2 years ago you came into our lives. Dr. Wheeler assured us that we would "pick a day without too much snow" since we were going to be driving an hour and a half to deliver you. We picked the wrong day. There was a blizzard and it took us nearly 3 hours to get from our house in Goshen to the Dees' house in Fort Wayne, where we dropped your brother off with the plan of being home together in a couple of days.
|Big brother, Monkey|
When we arrived at the hospital, they told us that their records indicated I had delivered you earlier that week. I hadn't, I was certain of that. Less than 10 hours after we checked in, you came rushing into the world. You were round and red. You were beautiful. We instantly knew your name (we had narrowed it down to 2 choices). Your name means "empty" like a vessel waiting to be filled. Daddy believes you are an empty vessel for God.
Things did not go as planned. You did not eat well, but they discharged you anyhow. The day after we got home you were yellow. You were very yellow. When Daddy took you to the doctor, they discovered that your body temperature was dangerously low. We couldn't get you warm. You ended up back in the hospital. After multiple tests and more than a week in the hospital, the neurologist came to us with devastating news.
They told us that part of your brain was missing. The part that helps the brain interpret movement to help you balance. It would mean that learning skills like sitting and walking would be very difficult for you to accomplish. They also told us that there was a lot of "white matter" on your brain. It looked like you had a stroke some time before you were born. The white matter is damage to your brain, that is unpredictable. It could mean that he is mentally handicapped or that he struggles with motor function. Life is going to be difficult.
|Cross-eyed Crackers - before surgery|
You were referred to First Steps for therapy at 11 days old. You had visits from therapists every week for 20 months. They worked on your motor skills. You were behind for a long time - slightly behind. You caught up and they released you before you even turned 2.
Now, at 2 years old, you speak in sentences, using 7 or more words. You walk and run. You are very independent. You're stubborn - if you want to do something you will figure out how to do it. You really want to use the potty by yourself. You'll get there soon.
You are a blessing. God is filling you already and using you to help fill us. You are a miracle. You're doing so many things that the doctors believed you would struggle with. You are loved by so many people.
Happy Birthday Crackers.