sometimes life just does not hit the notes that we think it should …
The creation of life is such a miracle, it’s so incredible that humans start off so tiny and small, growing from day one to become the person they are meant to be.
What is even crazier is that so many vital organs start to develop at a very early stage. Not fully aware of how each unit form to work together to create that tiny person that makes you a mother and a father.
We got to experience that joy for the third time and were super excited to share with the family that we’re expecting our third little wonder. At 8 weeks we had our dating scan and we got to inform our family that our tiny person is the size of a raspberry. Everything was going well at this point. We left our first prenatal scan knowing that our baby had a strong heartbeat.
At 19w3d, we got to see our bubs again to establish if all is going well …
I remember the day so clearly, I dropped our two babies off at daycare, knowing that we will soon collect them again to go see their sibling. I managed to do some business activities before heading home to fetch hubby.
The kids were so excited to see both Tienie and me when we fetched them from daycare … full of excitement to go see their brother or sister, not that we were planning to know the gender as we have been blessed with a little man and little lady, we just wanted a healthy baby to add to our growing family. We arrived on time for our scheduled appointment, full of hope and excitement to hear the heartbeat and see his/her tiny face.
We got called in, and they always seem to get my name pronounced wrong, but hey, we did not care at the time, we had more exciting things awaiting us.
As they scanned for activity and located our baby’s face, I was so excited to see the face but made a really strange comment on seeing the facial features. I did not think much of it at the time, but Tienie started asking questions and we immediately knew something was wrong by the sonogram’s reaction. Everything changed at this point in time, it was so unexpected. I felt shocked, disbelieved and I just stared at the screen. A specialist was called in to access the severity of the situation, it was confirmed that bubs has a cleft lip and palate. It’s shocking to see how clearly defined the cleft is at this point in time. They took a 4D image and it showed clearly a 5mm cleft lip. We were told that the cleft could often be an indicator of more abnormalities, thus they will continue to scan bubs whole body.
We could not get a good visual on bubs spine and I was asked to walk a few blocks down the road to see if bubs has turned position. Tienie stayed with both kids and I left the building to walk outside. I felt lost, in shock and all I wanted to do was scream and cry. I walked the block and it felt like I was floating in a bubble. We got to wrap up the scan and got to speak with a specialist to run us through what we just have been informed. I could not take in much of the discussion, as I cried too much.
We elected to not find out the gender of the baby but asked for an envelope that would reveal the gender if we felt like this is something we wanted to do.
During the consultation, Dr Hugo said that it would be preferable if the gender is a boy. If there was a scar from surgery, he could grow a mustache, I was willing to be a boy. We went home, with a heavy heart, knowing we will need to wait another 4-5 weeks before we have more answers. Then from 28 weeks onward, we would see specialists to help prepare us for what we will be facing once bubs have arrived.
I was also asked to not ‘google’ cleft lip or palates but did it anyway. I wanted to be prepared for what we visually can expect, how our life would be impacted, and just anything that could give me more answers to all the questions I had.
My biggest question was, what did I do wrong for bubs to deserve this? At 4 weeks the lip develops and at 9 weeks the palate … I had sleepless nights, I cried myself to sleep and was so scared for his journey ahead. I felt pretty lost & alone!
To the parents that just go their babies cleft diagnosis …