Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”
My pregnancy was just like many others. Everything was fine. The normal aches and pains, the nausea. The glow.
We had decided not to find out the gender of the baby until he was born. My family was beside themselves. “But what will the baby wear!? We won’t know what to buy!” My husband and I laughed. “The baby will be fine!” We really thought the baby would be fine. Perfectly healthy, ten fingers, ten toes.
They scheduled a c-section for early in the morning. Surprisingly, I wasn’t in the least bit scared, or nervous. Because remember, everything was going to be just fine. They laid me down and my husband held my hand and he smiled at me. The doctors shouted, “He’s here!”. “A BOY! It’s a BOY!”, my husband told me.
He walked over to the heating bed where they were cleaning him and told our baby boy his name. “Your name is Abel.” Everything was wonderful. Everything was fine! And then, it wasn’t.
The nurse brought the baby to me, to lay him on my chest and introduce him to his momma. But something was wrong. Before I could even focus my eyes on my newborn child they whisked him away. All I could hear was the nurse whispering, “He’s blue.”
Panic set in as I watched my baby disappear through the operating room doors. My husband, just as concerned, followed them. There I lay, spread out on an operating table, totally incapable of doing anything. Crying out for someone to tell me what was wrong. No one said a word.
The next few hours are a blur, I was still under a lot of anesthesia, and honestly, no one was telling me anything. I kept asking when I would get to hold my baby but, again, no one was answering me. Finally, a nurse came in. “We heard a murmur. You’re baby seems to have a heart issue. We’re flying him to the children’s hospital.” What?! But everything is fine. Everything is supposed to be fine!
Just before the baby was set to leave the hospital, I finally heard a diagnosis. Transposition of the Great Arteries, TGA. I kept thinking this couldn’t be reality. I hadn’t held my precious baby, I had barely even seen his face.
A storm kept them from mediflighting him out, so they had to take him by ambulance. Just before they left they rolled him into my room. He was hooked up to so many monitors. Cords were everywhere and there was an oxygen tube covering his face. It was my first time seeing my sweet Abel, and I still couldn’t tell what he even looked like. I, however, soaked that moment in as much as I could. No one could tell me he was going to be ok. They wouldn’t even promise me he’d make it to the children’s hospital alive.
I wanted to remember that moment like it was our first and our last; his little hand wrapped around my fingers, and his deep blue eyes staring into mine. I hoped he knew who I was. “I’m your mommy, little guy, and I love you.”, I whispered.