John Edward Peacock

About John

John Edward Peacock went home to his Father in heaven on April 26, 2009 after having suffered from intractable seizures for 7 months.

As you'll see, much of this page is about our son John. You'll find much information about him and photos. But it is really about much more than just John, or even our family.

It is about the work of Christ in our lives, in the lives of those around us, and–even more so–about the work that He has yet to do. While we are still greatly saddened by our loss of John, we are aware of many blessings that came from his life. And feel called to share them in some form or fashion with others.

So we have put together this web site with all of the entries from our original caringbridge site, and will from time to time offer more for those who care to follow along.

Bill and Kelly Peacock (and William)

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John Edward Peacock

Originally Posted on | September 16, 2008

We are very excited to let you know that John Edward Peacock, little brother of William Thomas Peacock, was born EARLY this morning at 1:11 a.m.. He weighed in at 7 lbs. 8 oz., and was 19 inches.

Kelly is resting comfortably and recovering well in Seton Hospital on 38th near Lamar. We’ll likely be here until at least Friday/Saturday.

Our beautiful little boy is experiencing some challenges. He is in Neonatal ICU because of seizures, lung/breathing issues, a heart murmur, and a hernia. But the tests (such as CT scan, blood work, etc.) are coming back with good reports. So we are encouraged by these, and by the covenant promises of God that He has John firmly in His arms as one of His children. We would greatly appreciate your prayers for our little boy.

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Waiting in the NICU

Originally Posted on | September 17, 2008

William met his little brother last night and was very excited. He is also excited because John somehow snuck a couple of Curious George books past the obstetrician during delivery and gave them to his big brother (thanks, mom!).

William and I spent the night at home, and a friend stayed with Kelly at the hospital. Kelly is doing well, and has already been up to the NICU to see John.

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A Bumpy Few Days

Originally Posted on | September 19, 2008

It has been a bumpy last couple of days. Wednesday the cardiologist told us that he had “the best possible report he could give” regarding John’s heart. Essentially that means that while his heart will almost certainly need some procedures, it looks like that they won’t be now, and may be well off in the future. Plus John’s clinical signs (his responses, activity, resistances, etc.) had show good improvement from Tuesday. That’s the kind of news we were praying and hoping for.

On Thursday, however, we were reminded that this path is not always going to be nice, smooth and upward sloping. John’s clinical signs were not as good as on Wednesday. They still didn’t know what is wrong with him (the hypoxia in the brain prior to birth is a only a guess based on symptoms) and they didn’t have another “best possible report” to share with us. In fact, the EEG from Wednesday showed no changes from the first one and John was still experiencing seizures, so they introduced a second drug to try and stop them.

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John's Diagnosis

Originally Posted on | September 22, 2008

We met with the medical team yesterday. The main reason was for the neurologist to give us the report on John’s MRI.

John has a condition of the brain called polymicrogyria, or PMG. More details further down, but the bottom line is that this is a permanent condition—meaning it will not go away but neither will it degenerate and get worse—that can affect both motor and cognitive development. But “it is difficult to make a predictable prognosis for children with the diagnosis of PMG because each child is very unique in their presentation of this disorder.”

The medical team will be running a 24 hour continuous EEG on John today. He is still having some breathing difficulty, and probably some seizures. They want to see what these look like on the EEG and see if they are related.

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September Notes from Our Friends

Originally Posted on | September 23, 2008

Thursday, September 25, 2008 7:39 AM, CDT
Hello little one! God bless you and your sweet family. Your Redeemer family can’t wait to meet and hold you!! Rest, eat and grow in strength little one.
Peace of Christ,
Andrea Rader

Thursday, September 25, 2008 7:56 AM, CDT
Dear Peacocks,

We are praying for little John everyday and at every meal. All the kids are praying for him every time they pray. I love CaringBridge. This is so helpful – to you and to everyone else. Thank you so much for including us. We will not stop praying for Great things from God and expecting Great things from Him! We rejoice in the good news we heard from you this morning! And we thank our Father for every piece of it. We long for and look forward to more and more of it!

