Sunday, November 30, 2008


I talked to Luke who is with Emily right now and he said that Emily got out of bed and was walking so much better---turning corners by herself and moving around much better. He was so impressed. Emily said she didn't feel stronger, but Luke thinks she is. Of course, she's still very sore. She said her muscles are really sore.
She's still coughing quite a bit. Luke is hoping to see her doctor tomorrow and find out why she's coughing and see if there's something they can do for it. It's really bothering Emily.
Luke preached this morning!! He said he mostly shared his testimony from this experience. I told him I wish we could upload it to the blog so we could all hear it. He chuckled. (It didn't sound too promising from his end---but maybe if there's a church member out there....and there was a tape....) He said there was a great crowd this morning and even some visitors. I know he was very glad to be back "home."
Luke has asked if we can sign up on the calendar to visit Emily. I'm going to have to ask David to extend our calendar to include visiting hours. But the main purpose is so Emily will not be alone. And if you wouldn't mind signing on the calendar when you can visit, Luke could check it each day and know if there are available hours where he can be at home with the kids. This will especially help after Janis leaves and Luke has more "kid duty." I believe the visiting hours are 6 a.m.--9 p.m. If you feel comfortable with Emily and can go visit for an hour (or more), we'd love for you to sign up to visit her. That will also help everyone to know if she already has visitors scheduled, too. If the calendar already has something (like a meal) on the time you plan to visit, you can still click on the check mark and add your visit on that time, too. They're open to "pop-in" visitors also, but these scheduled visits would help Luke schedule his times to be there. That would be a great ministry to them both. And I know Emily would love to start seeing her friends.
THANK YOU!! This rehabilitation process is bigger than the Panter family. Please know how much we appreciate you!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

The kids...and Janis leaving

Luke said the reunion of Emily and her children was wonderful!! They had a great visit together. The kids were so excited to see her and Emily was relieved to see them. And NO ONE got sad as they left. Thank you so much for praying over that issue!! God is so good. Luke said they plan to visit often now that Emily is in a regular room.
The kids were also excited about the Christmas tree that greeted them when they got home. Luke said it's been a little hectic as they've settled in to their house once again.
Would you please be praying for Janis (Emily's mom) as she prepares to leave in a couple of weeks? Mike & Janis have been planning a trip to Germany for over a year to see their son and his family. They had planned on going this time last year, but they were moving at that time and didn't get to go. Jason & his family have lived in Germany for 2 years and it will be 2 more years before they come back to the states. So I know Janis is anxious to see those 4 precious grandkids who live there! They've been so unsettled about whether to go after this happened to Emily, but now that she's doing so well, they will be going. Janis will need to go home (to Albuquerque) a few days before they leave for Germany to help get things ready. In the meantime, she wants to help Luke get all the help set up for while she's gone and get things ready for Emily's eventual homecoming. So I know there's a lot on her mind---even though she's anxious to see her family in Germany, she's anxious in another way about leaving Emily and her family. I think Janis' set date to leave is December 12. So if you can help with meals on Dec. 12 and for 2-3 weeks after that, just sign up on the calendar.
Thank you, too, for those who continue to help the Panter family financially. You just can't imagine the expenses Luke has of driving between home, the hospital and his parent's home in the country. And then there are the expenses of staying at the hospital and eating out, etc. So your help is very much appreciated!! You are a blessing.
We'll let you know of any needs that will be coming up as Janis prepares to leave. Thank you for wanting to help!!

Ecclesiastes 4:10
"If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!"


What a big day for Emily! She got to move to a regular room this afternoon! She's now in room 1101 in the Roberts Building of Baylor Medical. Is that not awesome? I certainly had no idea it would be this quick. I'm sure for those surrounding her, it doesn't seem quick at all. But for someone just hearing news each day, it's a miracle.
Emily also got to see her children today---all 5 of them! I'm sure it was a sweet time. Janis called to give me the update, so she wasn't there when it took place. So she didn't know the specifics of the visit. She was at home helping the women who came to decorate the Panter home for Christmas! She said it looks so special---the Christmas tree is up and the mantel is decorated. The kids will be so excited when they get home and see that Christmas has come into their house.
Hopefully, I'll get to talk to Luke tonight and hear more about the time Emily had with the kids. Thank you so much for praying. It's days like this that make us so aware of God hearing and answering prayer.
We love that you have walked this with us. It's become your story of God's grace as much as ours.

I Corinthians 1:4
"I always thank God for you because of his grace given you in Christ Jesus."


I talked to Janis this morning and some advancements are being made. Woo-Hoo! Emily has gone all this time without the vent now. So the next step will be to get the trach out. There are a couple of steps they'll take before they remove the trach. The first one they'll do is cap off the trach and give her oxygen through her nose. When she tolerates that well, she'll move on to the next step. So she's doing great!
She is very sore in her joints. They're not sure if that's from moving around more or if she's getting the flu bug that's going around. So please pray that God protects her from those bugs!!
More good news---Luke is planning on taking the kids up to see their mother today. I know it will be so sweet---and yet so hard---when they get ready to leave. Please cover them all in prayer today!
In the meantime, there are some women who are going to the Panter's house to set up the Christmas tree and do some decorating so the kids can come home to "Christmas" in their house! I know they will be ecstatic.
So this is a good day. Pray that all goes well! We appreciate you praying for Emily and her family. So many wonderful steps are being made in her recovery---and we know it's all due to prayer and the awesome power of God. Thank you.

Friday, November 28, 2008


Luke said that Emily is still coughing today. He sounded pretty frustrated because it seems that the doctors are taking the day off today and he can't find out any information. It may be a long weekend for him.
Mike got to come up yesterday and see his daughter. I'm sure that was good for both of them. Luke went to his parent's house yesterday about 3 and then after spending the afternoon with them and the kids, he spent the night at his house. But he was back at the hospital early this morning.
Please pray that Emily's cough subsides! And pray for Luke.
We hope you had a blessed Thanksgiving!!

Thursday, November 27, 2008


I called Luke just now and told him to tell Emily that we're celebrating her life today! We know that many of you, just like us, have had losses---God doesn't always answer our prayers with a "yes." He does what glorifies Himself the most. But today, we have so much to praise and thank God for. And we're praising Him and thanking Him for Emily's life.
Luke said Emily had a good night. She has tolerated the cap on her trach for over 24 hours now!! YIPPEEE!! In fact, they changed out her trach this morning and it has helped her coughing alot, Luke said. He said she's also eating well today. We don't know what the plan is yet about Emily getting to stay off of the vent, etc. But....for where we are...we're grateful!

We just want to praise and thank You for choosing life for Emily. Thank You for blessing Luke and her children and her extended family this way. Thank You for glorifying Yourself through her life. We come in agreement as her friends and family glorifying Your holy name---You've done all things well. We trust Your heart, Father. We love You!! In Jesus' name, Amen.

I Chronicles 16:34
"Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever."

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Quiet Night

I just talked to Luke and he said Emily has had a restful day. Her coughing has subsided considerably. She also still has the cap on the trach (which means the vent is off) and is doing well with that. Mike & Jonathan (Emily's dad & brother) had gotten there and they had just left to go to Jeff & Kim's, I believe.
Please pray that Emily does well all night long. Pray that her cough goes away completely. And pray that she endures the cap on the trach for 24 hours.

Psalm 17:8
"Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings."

Good Day

Luke called and you could hear the bubble of happiness in his voice. Emily is having a good day. He said the lung doctor came in and wants to leave the cap on her trach for 24 hours---IF Emily can tolerate it. So please pray for Emily to tolerate it. When she can leave the cap on for 24 hours, she can come off of the vent. And she can be moved to a regular room.
So far, she's doing great. But Luke said she's been coughing. He doesn't know if it's a tickle in her throat or what. He went to get her some Hall's cough drops and that helped. And then the nurses gave her a breathing treatment and that helped. Right now, she's taking a nap and that has relaxed her to where she's not coughing. Luke's just afraid the doctor might decide he needs to put her back on the vent because of her cough. But Emily told him that she was doing it last night while she was on the vent. These coughing fits also leave her hot--which invokes more coughing. So please pray the cough goes away. The doctor has ordered a chest x-ray to see if there is fluid built up in her lungs or something.
They still don't have the results on the ultrasound on her abdomen from yesterday. But the nurse had seen it and said she didn't see anything but fluid built-up. So they may want to drain that again.
I asked Luke if the kids were going to get to come see Emily this week and he said he was definitely going to bring Sarah. He hopes to bring all of the kids at some point, but they're going to play it by ear. He said they had an exciting night last night, though. Because Emily had the cap on her trach, she was able to call all of the kids and talk to them--on speaker phone!! It was the first time they've gotten to hear their mom's voice in a month! He said it was a great time---emotional for Emily, of course---but a great time.
Luke will be spending some of his Thanksgiving with his mom & dad--but he doesn't want to leave Emily alone. Emily's dad, Mike, is on his way and will get to Dallas tonight. Mike & Janis will be staying with Jeff & Kim. So I'm sure the family will be trading places all day so that Emily has a good Thanksgiving, too.
Prayer Requests:
*Luke asked us to be praying about Emily's rehab. He's supposed to meet with a social worker today. A nurse has told him that they really want Emily to go to Baylor's rehab---but it's not paid by their coverage. His coverage wants him to take her to a nursing home for rehab. So this is a huge concern for Luke. Please pray that Luke & Emily have favor with this social worker.
*Pray that God opens doors that no man can close.
*Pray for every penny to be paid by the time this is all over!
*Pray that God provides the best for Emily.
*Pray for the cough to go away.
*Pray Emily tolerates the cap for the next 24 hours.
*Pray that the Panter/Dietz family have a great Thanksgiving---there's so much to be thankful for!
*Pray that God brings order into Emily's body.

