The Moment We Knew
We weren’t sure how to feel driving to the hospital for the ultrasound. So many things could happen.
The results from genetic testing came back weeks prior, so we had an idea what to expect. But you can never be sure.
I met Karry and the boys in the hospital parking lot. My three-year-old made a beeline in my direction, arms wide and plugged with a paci.
The pacifier was a battle. I snatched it from his lips and put it in my shirt pocket while glancing at his mother.
“I know,” she defended, “but it was an emergency.”
I scooped him up and slung him inverted.
“Ready to see your little brother?” I asked him.
Big, exaggerated nods.
“Okay, let’s go.”
The technician was conducting a level-2 ultrasound to determine exactly what was going on with the baby. It was an important moment for us.
We had already been advised about the most likely condition of our baby. But we wanted to know for certain. We needed to be sure.
We watched the grainy monitors as the technician searched for the right angles as we had done so many times before. She measured his head. We counted his fingers and toes. We stared at the pulsing red and blue echoes.
The technician made friendly conversation, careful to give only objective facts of what she observed, leaving all speculation to the doctor soon to follow.
Finally, the doctor entered, and after a few more minutes of viewing, he was ready to give us the results.
“Your baby,” he said, “is a good-looking boy.”
Karry and I looked at each other.
“In my opinion, I don’t see anything that would indicate Trisomy 18 or any other conditions. He looks healthy,” he said.
Back in the parking lot, I buckled the baby into the car seat. He started calling out, “Dad! Dad!” as I closed the door and headed back to the other car.
I was kind of blowing him off. The baby says “Dad! Dad!” all the time. He probably wanted me to look at a bug or tell me something he told me two minutes ago. I took a few more steps.
But something told me to listen to that little voice.
I turned around went back to open the door.
“Dad!” he said reaching up at me “You have my paci in your pocket.”
I gave it back.
I was impressed with his memory. He wasn’t thinking about bugs or candy. He was taking a mental survey of his future security. He wanted to know he was going to be okay.
Dont’ we all?
Fifteen months ago we sat in a similar room for a similar procedure, but with a very different outcome.
Losing Boone was hard.
But before he was born, a friend told me to know that our Lord would carry us through whatever happens.
And he was right.
When we felt unable to walk through the pain, the Lord carried us through.
Sometimes the Lord taketh away. But the Lord also giveth.
And he is giving us another.
About Jason B. Ladd
Jason is an author, speaker, Marine, and father of seven. He has flown the F/A-18 Hornet as a Marine Aviation Weapons and Tactics Squadron 1 (MAWTS-1) Instructor Pilot and the F-16 as an Instructor Pilot. His award-winning book One of the Few: A Marine Fighter Pilot’s Reconnaissance of the Christian Worldview has been optioned for film adaptation. He is represented by Julie Gwinn of The Seymour Agency.