When our baby was first diagnosed with anencephaly, it probably goes without saying that we prayed for healing. And we asked others to pray as well. Erin and I never received any sort of confirmation or promise from God for healing, but that doesn’t mean we didn’t hope God would change His mind.
At the beginning of April, Erin’s pregnancy was normal. The first trimester had been very hard for Erin, but everything was going pretty well and we had been working on his name, a part of the pregnancy that I always enjoy. If anyone asked me about the topic of healing at the time, I believe I usually said something similar to "we don’t have any confirmation from God with respect to healing, but of course we still hope that He will."
Then, Erin’s routine OB checkup in early April brought us face to face with the reality that our little boy’s condition was starting to deteriorate, and that God had not - at least yet - healed him. On April 13th, Erin sent the following message to our friends and family:
Dear friends and family,We wanted to update you on the pregnancy. I have developed polyhydramnios; a common complication for this kind of pregnancy. At my appointment on Friday I measured 6 weeks ahead, and after an ultrasound, my Dr. said there is twice as much fluid as normal. To say the least, this news was disappointing. The reality that our baby boy is not thriving is becoming more evident.
We have named him Zachary David which means 'God remembers His beloved'.
- Please pray for my physical strength and for both of our emotional strength. God is good all the time, and He has proved it over and over to us these past months.
- Pray also for wisdom and guidance as how to proceed. I am 30 weeks, measuring 36 weeks and will likely need to have several amniocentesis's to pull the extra amniotic fluid off. We also need wisdom on method of delivery, time to think and pray through different possible scenarios if they were to arise.
- Pray also for protection over Micah and Madeline as Derek and I continue to process, grieve & accept all of this.
We feel the time drawing short, and our preparations are not yet complete. We know that in God's perfect timing, Zachary will be born, and we take great comfort in knowing he will pass on to his eternal home in heaven, into the arms of Jesus.
Thank you for all of your prayers and support during this season of our lives. We know we have been blessed beyond measure with you all!
Erin’s polyhydramnios was a direct result of Zachary’s condition. A baby with anencephaly usually has difficulty swallowing, and the baby’s swallowing is the method by which amniotic fluid is removed. Since Zachary wasn’t swallowing, the amniotic fluid was building up, and Erin was measuring six weeks ahead of schedule.
This was the toughest news since the initial diagnosis because it was an indication that Zachary had not been healed, and this sign of his weakening condition resulted in new depths emotionally.