a blizzard, an er, and a praying 4 year old

when my son was 4 years old he had a very bad asthma episode. for a couple of days i had been working with him to get him breathing with regular breathing treatments to no avail. finally, late one night he was wheezing and just so uncomfortable, i told him, “we have to go to the hospital.”

he was upset. which was unusual because usually when he was sick like that he was the first to say ‘call the doctor’ but this time it was different and he didn’t want to go.

i packed him up. it was winter and there was a big storm predicted for the middle of the night. i was oblivious to the weather warnings. i just knew i had to do something to get my kiddo breathing. so, off we headed to the hospital.

we were in the er about an hour and the situation continued to look pretty bleak. the nurses and doctors and respiratory therapists were all looking worried. they kept saying, “we need to admit him.”

he’d never stayed overnight in a hospital before. although asthma had crashed quite a few parties for us since his 2nd birthday. we were use to the standard  program when an episode occurred. the ‘usual’ for us included breathing treatments at home, call into nurse, appointment with pediatrician, sick baby visit, prescription for steroids, ride home. the weather had gotten in the way of our usual therapies. and as much as i hate giving him the steroids, they work when in crisis.

but this time for some reason the breathing treatments were not working and he had seen his pediatrician just that afternoon. when the x-rays came back and showed he didn’t have pneumonia, the respiratory therapist looked at us sideways and said again, “he needs to be admitted.”

i didn’t know what to do. so i prayed and i called everyone i knew to pray with me. i asked God to do his best to help my baby breath. when the nurse came in his area at about midnight after several treatments and medications and my kiddo still wasn’t quite breathing easy, she told him, “you’re going to be our guest tonight.” that was the last straw.

for the first time in two days my kid got real animated. he sat up and looked at her, wheezing and everything and with all the faith of a mustard seed he said, “i’m going home.”

then he looked at me for confirmation, “right, mom?”

i was astounded that he was animated. he had been a limp noodle for a couple of days with no appetite or energy. knowing what i know about the power of prayer i agreed with him, “yes, we’re going home. now breathe.”

he nodded and that’s when the miracle happened. he started breathing. gone were the raspy, wheezing short breaths. he was suddenly able to take deep inhales and sustain them. his oxygen levels went up. his chest cleared up and he was breathing.

i was both amazed and confirmed that the greatest power is faith. at four years old my son knew what prayer was, he says his prayers every night. but  on this night he stood in his faith and i got to be a witness to his conviction of faith.  it was one sentence (i’m going home) and my agreement (yes we are) that secured his healing.

prayer is not for show. its not about who yells the loudest or says the prettiest words. it’s not about how many amens you get or how many yah’s you accumulate. there is no word count. prayer is conversation and an expression of your faith. when you believe and your belief is affirmed by another who believes for you, your healing, your truth will come in exactly the right time and the right form for you.

i don’t often speak about my faith. but on this very snowy night as i rest here in my comfortable home. i am remembering the ride from the hospital in the wee hours of the morning on roads where visibility was near zero and the salt trucks were no where to be found. the sky was so cloudy and the winds so fierce it actually thundered in the midst of the blizzard.

but home we went. where he rested and slept in his own bed.

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