Utah couple stuck in Virginia relies on faith after newborn son is born at 24 weeks

Published: Wednesday, June 11 2014 11:15 a.m. MDT

After their baby boy Jack was born, Molly and Jordan were given some encouraging news.

"They'd given us lots of things to think about, that there was a large chance that he could have brain bleeds or lung problems because he's so small," Molly said. "In the 24 hours that followed, they did a brain scan, and he only had a level-one bleed, which they said is really common in preemies, and that level of bleed doesn't cause any mental problems, which was huge."

"They scanned his heart and his lungs, and everything looked good," Jordan added.

Since his birth, Jack has steadily improved. While both Molly and Jordan have learned that time in the NICU often entails one step forward and two steps back, they continue to celebrate his progress.

"Each day everything is just passing the odds; it's unbelievable. Every day is a miracle," Molly said. "We really tried to prepare ourselves for there to be a problem, but it hasn't happened yet, so we hope we're prepared for it when it comes."

Although Jack is making progress, because of the additional care he needs, he will not be able to leave Virginia for a minimum of 11 weeks.

"That first night in the hospital after everybody left, and it was just Molly and me, we had an hour-long conversation about how this all plays in to our belief system and how everything was going to be OK," Jordan said.

"And how even if he didn't make it, and even if he had real problems, we knew that the Lord had a plan for us, and that's exactly what we needed," Molly said.

Coming to that realization allowed Molly and Jordan to accept what had happened and anything that still could take place.

"It became so much less emotional and sad, to being able to cope with it and even (feel) some sort of happiness and inspiration that everything was going to be OK," Jordan said. "And I don't know what that 'OK' means. Just the sense of peace and comfort that we got from that, you just hang on to."

The experience has not only affected the family physically and emotionally, but has allowed them to grow spiritually.

"We both have our share of meltdowns, but the first thing we do is we kneel down and we pray," Molly said.

"It's been so good for us. We've been married for 2 1/2 years, and we'll have this conversation every two months. Just that we really should be reading our scriptures more, we really should be praying more, we should be doing all these things more, and then a few months later we have the same conversation because we hadn't done it.

"But sometimes it takes situations like this, where the first thing we do every morning and every night is get on our knees and say a prayer — and that's not to count all the ones in the middle of the day. It just put our focus so much more on the Lord and on what we need to be doing."

Shortly after hearing of Molly and Jordan's situation, friends and family began to express their support and love. A Go Fund Me fundraiser was created to help with the mounting medical bills and the cost of Jordan's trips back to Utah for work. Others offered their homes and cars or sent notes of encouragement.

"I would just say how grateful we really have been, almost an overwhelming amount of gratitude," Jordan said. "There is no way we are ever going to be able to pay back all these people for their prayers and fasting and even all the thoughts and everything.

"It's funny because Molly and I had just talked a couple weeks ago, and we said to ourselves, 'Man, we don't really have a whole lot of friends in Utah.' So this has just been such an eye-opening experience of what does a friend really mean."

The Go Fund Me account has raised $8,000 from friends and family members, as well as strangers.

"It just goes to show how much goodness there is in this world," Molly said. "There are so many people who we don’t even know who are just so willing to be amazing for no reason. Just to be like, 'I heard your story. I hope this helps. I hope that you know that we’re thinking about you, and you’re in our prayers.'"

Through it all, Molly says the comfort, peace and hope they are experiencing comes from a loving Savior.

"I feel the Atonement so much stronger in my life," Molly said. "Just knowing that Christ went through this for us. He has felt all we feel and he has felt what Jack feels. It's just amazing to me that he knew that we would all suffer so much and he was willing to do it all for us. And when we can't take it anymore, the Lord takes it in the end. He takes the burden off our back. He can do anything that we can't do ourselves, especially if we ask."

Email: spetersen@deseretnews.com | Twitter: @Sarah_DNews

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