It probably only happens a couple of times during your life, when you realize you're in the middle of a moment that will change the road you're on forever. Tuesday morning we had the most life-changing moment we've ever experienced when Daniel and I went in for a run-of-the-mill ultrasound, giddy to find out if we were going to give Jonah a baby brother or baby sister. Since our mind was full of "pink or blue?", you can imagine the shock when the ultrasound tech came back into our room to say we needed to talk with a doctor because something was wrong with our baby's heart. Four hours later we were at St. Vincents Women's Hospital, meeting with a pediatric cardiologist and neonatologist, who confirmed that our baby boy has a serious congenital heart defect called tricuspid atrisia, meaning that one of the valves in his heart never formed. As a result, the right side of his heart, which is responsible for pumping blood to the lungs, is underdeveloped and won't be able to function when he's born. The solution is open heart surgery within a few days of his birth, including a hospital stay of about 2 months, and that's if all goes well. You can imagine how shocked and dumbfounded we were, sitting in this room with this news that our baby was going to be born into one of the most high-risk medical situations a child can be born with. I felt like I was in a Lifetime movie or something, like this information could not possibly be our new reality. Not only will our baby boy's birth and first few weeks of life be spent in a hospital, and full of unpredictability, he will have to have two additional surgeries by the time he's three years old. All the expectations we had in our mind of what our second child's life was going to be like are being replaced with a giant question mark. We left St. Vincents after a very long day, not sure how to begin to accept and cope with this turn of events. Now it's been just four days and this morning as we laid in bed for a few minutes before Jonah was up, we talked not about how much our life has changed, but how much WE have changed in this short amount of time. Amazingly, Daniel and I are really at peace. Even though this is more painful than we can describe, we have so much thankfulness in our hearts that God has laid out this particular path for us and our family. We know that this isn't some unlucky lightning bolt that just happened to strike us. This is the beautiful plan of a Father who loves us and knows infinitely better than we do. And we can honestly say that we are looking ahead with hope and joy.
Yesterday we were talking about what this amazing little boy's name should be, and we thought of the story of Caleb. The Israelites had fled Egypt and were heading to the promised land that God had prepared for them. But when they arrived, they sent scouts to check out this new land and report back what they saw. The scouts came back saying the land was rich and fruitful, but there were giants living there. The scouts were terrified and told the rest of the Israelites that there was no way they could ever conquer them and live in this place. But one scout, Caleb, spoke up and said to not be afraid, but that they should trust that God would lead them into that good land, giants and all. Caleb saw the same obstacles everyone else saw, but he saw them differently. He trusted that God was who He said He was, and that He was more than able to fulfill His promises. Caleb's name even means "faithful", and although all the Israelites who doubted never got to enter the promised land, God blessed Caleb for his trust in Him. In Numbers 14:24, God said "But my servant Caleb is different than the others. He has remained loyal to me, and I will bring him into the land he explored. His descendants will receive their full share of that land." We have named our little boy Caleb James Kinnaird. We are praying that God would help us to have the trust and faithfulness that Caleb had; that we would look ahead and instead of seeing giants to fear, we will see God's perfect, crazy, and wonderful plan.