What a difference two weeks makes. It was two weeks ago today that we learned something was wrong with our precious little baby. How could that have only been two weeks ago? It feels like it was a lifetime ago. I feel like we’ve been walking this journey for awhile, yet I hope and pray that we are just at the very beginning with many, many weeks ahead with Gabriel.
Today was a special day for us. We got to see Gabriel for awhile when we had a 3D ultrasound done. This was a “fun day” — no diagnostics, no discussing of decisions, no medical terminology that is way over our heads. Just Tommy, me, and baby Gabriel. And the sonographer, too, of course, but I kind of forget about her and just imagine it as time two desperate parents got with their baby.
We got some great pictures of our baby boy. He is truly beautiful. He’s a little guy for his gestational age, which is to be expected, I suppose. But we just got to look at his little face a lot. We also got to see some really cool images of his hands, which was important to me. His hands are one of the markers of Trisomy 18. His hands are clenched into fists and his fingers are crossed. At first we really didn’t understand this, thinking that he would just open his hands up when he felt like it. We later realized that his hands are formed that way; it is the way he is made. So it was precious to me to get a close up, 3D view of his left hand, to be able to see the way his fingers were crossed. To see what they’ve been telling us for myself.
Our little one really likes to have his hands and his arms up by his face. We’ve seen that several times now. They tell me it’s the syndrome, but I say he’s a fighter.
We had the same sonographer today who we had 2 weeks ago. The one who first found problems with Gabriel. I had told Tommy before we got there that I really hoped it wasn’t the same woman. So when my name was called and I looked up and I saw her, I turned to Tommy and said “well, crap.” Not that there’s anything wrong with this woman. In fact, we learned a lot more about her today, and she is a wonderful person. But I think I was nervous about the same place, same time, same person who broke bad news to us before — nothing personal about her.
But turns out, I am so thankful we saw her again. She was so personal, so talkative, and so kind to us. She really went the extra mile taking pictures for us and getting me information I asked for. She told us what she believes God can do and said she’ll be praying for us. It was actually good to hear her talk about what she was thinking two weeks ago. She talked about how she wasn’t sure what to say but that she knew right away that there were serious issues. That’s why she was quiet. She’s never actually seen in a patient with the heart defect that Gabriel has. She’s never seen a trisomy before either. In all her years of practice. She told us we were her first. She said it was like all of the things you learn in school in case you ever see them but you never really do. But with us, she did. She said her friend, who’s also a sonographer, has never seen a heart defect like Gabriel’s either. We had a lot to talk about. It kind of felt like talking with a friend, and I am thankful for her. I’m thankful that she took the time to find Gabriel’s hands so I could see them better, because she knew it was important to me.
When we were leaving the office, the women at the front wanted to see Gabriel’s pictures. I felt like a proud mama, showing off pictures of my baby. And that’s exactly what I am and exactly what I did. I am so proud of Gabriel. I’m proud of the image of God that he bears. I’m proud of the way he’s making an impact. I’m proud that he fights so hard. I’m proud to be his mom.
We walked out the door and to the elevator and broke down. He’s just so beautiful. He looks perfect. I miss him, and he’s still here. I just want him.
Tommy and I went by the grocery store on our way home to Jack. We had to quickly leave. When we turned down one aisle we could just hear the cries of a baby — a newborn it sounded like. I was thinking of the ache in my heart as I heard those sweet noises. Tommy just leaned over to me and said “lucky”. We grabbed what we needed and bolted to the checkout. It’s hard to hear those things, see those things, knowing we likely won’t have that with Gabriel.
We’ve poured over Gabriel’s pictures from today. Watched the DVD. We love him so. Today was a blessing to us in many ways.
Tommy and I laughed that our questions were probably very different from the questions she usually gets at 3D ultrasounds. I imagine people usually ask for pictures of certain things, but instead of that I was asking if there was fluid building up around his heart, how big his ventricles were, and his growth and size. Oh how our life has changed.
The only negative from the ultrasound was that I asked her to measure his ventricles in his brain. I know it’s not nearly as precise or accurate as what they can and will do next time we’re at the high risk group, so I’m not getting upset about it, but it appears that there is more fluid in his brain than there was 2 weeks ago. Not a good thing. We should know more specifics this week or next week, as to whether that’s the case and what that means, but for now, I just ask will you please pray for this?
We are so thankful for all of your prayers! So thankful! It means more than we could ever say.
Here are our specific prayer requests:
– Please pray that more fluid is not accumulating in Gabriel’s brain! We are hopeful that it will not be worse than we saw 2 weeks ago.
– Please pray for guidance and wisdom for us and our doctors as we learn more information this week.
– Please pray for us as we learn how to handle this all with Jack. He’s so perceptive and knows and understands far more than I thought he did. I want to handle it well, and just because he’s young, doesn’t mean he doesn’t know.
Thank you for the love, support, comments, and prayers you give to my family. We are grateful with all of our hearts.