“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born, I set you apart.” - Jeremiah 1:5
My doctor’s appointment did not go well this morning. I received some upsetting– though not unexpected news– regarding my health. Everything is perfectly fine with Tatum, though today’s developments could alter her due date. Forgive me for being vague but that’s all I choose to reveal right now. I don’t think anyone could blame me for being despondent or even panicked. Yet above all else I felt….bummed. Reality isn’t something I’m trying to avoid nor am I minimizing a potentially serious situation. Instead I am humbled, knowing that my troubles pale in comparison to another family’s on this gloomy morning.
Heather Walker gives birth to her son Grayson James today. Diagnosed with anencephaly [a neural tube defect] during a routine ultrasound, the devastating reality is that her precious child will most likely go to Heaven very shortly after he is born. While I do not know the Walkers personally, we have many mutual friends, and I have been following her blog as she chronicles her family’s journey. Virtually all pregnant women carrying a child with this condition choose to terminate their pregnancy. Very few people would have faulted her had she made the same decision. However, that choice was never an option for her….and she never wavered in her commitment to carry Grayson to term.
I cannot think of a woman– a family– who more fully embodies what it means to believe in something greater than yourself. They are devout Christians who know that God has a plan for them and Grayson. They accept this plan. They trust in this plan. Whatever your religious and/or spiritual path, how can you not be inspired by their courage and conviction in their beliefs? The love and light exuded by this family is a miracle in and of itself. It’s entirely too easy to go to church, say a prayer, thank your Higher Power when the sailing is smooth. What you do while navigating the rough and stormy waters serves as the testament for your convictions. I am completely in awe of Heather and wish I could have even a fraction of her bravery, strength, and faith. By being the woman she is and sharing her story, so many lives have been touched.
How truly blessed I am to have two children in good health who haven’t had any prenatal distress or medical conditions. While Tatum hasn’t arrived yet, there is nothing to indicate that she will be anything less than healthy. I’ll give birth, recuperate for a few days, then go home with my infant daughter swaddled in my arms. Though we’re all praying for a miracle….Heather probably will not have the opportunity to take her son in her arms, yet she is comforted by the fact that he will be in the arms of Jesus. Her unshakable faith takes my breath away.
Please pray for this incredible family today and in the days and weeks following. If prayer is not something that resonates with you personally….send them healing energy. Have a moment of silence. Meditate. Light a candle. Uplift another human being. Help somebody who is suffering.
After spending 8 hours with his loving family, Grayson went peacefully at 5:57pm CST.
With infinite love, gratitude, and respect,