Glorious Unfolding

All week my mind has raced like mad.  Why is this happening?  What is the purpose?  What are we supposed to learn through this?  How much can a body endure?  When your child begs for surgery to relieve pain or asks you through tears of despair why none of this can be easy – your blood runs cold.   No one ever imagines this for their lives.  And then to top it off a challenge of such immensity that your stomach falls to your feet in fear and anxiety.  The overwhelming burden seemed so unrealistic and left me feeling incapacitated.  Thinking through all of the details that have to work out and wondering where to start.   All of the steps with so little time and no contacts.   Every visa process in the past took multiple months to prepare and execute.  

The past 72 hours are a complete blur.  Phone calls, emails, texts, whatsap, IMO, letters, applications, logistics and more.  Many people committed to our child either through prayer, encouragement or serious and relentless work.  Aunt Lauren you are like a machine – you need a bubble bath and pizza!  What started out as a hopeless battle became our glorious unfolding.

After repeating our story over and over again one cold call after another, I started to wonder what in the world it was going to take to move this process along. I’m not quitting  – just keep dialing the numbers I thought.  We were determined to call as many people as it took until we found the right one.  

We didn’t just find the right one. We found the right team.  Honestly, I have no clue what took place exactly amongst the people who really make things happen.  I don’t know who moved who for what reason or how.  All I know is that a group of people accomplished an amazing challenge for a child and a family they don’t know personally.  Compassion beyond words.  Our immigration attorney called it miraculous.  What a blessing to behold!

Late Friday night we received travel approval.  Saturday afternoon visas were issued and in hand. Travel begins in a few hours.  So many tears of joy!!   

Our story is far from over.  Khaleda is so strong.  Just as my sweet friend Amy says – “she is magic!”   This has been our latest miracle.  During the midst of this,  our friends Laura and Brandon sent us a you tube link. They said to listen – this song reminds us of your current trials.  We are praising God for his continuous overflowing grace and mercy.  Khaleda is stable but miserable. Her brother will be here soon to give her more stem cells. Keep your powerful prayers coming. He hears our cries!  This week has truly been a Glorious Unfolding.  Thank you to those of you who made this happen!

Glorious Unfolding by Steven Curtis Chapman – hopefully this link works for you.  It’s worth your few minutes of time.

13 thoughts on “Glorious Unfolding

  1. Praise God from whom all blessings flow! With God all things are possible. Continuing prayers for all of you.

    God Bless,

    Jeanette Meares

    Sent from my iPad



  2. Glorious unfolding, indeed! What a privilege to play a small part. So soon I’ll be able to envelop you in the hug that has been waiting for so long. See you soon, Khaleda! Hang in there. I’m coming with two very special gifts just for YOU!


  3. Dear Assell Family,
    It IS the glorious unfolding. What you need to know is that we complete strangers to you and to each other received a wonderful, glorious gift from your daughter — instead of despair for our inability to govern because of partisanship, the cold distances and ungratefulness of this town, and the worsening conflict in Afghanistan, we got HOPE. We, too, saw a miracle unfold for a good family and beautiful child. We were reminded that compassion and love for one another CAN defeat a formidable bureaucracy — over a federal holiday even. That in our small lives, we CAN do a good thing. One wonderful child reminded us that God is, indeed, great. And that if each of us tries, this world can be just a little bit warmer and easier for his work to be done ….We are so thankful to you. Khaleda is in the strongest hands now…


  4. Thank you for answered prayers! We are praying, praying, praying for this strong little girl, her brother and all of the family.


  5. My heart is heavy and my eyes are filled reading of the continuing struggle but God put you in Khaleda’s life for a reason so I have to believe this fight for pure survival will prove to be victorious. Many, many prayers and a huge long distance hug to let you know we are there and God is good.


  6. Dearest Assell Family,

    We have been anxiously following your roller coaster of news since Christmas. We were elated to hear of Khaleda’s engraftment success and devastated to hear of all the setbacks that followed. We can only imagine the full gamut of emotions that you are all experiencing. I marvel at Khaleda’s unwavering resilience. I shudder to think of what she has physically suffered, what you have emotionally and mentally endured as parents, and I am truly overwhelmed by the strength and courage everyone has shown. I know that God has you in His arms and is giving you all you need to overcome all that you encounter. Please know that we continue to pray for your entire family, for the safe travels of Khaleda’s brother, Sameer, and for her health and healing. Everyday we drive by the billboard that adorns Khaleda’s beautiful face, and I think of how angelic she looks. We pause and say a silent prayer for her speedy recovery. Tell Khaleda we love her and that we are all cheering her on!

    Hugs and Kisses,
    Widad, Wissam, Nahi, Edouard, and Nicolas


  7. Amanda and Mike, I am moved and touched – reading your blog all afternoon, in between every patient, and going back to read one post after another…. What a journey you have all had over the last few years.
    We barely know each other – besides saying a brief hello at our vision source meetings – but I wanted to reach out and say how much of an impact this has had on me. All of your strength, courage and faith is to be marveled.

    I see there are lots of friends and family helping you out, but if there is anything I can do here or in India
    (I saw images of Chennai where I grew up [Apollo Hospital was a few blocks from my home] – I would love to…

    My family joins in prayer to give you the strength and Khaleda a quick recovery.


    1. Hey Keshav, thank you for your kind words. We loved India. We were there for five weeks. Apollo Hospital treated us wonderfully. We will have to share more when we get through this journey. We so appreciate your prayers.


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