Psalm 95:2
"Let us come before him with thanksgiving and extol him with music and song."


Luke is with Emily today. Janis is staying away from her since she has a cold. The nurses have told her she could still come in with a mask, but Janis has opted to stay away to protect Emily from the cold. They also told her that Emily is somewhat protected by having a trach---it filters out those harmful germs.

You're going to love this story....
Janis was with Emily last night about 6:00. Emily had the cap on her trach and was able to talk. They were still waiting on Luke to arrive. Janis realized it was November 25---her son's birthday! When she told Emily, "Oh my goodness! I need to call Joel and tell him 'happy birthday'," Emily broke out into song! And not just any song. She began singing a Christian "Happy Birthday" song in Spanish that she'd learned in Chile. She remembered every word. And Janis said the other wonderful thing about this is that it showed her that Emily's vocal cords have not been damaged. Janis then called Joel and let Emily sing the song again to her brother. Don't you think that's probably the best gift he got all day?
Praise the Lord!
And Happy Birthday, Joel!!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Emily's New Room

I talked to Janis tonight and she said that Emily had gotten moved into her new room about 2:00 this afternoon. She said it's so nice and spacious and has about 6 windows that makes it very bright and cheerful. She said a very strict nurse had come on duty and had asked them if they remembered that this was I.C.U. ha! So they aren't able to stay with Emily right now like they could for a couple of days. But Janis said she felt very comfortable leaving Emily now that she was in a better place. She'd worried about her before---not having a voice if she should have a need.
Debbie Jenkins, Kim's mom, came up and stayed with Emily awhile this afternoon. Janis has gotten a cold or the sniffles or something and had gone up to the room and rested. She said she was feeling much better after resting. And Luke had come up this evening and was with Emily---so Janis will get more rest tonight.
The kids have gone to Luke's parents' house. We're guessing and praying that Sam (Luke's dad) is feeling better!
They had taken Emily down today for an ultrasound. Her stomach was distended again. Fluid keeps building up because her liver is not functioning 100%. They weren't too concerned with it, but they just wanted to see what was going on. Janis said she's probably gotten used to her coloring---but said she's still a little yellow, but her eyes are much whiter than they were. She also said that her liver numbers keep increasing--which is good!
Emily doesn't really have an appetite still, but they're tempting her with supplemental drinks like Boost or Breeze. She finally found one she liked---so pray that her appetite increases.
They're hoping the kids can come see Emily soon. They just don't want the kids to be frightened with the hospital and everything that goes with it. So let's pray God begins preparing Emily and the children for that reunion!!
Tomorrow, Sarah will be one month old. Can you believe that? It's about time for a reunion, don't you think?

Father, Please prepare the kids to see their mom. I pray they won't be frightened by anything. Give Emily the energy she's going to need for that reunion. Father, prepare Emily not to focus on what she's missed out on. Help her to see how you've spared her for these precious kids. Let it be a peaceful, wonderful, fun reunion that doesn't exhaust Emily or upset the kids when they have to leave her again. Just go before them and prepare the way. I ask these things in Jesus' wonderful name, Amen.

Proverbs 3:5-6
"Lean on, trust in, and be confident in the Lord with all your heart and mind and do not rely on your own insight or understanding. In all your ways know, recognize, and acknowledge Him, and He will direct and make straight and plain your paths."

Thank You

It has become evident that there are many people keeping up with this blog. The common thread is Emily. Missionaries from Chile, our immediate church family (Bridgeview), extended church families (FBC Greenville, NBC Greenville, Paramount BC, Amarillo) related churches (FBC Henderson, FBC Alameda, FUMC Car., Hunt Baptist Association Churches) etc.. Friends and family from everywhere are coming here to inquire into Emily's condition and progress. I thank you for your concern and prayers for Emily. Your support is much felt. We know that you are praying for Emily and that God is hearing yours and our prayers. God has done an awesome work in Emily's life. This Thanksgiving we are thankful. "Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen."
From our house to yours, Happy Thanksgiving.
Luke P.

Everlasting Arms

"God, the eternal God, is our support at all times, especially when we are sinking into deep trouble.
There are seasons when we sink quite low.....Dear child of God, even when you are at your lowest, underneath are the everlasting arms. - Charles Spurgeon

"However low the people of God are at any time brought, everlasting arms are underneath them to keep the spirit from fainting and the faith from failing, even when they are pressed above measure......everlasting arms with which believers have been wonderfully sustained and kept cheerful in the worst of times. Divine grace is sufficient. - Matthew Henry

"What have I to dread, what have I to fear
Leaning on the everlasting arms?

I have blessed peace with my Lord so near,
Leaning on the everlasting arms."

- Elisha Hoffman

Luke P.

We Got It!!!

Emily's getting the private room in I.C.U.!!! WOO-HOO!! The nurses were waiting for the other patient to move to a regular room and had some time on their hands, so they came in and gave Emily the "spa treatment" while she waited. One nurse french braided her hair, another massaged her, etc. So Emily was feeling very special this morning. She did tell Janis that she felt like she'd done 100 sit-ups yesterday---her abdomen was really sore from sitting up for 15 minutes on the side of the bed and then standing.
They were expecting 3 lung transplant patients and 2 heart transplant patients to arrive at the I.C.U. this morning. So there are lots of needs out there. Be praying for those patients and their families, too.
When Emily gets settled in her new room, she will have the cap put on her trach and have her daily "workout" where she has to breathe hard on her own.
Thank you for praying!! Thank you for showing this family how much you love them and for helping with their needs. We sincerely wouldn't want to walk this without you. You bless us.

Thank You, Father, for hearing and answering our prayers and for giving Emily favor today. We praise You for meeting her needs by giving her this room. Now we ask that it won't be long before Emily gets to see her babies, God. Thank You! We praise You!! In Jesus' name, Amen.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Physical Therapy

Janis told me tonight that Emily started physical therapy today. Three therapists came to help her. They first sat her up on the side of the bed and she did that very well. They then had her stand. And she did it! Of course, she's very weak and couldn't stand long, but she'll soon be running laps around the building!
It's looking good for Emily to get the private room----so please keep praying!

Psalm 84:11
"For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless."

Father, would you please give Emily & Janis both rest tonight? You covered the Israelites with a cloud by day---would you give them a covering tonight so they can sleep well? Would you turn Janis' hard chair into a soft mattress? Please minister to Emily's emotions while she sleeps. Sing over her. You are the Prince of Peace, Jesus---pour out that peace on her tonight. Heal Emily inside out. And God, we're asking for Your favor for Emily for that private room. Would you show Your great love for her by blessing her with it? And would you allow her children to come see her soon? Thank You for loving Emily so completely! In Jesus' name, Amen.


Janis & I had a bad connection when we called just now. But I'll tell you what I did understand. They have now put Emily on soft foods! YEA!! So she had bacon and eggs this morning. She's still not able to eat much, so the doctor has ordered that she only be fed food intravenously at night---and soft foods during the day.
There is a private room in I.C.U. and the person who has been in it is being moved to another floor. The respiratory doctor has fought for Emily to get the private room. So PLEASE pray that Emily gets that room tomorrow!! If she gets that room, she will be able to close the door and sleep and her kids will even be able to come in and see her.
This is where our connection went fuzzy and I hope I have all of this right....They put the cap on the trach this morning and she had to work to breathe again. When the respiratory therapist came in to remove it, Emily begged them to leave it on. But the therapist told Emily she had to put her back on the vent. It was a process to wean her off of it and she couldn't keep the cap on. (She's also able to talk when she has the cap on.) Emily began crying. After talking with her, they discovered she was really discouraged. She was seeing people come and go out of the I.C.U.---people who hadn't been there as long as she has and she knew that when she'd been able to stay on the cap for 24 hours, she'd be ready to be off of the vent...and she'd be able to go to a regular room...and she'd be able to see her babies. Janis and the therapist both tried to help her understand. But then...Janis told her she was entitled to cry---she'd just had a baby, she'd just learned this week that she almost died, and she was working hard---she was entitled to cry!! So please pray for Emily. She's missing her children. And her children are missing her.
On another note, Janis said that Luke's dad is in the hospital with kidney stones. So please pray for this family---they're just having a hard time!
*Just got word that Luke's dad was able to leave the hospital at 10 this morning. 

