Thank you for your continued prayers and concern for Christian and his family. Your commitment to pray and check in with his progress is a life giving gift to the Smith family. The knowledge people are praying is an invaluable gift. God is their sustainer and a very present help in time of need. You are the body reaching out and giving tangible life to their faith.
Over the weekend, Christian had his 3rd plasmapheresis treatment as well as a blood transfusion. The plasmapheresis treatment is basically like dialysis. It is the removal, treatment, and return of (components of) blood plasma from blood circulation. A blood transfusion is when he received the blood of another individual due to his own hemoglobin count being low. Today he has his 4th of 6th plasmapheresis treatments.
At this point, there has been no change in his use of hands or legs. Last week, he was fitted for leg splints due to the stiffness in the legs and feet. The splints will keep his feet in proper position so his tendons and muscles will not shrink. Christian is also struggling with constipation issues. Because he is not eating well, he is having difficulty getting his full dose of miralax, which is causing more constipation. Bowel and bladder issues are a direct result of the transverse myelitis.
It is very difficult on treatment days in particular. At this point, we are unsure if most of these symptoms are treatment related. He feels lousy. Low blood count. Treatments. Constipation. You can imagine!
1. "We want to see some movement in Christian's legs. We want to see his hands uncurl." His core muscles are not working either- which affects ability to sit up and hold himself up. Please continue to pray for God to heal Christian completely.
2. Please pray for Christian to have relief from his constipation struggle. It is very painful for him and for his parents who want to relieve his pain and are unable to do so.
3. The girls - Jillian is really having a tough time with seperation from mom and dad. Please pray for her to have peace. Ky appears to be doing well. She is working really hard to please everyone and help in any way she can. Please pray she will not take on any more than is needed. Please continue to pray for and support Mike and Stacie Criswell who are so kindly caring for the girls and offering them stability during this time.
4. Jack and Danielle- Exodus 17:8-15 tells of the battle against the Amalekites. As long as Moses held his hands up to God, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning. When Moses' hands grew tired, Aaron and Hur made it possible for him to sit and they "held his hands up - one on one side, one on the other - so that his hands remained steady" . The battle was won. Jack and Danielle are in a battle. They are weary, tired, and in need of people to "hold their arms up" in prayer and warfare against the enemy who would seek to weaken them during this time. It is difficult not to question decisions when you must watch your child suffer. Pray for God to strengthen their faith and resolve. Pray for God to give them the spiritual, mental, emotional and physical stamina needed to endure with confidence that God is good, God is able and God is trustworthy. Ask God to surround them both with a very real sense of His presence and peace.