Life is Worth Living

Paul’s Suffering

Well, I am back at it, after taking a 3 week break.  During this break I had intended to vacation with my family, attend my brother’s wedding, and enjoy some carefree timelessness.

But nothing has gone as expected.

Rather, two days before we were to leave for South Dakota, my husband and I had to rush our son, Paul, to our local ER.  His incision from last May’s surgery had become infected.  And before we knew it, he and my husband were driving straight through the night to St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester.

And thus began 3 weeks of the most excruciating suffering I’ve ever known–watching a child suffer.


Paul Endures Surgery After Surgery

During these last 3 weeks, Paul has undergone surgery after surgery, with almost everything going wrong that could go wrong.  His shunt tubing became blocked.  His heart rate kept dropping dangerously low.  He quit breathing for 10-15 seconds at a time and would struggle for breath, for hours upon hours.  Blood leaked into his brain.  One shunt malfunctioned.  Another shunt slipped out of place.  His left ventricle collapsed.  He hasn’t eaten for days upon days and is losing weight.  He is suffering seizures.  And then there’s all the vomiting.


All of these things have been happening in addition to the most excruciating head pain.  And we sit helplessly by him and watch and pray.  I’ll never forget the terrible day and night I had to watch his heart rate slow, his breathing cease, and then the trembling of his body to grasp a breath.  It was terrible.


And it’s still going on.  I beg of you, dear Readers, to remember him in your prayers.  But remember the other children too.  They are suffering in a different way.  They wonder, where is Paul?  Why can’t Paul just come home?  Why can’t the doctors fix him?

We don’t know the answers.  We only know that for some mysterious reason God is allowing this suffering, and we can choose to accept it, or we can drive ourselves mad with endless, unanswerable questions and blame God for ruining a perfectly healthy little boy.

But we choose to trust in Him.  He who is the beginning and the end of all things.  He who created the heavens and the earth.  He who loves us so much that He died for us.  And His name is Jesus.  And all knees on earth and in heaven will bend to Him at the end of time.  May His kingship reign forever and ever.


Paul Prayer Intentions

In the midst of his suffering, Paul has been praying.  He has been asking Mary to hold him.  And he has been praying for Ex-Cardinal McCarrick and for my cousin, Tony.  Up until today, Tony had been in psyche ward of a hospital.  All within a few years, his brother died in a motorcycle accident, his wife died from cancer, and his father just died last week.

Tony was released this morning.  He drove to his father’s house and killed himself.

Please, Jesus, You have a most merciful heart.  We pray, that in those briefest of moments before his death, Tony in his agony turned towards You.



12 thoughts on “Paul’s Suffering”

  1. Oh Kim, I had no idea about any of this until Ashley Ayd posted on Facebook today and I read some of your blog posts. I’m sitting in the library, praying and trying not to cry. Let me know what else, if anything, I can do to help. Please! School supplies? Dance practice running? Let me know.


  2. Your dear, dear boy….. My heart just aches for Paul and your family. May our Lady place her mantle of protection over him. May the Divine Physician reach through the hands of the medical staff, and guide all that they do. Sending many prayers, Mary Fleck and family

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Praying for Pauls healing and for your family. Also for Tony, so sorry your family is going through this. I am strengthened by your faith. May God increase this in you.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Kim, so very sorry for this very difficult time you’re going thru! Please know we are certainly praying for Paul & you & your husband & family !! Your deep faith & trust in our Lord is an inspiration to us all!
    “Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all you who hope in the Lord”. Pslm 31:24
    I have shared your prayer request with my Bible study ladies & they are prayer warriors! Love in Christ…Peg (Becca’s mom)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Trina, for praying for Paul. Truly we feel everyone’s prayers. It’s humbling and awe-inspiring to know that so many people are praying for him. It’s comforting too.


  5. We are somewhat new to Bismarck, moving here last September. We had homeschooled our two teen boys still at home last year and I have been on the email list for the homeschool group. Your sweet boy has touched my heart and been in my prayers, along with your family. I pray he will soon recover and go home to you all. I’m in San Diego right now where I will ask for prayers as well. God bless your family


  6. I’m so sorry for the loss of your cousin and also for everything Paul has been suffering. You, Shawn, the whole family and especially Paul are in our prayers. Thanks be to God for modern medicine and the doctors who have been helping navigate this. I admire your strength and faith during this difficult time!


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