orchestrating events in Phoenix
so that Karl would have his own personal neurologist 
in the ER 
when he was MedFlighted in to our hospital here in Colorado.


I still am amazed and dumbfounded by the all the miracles and ministering angels God had clearly orchestrated that day.  Almighty God had moved in two different states where Stuart and Mike live, to be certain that both were in Colorado on Sunday, July 17th.   Sweet friends, we could not have planned it to transpire like it did - even if we had had years to figure it out.  He truly is the Miracle-working, Mountain-moving, Awe-inspiring, Gasp-giving God who loves us soooo much!

Before long Graham, Savannah and Dw arrived at the ER as well. 
They had all been crying. 

I was praying for Bob and Vicki and the boys as they came.  They had a full hour to drive and they would have to pass the accident scene and traffic was backed up for miles.

Remember it's only a two lane highway from Pagosa to Durango!

Bob and Vicki arrived and they took Autumn back with 
them to see Karl, who was unconscious.  

I got on my phone and typed a very broken blog post to you, my sweet bloggy friends.  You were the first I wanted to know! We desperately needed prayer and I knew you sweet friends - living around the world - were the ones who would drop to your knees
 and start interceding!!

They immediately invited Stuart back to meet 
with the trauma surgeon.

The surgeon graciously showed Stuart the entire CT scan.  The trauma doctor in the ER that day was not hopeful upon reading Karl's CT scan.  


BUT Stuart begged to differ.  He had seen many patients with the same amount of bleeding in the brain not just make it - but thrive! 


The ER doctor talked of sending Karl to Denver.  BUT Stuart made it clear - Karl needed to get to a neurosurgeon immediately.  Stuart told him that Karl would not make it if he was sent to Denver.  {Transporting to Denver would take at least 3 hours.} 
He had to go somewhere closer.    

Karl needed neurosurgery NOW at the closest unit.

And just an hour and 20 minutes away {by car} 
in Farmington, New Mexico 
is a trauma center with a neurosurgeon
{which is a short chopper flight}.


It was decided then that Karl would go to Farmington, NM.  

Karl's brothers arrived and went in to see him.

And everyone prepared for Karl to be MedFlighted to 
San Juan Regional Medical Center
in Farmington, New Mexico.

Karl's bud, Andrew, arrived at the hospital and offered to drive Autumn to Farmington.  They left immediately.  She wanted to be at the hospital when the helicopter arrived. 

At our church, after I had ran to the car, my dear friend Megan offered to take the kids for us.  She even had extra car seats in the car and I not even thought about having just taken all the car seats as I sped to the hospital.


Such a blessing my dear Megan is - a true friend 
{Good Samaritan and Ministering Angel!} 
who would truly do anything to help. 
 She gathered them all and took them to my mom's 
apartment and eventually Dw's bud, Jerry,
 came and drove the kids home.  
{Jerry, Dw's best bud, Jerry's always another 
Good Samaritan and Ministering Angel}. 
Graham and Savannah would watch the kids.  

Stuart drove Dw and I to the hospital in New Mexico.
Josh drove our car with Emma as they followed behind.

As soon as MedFlight got Karl to San Juan, he was taken in for immediate brain surgery - putting a shunt in.  
They had to get the blood out of the brain. 

The neurosurgeon at the hospital in New Mexico allowed Stuart to come in and see the new tests.  The neurosurgeon even gave Stuart his cell number: "If you have any questions, at all, about Karl, just call me."


 Stuart: one of our closest, dearest and longest known friends, longtime neurologist - allowed to see all of Karl's tests and allowed to give life-saving input to a trauma surgeon in Durango whom he had never met before!


Miracles abounding.
On.every.front.   
Simply a.m.a.z.i.n.g.
Completely God.


Do you see how our loving and gracious God had been orchestrating events to save Karl's life?  
How Almighty God works the night shift on our behalf?


It wasn't until I was writing all of this out that the Lord brought something else to mind:


If Karl did not have the "TRUST" tattoo on his chest,
If Liz had not known Karl,
If Liz had not been at the scene,
If Liz had not previously seen Karl's tattoo,
If Liz did not have Vicki's cell phone number in her phone,
Those at the scene would have had to search for who Karl was,
Slowing down the ability to accurately identify him,
 In turn slowing down the ability to locate Vicki,
Which would have prohibited Vicki from phoning Autumn immediately,
Which would have prevented Stuart from being at the ER when 
the life-saving decision was being made as to where to send Karl for neurosurgery!


God's plans defy all odds. 
God's plans supercede all logic. 
God's miracles mystify all human reasoning.
God's plans trump eve
ry single human plan.
Every single time!


.All credit and honor and glory go to God!
He, alone, is worthy of all praise!

And so began a round-the-clock Prayer Vigil for the most crucial and critical 72 hours we've ever known.   Begging Jehovah Rapha {the God who heals} to spare Karl's life and raise him up to bring honor and glory only to Him.

I think there are times when it is easy to wonder where the Lord is in a tragedy?  Yet, when we stop to look, we can see His hand clearly every step of the way that day.  

How could it be that three people who believe in the power of Almighty God and that He does indeed answer prayer, were the first three on the accident scene?  And not only do they have personal relationship with Jesus Christ, they each had the exact medical expertise necessary to perform life-saving measures 
to save Karl's life.

ONLY GOD
could supercede all the events that made it necessary for each person to be where they were that day.  He alone would orchestrate each ones day to put them on a rural stretch of road in Southwestern Colorado

together:


Liz {the ER nurse}
Denise {the former EMT}
Mike {the out-of-town-just-here-on-vacation anesthesiologist}
Monty {a Good Samaritan who stopped to pray}
David and Christine {2 bikers who went to kneel and pray}
Michael {a responder who began to pray immediately}

right when Karl needed each of them 
for their very specific role
 on that rural two lane highway near 
Bayfield, Colorado....


and then, 


beginning at the hospital


Stuart {a neurologist from Phoenix and longtime close personal friend of ours}
Beth and her twin {who ministered to me and started praying}
the unknown lady in the ER waiting room {who sat praying for Karl}
the Chaplain at the hospital that day {who anointed Karl}
the family, friends, churches, prayer chains and bloggy world {who immediately began to intercede}


only  

Almighty God.

And that is why we call Him our:

Miracle-working, 

Mountain-moving, 

Awe-inspiring, 

Gasp-giving God. 

He alone is worthy to be praised!!

Please join us in thanking the Lord for His exquisite provision that day to provide extraordinary ministering angels who would partner together for the life of  
Karl William Hujus.

Part 3 to come {in the days ahead}