Good Evening Friends and Family-
I'm going to try to keep this update short and sweet (turns out I don't do "short" very well)... as there isn't much new to say, and I am so tired! It was another long day and long appointment at Vanderbilt for us. We arrived at 1030 and didn't leave until close to 2. We had much less time in the ultrasound room today, but had to wait over an hour to talk to the doctor. We met with a different doctor today, but he is another one of the specialists in the Maternal Fetal Medicine group. We actually really liked him. He was direct, yet kind, and I think we both really trusted him.
Here are the basics... from the ultrasound we can see that Blake's limbs all continue to measure extremely short. There has been growth since last time, but they are continuing to lag at the same rate as before (less than the 5th percentile). They spent a good amount of time measuring the ribs and the chest, and looking for other specific markers that are present in skeletal dysplasias. His ribs continue to be on the short side as well, which is pretty concerning to them. They want his chest to be big enough to accommodate his heart, which is working great, and his lungs, which don't start to actually function until he enters the "outside world". The size of his chest and length of ribs put him in what the doctor said the "scarier side" of things. He basically said what we had heard before, which is that Blake will have to prove his lungs and chest once he is born. As you can imagine, this is pretty terrifying and scary as this basically leaves us not knowing anything until he is born. All we can do is pray... and take it one day at a time. More of the same :). We have another appointment on November 5th, at which we will have more ultrasounds and measurements, and then be able to meet with the neonatologist and discuss the plan for Blake once he makes his big entrance.
Rob and I find ourselves just feeling more of the same emotions... we knew this was very likely what our appointment would be like, but you can't help to hope that this one will be different... maybe. just maybe, they can give us something positive, something better than last time. We feel tired of this process, and our hearts are heavy and sad. We know that there is still hope in all of this, and we cling to that.
Thank you so much for all of your calls, emails and texts. For the love and prayers that we know you continue to offer for us, for Jane and for Blake. We feel so loved and supported, and truly know our support system is amazing and something to be thankful for. You can continue to pray for all four of us, just as you have been doing... That we will maintain hope, and be able to just take things one little step at a time. That we would continue to give one another room to grieve and process, as we do it differently. We truly have felt unified in this, and really able to love and support one another well, which is a really big deal. Jane is a huge source of joy and comfort to us, and want to be able to love and enjoy our time with her as much as we can, as well as keeping things as normal as possible. We don't know how to ask for prayers for Blake... we just long for grace and peace, and strength to handle each thing that comes our way. It's pretty hard to think about how to prepare, both physically and emotionally, for this little life that has been given to us, knowing how fragile it is...
Please feel free to share this email/news with people who are asking. We welcome as many prayers as we can. We are also happy to talk about it, but also find that we want to carry on life as normally as possible- kind of a weird balance, so bear with us as we figure it out.
We love you all. Thanks for loving us.
Rob, Lara, and Jane