Psalm 68:19
"Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens."

Sunday, November 23, 2008


As I've prayed throughout the day today, the Lord keeps laying Janis on my heart. Though she would never speak it for fear of taking prayer attention off of Emily, she is beyond exhausted and suffering from sleep deprivation. As I was thinking back today on this whole chain of events, I just began to realize what a traumatic time it's been for Janis to see her baby girl going through all of this. The fact that she came to Quinlan expecting to get to spend some precious time with her daughter and new grandbaby and then, 40 minutes after arriving, found Emily unconcious and then had to be the one to defend her grandchildren while the whole ordeal with the ambulance was taking place. Then immediately after the initial trauma, she began taking care of her 5 grandchildren, which includes round the clock baby feedings and when she's not doing that, she's taking care of Emily and getting limited to NO sleep. She has been such a trooper to just thrust herself into the situation and just do what needs to be done, but I'm worried that without rest, she may get sick. Would you please join me in praying for SUPERNATURAL strength, multiplied rest and protection against illness. Also, that she would be able to find time to put everything aside and genuinely rest. I know so many of you who read the blog are friends of hers and I think it would be good and refreshing to her spirit if maybe we could post the prayers that we're praying over her. Thank you all for loving our family...there just aren't words to express our gratitude.


Quiet Day

I talked to Luke & Janis both tonight. Luke had gone to see Emily this morning and said she was doing well. Janis said Kim had come to see Emily and washed her hair and gave her a pedicure--Janis had given her a manicure yesterday. Kim's mom is a nurse and told Kim how to shampoo Emily's hair in the bed. Janis said it was awesome--and she could go into the business! I'm sure that must have felt wonderful for someone who's been in the bed for almost a month!! Thank you, Kim!!
The other good thing that happened today was that Emily was moved up from a clear liquid diet to a liquid diet. So tonight she had cream soup and pudding. Janis said she only took about 8 bites, but she said it tasted good.
Luke said that his dad came over tonight to help him with the van and when they went to start it up, it started up just fine! Maybe God healed that van!
Please pray for Emily & Janis to get some sleep tonight. They're both exhausted. Janis is trying to sleep in an uncomfortable recliner in a lighted, noisy room.
Tomorrow, Emily is set to have 3 hours of the T-bar on her trach. It will be quite a workout! Let's pray she gets plenty of rest tonight so she's ready to work tomorrow.
Thank you so much for hanging in there with us and praying for Emily!!

Proverbs 3:24
"...when you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet."

A Day of Rest

They are giving Emily a "day of rest" today.  They said that because she worked so hard yesterday, she needed it!  They have removed her feeding tube from her nose and she is eating jello and other clear liquids.  Janis said she hasn't been particularly hungry, but they are trying to get her to eat.   As Kim said in the last post, Janis is staying in the room with her now.  And she will probably be with Emily until Wednesday, at least.  Emily is still disoriented when she first wakes up, so they are letting Janis stay with her around the clock now.  And Janis said it's very hard to get any rest when you're staying in the "eternally light" I.C.U.  Not to  mention all the disruptions of sleep by nurses needing to check monitors, etc.
Janis said Luke got ready to go to the hospital this morning and his van wouldn't work.  So hopefully, he can figure out what is wrong with it.  Let's pray it's something minor!!   (I misunderstood--I thought he was preaching--my mistake!  I've found that my information isn't always completely correct since I get some of it secondhand---and sometimes, like this,  I must dream it up on my own!!)   
Please pray that Emily gets well-rested today.  She is scheduled for a work-out tomorrow!!

Isaiah 32:18
"My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest."

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Prayers For Sleep

As Becky mentioned below, Jeff and I did have an incredible time with Em this afternoon. It is just such a happy day. To see her sweet smile and hear her voice. To be able to share with her tiny glimpses of the miraculous things the Lord has done for her. She is doing far better than I expected her to be at this point..I'm just so thankful. The main immediate prayer need for Em tonight is that she would SLEEP. As you can imagine, the ICU is very loud and bright and there's always something beeping or someone talking or laughing loudly. After several weeks of trying to sleep through all of this, unsuccessfully, Emily is BEYOND exhausted. She kept looking at me tonight saying, "I just need to sleep." So, Janis and I would rub her "perfectly unpuffy:)" feet with lotion and she would dose off for 15-20 minutes and then something would wake her. They gave her some sleeping meds last night that gave her horrible nightmares and made her feel awful, so we asked that they just give her Bynedryl tonight and the nurse agreed, though she said she didn't think it would work. So our very important prayer need for this night is that God would givr Emily rest like she's never had before...I think Iheard Janis use the word "blissful" sleep. Would you join me in praying for Emily's rest and also for Janis as the last two nights she has slept in a recliner next to Emily's bed. Thanks so much sweet friends and family!

Working Hard

I talked to Janis tonight and she said that Emily worked hard all day. They put the T-bar on her trach twice today and Janis said you can tell that it's hard work. But Emily crossed the finish line both times!
Get this....she had clear liquids today! I had no idea she would be eating this soon. But Janis said she had jello, juices and lots of drinks. They're thinking this will help the bile situation. Emily has also told them she doesn't want anymore medicines that make her feel weird.
Jeff & Kim (brother & sister-in-law) have been there all afternoon and evening visiting. So that's been a breath of fresh air for Janis & Emily.
They hope to have Emily in a regular room next week. But of course, she has to be off of the ventilator--and she's going through the steps of getting off. The fact that she's working so hard is a great sign that it will happen.
Janis said a nurse indicated that after she is ready for rehab, it's a possibility that she could be moved to Greenville----which would certainly help Luke. Let's pray that God opens this door!
Speaking of Luke, he and his brother have been working on a surprise (shhhh....) for Emily for when she gets home. They've installed---or are installing---a Jacuzzi tub! When I called Luke, they were trying to figure out the faucet situation. Emily is going to be so pleased!!
OH! And Luke is preaching at his church tomorrow! YEA!
Thank you for praying Emily through this day---it certainly did help!

Emily is Talking!

Luke & Janis traded places last night.  So Luke is with the children and Janis is at the hospital with Emily.  Janis called just now with some great news---Emily is talking!  Of course, she still has the trach, but has a cap over it, so she can talk.  They have the T-bar over the trach which blows air across it which also makes Emily have to work harder to breathe more on her own.  But she's doing that well this morning.  Emily was also showing Janis the leg exercises the physical therapist had given her to do--and she was doing those well!
But PLEASE don't let up on your praying for Emily!!  It may be that when we get good news we go into celebration mode and quit praying.  You know the roller coaster ride this has been---so please pray that Emily has a wonderful day ALL DAY today!

Psalm 118:24
"This is the day the LORD has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it."

Friday, November 21, 2008

I.C.U. Syndrome

Janis called and asked us to be praying for Emily. She is experiencing I.C.U. Syndrome. Having had other family members in extensive I.C.U., I wondered if Emily might not experience it since she's been in there so long. I.C.U. Syndrome is caused by being in an enclosed room with constant light---where the patient loses orientation of day or night. Because of that, they usually have sleep deprivation, stress, anxiety and irritability. It's often accompanied with hallucinations.
Emily had a bad afternoon. (You can see the roller coaster ride the family is on---good news one minute, and not-so-good news the next!) Emily pulled her feeding tube out this afternoon. They finally talked her in to putting it back in. Janis asked us to pray that Emily's intestines would start doing their job. Her stomach is full of bile and it causes the nausea and vomiting. Emily has no idea how far she's come. She's just frustrated with the way things are and wants things to change quickly. They also had her using the T-bar with her trach which blows air across the trach which makes Emily work harder to breathe on her own. It exhausted her.
Prayer Requests:
*That the I.C.U. Syndrome stops
*For Emily's intestines to start working well
*That Emily works hard at getting off of the vent
*That God's peace would fill Emily's room and heart

Psalm 90:17
"May the favor of the Lord our God rest upon us; establish the work of our hands for us— yes, establish the work of our hands."