The peace of our Savior Jesus enfold you,
The Mac clan

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The Next Big Milestone

Originally Posted on | September 24, 2008

As we walk in Christ, we walk in God’s heavenly kingdom surrounded by agreat cloud of witnesses—many of whom have appeared to us for the first time through this challenge we are facing. This cloud is a source of great comfort for all who walk as pilgrims through this fallen world. It certainly has been so for us. I am sure there are prayer lists out there somewhere that John and our family are not on, but I don’t know where they are. Our family is being greatly comforted by everyone’s prayers, and our little boy is making great (from our perspective) progress as well. We know that the prayers of the faithful are answered. Of course, we also know that not all little boys and girls with health problems are healed as we hope John will be. But please don’t let that stop you from praying—we are confident those prayers will be a means through which our little boy is healed completely in God’s perfect timing—whether that be in this life or the next.

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A Familiar Sound

Originally Posted on | September 27, 2008

I started to write the first sentence of this update, and it sounded familiar. So I went back to the last update I wrote on Wednesday evening, and the beginning was identical. One of the things I do for a living is write, and I strive not to be redundant when I write. But I am not sure what else to say, so here it is again:

The last couple of days has brought us some good news.

First of all, we met with the neurologist, Dr. Karen Richards, on Thursday morning. John’s EEG was definitely improved over the initial one. Dr. Richards was optimistic about John’s prospects. Second, our little boy actually took some food by mouth! Not much, not for long, but he took it! Third, at times he has been breathing the same normal air that we all breathe, without extra oxygen. That goes back and forth, but is definitely progress in the right direction! Finally, it looks like we may be able to take John home in two or three weeks.

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October Notes from Our Friends

Originally Posted on | October 1, 2008

Thursday, October 2, 2008 4:43 PM, CDT
Sweet Baby John, and dear Kelly, Bill and William –We are in constant prayer for you all and know that God is so clearly at work in the life of this precious baby. We rejoice with you at the progress John has made so far, and can’t wait to meet him!

With our love and prayers,
the Connells
Ruth Connell

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A Good Week

Originally Posted on | October 3, 2008

John has had a good week. Lots of ups and downs. But more ups than downs.

A quick summary of the week and things to pray for:

Eating – John drank 40 ml out of a bottle on Sunday night! We were excited and very thankful, since the most he had before that was 5. Our little boy was on the road to healthy eating, would be home soon, and everything was going to be great. Then, in God’s infinite wisdom, he ate next to nothing for the next two days, during which the doctors started to discuss the possibility of John coming home with a tube so he could eat. Of course, we weren’t so excited anymore. But the week has leveled out well. Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday he has had at least one feeding a day of 10 ml or more through a bottle. Usually more. A good sign. He may still come home with a tube, but things are looking better.

May John be blessed with a growing ability to suck and swallow.

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A Very Big Deal

Originally Posted on | October 6, 2008

Friday night I was at the hospital for one of John’s breathing episodes. The worst one I have witnessed. The doctor came by to check him out, but nothing seemed to be any different than it had been. So they just turned up the oxygen a bit and let him rest. The good thing about Friday is that he had been eating more from a bottle.

Then on Saturday, the feedings got better. Kelly, one of the nurses (who are just great by the way), and I were all able to get John to take over 30 ml from a bottle at different feedings (a meal is 80 ml of milk). Saturday was by far the best day he had had eating.

Then came Sunday. Actually our Sunday together began at midnight. I read John the Nicene Creed to help him know more about who he believes in. Then the next morning, Kelly, William, and I went to the early service at church, grabbed an early lunch, then headed to the hospital. We were there for the 1:30 and 4:30 feedings.

At 1:30, John took 20 ml. Not bad. Then at 4:30, John went to town. Kelly gave him 40 ml before she had to go pump. We were very excited because the most he had ever taken before at one sitting was 40 ml. Then I took a try. John took 40 ml more—he had taken his entire meal by bottle with no need for a tube at all! Needless to say, Kelly and I were (and are) very excited. And even as (or more) important, he did all this throughout the weekend without any breathing problems (since Friday night). We don’t think about breathing much, but at the NICU, breathing is a very big deal.

