This is Danielle and Drew and their precious baby girl Daphne.
Daphne was born with Trisomy 18, a genetic disorder that is caused by there being 3 pairs of chromosome 18 rather than the normal 2.
The large majority of babies with Tri18 never make it past the womb and the ones that do, are rarely strong enough to live to see outside the NICU and hospital walls. Most deaths are caused by heart abnormalities, loss of kidney function, and other organ failures.
When Daphne was in the womb, doctors told Danielle and Drew that their baby girl would have to undergo major heart surgery after birth. They told the both of them a lot of things in an attempt to prepare them for what they were sure would happen. Thing after thing would crop up, they would try to help her, but in the end, she would pass away.
Daphne was born at 2:20 on January 7th weighing in at 3 pounds 11 ounces. A tiny little angel sent down from God to bless the lives of her mama, daddy, and anyone who would meet her. It took a few days but Daphne was officially diagnosed with Trisomy 18 and things seemed to be getting tougher for her.
A lot of babies with Tri18 end up passing away from complications and episodes of sleep apnea. Daphne's nasal passages and airways are extremely tiny and a couple times, she was unable to recover on her own which spurred nurses to bring her back around from coding. A couple days after she was born, the doctors sat down to seriously discuss with Danielle, Drew, and family about the reality of Daphne's prognosis and their course of action.
When I spoke with Danielle after she had met with all of Daphne's doctors, I was in awe of her strength. She stated everything very matter-of-factly but not in a detached, angry way that one might expect.
"I am so grateful for the time we have had to spend with her so far. It's definitely more than most babies with Trisomy get. We are so lucky. We didn't get a life expectancy but we now have a plan of action. We're going to learn how to take care of her. We will be spending time here at the NICU in the Family Overnight Rooms before they discharge her. Once she is at home, the time frame is typically a week to maybe a couple months."
She went on to tell me how the doctors had stressed emphatically the need to just let nature take its course. It was only more painful for Daphne to keep being brought back around time and time again. Between the two of them, they had discussed and then given a verbal 'Do Not Resuscitate' order. They had fully accepted whatever God's plan was and acknowledged how blessed they were for Danielle having had the opportunity to carry and give birth to Daphne.
On January 14th, the doctors suggested that Daphne didn't have much longer. Maybe a few hours or maybe she would make it through the night. Family and church members who care deeply for Danielle, Drew, and her little girl gathered around and gave that precious baby a name and a blessing.
Daphne Dawn Reading
Daphne's story has spread and there are COUNTLESS people whose lives have been touched and COUNTLESS prayers being said from all over on this baby girl's behalf. She has continued to improve and surprise her doctors. When she was first born, the damage to her heart is what had concerned the doctors the most. Shortly after that, Danielle was told that Daphne wouldn't need the heart operation they had been telling her for months would be necessary. Days have gone by and on January 17th, perhaps the best news yet was given. The holes in Daphne's heart are somehow, inexplicably healing themselves. Danielle, Drew and family members along with so many others including myself, have ZERO doubt as to how and why these miracles keep happening. The prayers and faith and hope of everyone are healing the holes in her heart. She is alive and fighting because God needs her here on Earth to continue to inspire and teach those around her.
Daphne is now strong enough that today, she was discharged from the NICU in a Scottsdale Hospital. Something that a few days ago, no one was really sure would happen. She was transported to a Hospice House where Danielle and Drew will be given a few more days to transition to having her at home and along with her mom, will be taught about every little thing that will go into Daphne's care. Even with her feeding tube and oxygen, she will soon be at home in her own crib, continuing to bless and enrich the lives of so many people.
Now Lovelies, this is where you all have the opportunity to be a vital part of this baby girl's life. Pray.
Pray your hearts out and spread the word.
If you are on Twitter, Facebook, or have a blog of your own, the amount of power you have of spreading the word is monumental. By sharing a link to this post you will be potentially letting thousands of other people know about this miracle of a baby. When praying hearts combine in a joint effort, mountains move and the impossible happens. Just weeks ago, Daphne living was seen as the impossible.
A friend of mine said something about a week ago, when I shared about Daphne on Facebook. It has stuck with me and rings with a truth I rarely feel.
What a blessing. I know that baby girl has the power to change the world.
She has already begun changing this world. She won't stop. Regardless of how long God allows this angel to be here, she will never stop changing this world. Her story and the countless miracles and infinite love she has spread will work wonders of their own. Now you can too.
Grab the button (thank you Chambanachik!)
Post it on your blog where it can be seen
Keep the miracle going