Boles High School PALS

I just had to devote a post about the Boles High School PALS. This leadership class is taught by Becky Hawkins. Becky says that part of being a leader is learning how to serve your community. This group of high school students brought $1000 in Wal-Mart cards to the Panters the first week of Emily's crisis. Can you believe that? Becky contacted me this past week and said their school had a poster printer and wondered if they could get photos of the Panter children so they could make poster-sized photos of the kids to hang in Emily's hospital room! By the time I found this email (I'm not fond of gmail---too hard to see new emails!), Becky had already contacted Paula Kiser who is the Panter's neighbor--and also a teacher. Paula went over and photographed each child and then Becky and the PALS made posters of the kids. She said that Lily's poster was life-sized---and they showed so much detail. After Becky & the PALS made the posters, Paula brought them home to Luke. I'm sure they're already hanging in Emily's room.
Becky told me that the PALS are also providing a complete Christmas for 5 other families this year. They also care for an older woman that they've helped for 2 years. You could hear her pride of this group of kids! I just wish the news media would pick up this story---it's a story everyone needs to hear to be encouraged!! Thank you, PALS, for all you're doing. It sounds like you have an incredible future ahead of you! I've asked Becky for a picture of this group---and when I get it, I'll be posting it on here for you to see!

Good News!

Janis just called with an update---and it's all good news!
They are going to pull the I.V. for dialysis. So I'm assuming that means they don't expect to do anymore dialysis---which means her kidneys are functioning! Thank you, Lord!
They're going to put a "cap" on her tracheotomy so that she can begin talking that way. There is a process for removing the trach, and this is part of that process. Thank you again, Lord!
They're going to do a test to see if she can swallow food. Pray she passes!!

Matthew 15:31
"The people were amazed when they saw the mute speaking, the crippled made well, the lame walking and the blind seeing. And they praised the God of Israel."

Thursday, November 20, 2008


This is the first time I have posted on this blog that Emily's aunt, Becky Dietz, has created. I am thankful for this blog. Many people have been able to be in contact with our family at the touch of a button or two. We appreciate the love and support that you have all lavished upon us. The encouragement that we have received is really hard to explain or put into words. Your prayers are felt everyday. Emily is doing so well and there is no doubt that it is because God has had his hand upon her the entire time...her entire life. But many times when we as Christians experience the the saving hand of God, we forget over time that we are where we are NOW because of what He has done. Remember king Asa in 2Chronicles 16. God supplied his every need during the hard times of foriegn invaders. But when a seemingly easy situation arose later during his reign, Asa relied on his own strength and finite hand. It is my deepest hope that everyone touched by God through this event in our lives remembers that when we see Emily talking and walking, sitting at the supper table, leading a Bible study, holding our children or just living life,that God is not only the one responsible for saving her and answering our prayers, but the one we need every hour. It is written about King Asa that at the end of his reign he became diseased in his feet. But even in his disease "he sought not the Lord, but the physicians". The Bible says that he slept with his fathers where they "buried him in his own sepulcres which he made for himself". Asa began trusting in God for his every need and saw his needs met. He saw armies wiped out by God on behalf of Israel. Asa had faith in God during his reign. But over time, Asa began to put his trust in the might and wisdom of men. Let us not forget what God has done and as my deacon always says "Let's be careful to always give God thanks for what He has done and give Him the glory in all things".
Luke Panter

6 liters

You do know what 6 liters of fluid look like, right?  Think about (2) 3 liter bottles of Coke.  That's how much fluid they removed from Emily's abdomen.  Can anyone say R-E-L-I-E-F?  Wow!  Luke called Janis who called me and said that when Emily came back from the procedure of removing this fluid, he asked the nurse if she knew how much fluid they removed from Emily's abdomen.  The nurse said that when the dr. took her downstairs, he was hoping for 1 liter!  But Emily piped into the conversation and told them the dr. had taken 6 liters of fluid!  Can you imagine?  She must already feel so much better.  Luke said she looked better!  
Thank You, Father, for helping Emily this way!

Holiday Changes

This post is especially important for those who were going to provide meals, childcare, or clean the week of Thanksgiving. Luke's parents are going to take the kids to their house Tuesday, November 25-Sunday, November 30. So anyone who had signed up to help with meals, childcare or cleaning, please note that it won't be needed. If you will contact me by email to let me know you got this information, that would help us tremendously! Just email me at Thank you for your willingness to help during your own holiday preparations--you guys are the best!!
Oh! And by the way, Luke said his yard looks fantastic!! What a wonderful help his church provided by raking and bagging leaves!! Thank you so much!

Doing Better

Janis called with an updated report. She said that the kidney doctor came in and said he didn't plan on doing dialysis. He believes her kidneys are coming back and he's watching to see that they come back all the way. She put out 380 cc's in one hour today!! That's awesome! But they're also looking for the kidneys to clean her blood and the oxygen level, etc. But we're hopeful.
The lung doctor came in and he lowered the oxygen level on the ventilator even more today. One of the doctors is planning on taking Emily downstairs and removing fluid from her abdomen like they did for her lungs the other day. This should help her a whole lot! They've quit feeding her through the nose tube because they think that's what was making her so nauseated. Instead, they're feeding her intravenously. She's still been nauseated some, but she seems to be better.
Luke was so excited today.  He wasn't there when Emily "woke up." He was with the kids. So when he called Janis this morning to give her the update, he said, "Emily's back! She wouldn't let me have the remote control---she wanted to decide what was on t.v.!" Ha! I think that's GREAT!! Way to go, Emily!! (One for the girls!)
Janis had some help today. A friend of Emily's came to stay with the kids while she got out and ran some errands. She said when this friend had the kids pick up all the toys before she left, Abigail was directing them, showing them where everything went. Janis is beginning to feel the  sleep deprivation---getting up with a newborn at night, not getting naps, etc. I know she'd appreciate your prayers for her stamina.
Let's pray that removing this fluid from Emily's abdomen makes a world of difference!

Psalm 84:12
"O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you."

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Nauseous Wednesday

Bless Emily's heart! She's still throwing up. Luke said it happens when they suction her tracheotomy/vent. He's trying to encourage her to do deep-breathing so she can just get off of that thing and get well. In fact, that's also what is preventing her from going to a regular room---the ventilator. If she can get off of that, she can be moved. And Luke's hoping that happens by Thanksgiving---so the kids can come see their mom. Let's ask God for that!! Wouldn't that just be the best thing for the Panter family?
Luke's mom is coming next Tuesday and taking the kids to the country through the next Sunday. So they'll be with their grandma and granddad for Thanksgiving. Of course, if Emily is moved to a regular room, they'll make the trip to come see her!

Would you bless Luke and Emily this way? Would you help Emily breathe deeply and build up her lungs? Would you help her so that she can get off of the ventilator---and the trach? Father, You've done so much and we're just asking You to complete the good work You've already begun. We praise You that You do all things well. We come in agreement asking for this miracle. And Father, please settle Emily's stomach. Help them find the medicine to prevent her from being sick. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Still Nauseous

Emily has still been nauseous today. The meds they're giving her for that don't seem to be working well, Luke said. She's been fluctuating between being hot and cold today---just trying to get comfortable.
The lung doctor came in and cut back on her oxygen level on the ventilator and intends to do that every day to wean her from it---as long as she tolerates it.
Luke said Emily had been "talking" to him all morning---through the white board, I'm assuming. We didn't get to talk long because he got on an elevator and we lost our connection.
So please keep praying that the nausea goes away!!

Your Purposeful Service

This morning, I read this verse and thought of you:
I Corinthians 15:58
"Therefore, my beloved brethren, be firm (steadfast), immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord [always being superior, excelling, doing more than enough in the service of the Lord], knowing and being continually aware that your labor in the Lord is not futile [it is never wasted or to no purpose]."

We're so grateful for every little and big thing you are doing for the Panter family. I called Kim one night and was lamenting that I couldn't be there to help with the kids because of my job and that all I could do was keep up the blog. She pointed out that I was doing my part. Some of you may feel the same way. You're "just" taking kids to school. You're "just" taking a meal by. You're "just" sending money. Or you're "just" praying! You get the picture. we all "just" do our little part, the whole need is being fulfilled. Our labor in the Lord for the Panter family is not wasted or has no purpose. It's the body of Christ working together to fulfill the needs this family has. So whether your part is large or small, it's needed! And you have no idea how much it's appreciated by the Panters. I know that Luke knows he couldn't be doing what he's doing without your help. So THANK YOU!! I knew God woke me up early for a reason---He wanted You to know how much you're needed and how purposeful your service to Him really is.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Yesterday Was Our 2 Steps Forward Day...