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Breathing and Eating

Originally Posted on | October 8, 2008

Breathing – After a d-sat (de-saturation, i.e., a reduction of the oxygen saturation in the blood) free weekend, John has had several episodes. His saturation should range from 92% to 100%. It falls into the 80s at times, and that is no big deal. But when it start hitting the 60s and below, that is where there is a problem. So a disappointment, but opportunity for prayer as well.

Eating – John ate four straight meals via bottle, from 7:30 last night to 4:30 this morning! Please thank God for this, and pray for a continued desire and ability for John to suck and swallow, and for Kelly and I to have the time to do the feedings ourselves. They almost always go better when we are doing it. The nurses are usually watching several children, and often don’t have the time it takes to get a whole meal down.

Care Conference – We will be having the conference at 5:30 on Thursday with the neonatologist, the neurologist, the physical and occupational therapists, etc. Please pray for wisdom, and also for good results from the EEG John will have today.

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Lots of Things to Pray For

Originally Posted on | October 10, 2008

We met with the doctors last evening in our care conference. A lot of reality. A lot of uncertainty. But also some clarity in what we need to do, look for, and pray for over the next few weeks.

Prayer Requests

I have said before, and I will say again, that God’s will will be done in John’s life. But today we exhort you to pray for healing in our little boy. And to pray for our family’s prayer life as well. Prayer doesn’t come naturally to this fallen world. And though in can be said to come naturally to those redeemed by the blood of Christ, the old, sinful flesh still gets in the way, particularly when exhaustion sets in. So here are some way you can pray for us:

  • Offer thanks to God for John, William, the medical staff at Seton, the body of Christ that is sustaining us, and for John’s great improvement in eating this last week
  • Pray for John to be able to breathe on his own without intervention
  • Pray for John’s seizures to go away
  • Pray that John would be able to eat without a tube
  • Pray that John’s heart would continue to sustain him without intervention
  • William is notably missing the time he usually has with his entire family. Please pray for God’s comfort upon him, and that he would turn to his Father in heaven even more than to his parents for love.
  • Pray that the doctors and medical staff would be given great wisdom and skill in caring for John (they have already exhibited this)
  • Pray that the Peacock family would rest in Christ during this time of trial, particularly in his Word, in prayer, and with gratitude

Now on to the details.

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Where We Are

Originally Posted on | October 15, 2008

Things get busy, so we don’t write. But then so many things happen, we don’t know where to start when we do try to write.

So I’ll start where I am, in the NICU (this is from last night).

John is undergoing a 24 hour pulmonary cardiogram (PCG). It is the doctors next attempt—as much a process of elimination as search for a specific cause—to understand why he is having his breathing challenges.

This is the first time we have engaged a pulmonologist in John’s care. He will look at the results of the PCG for airflow, reflux, heart rates, etc. to see what else we can learn. As previously mentioned, an ENT will come in soon thereafter to take a look at John’s airways from a structural perspective. The combination will enlighten us in some ways, either telling what the problem is, or what it is not.

We’ve also began a search for experts in John’s particular brain malformation, Bilateral perisylvian polymicrogyria (BPP). Not that John isn’t getting good care now—he is. But no telling who is out there who might bring just a little more insight into John’s situation. We really don’t want to bring John home with a tracheostomy, and perhaps someone can help John’s doctors identify the reasons for his breathing disruptions.

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Happy Birthday

Originally Posted on | October 16, 2008

Today is John’s birthday. He is one month old. Happy birthday, John!

I’ve loaded three new photos of John in the photo section. One of these shows him without any wires or tubes. It was the first time we’ve seen him since the day he was born without any tube, etc. They took everything off to give him a bath. And they left his feeding tube out for almost half a day. But eventually had to put it back in.

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The Body of Christ

Originally Posted on | October 20, 2008

I was talking to some friends at church Sunday. Among the topics of conversation was rest: “Thus the heavens and the earth were finished, and all the host of them. And on the seventh day God finished his work that he had done, and he rested on the seventh day from all his work that he had done. So God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it God rested from all his work that he had done in creation.” – Genesis 2:1-3

As God rested after His work of creation, He gives rest to His people in His creation. One way He does this is through the body of Christ: “The cup of blessing that we bless, is it not a participation in the blood of Christ? The bread that we break, is it not a participation in the body of Christ. Because there is one bread, we who are many are one body, for we all partake of the one bread.” – 1 Corinthians 10:16-17

Amidst our weariness, the Peacock family is being blessed with much rest in the body of Christ these days.

