Thursday, October 23, 2014

Welcome Baby Brayleigh

Our family wants to personally thank each of you for your prayers and support over the last few weeks. Despite facing a life limiting condition, known as Edwards Syndrome, in which the general prognosis is bleak shortly after birth, in just a couple of weeks, Brayleigh Christine (with a name meaning our little Ray of Hope in Christ) has defied the odds.  Our little miracle baby has overcome any limitations that doctors thought she would initially face as she meets milestone after milestone each day. She is still in the neonatal intensive care unit at Emory, and while she requires some supplemental oxygen and a feeding tube, she is breathing mostly on her own.  She is also learning to feed from the bottle, one of her most recent accomplishments.

Brayleigh was born five weeks early on the early evening of October 8.  As a premature baby and with the general health challenges that accompany Edwards Syndrome, Brayleigh is completely off of IV fluids, is tolerating my milk and the amount of oxygen that she was getting has been reduced down to nearly nothing. She has handled the lower levels well, and they have removed the large oxygen mask from her tiny face, replacing it with a small plastic cannula that just runs through her nostrils. (We can actually see what she looks like now)! She has been working on supplementing being fed through a feeding tube with a bottle and syringe.  She is learning to swallow without it affecting her breathing.  With things going better than expected for our little Brayleigh, she should be able to come home over the next few days, a treat that we had only dreamed of.

This journey has undoubtedly tested our strength as a family and our faith as Christians, but we are forever grateful for our precious gift and blessing, who has taught us so much about perseverance and overcoming the odds when the world has placed limits on you. Brayleigh is fully aware of our presence (smiling and cooing when she sees us), she loves to be comforted in our arms, responds to our voices and thoroughly enjoys lullabies.

We know, though, that the road ahead will be far from easy as we provide Brayleigh with all that she needs from medical care to the simple yet powerful comfort of our loving arms. Please continue to keep our family in your thoughts and prayers, especially big sister Courtlyn, who asks a lot of questions and keeps us honest as we try to establish a new normal in our family.

Peace and blessings,

Sabrina - Brayleigh's mom