...And today was our one step back day. Poor Emily! She's had a miserable day. She was nauseous all day. They're not sure if it's because her body hasn't been used to food, if it was too much too soon or even if it was withdrawal from all of the medicines she's been on. But she hasn't felt well all day. They gave her phenergan which should have put her to sleep, but it didn't. They finally gave her another medicine that is making her sleepy and calming her body down.
Because of her nausea, she hasn't had any deep breathing going on today and, in fact, has had fast breathing. So that's probably one step back for getting off of the ventilator, too. She's also had a lot of coughing and they've had to suction her a few times. Of course, her body is "waking up" and she's experiencing more each day, so it's just been a tough day.
The swelling is going down on her legs. Janis said her feet are still swollen, but not as much. Her stomach is still distended and hard. That could just be from her intestinal system "waking up." They've given her blood today because her count was low. One nurse said it could be just from her blood not having enough oxygen in it, so that may be why they're giving her blood. Or it could still be the effects of losing so much blood in the beginning. They also gave her dialysis today just to clean her blood. The kidney doctor did come in and told Janis that her kidneys are progressing. We know this is going to be a process with some great days and some not-so-good days. Let's pray there are more great days than the other!!
Let's just pray for God's grace as her body "wakes up!"

I Corinthians 16:23
grace of the Lord Jesus be with you."


Emily is experiencing nausea this morning. They think it's from the food they are feeding her. Other than that, she's doing great. The lung doctor reiterated that he plans on having her off of the vent in a week.
Please pray for the nausea to go away!

My Sister's Prayer

My sister sent me this message this past Saturday:

Was excited to hear Emily's good news!  When I first heard about her I remembered the story of Jesus healing Peter's mother-in-law and how she was immediately up and ministering.  I've been praying that for Emily - that she'll heal so quickly that she'll be up soon and using this experience to minister to others as well as her own family.

This has become my prayer now!

Matthew 8:14-15
"When Jesus came into Peter's house, he saw Peter's mother-in-law lying in bed with a fever.  He touched her hand and the fever left her, and she got up and began to wait on him."

Monday, November 17, 2008

What a Good Day!

I called Janis to see how the rest of Emily's day went and she said it was great. Emily is more settled in her mind about what has happened in the past 3 weeks. I think she asked lots of questions throughout the day. Janis had gone back to her room to drink her Sleepytime Tea and was winding down for the night. Emily was worn out and was in need of pain medication---so everybody was ready for bed. Luke had a great day with the kids and had lots of laughter over the movie, "A Bug's Life" that they watched together tonight. Lily's doctor's appointment was just a regular check-up and a flu shot, Janis thought.
Tomorrow evening, Janis & Luke will trade places.
A good day.

We're so grateful for what You're doing. Thank You for bringing healing to Emily. Please continue that good work! We know Emily has a long way to go, but thank You for this encouragement. You are awesome, God! We love You and thank You for Your good work.
In Jesus' name, Amen.

New Steps

Do you believe in miracles? We're seeing one right before our very eyes!! God is so good---awesome, incredible!! I just want to spend a minute giving Him praise. He has chosen life for Emily and is bringing her back from the brink of death. He is raising her up much like he did Jairus' daughter. Could we be any more grateful? I'm just in awe of our magnificent God!!

I talked to Janis this morning and she said Emily is "back!" She is out from under sedation and is cognizant of everything going on around her. In fact, she has a white board and is writing messages to her mom--in full sentences! She remembers that she gave birth to Sarah---but now tells her mom she didn't know what she was thinking---but thought she was pregnant again? ha! She has good eye-hand coordination. She asked her mom where Mike & Jonathan (dad & brother) were. Janis told her they were home, but would be coming next week for Thanksgiving. Emily's eyes got huge!! Janis laughed and told her that yes, she'd been asleep for 3 weeks. She couldn't believe it! And then she wrote a message, " was just an anuerism?" Janis laughed and said, "Yes! It was JUST an anuerism!!"
Emily still has a fever of 99* but Janis said they keep the room so hot that she thinks that is part of it. The lung doctor came in today and told Emily he's going to try to get her off of the trach this week. He'll at least wean her from the ventilator this week, but hopefully, the trach, too. He told her to start practicing breathing deeply. The vascular doctor is holding off on any tests to find why she has a low blood count---but has the order for it on standby.
Luke is with the kids today and was taking Lily to the doctor this morning. Pray for him, too. So many places to be and so many things to do ---it can be confusing. Pray that God leads him with His peace.

Prayer Requests:
*First, let's just PRAISE God for where He's brought Emily from and where He has her now!
*Pray that she is able to be weaned from the ventilator this week
*Pray that she can have the trach removed this week
*Pray that she makes leaps and bounds in recovery
*Pray the fever goes away
*Pray that they find why she has a low blood count--or that God just increases her blood count!
*Pray that she continues on this pathway of healing
*Pray that Luke knows exactly where he needs to be
*Pray that the Panter family will be reunited soon!

Psalm 139:14
"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well."

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Sunday's Update

Janis is staying at the hospital while Luke goes home and spends time with the kids for a couple of days. I'm sure they're needing their daddy for awhile! And Lily has a doctor's appointment tomorrow, so Luke will see that she gets there. That's been one of my biggest prayers---that Luke would know where to be--and when. I'm sure his mind is going a dozen different directions with all of the needs around him. So please pray for him.
Emily had a good day. She was totally awake. Of course, Janis said that every time she goes in to see Emily, she has to tell her where she is and why she's there. She's frustrated with not being able to communicate and she's also uncomfortable. Janis laughed and said that one time when she went in, Emily was scooting over in the bed and wanted her mom to climb into the bed with her. But she seemed to be content that Janis sat beside her.
Her blood count was down today and they're not sure why. They are testing her for what they think is old blood in her stool. (SORRY, Em!!) But they want to find the source of that problem. Her eyes are still a little yellow, so she's still a little jaundiced. They did not give her dialysis today but she's having great output. Her stomach is still distended. We're guessing that has confused Emily some. Janis said Emily thought she was still pregnant. But Janis keeps reminding her every time she goes in to see her that Sarah is born and showing her the pictures of Sarah.
Healing just takes time sometimes, doesn't it? But boy!! We serve a mighty God who is able to do all things well. We're amazed when we think of where we were 2 1/2 weeks ago. Emily has come a long way. Please pray for all of these little things as they come up---that they would be resolved quickly and completely. We're blessed that you're hanging in there with us! God bless you guys. We wouldn't want to walk this without you and your prayers!!

Psalm 138:8
The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me; your love, O LORD, endures forever— do not abandon the works of your hands.


Janis is Emily's mom. She came to stay and help Emily after Sarah was born October 26. So she was here when crisis struck the Panter household. Mike, Emily's dad, came as soon as he could for the surgery to repair Emily's aorta. And then Mike had to go back to Albuquerque to work. He & Jonathan, Emily's brother, plan on coming to be with their family for Thanksgiving. Mike plans on driving down on Wednesday evening from Albuquerque to Dallas and then turning around and driving back on Saturday to be at his church on Sunday to preach. I asked Janis to please let me make this need known thinking that someone might happen to have some frequent flyer tickets so that Mike & Jonathan could fly instead of drive---and so they'd have more time together. I know it's been hard for Mike & Janis to be apart this long already and Janis plans on staying even longer. So....if you have some frequent flyer miles that can be quickly turned into tickets for 2 people to fly from Albuquerque to Dallas---round trip---would you please contact me? My email address is
Thank you so much!!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

What a Great Day with Emily and Janis! AND A PROJECT!!

I've spent most of the afternoon and evening with Em and Janis's been a great day! I agree with Janis that Em looks SOOOOO much better than she did this time last week. Her coloring is so much better and she's much more alert....and just a little bit FEISTY!!!! Which just made my year! Anyone who knows anything about Emily Kristin Panter knows that she's nothing if she isn't's one of the things I love so much about her. Well, I'll just be the first to announce....her stubbornness is coming back! When I walked around the corner to see her today, there was this look of intensity on her face that told me she could've conquered the world in that moment. She wanted to know where she was and why she was there and what in the world were all these things sticking out of her and she was stopping at NOTHING to get her answers! She had one of her feet sticking out of the covers and Luke kept trying to cover it up for her, but each time he'd cover it, she'd stick it out again and she kept mouthing the same words over and over and over, never swayed for an instant by the fact that each time she said it, all three of us got a different translation. Bless her heart, I know she'd give anything to be able to ask us everything she wants to know. I have never in my life been so encouraged by someone's stubborness than I am today. I left Baylor Medical Center tonight fully confident that Emily WILL go home from that place. She's got plenty of fight to get her through the things she still faces! THANK YOU, JESUS!

