I’ve delayed writing this for weeks. Mostly because I’m horrible with my words, and even more horrible when my words must encapsulate my feelings. Most of you know, my husband Mikey, is much more gifted in this area. Anyways, last October, Mikey and I announced that we were expecting the gift of a baby Puckett in April 2017. We were absolutely thrilled(even if it meant we had to cancel our Mexican vacation), as I had been very insecure about my ability to get pregnant due to some personal/medical issues. God had truly blessed us!
I will never forget our 20-week appt, which included a gender reveal! We were so excited to see our little one. Our ultrasound seemed to go great. The tech took all her images and showed us that we were having a sweet little girl!!! We recorded her heartbeat so we could listen to the soft rhythm over and over. After our ultrasound, we waited in an exam room to meet with my doctor. The door opened, and she walked in with a very serious face and got straight to the point. She explained that the images they took, showed something was very wrong with our baby girl’s development. She started by explaining her head size was measuring 3 weeks behind, and that it looked like her brain structures were not developing correctly. She continues stating, that in addition and in direct correlation with the brain abnormality, she had a cleft lip and palette. “Holoprosencephaly”, pronounced, HOLO-PROSE-en-SEFully is what she said the condition was called. My heart began pounding into my throat. She was only two feet in front of me, and Mikey was sitting a few feet away in a chair, but as I sat upright on the exam chair in the middle of the room, I felt so alone, so devastated. I felt as though I was stuck on an island in the middle of a stormy ocean, and miles away from my Mikey, whose face, at this point had turned a shade of grey I’ve never seen before. Shock and unbelief had hit us both like a brick wall.
To speed the story up, we almost immediately met with a paranatologist, to confirm the suspected diagnosis. It was confirmed later that day, she indeed had the condition, but it was too early to confirm which degree of the condition she had. There are three main types of the condition, going from less severe to the most severe, which we were quickly informed can look extremely different from child to child. They were not 100% but they thought she had one of the two lesser severe degrees. We were told to come back later once she was bigger to have another ultrasound, and a fetal MRI to confirm which degree she had. We had so many questions, and due to the rarity of the condition, they didn’t give us many answers. They did tell us that due to the gestational age of the baby or “fetus” as they referred, we had to make the decision on whether to terminate or not pretty quickly, due to the laws in Missouri. I will not lie and say the thoughts didn’t cross my mind as I was bombarded with this devastating and frightening news, however, Mikey and I immediately told the doctors we wanted to keep the baby, no matter the circumstances. We didn’t know the outcome of this pregnancy but we knew God was sovereign and her life was meant for something! I could go off on a tangent about this personal experience with “termination” as the doctors said, and the need for compassion and love for other women who are faced with the same difficult decision, but you can ask me about that later.
Mikey and I came home that day, as completely different people. We cried, and cursed, yelled, and cried more. I can’t explain the multitude of emotions that flooded my mind. I hope you will read Mikey’s emails that are also posted on this website, as these display our emotions throughout the process very well. The days following that appt were the most difficult days I have ever experienced in my life and I know Mikey feels the same. We were angry at God, and so confused at what was happening to our precious girl. We questioned his love for us, and even felt like he was making a mockery of our love for each other. Our selfishness and sin became SO apparent during this time as well. We knew the truth in our mind, that God loves us and his plans are good for our lives, but we didn’t believe these truths in our hearts. We prayed to God with our honest and raw emotions. I described it to a lot of people that I felt as though I was mourning the death of our baby. The baby girl and future with her that I thought I was going to have, was snatched out from underneath me. Thankfully, due to the goodness of God and our wonderful family and friends, people immediately came around us, to love us and pray for us. And we felt it. When we felt like we couldn’t pray, we knew people were praying on our behalf. Being a part of the “body of Christ” and kingdom of God has never felt more real. They came around us and loved, listened, spoke scripture, and prayed. We only made it through this time because of God’s grace and those people!
Now for our most recent news…The last week of January I had my MRI done and we met with the Dr later that day to discuss and hopefully get more information. Unfortunately, we were not given news we wanted to hear. Based on the MRI images, the doctors have diagnosed her with Alobar Holoprosencephaly, which is the most severe of the three degrees. He immediately followed this up by saying that these babies don’t normally survive birth or much longer after birth, due to their severely compromised brains. Again, our hearts were broken. Our hopes and prayers of healing for our sweet girl were not answered. This is very recent news and to say we have accepted it, would be a lie. However, when I say we felt different this time around, I don’t know how else to explain it, other than God is graciously working and changing our hearts. When leaving this appt, there were of course tears, but also an overwhelming feeling of gratefulness. We felt sad, but SO thankful for her life and the blessing it had already been in our lives. We don’t deserve this blessing.
We know the coming months will be even harder than the last, but we are clinging to God’s promises of faithfulness to us. We are also leaning heavily on those around us. We are not strong enough on our own. I cannot say enough wonderful things about Mikey. I am so thankful for him and how he has lead me in this process. He has been my rock and I thank God for him everyday. He has given me the space to be mad, sad, frustrated and even numb. I love him.
We love Blakely dearly and are cherishing all her kicks and punches right now. She is ALIVE right now and we are clinging to this blessing! We are uncertain of the future but we know for sure her life is not in vain. She has been used by God to touch our lives, and she is now a part of our life story.
Thank you for listening, or reading my rambling! I encourage you to browse through Blakely’s website and read through Mikey’s emails. These are email updates he sends to people that are praying for us and we will continue to post these on the website as we move forward!