Friday, October 5, 2012

That Moment When Everything Changed

August 24, 2010
This morning was a little upsetting because I'd had a little spotting in the middle of the night and this morning. Oh sweet baby, I hope you are okay! Around 9:00am, I called the nurse to see what she thought. She didn't seem too concerned, but she wanted to double check with the doctor. Well I was at school, so I couldn't just have my cell phone out all day, and of course I missed her return call. When I called back, she said they seem to think everything was just fine and you're probably just growing. Hmmm, silly baby, I bet you are long like your daddy and you just had to stretch out your legs!
A little later in the day, I had another missed call from the doctor's office. It was a different nurse this time, Nurse Betsy. I returned her call and couldn't reach her. Couldn't reach her. Couldn't reach her. I bet I tried a hundred times. Finally at 4:30pm, she calls me back. A routine blood screen came back with a high-risk of Trisomy 18. Trisomy what??
This was my thinking...okay, no big deal. If I'm a high-risk for this Trisomy thing, tell me what I need to do to make myself a low-risk. That's what you do when something is high-risk, right?
I remember Nurse Betsy's dramatic pause. I asked her what I needed to do and she told me that I was being referred to a genetics counselor. That's weird, why on Earth would I need a counselor?
So I get off the phone and I immediately get on Google. My heart sank. I can't even read sentences as the singular words jump out of the page and slap me in the face...DNA, chromosomes, defective, abnormalities, malformations, miscarriage, stillbirth, LETHAL, TERMINATE.
My heart was in my stomach and my eyes blurred the computer screen into a giant twinkling puddle. I ran to the bedroom and fell to my knees and cried to my Heavenly Father. Please say it isn't so! PLEASE! The emptiness consumed my whole body as I just fell to the floor wishing my husband was at home. I was helpless. I was so devastated. I couldn't even pull myself off the floor. I needed someone. A sudden surge of fear overcame me and it was so overwhelming I couldn't be alone, yet at the same time, I couldn't pull myself up to call KC. I wanted my husband, I wanted my Mom and Dad, I wanted someone, please! Just then I hear my front door just open and a "yoooo-hooooo!"
I got up and ran to her and collapsed in her arms. How did she know to stop? She never just randomly stops over. Heavenly Father, thank you for bringing my momma to me. No words would come out, I just hugged her and cried. She was scared to death, "What is it, baby?" she said with her frail voice.
I could barely force out the words, but I somehow was about to spout, "Nurse called, Trisomy 18, birth defects, baby doesn't live."
Momma held me tight and got Daddy to come in from the car. We all just cried and held one another. Daddy gave me a blessing. He placed his hands upon my head and gave me the most beautiful blessing. I immediately felt some relief from the despair. What a sweet miracle, a tender mercy from Heaven, for them to be just driving through and happen to stop. Like I said, they never just stop by without a call first! I'm thankful for parents who are in tune with the Holy Spirit enough to have heard the promptings that led them to my door step at that exact moment. There's no doubt it was God's intervention. KC finally got home from work. He noticed my red, tear soaked cheeks, and with fear in his voice said, "What is it?" I fell into your daddy's arms and cried again as I explained to him....
Trisomy 18, Edward's Syndrome, is when there is a third copy of the 18th chromosome. The effects are lethal to the body. Not only will the baby suffer brain, heart, spinal cord, kidney and intestinal defects, but many physical defects also. The mother usually miscarries the baby before it ever has a chance to be born, but if she can carry the baby to term the child only survives days or hours. Trisomy 18 children are usually labeled Incompatible with Life....


April said...

My heart hurts after reading this. Thank you sweet April for sharing this story. I still think of you and Charles Patrick so often because our Grace was born so close to the same time. Your story will inspire and help so many hurting parents. You are so good to do this.

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