Another amazing part of my day was going with Janis to get our "toes done." We had a really great time and as I was driving home, I just began to think about how lucky I am to have Janis as a mom-in-law. I have never seen such strength in any other person as I've seen in her during this time. We were talking tonight about "sufficient grace" and I was telling her that I was thinking about her last night and how, even after everything that she and Mike have been through with their kids (Joshua's death, Jon's Down Syndrome and now Em's illness), she exudes strength. I was fully expecting to find her curled up in the fetal postion and melting down the day she found Emily unconsious, but instead, she was declaring the goodness of the Lord and speaking the things she knew to be true about his character. Though I knew she was scared, peace spread out all over her. My question was..."How? and Why?" How did you keep from absolutely losing it? Her response to me was that God gives us sufficient grace to cover us in our current circumstance...and that grace is sufficient to get us through. While others may not understand or have the same portion of that grace, God knows EXACTLY how much we need to walk through what He's asking us to walk through. That promise brings life to me and deeply encourages my spirit. Thank you, Janis, for serving your family so faithfully. Thanks for loving Em's kiddos the way you have. Thank you for putting aside your desires to be with your own baby and sacrificing sleep and sanity to take care of those 5 precious babies. You're beyond amazing.

So, now about my project. I'm wanting to TOTALLY makeover the Panter household inside and out for Christmas. I'm wanting to get a team of people together to completely get it set up in one afternoon. I'd like to be able to use all new items so Luke doesn't have to worry about getting their old stuff out. We could maybe ask them for a color scheme and then just go over one afternoon while they are away and totally surprise them. I know the kids would love it and Emily would too if she gets to come home by then. If you'd be interested in helping out with this, would you please email Becky at and she'll get me your info so I can be in touch or you can email me at

Thank you to all of you who have loved our family. There aren't words to describe the depth of our gratitude to each and every one of you. Please believe me when I say that it is your love and prayers that have kept us going during this difficult time. We are blessed and we are thankful!

Keep Praying for our EMILY!:)


Janis: MY verses

These verses were my lifeline during our year with our son Joshua and have been the "desktop" playing on my mind behind all my thoughts during these past two and 1/2 weeks.

Isaiah 43:1-3
But now, thus says the LORD, your Creator, O Jacob,
And He who formed you, O Israel,
"Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by name; you are Mine!
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
And through the rivers, they will not overflow you.
When you walk through the fire, you will not be scorched,
Nor will the flame burn you,
For I am the LORD your God.
The Holy One of Israel, your Savior.

What a comfort to know Emily is never alone!

Jude 24-25
Now to Him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to make you stand in the presence of His glory blameless with great joy,
to the only God our Savior, through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time and now and forever. Amen


Janis: Good Day with Emily

I've been here with Luke since yesterday evening, and it has been SO good to see Emily. She is looking so much better, and has more periods when she is more awake. She tries to mouth words; we try to understand what she's trying to say, which means she gets frustrated sometimes, but we are just so happy to see her better. We brought a 5x7 photo of Sarah and an 8x10 photo of all five kids together which two different friends had taken and printed out for us to bring to Emily. When we showed them to her, she smiled and touched them. She wanted the nurse to see them. She obviously understands what we say. Kim went in to see her while ago since we missed the 5:15 visiting period (more on that in a minute) and the nurse let her in since she won't see Em until next weekend. She said Em was asking her where she was, why she was there, etc. Hard for Kim, but we know it will only be more of this as Emily comes off the sedatives, etc. She wants to get up, pull out tubes, etc., but that is all good, in my opinion. Her stick-to-it attitude (stubborness) comes out as she keeps asking for a drink even though we and the nurse keep telling her she can't have a drink. Personally, I don't see what harm a few ice chips could hurt!
My sweet daughter-in-law Kim took me to a spa for my second pedicure--WONDERFUL and some delicious PeiWei food, which is why we missed the visiting period, Dallas traffic. Thanks again, Kim, and Jeff.
Thank you all for all your continuous prayer support. There is still a long way to go before Emily can return home to her kids. We love you all.


Still Doing Dialysis

Luke said they did dialysis on Emily again this morning. But it wasn't to remove fluid but to clean the blood. Her kidneys are functioning and pulling off large amounts of fluid. Her swelling has gone way down. Luke said that the swelling has gone down below her knees. It obviously comes off from the top of the body on down. So she's looking much better! He said her complexion is much better, too. The nurse had said this morning that she looked much "lighter." So her jaundice is going away. The lab report hasn't shown anything different. And Emily still has a fever---and they've never found the source! I guess that means there was no infection in the fluid taken from her lungs.
Emily has been awake and has struggled to communicate with them. She knows she has a trach and Luke said she understands everything that they are telling her. The nurse described her as being in a "drunken state." Obviously, she's not completely off of the meds. Her stomach is still distended but that is from all of her organs having to absorb the extra fluid in her body.
The kids are with Luke's parents this weekend. Grandpa took the 3 oldest kids to a basketball game last night and I'm sure they're loving being out in the country today! Kim is coming to take Janis for a pedicure today. What a special treat!! I know Janis needs some pampering. Luke said they're getting some rest and are staying in the tower again this weekend. Luke has Martin Jones coming in to preach for him this Sunday. Martin is a good friend of Luke's.
So things are progressing. Thank you so much for praying!! God is good, isn't He?

Isaiah 58:8
"Then your light will break forth like the dawn, and your healing will quickly appear; then your righteousness will go before you, and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard."

The Need Grows

I know I don't have to tell you how expensive it is to be in the hospital for even one day! And now we're going on 2 1/2 weeks with no end in sight yet!! And not just the expense of the hospital, but the day-to-day expense Luke has of driving back and forth, having to eat out, a motel room on the weekends so Janis can be near Emily, parking, cell phone bill, etc. If you'd like to be a partner with the Panter family in this crisis they're walking through, would you please consider donating on this blog? No donation is too small. You can also send a check to:

Luke & Emily Panter
c/o Bridgeview Baptist Church
PO Box 820

Quinlan, TX 75474

This is a very hard time for the Panters and my prayer is that they'll be able to walk out of the hospital owing nothing. I'm praying we may have some "divine connections" out there with influence at Baylor Medical, too. But however God chooses to do it, I'm praying we can come together as the body of Christ and give to a brother and sister in need. Please prayerfully consider their need. God bless you--and I know He will!

Romans 12:13
"Contribute to the needs of God's people [sharing in the necessities of the saints]; pursue the practice of hospitality."

Friday, November 14, 2008

Good Output!

I talked to Janis tonight and she said that Emily had had good urine output all day today. They don't think the doctor will order dialysis tomorrow because of it.
She also said Emily was still really "out of it" because of the sedation she'd had for the surgery. They still haven't gotten results of the test on the fluid from her lungs. But the doctor had told them she would breathe much easier after getting all of that fluid off!
Please continue praying. God is answering!

Fluid off Emily's Lungs

Luke called and said they'd taken 900 cc's of fluid off of Emily's lungs.  The doctor was shocked, I think!  They had no idea there was that much fluid on her lungs.  They are testing it for infection.  Please keep praying!


Ok...I hope I can remember everything Luke told me! He met with the lung doctor this morning and he told Luke that he's ordering a procedure to withdraw some of the fluid from Emily's lungs. He wants to test it and see if there's infection in it. Luke said every doctor right now is targeting the infection---they're all determined to find the source of the infection so they can get this girl well! The lung doctor told Luke that when her fever breaks, they'll begin weaning her off of the ventilator. Yippee! The kidney doctor told Luke that her kidneys are producing. He thinks the kidneys are "coming back." If there's a significant decrease or if the numbers remain the same, he will do dialysis tomorrow. But if they continue to increase, he won't.
Emily's belly is still swollen, bu they think it will just take care of itself. Emily is awake!! But she's having trouble communicating because she's still just a little bit "loopy" from the affects of the medicine. And she's uncomfortable. Luke must have asked the nurse about getting her a white board to write messages, but the nurse said she'd be too frustrated right now because she wouldn't have good eye-hand coordination yet.
Every doctor and nurse are being very positive about Emily's case now! Is that not exciting? They said this weekend will be crucial as they look for signs of recovery---recovery of her lungs, kidneys and liver. So let's carry her through this weekend with our prayers! Would you agree with me?

Thank you for the miracle you're performing in Emily's life, in her body. We're in awe of You. You are the Miracle-Worker. We praise You! I know You are, but we just ask You to continue carrying Emily through this weekend. Please help these doctors target the cause of Emily's fever. Would You please break the fever, God? Would You cause her kidneys to function on their own this weekend and increase those numbers? Would you heal her liver? And Father, we ask You to bind fear from Emily. Help her understand what is going on as she wakes up and knows she has a tracheotomy. Help Luke & Janis to be able to communicate with her and understand her today as she comes more awake. Bring peace into Emily's heart. Thank You, thank You, thank You for what You're doing. We praise you, Father! In Jesus' name, Amen.

Psalm 18:46
"The LORD lives! Praise be to my Rock! Exalted be God my Savior!"

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Good Report!

