If you're reading this you probably know by now that we are expecting a baby boy in May 2016. We learned this morning that this baby is a carrier of SMA, but IS NOT affected with SMA. We wanted to fill you in on our journey to this point.
When Steele was diagnosed with SMA in November 2013 we were referred to a genetics counselor where we learned that most likely Beau and I were carriers of SMA, and that is how Steele came to have SMA. (Since that time this has been confirmed-Beau and I are, in fact, carriers) We were informed that because of our genetic make-ups that should we have more children, each pregnancy would have a 25% chance to pass SMA. At first this news terrified me. I was literally so scared that I even thought about some sort of permanent birth control to my body. I was in panic mode, and just hated the thought that my sweet boy had this awful diagnosis, and I definitely didn't want to think about future children fighting this too. I remember laying in bed one night and asking Beau, through tears, to pray for our family. I felt so lost and hurt by our situation. I needed wisdom and peace with where God was leading us. So we prayed and waited.
Fast forward to August 2015 and I just had "that feeling" like I needed to take a pregnancy test. Everything in my body was just different. It was positive. I don't remember which emotion came first, fear or excitement, but I know which I allowed to take over-FEAR. I was terrified. I prayed and prayed that God would give me peace and that I would be ok with whatever happened, SMA or not. I have an amazing support group in my family, friends, and a group of my "sisters" at church. I would love to tell you that I ran to them immediately to tell them the news. I didn't. I let myself become paralyzed with fear. I cried. I panicked. I drove poor Beau crazy. You would have to know Beau. He is much the opposite of me when it comes to worry. He has a gift of trust in God no matter his situation. I admire that so much about him.
It was amazing what happened when I finally did begin to tell some of my friends and family the news. They spoke encouraging and uplifting words to me. They spoke life over me and my family. And from that moment on the fear has gone away and this amazing peace just overcame me. I regret that I waited to tell others, but in a way I am thankful for the lesson. Don't let the enemy defeat you by staying in the dark with him. He would have loved for me to stay in that dark, secretive place where he could lie to me and beat me down. I am so thankful for the wonderful people that God has placed in my life.
In early December I had an amniocentesis done to determine whether or not this baby would be affected. I am thankful for the gift of life. Beau and I decided a long time ago that God was in charge and that we would go where he called us, even when it got hard. We are so grateful for this gift. We know that adding a member to a family will have its challenges, but are thankful. Steele will forever have a brother by his side.
Which brings us to the name of this baby... I believe whole heartedly that God placed the name Steele on my heart long before I ever even imagined myself with children. When we learned we were pregnant I began to pray that God would also name this baby. A few months ago Steele's bible verse in church for the month was Deuteronomy 31:6- Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid. For the Lord your God goes with you. It has been his favorite verse ever since, and he is happy to repeat it over and over and over again. As I have been praying about naming this baby God has delivered a message to me. I wake up at night with this word in my head. I dream about it. So, I asked Beau what he thought- and he didn't like it at all. So I kept praying. And then a couple weeks ago I asked Beau one more time. I said the name out loud, and with tears in his eyes Beau told me that was it. That was the name of this baby. So, we are happy to announce that our baby boy will be called
BRAVE CHRISTOPHER BECTON
God is showing me, through my children, that I DO NOT have to live in fear. HE IS AWLAYS WITH ME.
Be STRONG and COURAGEOUS. Do not be afraid. For the Lord your God goes with you. Deuteronomy 31:6
I thank God that Steele and Brave will call me mommy.