Steroids – to take or not to take?

Two days ago, when the MF (Maternal Fetal) High Risk team came around, they suddenly proposed Roxanne to take steroids on the very same day.

Steroids is to be taken in 2 dosages, 12 hours apart, and following the 2nd dose, the baby needs to be delivered in a week’s time, in order to experience the benefits of steroids. Otherwise, the injection would have been in vain.

While they do not hope for Roxanne to deliver in a week’s time, they are concerned with the intermittent bleeding in increasing quantity. They said it could be a tear behind the placenta, and the tear could be going deeper, which may result in a sudden abruption (total detachment of placenta from uterus walls). When that happens, baby would lose her supply of blood and oxygen and die within minutes.

At first, we disagreed to the steroids jab as we were unprepared and uncomfortable about it. But the team head, a well respected and very nice lady explains gently.

“This is for a ‘just in case’ scenario. If anything like an abruption happens, and your baby needs to be out, the steroids will ensure that your baby has a higher survival rate. In the case if nothing happens, we can give you a 3rd dose perhaps in the 28th week. Then we can time your c-sect accordingly as well. So far, there does not seem to be any side effects if we do not go above 3 doses. So this ‘just in case’ jab in my opinion, is not wrong, but makes medical sense logically.”

Everything that the team head said makes perfect sense. There’s no strong reason, it seems, to disagree to the jab. And so we agreed. The team recorded in the files for Roxanne to have the steroids jab taken.

But immediately after they left, Roxanne confided in me that she still feels uncomfortable.

She said that while the MF team talked about steroids, baby kicked and made lots of movement. And when the topic changed to something else, baby’s movements stopped.

But when we revisited the steroids topic, baby reacted again with a lot of kicks and movements.

As Rox shared this with me, I knew that I too, did not have the peace in my heart to go with the steroids jab, although my mind tells me that it is logical and agreeable. And we do trust the team of experts, especially the head, who seems like a really sharp and nice lady.

Let’s pray and ask God for His decision darling,” I grabbed the bible beside me and prayed.

Lord, it makes sense to go with the team’s suggestion, but we don’t really feel the peace. There are many things we do not understand, and we want your decision. If you want us to take the steroids, show me the word ‘take’. If you don’t want us to take it, show me the word ‘don’t’.

After I had prayed, I shut my eyes and opened the bible randomly, then pointed my finger randomly on the book. I opened my eyes and saw this:

“When you lay siege to a city for a long time, fighting against it to capture it, do not destroy its trees by putting an ax to them, because you can eat their fruit. Do not cut them down. Are the trees of the field people, that you should besiege them?” – Deuteronomy 20:19

God not only showed me the word “do not” twice, This passage which He showed me has the words “lay siege” and “capture” which could have been used interchangeably with the word “take”. But the word “take” wasn’t used.

This point affirmed me further of God’s decision that He would not like us to take the steroid.

While we cannot explain why this is God’s decision, when a Christian decides to trust in Christ, he trusts Him fully and he obeys even when he does not understand.

Ironically, that’s the spiritual rule for His life of abundance and eternity to be activated in Christians and that’s also God’s commandment – there are absolutely no two ways about this at all. You are either a disciple who follows Him by trusting and obeying Him fully, or you are not a disciple because you deny Him when you don’t.

So I got up quickly and informed the doctors and nurse about our changed decision.

Despite the doctor’s prognosis, we are actually doing much better in terms of our emotions. Those of you who had visited would have noted that we look better in spirits than thought. God has strengthened our faith and we believe God that everything will work out the best way possible for us and for Yixuan. Only by persevering in Him and taking good self care can we overcome.

I have to end with this amazing testimony. The same day we rejected the steroids, I bumped into an acquaintance at KKH. We studied in the same faculty during uni days. We had a quick conversation and I realised he is now married to another friend of mine from that faculty.

She delivered her baby at 28 weeks 3 months ago at KKH. Her baby weighed only 600+ grams! If my baby is under-growing, he told me that his baby fell way off down the charts!

Yet his baby made it after 3 months in the Neonatal ICU due to state of the art facilities and the dedicated care and expertise of the medical team at KKH. He said that prior to coming KKH, gynaes from two private hospitals actually gave his baby no chance and told them to terminate their baby (and you thought private hospitals are actually better?).

The best part of all this? He suddenly said, “The most important thing is to keep faith in the Lord.”

Hey wait a minute. I remembered clearly that the two of them weren’t Christians back in uni days. So I asked,”Sorry, but are you a Christian?

He replied “not me“, but “my wife gave her life to God through this ordeal after visiting a miracle healer.

Nevertheless, I do supposed that if he can ask me to keep faith, he must be several steps nearer to His Kingdom, isn’t it? What a way God would use to bring hope to us! When ordeals come, glory is near us as well.

I hope their story encouraged you too. God can and He will, when we believe and ask of Him sincerely.

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