I talked to Luke about 10 minutes ago and he said the surgery went exceptionally well. Praise God! He said Emily is probably "out" for the night. They heavily sedated her for the surgery. He said she really looks good. He met with all of her doctors and they all gave her a good report. They plan on giving her dialysis Saturday and maybe two more after that---we hope! Her output has been really good and the numbers on the blood test were good which means her liver is improving. Her lungs still have some fluid on them and if the next 2 dialysis' don't take care of that, the doctor plans on going in and removing it himself. Her jaundice level has dropped from a 20 to a 16 and her fever is down a little. So all in all, she's had a really good day. Let's just pray that with Emily not having a tube in her mouth, she starts feeling better and it gives her even more motivation to fight.
We're praising God for this good report!!

Trach Still a Go!

I talked to Luke and he said the tracheotomy is still set to happen at 2:00 this afternoon. He asked us all to be praying that it goes extremely well.
They've already done dialysis this morning and that went well, he said. They are going to begin weaning Emily off of the sedatives and that will probably be a shock to her system. Pray that she endures that well. We really want her to wake up, but dread the pain that will come with it. There are no lab results yet today, but Luke expects to hear a report on that later on. Let's cover Emily in prayer between now and when we get the report that the tracheotomy is successfully completed!
I have to tell you a heartwarming story. When Luke said he'd taken his phone in to show Emily a picture of Sarah, my heart just broke! I wanted an 8x10 so that Emily wouldn't have to strain to see her new baby. So, I contacted Paige Jones who was going to help with the children today and asked her if she had a digital camera. She does!! And she's agreed to take pictures of Sarah and have an 8x10 made for Emily to keep at the hospital. But her generosity didn't stop there. She's going to keep a running commentary of pictures going while Emily is hospitalized and make a book of them so that Emily sees the stages of Sarah's changes when she comes home. Doesn't that just make your heart sing?? This is just one story among hundreds of people reaching out and helping the Panters. You are a very giving, generous people. Thank you! And thank you, Paige!!

Psalm 33:20
"We wait in hope for the LORD; he is our help and our shield."

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Trach Tomorrow

I talked to Luke and he said that they have Emily scheduled to have her tracheotomy tomorrow at 2:00 p.m. Please be praying for her! They think she's "good to go" for this surgery. Luke said the test results on her blood test were good today. They don't know if it's from the dialysis or her own kidneys---but it was a good report! There was also nothing of significance on her echocardiogram. So that was also a good report. Let's just pray that Emily's kidneys kick in well and start pushing that fluid out! They'll also do dialysis tomorrow---Luke thinks it will be after the surgery.
Luke said he got on the blog this morning and the first thing he saw was that there had been 32 comments on the "Tracheotomy" post. He said his first thought was, "Wow!" And then he read the post. He then began reading all of your comments to him and said he was just blown away by all of the encouragement you gave him. He asked me to tell you, "THANKS!" He just couldn't stop talking about it---it really ministered to him.
Let's pray Emily through this surgery!!

John 12:28
"Father, glorify your name!"

Echocardiogram Today

Emily had a good night last night. There was good news from the lab report this morning---things were a bit better, Janis said. Emily still has a fever, but they still don't know why. The 3 hours of dialysis yesterday pulled off more fluids and she seems to be a bit less jaundiced today.
The doctor has ordered an echocardiogram today to check her heart to see why more fluids aren't coming off. So please pray for good results!
Yesterday, when Luke spent time with baby Sarah, he took a picture of her with his cell phone. Then this morning, Luke asked Emily if she'd like to see a picture of Sarah. Emily smiled and nodded "yes." So Luke held the phone as close as he could for her to see it (she doesn't have her glasses on!) and Emily just smiled. Doesn't that bless your heart?
Janis has asked that if you have left dishes at the Panter home that you come by to pick them up, if at all possible. If you are from Emily's CBS group, you can call Hanann and describe your dish and she'll pick it up for you. Thank you so much for doing that---it will help Janis tremendously!
Yesterday was pretty chaotic for Janis. I know I called her at one point and she quickly said, "I've got to go!!..." amidst kids screaming in the background. Abigail seemed to be acting out her frustrations yesterday. But she said things were much calmer today and she "had Abigail back!" Please pray for Janis. I can't imagine how hard it must be caring for 5 children.
And would you pray that Emily would be protected from infections that always seem to circulate in hospitals? Let's just be in agreement that God would protect her from any of those.
THANK YOU for praying! You bless our lives.

Psalm 91:5-7
" You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday. A thousand may fall at your side, ten thousand at your right hand, but it will not come near you."

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


Luke said the doctor told him they plan to do a tracheotomy on Emily on Thursday. Please pray for her before she goes through this surgical procedure.
Luke said her dialysis is over for the day and things looked good. But they plan on doing more blood workup tomorrow morning.
When I called Luke, he was feeding baby Sarah and enjoying holding that bundle of preciousness. He said she was already changing.
Luke is going back up to the hospital tonight for the 8:15 visiting time and said if there were any changes, he'd let us know.

Would you please leave a note for Luke to encourage him? I'm sure he'll have an opportunity tomorrow to read your messages. Thank you for praying.

Two Weeks

As I thought about this post this morning, I wanted to start off by praising God for all He has done in the past two weeks. Please add your comments below of things you're praising Him for!
*He saved Emily's life
*He went ahead of Emily that night two weeks ago and prepared the way
*Blood was waiting on her when she got to the hospital
*The best surgeons and nurses were waiting on her at Baylor Medical
*Janis was there to help with the children because of the birth of Sarah
*People have surrounded the Panters with help and love
*Gifts have been given to offset the needs of the family
*Emily continues to make progress--even though it may not be at our pace
*Emily has concerned medical staff that are looking out for her best interest
*God continues raising up the help that is needed
*Hundreds, maybe thousands, of people are praying--from all over the world!
*God's is being magnified and glorified through Emily's life

I talked to Luke this morning and he said the doctors were not impressed with the blood test results. Her kidneys aren't cleaning her blood like they need to. So they're going to put her on the 3 hour dialysis today. Emily has been anxious, so they've given her some medicine to calm her. Luke also left the headphones on her so she could listen to praise music. Luke said it's another Wait & See Day! So we'll pray as we wait....

Jeremiah 32:17
"Ah, Sovereign LORD, you have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too hard for you."

Monday, November 10, 2008

CT Scan Report

I called Luke and he said he finally got the CT scan report from the vascular surgeon. The CT scan showed nothing new. That's good news! In fact, the surgeon was surprised that the pulmonologist had even ordered one. Luke, of course, was very frustrated with the slow communication today. He said it was so hard getting ahold of these doctors to find out what was going on. Dr. Spak (pronounced Dr. Spock---which Luke thought was hysterical!) is the infectious disease specialist and he basically told Luke he "was on the job." He's found no infection at this point. He said she's "just running a fever." Emily's fever is down to 99 degrees. They will continue doing tests every day, he said.
Luke was very encouraged by the surgeon. He was very optimistic about Emily's progress. He's the one who did the original surgery on Emily--so he has a better perspective than most. Luke came away feeling good after talking to him. Like we reported earlier, they do still plan on doing a trach. This is because they're thinking Emily's recovery is going to be more long-term than we'd expected. Even though they've reduced her respirator level to a 5, they plan on keeping her on it for awhile. So the trach is necessary. Luke said her mouth is full of sores already from it. The trach will help her so much---and I'm sure she'll be much more comfortable with it.
She's still not on dialysis and is still having good output. They don't plan on putting her back on dialysis tomorrow at this point. They want to do some more blood workup tomorrow. Luke did say that Emily was more "puffy" because of not being on dialysis and retaining more fluid. And she does have some fluid on her lungs.
But...all in all, Luke felt like Emily had a good day.
Something I've learned is to pray scripture--out loud. It's the sword that the Spirit wields. (Ephesians 5: 16) Would you agree with me? Would you find scripture to pray over Emily? And would you please post the scripture that you're praying in the comment section? That would mean so much for us to all come in agreement with the same scripture. His Word doesn't return to Him void.
Prayer Requests:
*Pray for the fever to completely go down
*Pray Emily's kidneys are beginning to function
*Pray that Emily's lungs are healed
*Pray that the swelling goes away in all of her body
*Pray for Luke, Janis & the children. We know it's hard being on the front lines of this battle
*Pray that all of the bills are covered
*Pray that every physical, mental, emotional & spiritual need is met in the Panter family

Ephesians 6:17-18
"And take the helmet of salvation and the sword that the Spirit wields, which is the Word of God. Pray at all times (on every occasion, in every season) in the Spirit, with all [manner of] prayer and entreaty. To that end keep alert and watch with strong purpose and perseverance, interceding in behalf of all the saints (God's consecrated people)."

