Mother's Day 1996 - Dh was in Nevada trying out a new job at the gold mine. I was home with the boys, DD was on her way to Las Vegas, NM for a youth conference. She was with Kip - Kip had survived cancer in high school. He was told many things, but for sure he 'd never have kids. Kip was married to Melissa and they had 3 biological kids at this time. Kip was taking a van full of high school kids to a Christian youth conference. The night they left his youngest, Chloe - 2, was running around the church while they were loading the van and got a sticker and started to tear up. I took it out, held her until the tears were gone - and off she went. She was their youngest. This sweet, beautiful, inquistive, blonde headed girl - Chloe.
It was lonely at our house with DD and DH gone - he'd been gone for about 2 weeks. He sounded excited about the job, it looked like we were moving to Nevada. That in itself was so confusing. We had a good church, the entire town supported the youth group, our kids were in EVERYTHING in our small school - all the teachers were Christians. It was a wonderful place, but we were drowning financially.
Sunday morning I was awakened about 5, I had a strong urge to pray. I love to get these urges - but it's tough because I never know for sure who it's for. DD? DH? Praying for about an hour, the feeling lets up and I know it's okay to start getting ready for church. About 7 the feels comes again, I have my boys pray with me.
I taught the 3-4 year old Sunday school, and we were giving out flowers so we had to be there early to hand one to each mother. Sunday School went great. About 15 minutes into it I feel the need to pray again. They pray with me, and this time it's just a few minutes. I had 5 boys, usually we had 15+ but many were visiting. The smiles they gave as they handed out flowers was priceless. When all my little ones had left the class, the feeling hits - hard. I stop and pray; wondering if this is someone close to me.
The nursery didn't have anyone to watch it so I volunteered. Shortly after praise and worship the phone rings - which is odd. Someone answers and I think nothing of it. I am rocking a sweet little one when the feeling comes again. I'm praying when an elder comes in - Jerry. He asks if I know the number to the Methodist Church in Gruver. Yes sir, I know it - but I also knew they wouldn't answer the phone during service; the Baptist Church right is across the street. Call them and they could run over.
Jerry then tells me that Melissa, Kip's wife, was in Kansas at a family reunion. Chloe fell into the swimming pool and drowned. I think, oh sweet Jesus, the intercessory prayer was for her. They have her in the hospital. They had revived her but there was no sign of life - she was on complete support!
Church is interrupted to pray for Chloe. Jerry and his wife, Nelda come in and ask if I want to go with them to be with Melissa. When they're first child was born, the baby and Jerry were rushed to OKC because she was in big trouble - Nelda was to ill to be moved so she had to stay by herself in the small hospital. They did not want Melissa to feel like they had 19 years earlier. He said the preacher would take my boys if I wanted to go. Sure, I said.
I kissed my boys goodbye, someone tried to call Kip, ran home and changed, got some cash and prayed - constantly. There was no fear about Chloe's recovery in me, what I felt was joy -but I kept silent and kept praying.
Updates were coming on cell phones when Jerry, out of the blue, said we need to go to OKC - they'll be taking her there. He whipped around in the highway and headed to OKC, driving over 90 the entire time. Sure enough about 20 minutes later - they were life flighting her to OKC children's hospital. We didn't stop to eat, drink, go to the bathroom - we drove, fast, and we prayed. With each mile I felt more joy - in my Spirit I knew she would be alright. But in my head, I was afraid to claim it - what if it wasn't God telling me that and she wasn't alright? So, I kept it to myself.
A four hour drive took us two and a half. We passed many highway patrols - not one even looked at us. Jerry had his flashers on. The updates were the same - no brain movement; no eye control - not much hope. Yet, my feelings were the opposite. Praying, praying, praying. They had got Kip at the conference. My daughter who was there - later said they stopped everything, brought all the youth and leaders in and prayed. She went with Kip and his 6 year old son to Las Vegas for him to get on a plane - she said they prayed the whole way there. When he got on the plane - he told me the last thing he saw was my daughter, crying but praying.
