Thursday, August 29, 2013


We got to hear the baby's heartbeat on Monday. It brought us to tears as we listened. The Lord is good to us. Hearing this is a reminder to us that there is a little life inside Alicia's womb. We listen to it often to remind us of that fact. Thankfully, I was able to record it on my phone and share it with you all. Keep praying for us as we walk through this journey. We thank the Lord for all the support we have received.

"Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." -Psalm 73:25-26

Friday, August 23, 2013

Cling to what is Good

"Cling to what is good." -Romans 12:9

We received news the other day of the full results of the genetic testing of our baby. Results confirmed the diagnosis of Trisomy 18 (T18). This is difficult news, but there was still some encouragement with the arrival of this news.

The midwife was able to tell us that our baby is a little girl. This is very encouraging for a couple reasons. First of all, we already have two beautiful girls that are a joy to have, so we look forward to having another one! Secondly, the chances of survival of a baby with T18 increase dramatically if the baby is a girl.

So we are thankful to the Lord for this news. We are clinging to what is good like a life preserver in the middle of a storm--not always comfortable to ride, but at least it keeps you afloat. Praise to the Lord for his hand at work.

Thank you all for praying and holding us up. We appreciate all the encouragement.

Saturday, August 17, 2013


I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the LORD In the land of the living. Wait on the LORD; Be of good courage, And He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the LORD! –Psalm 27:13-14

We are sort of in a wait-and-see mode as far as the doctors are concerned. There is nothing that can be done to better the situation. The issue is not a pregnancy-related issue. It is not an issue that has to do with Alicia’s health. There are moments that it is discouraging to not be able to do anything to help. But God is using this to strengthen us and prepare us for the future.

 These verses from Psalm 27 put words to how we have felt the last few days.

There are moments when I feel like giving up. There are moments when I feel like drooping my head in despair. I’ve said to Alicia that I can’t imagine facing this without the Lord. That is exactly what these verses say. Our faith in the Lord is what provides hope for the future. We trust that the Lord will show us His goodness in the days, weeks, months, and years to come. The verse says that we will see His goodness in the land of the living. No matter the outcome, we trust the Lord will show us in this lifetime His goodness.

 Mom always asked us kids, “How’s your courage?” At times, these days, our courage is not good. When we look at our circumstance it overwhelms us. The situation is impossible. But when we just stop, wait, and look at the Lord He gives us good courage and he strengthens our hearts.

 So we face the days ahead doing our very best to wait on the Lord. All we can do is wait. And that is the best we can do because that is when God gives strength.

 Thank you all for your prayers and encouragement. You are helping us bear this burden.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

McKeen Baby Update

On Monday, Alicia and I went to Portland for a test to determine if there were any genetic reasons as to why the baby is having the problems that are present. The full test results take about ten days to come in, but we were told that we should get a call either Wednesday or Thursday with some preliminary results.

Today we got a call from the genetic counselor. We were told that the baby has trisomy 18 syndrome. That means that the 18th chromosome has developmental problems. This is very difficult news. Only a very small very percentage of babies that have this problem are born alive. Of those that are born alive, less than ten percent will make it past their first birthday. Most babies with this syndrome will have severe developmental defects.

Please lift up our baby to the Lord with us. Our God is able to do anything (Job 42:2). Our hearts are begging the Lord to move His healing hand. Pray for strength for Alicia and I as we work through all this. We have never felt so helpless. The baby is so close to us, yet we can do nothing. The Lord is certainly teaching us to lean on Him through this. God’s will is perfect and His sovereign hand is working.

Thank you to all who have been praying. You have been a tremendous support to us.

Friday, August 9, 2013

Please Pray for Our Baby

On Monday Alicia had her first ultrasound appointment to see the baby. She is just over 11 weeks along. At that appointment we were told that we needed to go to Portland to have a specialist do an ultrasound. We weren't told much, only that there was a possible 'extra membrane'. We didn't know what that meant.

Today we had our ultrasound appointment in Portland. We found out that the baby has Cystic Hygroma. That means that there is fluid build up developing under the baby's skin. It is caused by developmental problems in the lymphatic system. This is a condition that is believed to develop in less than 1% of all pregnancies.

We were told that sometimes this clears up on its own and a baby is born healthy. However, it is more likely that there are underlying problems with the baby's development. We were told today that our baby has less than a 20% chance of being carried full-term and if the baby does survive the pregnancy, there will most likely be developmental defects.

I'm asking you to pray with us for a miracle. Our God is great and He is able to perform a miracle for our baby. It is our prayer that Alicia would be able to carry the baby full-term and that the baby would be born. Please pray with us. We want the Lord's will to be done, not ours, but we are asking that a miraculous birth would be a part of His plan.

Thank you for praying with us.