September 14, 2011

How one word can change your life forever...............

These past 6 days have been long and difficult.  While there have been some wonderful things going on in my life - a beautiful new healthy grandchild, my son and his wife also pregnant buying a beautiful home locally after being transferred back home... there was a dark cloud looming that began with a simple phone call...........
My daughter called and said her OBGYN had called (my daughter is 6 months pregnant) and left a message for her  to contact her.  We both thought this was strange as she had not had any blood work or tests done lately-so we figured it was just a mistake.   We found out the next day it was not a mistake.

A test that was taken a month ago had some unfavorable results.  My daughter had a gene mutation causing her to be a cystic fibrosis carrier and her doctor wanted her husband tested immediately.  Being a carrier meant she would never have the disease-but could pass it down to her unborn child if her husband also had the mutation.  I figured my daughter did not have any first hand knowledge of cystic fibrosis and this was confirmed when she asked me- Could this be serious?   How do you answer that question?...I had some knowledge of the disease thru a co-worker who had two children with CF.  I had seen her come into work exhausted from all night emergency room visits, leaving work early for dr. appointments, working from home during hospital stays....I did not share this with my daughter....I just couldn't at this point.

As anyone would do we looked on the internet trying to figure out exactly what a carrier meant, why we did not know of this prior to the call, what the chances were that her baby would have cystic fibrosis.....
We found out the following--(my mind has not been terribly clear so if the info I share is not 100% accurate - I apologize) IF her husband tested positive-which one in 17 Caucasians do their baby would have a one in four chance of having cystic fibrosis......The most reassuring news was that in the last 3 decades there has been some wonderful progress made in this area - lengthening the average life span of a child born with cystic fibrosis from their teenage years to their 30's....some with several difficult symptoms to deal with and some with few....We kept going over the odds in our conversations....playing the numbers game.....and of course praying....a lot of praying...

Her husband is a teacher at the Catholic grade school where we attend church and have belonged to the parish since my daughter was in kindergarten...I joked with him that if the church burnt down today it was because I had lit every special intention candle that was in the church.....

Today at 9:13 a.m. the call I was waiting for came while I was at work...My daughter was also at work when her doctor office called and said the doctor wanted to speak with her...Her eyes filled with tears....The doctor was put on the phone to tell my daughter that her husbands tests came back negative and he did not have the gene mutation that would cause their child to have cystic fibrosis.. She was thrilled and so was I when she shared the news with me...our prayers had been answered......We could exhale.......

So tonight we are all thankful and will offer prayers of thanks and joy...but from this point on I will continue to light a special intention candle at our church for those who face situations like this and receive different news....the mothers, grandmothers, fathers, who hear those words --there is a medical situation with your child...  those who hear this and then must pull themselves together to figure out their next step...I pray for strength for help them get through those difficult times...and also that there are  times of happiness mixed in for those whose burdens seem heavy....That is what i pray for tonight....



  1. I am so glad everything worked out for your daughter and son-in-law. I know the waiting must have been terrible for all of you. My wish is that they have a beautiful and healthy baby soon.

  2. So glad everything turned out okay. I love you my friend.

  3. Praise the Lord! Such great news. I will keep this sweet "wee" one in my prayers.
    Chris, I can only imagine how difficult these days have been for you and your family.

  4. So happy for all of you. I have cared for many children and adults with CF and it is a very difficult disease.

  5. Thank God for this good news. We have friends who have a daughter with CF - she is now 21 years old but in very poor health. She is constantly in and out of the hospital. Blessings to you.


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