We went right to the ICU - they had a waiting room for all the families. Only 2 people could be with each child. Melissa was with Chloe. When she came out, she saw us and started crying. Shortly after we got there, her family arrived with her older daughter, Hanna. We had planned to go see Chloe but when all the family got there we told them to go in first.
The waiting room had a phone with a message board by it - whoever was in there would answer the phone and write the message on the board. It starts ringing - we look around; no one moves so I answer it. It's Kip - he says this is Kip and my daughter is there. I say, Kip this is Cindi. He just starts to cry - we will be at the airport in 45 minutes if someone could pick me up. I start to cry and tell him we will be there - Jerry, Nelda and I. We go tell Melissa and head out.
The OKC bombing had happened earlier this year and we drove by it. Very solemn, sad but beautiful none the less. People left all kinds of things showing their love and support of the survivors.
At the airport Kip hugged everyone, his son was thrilled about getting to ride in an airplane. We hurried out of there, stopped to get some food, then to the hospital. Kip went in to see Chloe, all the family had been in. Praying without ceasing, I still knew she was going to be okay - that she would have no problems from this.
Finally everyone else had been in. Nelda and I went in together. Here was this sweet little thing with tubes, hoses, and blinking, noisy contraptions all over her. Before I even stepped into the room, the Holy Spirit was guiding me to touch her toe. When I did, I whispered to her that I had just taken a sticker out of that foot 3 days ago - that she needed to wake up.
Tell her to wake up, I hear in my spirit! Oh God, are you sure you want me to be the one? Shouldn't this be her mom or dad? Tell her to wake up! God are you sure? Tell her to wake up! I move to the side of the bed. Nelda is stroking her hand on the other side, she's moving her hair out of her eyes. I tell her, "Chloe - you need to wake up!" I hear that still small voice, "Command her to wake up!" I look at Nelda to see if she can hear it too. She's doesn't. "Chloe - wake up NOW!" She twitches. Nelda runs out to the nurse, who tells us that's normal for comatosed people. She's not waking up. Again I hear, "Tell her." So, again I say, "Chloe, it's time to wake up - NOW!" Her eyes open and shut, Nelda's off again for the nurse.
My heart is about to burst open - I feel like shouting! Thank you Lord, thank you Lord is all I can say. I know she's out of it. The nurse comes in as Chloe grabs my hand pointing to her toe - she wants that O2 sat monitor off.
"Yep, she's up!" the nurse said.
I am crying as I hurry down to the waiting room to get her parents - they know immediately when they see me that their miracle has happened. Rejoicing in the waiting room, prayers being lifted as well as thanksgiving - it was amazing! We are all crying and laughing when Melissa and Kip come out - she's fine, and she's hungry. We all laugh, then breathe that sigh of relief. They have to stay 3 more days for testing to be sure all is fine. We all knew the answer - she would be fine.
Now, the parts of this story that blew me away were how God worked all things. On the following Wednesday night the Methodist church was having a baptism. All of us went to our churches and then headed to the baptism. Afterwards, we went for desserts in the kitchen area. People started sharing their testimony, sharing what the Lord had done for them, etc. I was sitting in the back and was shocked when someone called my name out - to tell the story of Chloe's healing. First of all, I had only told my kids and David, I was too overcome to tell anyone else. How did they know?
I stand up and tell about the urgency to pray, my feelings of joy when medical professionals were telling us she wouldn't be normal again; about each detail worked out for His glory. Of course by the time I was done I was crying - as was the entire room. Nelda then stands up - we had not talked about what happened while we were in the room with Chloe. I didn't know what she thought, heard, saw nor did she know about me. She proceeds to tell us - that while we were in the room, she had a hold of Chloe's hand. A heat, hot but not hot - she had no real words to describe it - went through her hands. I had no idea - she had none of what I was experiencing either. None of us involved knew each other very well before this happened, but we are all connected now. Chloe's accident brought to our eyes - up close and very personal- the powerof God !
Every Mother's Day I think of my fast trip to OKC, the faith that I gained in that one day can never be shaken! I saw it - God touched her - He touched us all.
Happy Mother's Day!
This is my sweet Mom and my loving Gramma - yesterday.