Wednesday, May 27, 2009


Has it only been a year?? (well, almost a year) Next Friday, my son Matthew will turn one year old! He will spend the first part of his 1st birthday driving 1.5 hrs down to Egleston Children's Hospital, one hour getting fed and medicated, 3 hours for dialysis and vital and another 1.5 hours traveling home. Not a fun birthday...but a great one nonetheless! This is the baby that I was told to abort numerous times at 16, 17 and 18weeks gestation. This was the baby that was given a 5% chance of making it to birth, a 12- 15% chance of making to his first birthday and only a 20% chance of enduring hemodialysis at such a small size. And I am 100% thrilled to tell them to their faces...they were wrong!
From mid February 08 to June 3rd 08 I had several "procedures" to keep him going: 4 fetal surgeries for shunt placement, 11 bladder/abdominal taps to relive his urine build up, 13 amnio-infusions for lung development, 2 rounds of steroid shots (those suckers smart!), 5 IV lines and several blood drawls/labs. I don't regret any of it. He's had much more than that in just his first month of life. Most people (the lucky ones) never have a surgery in their lifetime...Matthew has had 14 in one year. OK, 10 in one I am counting the fetal surgeries in there too. And I have never been happier to report that we are moving closer to yet another surgery...transplant!!
I got the OK to move forward with evaluation last Friday, after I made a small stink to his nephrologist. He wanted to wait until Matthew was 9 kilos, he's at 8.5...he'll make 9 kilos in a matter of weeks people. But weeks add up. Ian is starting summer vacation TOMORROW!!! Now granted 18 days of this he'll be in Savannah for drill, but we finally get to spend some family time together making memories. :) We need his time off to do the onslaught of donor testing that is required to give my son a healthy kidney. And based on seems we will be transplanting in August, his due date month. :)
I hate that he will have another surgery, more scars, a long hospital stay...but I LOVE that he will LIVE because of it. People often ask how could I endure sending my child up to the hospital and waving good bye as the wheel (well, they just carrying him in their arms - fighting over who actually carries him) him into the OR, without a tear in my eye? Because they are helping him...each surgery has helped him...whether the "outcome" has been what we wanted or not...he's been better off with the surgery.
To be a smiling, waving, babbling, drooling baby boy that has fought for his life since 16 weeks gestation...well 12 weeks since that is when they say urine starts to form in babies...I'm so proud he has defied the odds. The numbers don't lie. Matthew may be an "outlier" But the number one has never been as much of an accomplishment as it has for Matthew, my brave fighting Matthew.


Kristin Campbell said...

Yeah! I am so happy for you and for Matthew that he has come so far and is going to start the testing! How wonderful! What a blessing.

I am so glad you fought for his life when they told you not to. I am so glad that you did everything you could do to give Matthew the best for his life.

You are such a good mom! It is a blessing they caught it early and a blessing you had all those procedures done early before he was born.

Congratulations! And Happy Birthday Matthew!

Jenn said...

Yay! Does he atleast get some cake for all that? lol

Susie said...

Awesome, Karen! I am so thrilled (and privileged) to read and be a "part" (albeit small and distant) of Matthew's journey! We will continue to pray for him.

And we praise God for Matthew and for your testimony to Him who gave this special little guy to you!

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