Monday, April 15, 2013

The Disheartening Effects of Pregnancy

Please Note: I will continue typing a small paragraph at the very beginning of each post about our recent, day-to-day interactions or stories with Isaac, while he's here with us. The "real" posts will begin Immediately after, starting with the title of the blog post. 

Monday, April 15, 2013- 

Isaac likes to kick me in the same place almost every time. It's right where the top of my pants push into my skin, getting tighter and tighter everyday! It's as if he's trying to tell me to back it off of him so he can stretch out in there. Is it rude of me not to loosen my pants just so he'll keep kicking me? :) Sydney started poking Isaac last week like a sibling would poke another. She thinks it's cute to poke him, although I'm the middle man that absorbs most of the poke! I let her do it because she won't get to when he's on the other side of my tummy. My favorite daily experiences with Isaac continue to be between him and Sydney. Yesterday we took "them" to the park after our Sunday Walk. :) Sydney can't help but include him in everything: "Is baby brother gonna come play? Come on, baby Isaac!" And so you see me at the top of the playground equipment :)

Isaac's story: Post 2
The Disheartening Effects of Pregnancy

"We need to talk about a problem with your baby," the doctor said to us as I sat myself in the upright position. The words came at me slow and my heart was slow to drop. The tears came a little delayed as well- I wouldn't let them pour out until I knew what she meant by "problem." I hoped that she'd meant to say there was only a "concern." That word would have been much less frightening in comparison, but a "problem" potentially meant something more permanent, more severe. As she explained what they'd seen in the ultrasound, what we hadn't seen until she pointed it out to us, that is when I couldn't control my tears anymore, though I continued to try the entire time she explained so that I could hear and understand the words that were coming from her mouth.

Five minutes after we returned home (Scott went straight back to campus), I was to have a friend and her daughter over to chat with and play with Sydney. When I determined not to let myself cry on that short 5 minute drive home from the hospital so that my eyes wouldn't be all red and puffy, I determined not to call and cancel, though it was more than tempting. I wanted nothing more than to be in the privacy of my own home and let the tears burst out as soon as I got there. Yet, I didn't want to just go home and mope around and cry all day and I figured having them over would be a good distraction for me.

Almost as soon as they left, we headed back to the hospital for the blood test we'd scheduled that morning, the blood test that may or may not later confirm what she'd seen in the ultrasound. Luckily, Scott could again, meet me at the hospital, which is part of his campus, being a med. student.

I was more exhausted from holding in my tears than I thought I'd be, but as soon as I returned home, it was time for another guest to come to our home and help make decorations for a baby shower that would take place in my home only two days later. Again, I welcomed the distraction and put off the crying for even longer. I didn't want to stress myself out by canceling this much needed help.

Finally, when this friend left, I could let my emotions flow and have time to actually think things over for the first time all day. I could finally search for some sort of peace or comfort, that really didn't seem to come fully until much later that evening, and would only increase during the days following. Scott canceled a meeting he had with the bishopric to stay home with me that night, and the bishop came over after the meeting so that they could give me/"baby boy Walton" a blessing.

Finally, after having received the first bit of comfort through a priesthood blessing, the bigger picture began coming together, a piece of which we received exactly three months sooner, right after I found out I was pregnant. God knew long before any doctor knew exactly about our baby boy Isaac and His plan for him. God told us, prepared us, long before any doctor could. He warned us far in advance so that when it came time for us to find out the reality of our situation, He could comfort us when we needed it most, with the blessing I received when Bishop came over and Scott and him layed their hands on my head for a blessing of comfort and guidance.

Here is the entry from my journal (Click here, then scroll to where the blue font begins) where I shared a while ago about the blessing I received when I was only a few days pregnant and what I then thought "finding peace and comfort in the disheartening effects of pregnancy" to mean then, not knowing anything that was to come, or what it really stood for. Since then, I've received two separate priesthood blessings in which I was promised that I would continue to receive revelation from our Heavenly father, BUT that I wouldn't always understand immediately what He was trying to tell me. I clearly didn't understand immediately what that original blessing meant, as I attributed the disheartening effects of pregnancy to my morning sickness, which I hadn't experienced with Syd, but that was comforting to me because it meant I was still pregnant. Also, the fact that I wouldn't always understand immediately what He (Heavenly Father) is trying to tell me is key to future experiences which I will share at a later time. VERY COOL.

God has a plan. He has a plan for each of us.

We still don't know how that plan will continue to play out exactly for our baby Isaac, but we do know that God has a plan for him, even if the part of that plan that takes place during his earth life is very short. We know because He told us, long before any doctor could. We have found great comfort in knowing (because we have sought that knowledge), that God's hand is so much a part of our lives- what we are going through, and more importantly, a part of our baby Isaac's life.

Because of Him, and true to His words through the power of priesthood blessings, we truly have been able to find "peace and comfort in the disheartening effects of pregnancy." 

Even so, it was two weeks later that we learned that the information, which we'd received at that appointment on February 7, was not the worst news. 