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A Lot of Love at Seton & Dell

Originally Posted on | October 22, 2008

We moved to Dell Children’s today. Well, I should say that Kelly helped John move today. I haven’t been there yet. But will be tomorrow. I am taking the morning shift while Kelly goes to the Ladies Bible Study at church. It has been a while since she has been able to go.

The transition went well. John had a good day, especially compared to yesterday. Tuesday he had a pretty severe seizure/desaturation episode and stopped breathing. Kelly was there. But they got him back up and going without much trouble.

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Seizures, Transitions, & Routines

Originally Posted on | October 28, 2008

(This was supposed to be posted Tuesday, but it wasn't.)

John’s heart procedure (the balloon aortoplasty) was scheduled for tomorrow, but now has been delayed until Thursday morning at 9 a.m. The reason is that they need to have a surgeon on standby in case something goes wrong, and no one was available on Wednesday.

Since last Wednesday, we’ve been at Del Children’s Hospital. It was tough to move, but it has been nice to have a room to ourselves and be able to have more visitors. The transition from Seton to Dell Children’s finally settled down on Saturday. John and William’s Aunt Liz and cousin Annie came to town to help out (a lot of other family has been here as well during this time). We had both a fair amount of time with John and William. And just the two of us. Plus, John ate all of his meals from a bottle from 8am to 5 pm. No desaturations at all. He hadn’t had a seizure for 3 days.

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The Gifts of God

Originally Posted on | October 30, 2008

John’s procedures went well. The bronchoscopy revealed no further blockages in his throat, and Dr. Nowlin said he'd outgrow the laryngomalacia. So that is good news.

The balloon aortoplasty also had good results. They were able to reduce the gap in the blood pressure on either side of the valve by about 50% with very little leakage. Dr. Finnegan said that he wouldn't be surprised if we had to do this again in 4 to 6 months, but it could be longer as well. In any case, we've bought some time to deal with the seizures. The only complication from the procedure was that John lost his pulse in his right leg because of trauma to the veins/arteries--they had to run both tubes up his right leg because they couldn't get access through his left leg. But this evening the pulse is returning. They can't feel it, but they can hear it with the Doppler. So please pray for the full recovery of John’s leg.

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A Recurring Pattern

Originally Posted on | November 4, 2008

John recovered well from his procedure last week. But since Saturday morning he has been having problems with seizures and breathing. The two problems are related at times, but it also appears that John is having breathing problems not related to his seizures. But it is hard to sort this all out while the seizures are ongoing.

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The New Normal

Originally Posted on | November 11, 2008

Just a quick note to ask for prayers. The doctors keep upping John’s medications, but the breakthroughs of seizures appear to be increasing—even though he had increased dosages today, he still had three seizure episodes throughout the day. The doctors have told us that this means we may not be able to control them at least for now. So we are meeting with them this morning (Tuesday 8 a.m.) to discuss what that means—short-term and long-term. In particular, we’ll be discussing what support John and our family will need in order to bring him home while he is still having seizures, and how to make all that happen so we can bring him home.

Please keep John, our family, and John’s doctors and care providers in your prayers.

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My Shepherd Will Supply My Need

Originally Posted on | November 12, 2008

Since Bill has been going up the hospital at night, some of the bedtime routine for our oldest son, William has come into my care as of late. William enjoys “just one more song” and not so much because of my singing voice, but because I think he really likes the company and would rather not go to sleep right away. I also believe he has found some comfort in the hymns that we have been regularly singing as he picks the same requests over and over. One of his favorites is “O the Deep, Deep Love of Jesus”. He also likes “Amazing Grace”. They bring me great comfort as well and a sense of peace I never thought possible. One song that gives me great hope and peace is, “My Shepherd Will Supply My Need”. It goes like this:

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A New Diet

Originally Posted on | November 18, 2008

Last week, the doctors gave John an experimental does of steroids, hoping to short-circuit the seizure process going on in his brain. It worked for a while—for about three days, the seizures were much less frequent and intense, but then Saturday came along and seizures returned. Although since then, the seizures don’t seem to be quite up to the level they were before.

