Monday, June 18, 2012

Defying the Odds

 Just as Clayton's birthday celebrations ended, we have Father's Day.  I was just thinking about Father's Day 7 years ago and it reminded me of all that Clayton has been through.  Seven years ago on Father's Day we were celebrating in the Hillcrest NICU. I was thinking of how far we've come since we learned that Clayton was becoming part of our family.
     Let's start at the beginning. In the fall of 2004 Chad and I decided to take a cruise with 5 other
 couples.  We had three little kids at home and just making this trip happen was quite an arrangement.  My life was crazy with the little ones and Cort, as a toddler,  was enough to make me exhausted.  But, we decided that going on a cruise with friends was a much needed break.  We had a great time, enjoyed sun and sand and came back relaxed and ready to take on our busy toddler and little girls.
    About 2 weeks later, my breath was knocked out of me when a pregnancy test came back positive.  Oh my dear!!! How was I going to handle FOUR kids with no grandparents in town, no family... OMG!
 As the weeks went on, I got used to the idea and was excited about our new addition.  I was a little irritated at the pharmacetical company that soon announced recall on their birth control drug, but mostly, I was excited about the new addition.  However, I was constantly worried.  I just couldn't imagine it possible that I would have FOUR healthy babies.  Surely the odds were NOT in my favor since I had already given birth 3 times with no complications.  Later in my first trimester I started experiencing the signs of miscarriage.  Having lost my first baby to miscarriage, I knew that this was likely the case.  As I drove to my doctor's office to see a little heart beat, I just remember preparing myself for the worst and praying for the best.. Well, sure enough, the doppler rolled over my tummy and there he was.. Heart beating and looking as healthy as could be. He continued to grow inside my tummy even though my entire first trimester was rocky. He defied the ODDS.. He was still there.. PTL...
    Fast Forward to the end of my pregnancy.. His birthday, June 16,2005.  After an uneventful birth, there he was 8 lbs 9 oz.. as cute as could be.  While I was overwhelmed with the thought of four kiddos, my heart was overjoyed.  Praise the Lord.   Shortly after his birth, the nurse came in and listened to his heart and said to me... I'm taking him to the nursery.  I'll be right back .  She returned, but not with Clayton.  He was admitted to the NICU because he was born with a VSD.. a heart defect.  After several scary days in the NICU while tests were run, we learned that it was minor and would
surely close on its own requiring no surgery.  He was overseen for a year at Cooks, then given the release to do anything he wished to do with no followup... He defied the odds... Praise the Lord.
   As far as health problems go, this was it for him.  There was the one time we were heading to Disney on Thanksgiving Day at DFW airport and he got lost.  Three years old, a crowded airport, and two parents who each thought the other had him.. and he's gone.  After about 5 minutes of frantic searching, screaming and acting hysterical, which seemed like an eternity, he walked up holding his blankie, crying, escorted by a security guard.  SCARED ME TO DEATH... started our trip out scary, but there he was!! He defied the Odds.  I grabbed a luggage tag, completed it, attached it to his jeans, and off we went.
    Since that time, we are had full health, lots of great fun, and lots of crazy behavior problems too.  If you've never read the story of how a passerby thought a screaming Clayton getting "kidnapped" in Walmart by me, his MOTHER.. You should read it.    Besides a few times like this when we thought we would kill him, he's had a very healthy happy 7 years and we plan for him to have many more.  While it doesnt seem like him getting Rhabdomyosarcoma is defying the odds, since only 500 kids are diagnosed a year, the fact that he's fighting it and winning like he is.. is certainly Defying the Odds.  Please pray with us that Clayton keeps WINNING!!

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