Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Luke's first birthday..

One year ago tonight.. our world completely changed. Our sweet baby boy was born and our journey as parents began. As I look back over the past year and how God has worked in our lives I am so overwhelmed. Overwhelmed with memories of the 12 days we had with our son. Overwhelmed by the support of so many people who reached out and loved us. Overwhemed by the faithfulness of a God who carried us and empowered us to face the impossible....

Wow - it has been a year.

One year ago, I woke up at 4:30am to get ready for our scheduled induction. I was 38 weeks 6 days pregnant and our doctor felt it would be best to induce labor so that I would not go on my own and not be near an equipped hospital. Benson, my mom and I stayed in a hotel in Indiana the night before the induction. I remember stopping to get Krispy Kremes (one of my huge pregnancy cravings!) the night before... it was the last thing I ate before having Luke.

We arrived at the hospital and I was taken back into the delivery room. I remember looking over and seeing the little isolette which helda little blanket and hat that Luke would be placed in once he was born and how real it suddenly became. Our nurse Tiffany was amazing... we started the Pitocin a little after 6am and I started feeling contractions sometime around 8am. The entire day, we sat around and talked while watching the World Cup. Our family came in and out of our room - I was relaxed, happy and excited. Around 6pm, my contractions began increasing in intensity. I asked for something to take the edge off and they gave me Stadol - big mistake. Apparently, I started seeing McDonald's characters and thought Benson was Grimace the Menace.. ?!

Around 7pm I was 7cm dilated and decided to go ahead and get an epidural. Soon after, they broke my water and things began moving quickly. Within and hour and a half, I was fully dilated and ready to push. In a matter of minutes, our room was filled with more doctors and nurses than I could count. I had such a hard time pushing because my epidural was so strong and I had no feeling at all. After over an hour of pushing and the help of a nasty episiotomy, Luke Aaron came into the world with a weak cry. I remember looking down and thinking about how long and blue he looked. Benson cut the umbilical cord and they handed him immediately over the NICU doctors who began to work on Luke. They handed him to Benson for a few moments and began to transfer him to Kosairs. Before they left the room, they looked at me and asked if I had held him. When I said no, they put him in my arms and I kissed his forehead and told him I loved him and that I needed him to fight for me because we needed him to be okay. The doctors pinched his little feet and said "cry for mama" but he was completely unresponsive and turning darker each second. It was in that moment that I knew something was terribly wrong. I knew HLHS babies usually come out looking like any other heart-healthy babies. I was so scared I gave him immediately back to the doctors and they wheeled him away. That would be the first and only time Benson and I held him without any tubes and wires.

You can read about the day of Luke's birth and the hours following written from Benson's perspective by clicking here. It is crazy to think how much we went through in just a few short hours. Needless to say, Luke's birthday was one that we will never forget...

Happy Birthday Sweet Luke! We love you so much and are so very proud to call you ours. I know that you are celebrating with Jesus and that it has to be way more fun than anything I could plan for you here.. my heart isn't sad for you today... it is sad for me and for your daddy and for all the people who love you who are left here without you. I cannot wait until the day I see you again.. until then, keep changing the world little buddy... you have surely changed ours! We love you!


  1. To Benson and Kristin,
    Luke's first Birthday! Luke has touched so many hearts. When I check your blog, there's always new visitors getting acquainted with Luke and his story, and just like us regular blog visitors, their hearts will be touched. Even a year later Luke is still making a difference. One of Jesus' precious little lambs. "He will carry the lambs in his arms, holding them close to his heart." NLT Isaiah 40:11
    My love and prayers will continue for you guys. Donna Brokamp Sevierville TN

  2. This is a beautiful post. Thanks for sharing with us.

  3. God bless you both on this special day. As parents, we so seldom acknowledge the miracle of a healthy baby. Luke has made a bigger impact than you may know. Happy Birthday little guy!

  4. I love this post and the beautiful pictures. This was about as hard for me to read as it was to write our birthday post. You guys are so strong and have had SUCH a year. He did fight so hard! He is healed now and celebrating! He also looks forward to seeing you again! love you guys!

  5. Happy Birthday Sweet Luke!

  6. Happy Late Birthday Little Fella! I have followed Luke's story since day 1 and he's had such in impact on me and so many others. Congrats on a healthy, precious Baby Kate also :)
    God Bless.

  7. Did you get the e-mail I sent you about a month ago? Laura Bradley,

  8. Hi
    My name is Jenna and I came across your site. luke is an amazing courageous strong and determined fighter. He is a brave warrior, smilen champ and an inspirational hero. I was born with a rare life threatening disease, and love it when people sign my guestbook.

  9. Wow! Ur blog is amazing. Our hlhs baby lived 18 days. ur baby was so beautiful and ur testimony uplifting even through my tears as i read this. I noticed laura bradley commented. We know her well and live near her. Its a small world esp n the heart community. I am so sry for ur loss but thankful for ur faith. Thx for sharing ur story.


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