The next step is putting John on a Ketogenic diet. This diet is designed to put his system into a state of Ketosis, which mimics aspects of fasting by forcing the body to burn fat rather than carbohydrate. This has an anticonvulsant effect in many patients. It means taking John off of breast milk, at least for the time being, and we don’t necessarily like that from an emotional perspective. But the alternative is to try yet again another anticonvulsant medicine, and they haven’t been all that successful so far. If all things work out the diet will begin on Wednesday once he comes off of his Ph probe, which is designed to give us more information about whether John has problems with reflux.

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More Questions

Originally Posted on | November 24, 2008

John’s seizures have worsened—back to where they were before the first dose of steroids. Dr. Reardon, the neurologist, decided John needed to be stabilized and didn't want to wait until we started the Ketogenic diet, so they gave John a second round of steroids starting Saturday. Can’t do much more of this, though, because too much steroid treatment will make John stop producing his own, then it takes months to wean him off the steroids until his body starts back up again.

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Meditation, Prayer, and Fasting

Originally Posted on | November 24, 2008

We finished our conference with the medical staff this morning. After all the questions, discussions, and mystery of the last couple of months, we seem to have reached a place of (relative) clarity. The clarity comes from the fact that we have come down to choosing between two paths that bring John home to be with us. And we plan on informing the medical team of our decision tomorrow. While this will not be the end of the decision-making process for us, it is clearly the first significant decision we have had to make. The details of the decision and the paths are below.

To help us make this decision, our family is going to have an evening of meditation, prayer, and fasting, using two passages of Scripture to guide us:

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January Notes from Our Friends

Originally Posted on | January 1, 2009

Friday, January 2, 2009 9:02 AM, CST
I’m so thankful you are all home together! Love the family picture. God is good. Praying for seizures to cease!
Gayle Clark
Austin, TX

Sunday, January 4, 2009 4:39 PM, CST
What a blessing to rejoice with you today at John’s baptism. Thank you so much for letting us know about it. Please keep the updates coming now that you are home.
With love and thanks for your precious family,
Ed and Jamie
Jamie Kruft

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February Notes from Our Friends

Originally Posted on | February 1, 2009

Sunday, February 1, 2009 12:45 AM, CST
Please know that you, John and all of your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Many challenges lie ahead. Your faith in God will give you strength and help you to find the good. God Bless.
With love,
Fln Neve
Fort Worth, TX

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March Notes from Our Friends

Originally Posted on | March 1, 2009

Sunday, March 1, 2009 7:56 AM, CST
Dear Kelly and Bill,
May God continue to bless you all and care abundantly for John and William. I keep thinking of how you ministered to the hospital staff at Dell. I thank you for encouraging me with faith in Christ you all are displaying through such a difficult time. Love Gretchen Bixler

Saturday, March 21, 2009 8:31 AM, CDT
I am so glad to hear that John (and you all too!) had a good rest of the week. May the Lord continue to be with you all and give you his peace.
Love and prayers,
lori akin

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April Notes from Our Friends

Originally Posted on | April 30, 2009

Friday, April 10, 2009 10:19 PM, CDT
I am still thinking of you guys and praying too. May you have a blessed Easter. He is risen!Love,

lori akin

Wednesday, April 15, 2009 8:56 AM, CDT
Dear precious Peacocks,

We love you and love reading about John. Thank you for encouraging us all in Christ Jesus. Praying for you today and always,

Jamie for all the Krufts
Jamie Kruft
Austin, TX

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"What am I Going to do without my Aircraft Carrier?

Originally Posted on | September 15, 2009 

“What am I going to do without my aircraft carrier?”

William asked me this question multiple times last Saturday, shortly after we watched his beloved aircraft carrier float down the street and into the storm drain on its way to Shoal Creek. Even though it could barely float anymore, William had played with that plastic five and dime toy for years in the bathtub, and my heart broke for him as I helplessly watched it disappear down the drain.

In answer to his question, I spoke to him of God’s comfort and provision for us. But also told that sometimes that we just lose things and don’t understand why, but even so we must know that God is good.

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