*Details of the ultrasound and findings
are in this letter which Scott emailed to our family and a few others late in the evening on February 7, the day of our appointment. The letter below was the first letter in which we shared anything about this experience with anyone. 

-From my journal-

Friday, February 8, 2013

*Yesterday I was at the doctor half the day, in two different appointments. The first was an ultrasound and the second was a blood draw. Scott wrote this email about what we found out..he sent it to our family.

Hey all,

I just wanted to send y'all a quick update. Steph and I had an ultrasound appointment this morning for a routine screening that they do. Since she miscarried a few months prior, she has been in the "high risk" category. That just means many more ultrasounds and appointments in the high risk office. So far things have been going well, despite some morning sickness that seems to be subsiding. She is 12 weeks and 2 days so it is still early to tell much, but the tech said she is almost positive it will be a BOY!! We are very excited about that.

The ultrasound tech went to show the doctor the images and said they would be back in shortly to talk to us about them. Anyways, the doctor came in and you could sense the uneasiness in her voice. She said that we needed to talk about a problem with our baby. He has some things that haven't quite developed perfectly up to this point and that is why we are writing. He has a protrusion of his abdominal contents into the umbilical cord region. This can be one of two things: A gastroschisis (less concerning, but requiring a surgical fix after birth) or an omphalocele (more concerning, sometimes accompanied by chromosomal abnormalities or other defects including heart, GI, urinary system etc.). The doctor believes it is the latter, more serious one, but it was to early to say definitively. During normal development, the intestines normally leave the abdomen and enter the yolk sac area while the body grows, then they migrate back in. This hasn't happened as it should. Barring a miracle, he will be born with his intestines/abdominal contents outside of his body that will require surgery. If this is the only problem, almost all the children survive and undergo surgery to fix the problem. About half the time, there are other birth defects that accompany the omphalocele. The cause can also be chromosomal. About 30% of these cases are caused by a chromosomal defect, often being a trisomy 18. Trisomy 18 is not very compatible with life but usually goes to term. It also may be caused by trisomy 13 (even worse than 18) or trisomy 21 (down syndrome, but this is less common for this abnormality). There are a million things to talk about and mention but it doesn't do much good until we get results from some of the tests they did today, looking at the baby's DNA.

I am writing to ask for your prayers, fasting, and faith.

Moroni 7:27-30; 33

27 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, have amiracles ceased because Christ hath ascended into heaven, and hath sat down on the right hand of God, to bclaim of the Father his rights of mercy which he hath upon the children of men?
28 For he hath answered the ends of the law, and he claimeth all those who have faith in him; and they who have faith in him willacleave unto every good thing; wherefore he badvocateth the cause of the children of men; and he dwelleth eternally in the heavens.
29 And because he hath done this, my beloved brethren, have miracles ceased? Behold I say unto you, Nay; neither have aangels ceased to minister unto the children of men.
30 For behold, they are subject unto him, to minister according to the word of his command, showing themselves unto them of strong faith and a firm mind in every form of agodliness.

33 And Christ hath said: aIf ye will have bfaith in me ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is cexpedient in me.

Christ has the ability to work miracles. I have witnessed them first hand and have absolute faith that He can do anything that is expedient to Him and the will of our Father in Heaven. We are grateful for this opportunity to exercise unwavering faith in Him and know without a doubt that he will bless us for our faith and righteous desires. I know that we can see miracles and that we will witness a miracle in our family. We don't know what that miracle is but we are asking, with faith, that He heal our baby boy. We are just asking that you join with us. Like it says in Moroni, miracles have not ceased, and they happen according to God's will. We just have to be the type of people mentioned above. "Men of strong faith and a firm mind in every form of godliness."

Please join us in praying and exercising that faith. There is no room for doubt or fear; we don't have time for these things. We love you and are grateful for all of you. We are going to be fasting this Saturday-Sunday and would appreciate you joining us if you can. Thanks again, we love you!

Scott, Stephanie, Sydney, Baby Boy Walton


  1. I am so grateful that you would be willing to share these things. The faith that you and Scott have is beautiful and humbling. What a beautiful example you both are. I love you guys and will continue to add my faith and prayers to yours.

  2. I am so humbled, and impressed by the way that you carry yourself. You and Scott are such amazing examples! We are thinking of you, and keeping your cute little family in our prayers :) love you guys!

  3. Mary and Michelle, thank you so much for your comments. We love you guys as well and are so grateful for your prayers!

  4. Thanks for helping my testimony grow through your expressions of faith in our Heavenly Farher that knows an loves us.

  5. Stephanie,
    I don't know you nor do I recall how I stumbled upon your blog last night however I do believe I am to reach out to you in telling you I know someone (the brother and SIL of a dear friend) who lived through VERY much the same story you are living out in faith with Isaac. Their daughter was born with an omphalocele in addition to other accompanying health concerns. They have an AMAZING story themselves. I'd love to assist in connecting you to them (they live in Texas) if it something you desire. Perhaps they can share their story, answer questions ... at the very least I KNOW they will partner with you in prayer.

    1. Thanks for writing Christine. I appreciate it! Do you have an email I could contact you at?

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