Monday, July 29, 2013

The Gift of a Grand Mal Seizure

It seems odd to call a grand mal seizure a gift.  It is what we had tried to prevent for over 5 years.  How can we call it a gift?  Because Christina did.  From her blog post on April 23--"The first seizure, and the following MRI was God’s perfect provision allowing us all to be aware of my new health status."

  • We were now aware that Christina's beautiful brain was full of new tumors. 
  • Within 24 hours, doctors were all on the same page.  (Thank you Dr. Kathie Hennessey.)
  • Within 36 hours, Christina was on Hospice Care.
  • Within 48 hours, Christina's friends and family were gathering from all over the world to say good-bye.
  • Meals were being delivered by our wonderful IBC family--enough to feed all of our guests.
  • Worship (Christina style) was happening nearly every night.
  • The house was filled with laughter and love and stories.
  • Christina answered many life questions on video--a gift to our hearts.
  • We even have a funny video of a very pregnant Linsey Fuller and Christina singing (with motions) a favorite song from middle school days.  (King Jesus is All)
  • Christina had 2 beautiful "daddy-daughter" dates.
  • She had time to help her loving husband grieve and process about the future.
  • She gave us the beautiful pictures and sounds of the unseen reality of heaven.
  • A second grand mal seizure was stopped with the words, "Jesus, Peace".  No more seizures.  The first had served the purpose.  The second marked a change of pace but brought with it no trauma, no hospital, no extra care.  Jesus had mercy.

Again, from Christina's blog--"I am so thankful for the beautiful time I/we have all gotten to experience because of this. Friends and family have been able to fly in and I’ve loved the relaxation of my home, only made possible by so many people contributing to help–the Isaiah care, the food, the cleaning, the super fun yard work parties, errands run for us, the worship nights, Doug’s awesome work allowing him to take so much time off. We’ve had overnight baby care (thanks Mom!) for quiet restful nights and sleep-in mornings with lattes waiting for us when we get up. Oh yes. The list goes on and on and on. We are SO thankful."  
Amazing Aunt Loralee--3 months of serving, and worshiper cousin Chris
It could have been much different.  Christina could have just mysteriously declined in ability and function and it would have been impossible to do any of the visits, worship, stories, and final conversations.  Or she could have died during the grand mal seizure.  Or she could have slipped into a coma.  Instead we had the gift of time.  I am thankful everyday for all that happened.  The beautiful, the difficult, the hard to understand.  Jesus was present and powerful every second.  He taught us how to love, how to hope, how to trust.


  1. Amen to this ... what a wonderful gift it was for us to have the 3 beautiful days we did with her ... will never, ever forget it. Love to you all.

  2. Erin--you and the Westmont girls--such a gift to all of us. Christina talked about it in her journal--her excitement to see you all--the extraordinary planning to bring you from all of the U.S. and France:) She kept saying--"Really? They're coming?"

  3. It was a wonderful gift and I am so happy the Lord gave this to you and her husband.



  4. It was a gift to so many of us--much needed and much appreciated. Truly beautiful.
    Jo Dee

  5. I am so thankful you shared and continue to share with those of us who could not physically be there in those final days. The Ahmann/Nevill light of Jesus shines on!


    1. I pray Jesus' light will shine on through us all until we are at home with Him!
      Much love to you, Mary.
      Jo Dee

  6. Jo Dee,

    Your faith and courage are a testimony to many you will never meet. Christina's life and story have touched many of our friends over the last five years. I pray God's deepest comfort for you as you miss your daughter. Thank you for her part in Kerri's life.
    Chris Cole (Kerri Cole's mom)

    1. Chris,
      Thank you so much for writing. We loved having Kerri and the other Westmont girls here. It was great to catch up and share some deep life together. I was astounded at the sacrifice Kerri and the others made to get here in time to see Christina. When she heard they all were coming, Christina kept shaking her head and saying, "They are really coming?"
      She even mentioned her excitement a few times in her journal.
      Much love,
      Jo Dee