Ollie's heart journey was a scary one. I have always had faith in God, but Ollie's health tested my faith & made it grow stronger. You think you have faith until you have a child with a major health issue, and then you realize just how much you need to grow that faith. I can't even explain the process we have been through.
People often ask me how that experience was, and here it is six weeks post surgery...
I am now thankful for her heart story. I never thought I'd say open heart surgery was a great experience, but it truly was one of the best, most beautiful experiences in my life. It sounds so funny to say that, but it's true.
I learned to give it over to God, and for those of you that have done this you know how hard it REALLY is to do. She was in his hands. I handed my baby off broken, with a heart that she couldn't survive with. Through big tears, I told her to be brave and that Jesus and the angels were holding her hands. Jade & I were more afraid than she was.
A living angel fixed her. I don't know how he did it so well, but I truly believe God works through that man. Everytime he spoke to us I would just stare at his hands and think, those hands are truly miracles. He returned Ollie to our family with a healthy heart! In a matter of 4 hours it went from broken to beating beautifully! It is one of the best sounds I have ever heard.
When we left Children's Hospital to head home, Jade said that was one of the worst weeks of his life. I quickly said, no honey it was the best week of your life. He then agreed.
You see, for as stressful as it was & for all the tears that led up to that day, it's behind us now and we get this beautiful baby. No more fears, no more worries, just her huge charming personality. Aubrie & Everett have a healthy sister that can now play with them.
I also believe I am at a better place because of what Ollie has gone through. You see, I don't grieve at all about Down Syndrome anymore. I don't think of what life would be without it or who she would be or how I would change things. I don't worry about her future. I think when you have a healthy child with Down Syndrome it's sometimes harder for families to move beyond the Down Syndrome. I believe they feel broken for a longer period of a time.
A child like Ollie, with a serious heart defect & Down Syndrome changes that view. All I have cared about since her birth was her heart. I didn't want to lose my baby. Even though I had this strong faith in God, there was that nagging piece of truth in my brain that she could die. I never spoke of it, but I felt it daily on my shoulders that we could potentially come home without her to a nursery and all her things, without our baby girl. That snapped life into perspective so fast for me. It was a good fear. It was a fear I swallowed daily & prayed continuously over.
I am grateful for it. I look around today and count my blessings constantly. My house is messier than it's ever been, but it doesn't seem to matter like it used to. I am much more patient with my kids. I see the beauty in every day things. I am a bit of a control freak, and anymore I am not so much. I am relaxed & breath easier. When we have a fun day, I truly reflect on it and think we have such a sweet life, we are so blessed, and I truly praise God daily. I don't send him a list of needs and wants for myself, but I praise him for what he has given me because he is good & without him I know the mess of a person that I would be.