Meredith Parker: Surviving a Massive Heart Attack
By Audra Smith
The 700 Club
CBN.com - In the summer of 2008, Jonathan and Meredith Parker had a big reason to celebrate. Olivia was born on June 24th, 2008. But on July 2nd, just eight days after Olivia’s birth, tragedy hit the Parker home.
"The evening was like normal,” Jonathan said. “It was about 11:30 We put the baby to bed and went and laid down. Within just a matter of minutes, the baby started crying. So, we got up to go check on the baby. When we did, Meredith came behind me and said that her pulse was racing. She immediately tensed up. I thought she was having a seizure.”
“Her eyes rolled back,” Jonathan said. “She fell back on the bed and began gasping for air. Just a few short moments and then she stopped breathing altogether, and began turning purple.”
Jonathan, a trained police officer, immediately began CPR and called 911. Eight minutes later, the paramedics arrived.
“When we arrived at the Parker home, we found Meredith on the floor in her bedroom,” critical care paramedic Joe Thomason said. “She had no pulse, respirations. We placed advanced airways, started IVs, we had given her medications. Being that her first difibulation was over 6-8 minutes…she was in less than a 10% chance that her heart would even start from advanced cardiac care. We had difibulated her heart multiple times, 3-4 times…without the success or return of pulse….”
“One of the thoughts that I had as I looked down on her was, ‘You can sit there and do nothing and watch her die…or you can do something now,” Jonathan said. “So, I went and as the paramedics were working…difibulating her, shocking her, and doing those sorts of things…I anointed her with oil and prayed. And then I felt the Lord leading me to go get the Bible. So I went and got my Bible and I laid my Bible at her feet and I prayed: ‘Lord, Your Word is Life. I need a miracle.’”
Without interrupting our treatment, he laid the Bible on her feet, “ Joe said. “At which point…as soon as there was contact between the Bible and her feet…she had a spontaneous return of pulse and respirations. This was not due to any medical treatments because were were only doing CPR at this point. Those that were there….believe that it was a miracle that occurred.”
Meredith was airlifted to the nearest trauma hospital. Doctors determined that, even though she didn’t have a history of heart problems, Meredith had suffered a massive heart attack.
The doctors said, ‘We put in a stent, we’ve gotten the blood flow opened up, but the period of time without oxygen, without a steady heart rhythm…we don’t expect her to live,” Jonathan said.
“Immediately, I called both sets of parents and asked them to pray ,” Jonathan said. “They immediately began calling other people. And they started spreading the word. Before long, the prayers had gone out and literally from almost every habitable continent in the world, someone was praying that God would do a miracle and raise Meredith up.”
Doctors continued to prepare Jonathan for the worst. They also warned that if Meredith survived the heart trauma, she would have extensive brain damage.
“And I called out to God, the thought was, ‘What will I do without my wife. What will my 8 day old do without her mother?’” Jonathan said. “They only have assigned times that you could go visit. So three times a day, I took my Bible, I took my notebook that she had of scriptures and prayers and I cried and prayed and I quoted scriptures.”
That Thursday morning, I was sitting in the waiting room holding my Bible. I opened it to Hosea, Chapter 6,” Jonathan said. “The first three verses say, ‘Come and let us return unto the Lord for he has torn us and He will heal us. He has smitten us and he will bind us up. After two days, he will revive us and in the third day, he will raise us up.’”
“So I took the Word of God and I said, ‘Lord, this is your Word for this situation,” Jonathan said. “ I would repeatedly read over her and say, “God is going to revive you. God’s going to raise you up and we are going to live in His sight.”
Friday, July 4th was Meredith’s second day in the hospital.
“I walked in and I called her name and her eyes flickered to me,” Jonathan said. “So, I grabbed her hand and said, ‘Meredith, I need you to squeeze my hand.’ And then slowly she did squeeze my hand. And by the end of the night, she was attempting to talk over the ventilator. She was nodding her head and responding to our questions.”
“By Saturday morning, I walked into the hospital room to my wife…who they said would not live, who they said would not respond,” Jonathan said. “They said she wouldn’t speak. I walked in and she was sitting on the bed. She smiled at me and in a plain voice she said, ‘Hey babe.’”
And so at that moment, I knew that the doctors had done their best. They meant well….but God had the final say on the situation.,” Jonathan said.
Because of her rapid recovery, Meredith was moved from ICU the next day. Just one week after her near fatal heart attack, Meredith was able to return home and see Olivia.
“I do remember asking if I could see her, asking if they could bring her to me,” Meredith said. “I just remember being so grateful and so thankful that I was still there for her and it was like she knew exactly who I was.”
In the ensuing weeks, Meredith underwent serious cardiac rehabilitation. Today, three years later, Meredith has returned to her daily life, with no limitations.
“I love to share my testimony,” Meredith said. “I love to pray for people that are sick and need healing…just letting people know what he is still able to do and capable of doing.”
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