Update from Luke

I just talked to Luke and he was frustrated because they hadn't heard from the CT scan or the blood results and felt like he had no news to offer us.  But as he began talking, he'd really found out alot, but just didn't feel like he had essential information for us.
They've brought in an infectious disease specialist to give close attention to Emily.  They're just not sure what her infection is.  Her fever has gone down from 101 to 100.4.  Luke said she really does feel cooler to the touch.  They have her on an antibiotic.
Her urine output is still good---and she's not on dialysis today.  Luke said she had a 100 cc hour and a 70 cc hour.  So for that, we're thankful!  They think her kidneys are coming back, but they want more evidence before they'll commit themselves to that prognosis.
Emily's stomach is still swollen.  But she did have a bowel movement and they were very excited over that!  (Luke laughed at what they were getting excited over!)  So they know that her bowels are not impacted and I guess that was a concern.
She's still jaundiced.  And Luke said they are going to do a tracheotomy this week....they just don't know when.  The doctors are conferring with one another over that decision.
Bottom line....they told Luke that Emily is still very critical.  There are a lot of things wrong with  her and she's still fighting for her life.  These are small victories in a large battle.  So Emily still needs lots of prayer!  If you're like me, Emily is never far from your mind or your heart.  I thought I knew before, but now I really know what it is to pray without ceasing.  I'm sure you do, too.  Please continue lifting Emily up to her heavenly Father Who loves her more than we do.  We'll let you know as soon as we hear about the CT scan and the blood results.

1 Thessalonians 5:17
Pray without ceasing.

A Word of Thanks

You guys are just incredible! We put a word out for a need...and Boom! It's taken care of. I talked to Janis and she asked me to give a huge thanks to neighbor, Paula Kiser. She is Luke & Emily's neighbor and I think she's brought meals for a week! You are awesome, Paula! Then some women from First United Methodist Church brought by a quilt that they had prayed over for Emily. That is such a wonderful idea. I can't wait to see it! Maybe someone can take a photo of it so we can all see it. Janis also said that PALS from the high school (a future leaders group) brought by gift cards to Wal-Mart and some bags of food and various items. First Baptist Henderson has sent a case each of size 1 and size 3 diapers and a gift card for more. And Emily B. is bringing diapers, wipes, kid-friendly lunch foods, etc.
I know this by no means includes everyone that has helped! I know Emily's CBS class has helped...friends have filled in babysitting, taking kids to school, taking kids to daycare, offered to loan their car, offered to rake and bag leaves, offered to clean house, taken them out to eat, brought meals by, put money in Luke's hand, put money in Janis's hand, sent cards with donations, sent donations through the internet. You guys are just amazing. We've had large and small gifts given through the internet--and literally from all over the world! One person gave a gift and said they'd been through tough times and wanted to buy a gallon of milk for the kids. God knows each gift you've given, each gesture you've made--I only wish I knew everyone's name so we could thank you each publicly. And I'm sure there are gifts I have no idea about!! And God knows about all the needs this family has. Thank you so much for reaching out so quickly when you know of a need.
You're just the BEST!

Deuteronomy 28:6
"You will be blessed when you come in and blessed when you go out."

No Word Yet

Luke didn't have an update yet. He said they took Emily in for a CT scan this morning to see if they could find the source of the infection, but they don't have the results of that yet.
They also don't have the results from the blood work-up either. They are letting her go without dialysis today to see how she does. We'll update as soon as we know something!

Please bless Emily today. Give her full body function. I pray that every report we get is a positive report. I pray that Luke and the family can see You helping Emily take steps forward. Please bless every person who is helping the Panter family. Pour back into their lives with the same measure they're pouring into Luke & Emily. And Father, please meet all of Luke's needs. I pray you pay every medical bill before they leave the hospital!
I know You're hearing our prayers. Please just help Emily. Bring peace into her heart. Answer any questions that may be floating through her mind. Reassure her that her babies are being well taken care of. Help her to rest--and yet to fight--at the same time. We trust Your heart, Father. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Psalm 120:1
"I call on the LORD in my distress, and he answers me."


Thank you so much to those who have offered a car for Luke to use. Luke will be in contact with you. And...thank you to Luke's church, Bridgeview Baptist, who are going to rake and bag leaves this weekend. You guys are awesome!
I forgot to mention that the Panter family is in need of diapers. (And baby wipes, I'm sure!) Lily wears a size 3 and they use the Luvs brand. And of course, Sarah is in newborns and quickly moving into a size 1.
Also...if you would like to help fill the freezer with kid-friendly lunch food, that would be very much appreciated!
Thank you again for all the help. And we'll update you on Emily as soon as we hear something today!
Keep praying!!!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

On Her Own

Luke told me that Emily is on her own tonight--they've taken her off of dialysis so they can test her blood tomorrow morning. They can't get a true reading on a blood test if she is on dialysis. She still has good output even though she's not on dialysis. But the main test is with the blood. 4:00 a.m., they will be drawing blood and testing it. This will tell them if there's any change in the kidney & liver function. The doctors should come in by 9 or 10 and maybe we'll know something by noon tomorrow. Luke doesn't expect them to dilly-dally on this because they're anxious to know the results themselves.
They had to give Emily blood tonight. There's some test that tells them the oxygen level that the organs are getting and the score needs to be at 27. Emily's score was at 24. Luke said they acted like it wasn't a big deal. But they did give her blood.
Emily is still running a temperature of 101 degrees. They've put a cooling blanket on her to try and bring the temperature down. Maybe the blood tests will also show them where the infection is.
Emily's levels on the respirator have stayed the same....which is good! They haven't had to increase the amount of oxygen or pressure she's getting. Awesome!
Some of Luke & Emily's friends organized a BLOOD DRIVE today. It was incredible!! The blood drive was done in Emily's name and so many people showed up to give blood that they had to turn people away! That just makes me want to cry. What an incredible display of love and help. The family wants to thank those who organized it....and for those who went to give blood. We're humbled and blessed!
Prayer Needs:
*Pray for good results on the blood test
*Pray that they'll find the source of the infection
*Pray for strength for all of Emily's organs
*Pray Emily will be able to come off of the respirator and avoid a tracheotomy
*Pray for peace for Emily
*Pray for Luke as he cares for Emily
*Pray for Janis as she cares for the children
*Pray for Luke's parents to regain energy quickly after a weekend with 5 active grandchildren

Isaiah 26:3
"You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in you."
I did some editing of the very FIRST post about Emily's injury to clarify some of the information. Some have thought the problem is in her leg, but it is in the iliac artery in her abdomen. Check the first post again if your really interested. :-)

Emily looked much better to me when we went in at 8:15 this morning. She was much more awake and aware of her state which meant she was distressed, thrashing around and pulling at her arm restraints. While it was hard to see her this way, I thought it was a good sign. She undertood me when I told her just to squeeze my hand and relax everything else, and she squeezed very hard! They gave her some more meds to ease her discomfort and help her relax.
We saw both the lung and kidney doctors who were covering this weekend, so to summarize her situation:
they've pulled a lot of fluid off, but she is still edemic

her lungs look great, and the dr. lowered her PEEPS from 10 to 6 so she can breathe more on her own because she is so much stronger than she has been the past two days

the kidney doctor said everything is looking good, but the fact that her kidneys are making urine means nothing, that people on dialysis still make urine (news to me), and he expects her kidneys to come back, but won't promise that they will

the nurse said because her temperature has gone back up again this morning they plan on doing another scan of her abdomen to see if anything is going on with the surgical area.

So... all in all it is good news, I think.

Thanks for the prayers!!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

A small favor

WOW!!! What an incredible day! It's so good to hear some positive news for a change. It's amazing to me the difference I saw in Em today. She was so calm and at ease while I was there. I am thoroughly convinced it was the fact that she had been listening to the WORD being sung over her all night and through the morning. What a difference the WORD makes in our is life giving. Please join me in praying tonight that the Lord would allow Emily to hear His heart of love for her as she listens to the songs Luke has chosen for her to hear. I'm just praying that she would have such an intensely intimate time with the Lord...that in His presence all of the physical pain would go away and that she could just draw into her healer and find rest.

I'm needing to ask a small favor. I am wanting to send Janis to get her toes done one afternoon next week and I'm needing to find a couple of people who would be willing to watch the kiddos while she does that. I know Luke is wanting them to be with people they know well and are comfortable with. If you feel like you have this rapport with them and would be available to help me out with this one afternoon, would you please leave me a comment or call me at 972-922-2793. Also, one of the major needs we are facing is the need for childcare during the day. Janis kept the kids last week, but we would love to free her up to be at the hospital with Emily. We've made arrangements for Hannah and Noah to get to and from school, so the real need is from about 8:00-6:00. I realize this is a lot for one person, but maybe two or three friends could get together or split it up. Obviously, we want to keep some continuity for the kiddos, but we need to free up Janis, too. Please contact me if you think you could help out with this. Thanks so much for all of your love and prayers....we feel it. We have been blessed beyond comprehension by the outpouring of love from friends and total strangers. Thanks for loving us, but more importantly, thanks for loving Emily.

For His Glory,

Kim Dietz (Emily's sister-in-law)