Parents: Danielle Angle
Hometown: Indianapolis, Indiana
Carried to term, lived 20 days
Superman Gabriel’s Story
The Beginning… Our Journey began in February 2014 when I found out that I was expecting our first child. While this was a surprise to the both of us, we were excited. We both embraced what this change meant and knew our lives would never be the same. The Tables Turn… Our excitement to be first time parents soon turned into devastation. At my 20 week appointment we learned that our baby’s heart was not properly developed. We learned that the left two chambers of the baby’s heart were significantly smaller than the right. We left the doctor’s office overwhelmed, with little answers. What was supposed to be an exciting gender reveal appointment, transformed into the start of many terrifying doctor appointments. We were referred to a fetal specialists for follow up ultrasound and more answers. If this was not already enough to wrap our heads around, later that same week we also learned that my screening test came back positive for Trisomy 18. The doctor told me not to worry, false positives come back all the time.
I went back immediately in order to have a second blood test completed that would screen specifically for Trisomy 18. Time seemed to crawl by as we waited for the tests results and specialist appointment. Kenny and I looked for happiness with the pregnancy. We decided that learning the sex of our child would be a start to that happiness. We agreed on a name for both a boy and girl and opened the envelope. It’s a Boy! Knowing our child had a long road ahead and our journey as parents was far from over, we decided to name our son Gabriel. My pregnancy was not difficult physically, however the emotional roller coaster was sometimes unbearable. So how do you bear the news from your doctors that your son’s prognosis is to live less than 72 hours? With faith. Our family and friends stood behind us showing support day in and day out. Team Gabriel began to grow as time passed. The Big Day… 39 weeks came and the big day had finally arrived, we were finally going to meet our son. The scheduled C-section went as planned and Gabriel had arrived. We will never forget the sound of Gabriel’s first cry. To us it meant more than he was here, to us that cry meant he was alive and breathing and God was with him. Gabriel was 4lbs and 13oz, 18 inches long. He had the biggest and most beautiful eyes. Our hearts were full of love and happiness as we got to hold Gabriel. Hours went by and our room was filled with family and friends wanting to meet our blessing. Day 2 came and went and it was the same thing, sharing Gabriel with wave after wave of friends and family. He was truly a miracle.
We’re Going Home… Day 3 came and Gabriel was still doing so well. Doctors told us prior to his birth that he would only be with us for 72 hours, he proved them wrong. The doctor’s said that Gabriel would not suck and swallow, never able to take a bottle, but he proved them wrong. Doctors said he would not be able to open his hands, he proved them wrong again. Our miracle baby was a fighter and was doing well enough to go home. The nurse and hospital staff worked endlessly to get us the necessary items to care for Gabriel. Our family worked and got together clothes and other baby items at home as we had nothing. After all the doctor’s had told us we would never be taking our baby home. Home Sweet Home… While at home, Gabriel was closely monitored by Seasons Hospice. Their staff was so supportive and helped us day after day. While some visits from the nurse the news was not always promising, they were honest and we respected that.
Every day that Gabriel was with us was a blessing. Our home was a revolving door with friends and family wanting to meet the Superman that Gabriel proved to be. Gabriel fought for 20 days. On October 30th, 2014 Gabriel passed away in the arms of his mother and father. Moving On… Kenny and I struggle daily with not having our Gabriel to hold. He was truly a blessing in our lives. Our faith carried us through this journey and continues to be our anchor during this time of grief. Gabriel touched many lives while he was here, some of which we didn’t know.
There is nothing we would change about our approach or care with Gabriel’s journey. We learned and loved more in those 20 days than many people experience in a lifetime. We also learned that someone so small can make you feel a love so big. God has called our son home, however his memory and legacy on earth will remain.