We made our way home and waited. Finally the phone rang and confirmed what we already knew in our heart. Our little baby was diagnosed with Trisomy 18.....all the statistics were poor for survival. We also found out in that phone call that we were having a boy. We named him Jonah which means "dove or peace" and his middle name is Ethan meaning "firm and constant". God was our firm and constant peace through all this. It was amazing how much this little frail boy would teach us about our great God.
Now that we knew what we were dealing with from a medical stand point there was a whole new world opened to us. One that we found overwhelming and disappointing. Even before we had a firm diagnosis of Jonah's condition it become very clear that the over all recommendation was to terminate my pregnancy. We even had believing family put on the pressure to end our babies life to "make it easier". The hospital offered us an abortion the first day we were there even without a definitive diagnosis. This baby was not a person to them. We were offered a support group and counselling if we decided to abort the baby. When we made it clear we were not going to end Jonah's life we were told to go home and have the baby in my local hospital. We were informed that we could not find a doctor anywhere who would do any life saving procedures on a baby with Jonah's condition. It was even suggested to us that if Jonah survived the birth that we should starve him as not to prolong his life. There is no law in Canada to protect babies like this....the doctors have no obligation what so ever. I cannot begin to tell you how the mama bear in me came out. It seemed unbelievable that if this little baby against all odds survived...... these professionally trained people would not help him because he did not meet the standard. Productivity and performance make you valuable in our culture.....not life itself. I was beyond shocked by this. Thus began the fight. So not only were we faced with the almost certain death of our child we were pushed aside because we chose to value his life over what most assumed was the easier road....termination.
Each day came and went. My hope was in God because there was hope no where else. We prayed God would intervene and save our baby. Each morning I waited to feel him move to know he was alive. We were told he could die at any time and most likely if he survived full term he would fail during labor. Each day he kicked I was blessed with one more day with my son. Each of those days was a treasure and gift. I clung to God daily wondering on a regular basis how I was going to carry this little boy 20 more weeks knowing the likely outcome.
Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, lean not on your own understanding acknowledge the Lord in all of your ways and he will make your path straight. Proverbs 3:5-6
O, my strength come quickly to help me. Psalm 22:19
God is my refuge and strength an ever present help in trouble. Psalm 46:1