My sweet Sophia Allison Duquette was born on October 2, 2008 with full Trisomy 18. She was amazing. She was perfect! Her little hands wouldn’t open, but one was closed in the “I love you” finger position so we said she had lovey hands. She had heart problems and tilted kidneys. She could, pretty much, breath on her own but she did need a little help with oxygen. She did so many things that the doctor’s told us would be impossible for her to do. She always responded to our voices and would get so excited and wave her hands around when she heard myself or my husband. There was also one nurse that she would, also, respond this way for. We spent 23 days in the Women & Infant NICU in Providence, Rhode Island with our sweet Sophia. She passed on her due date, October 25, 2008. Her heart just couldn’t continue anymore and it flooded her lungs with blood and she went into respiratory distress. She passed away in my arms, as we turned her breathing machine off and let her drift to Heaven peacefully. It is agony without her. But we know that she alive with our Savior, Jesus. And that we WILL be together forever one day.
Sophia was our second born. At the time Sophia blessed us with her presence, we had a 3 year old little girl named Gabrielle. Since our sweet Sophia passed away she has had two more siblings join her in Heaven. Our precious Angel and Micah were also Trisomy babies, but we do not know what strand, as Angel left us in my first trimester and Micah was still born at 17 weeks. We have been blessed with these precious little lives, and blessed again to have a healthy baby boy we named Callan and just recently, a healthy baby girl we named Phoebe.
As much as I love and adore my precious Phoebe, she is the one that looks the most like our sweet Sophia and so it has been bitter sweet, as being able to love and care for Phoebe has made me long even more to be able to love and care for my sweet Sophia.
Every day is journey in this “new normal” life that we’re living. Answering the question of how many children I have is not so easy to do anymore. Even signing a birthday card make me pause to consider if I should include ALL my children. But, through it all, I can see the sustaining hand of the Lord. Even when the wave of grief is so intense I don’t think I can even take another breath; God is gracious and merciful to me. I’ve come to understand this is a journey, not an event that I’ll ever “get over” as some have suggested I do. Day by day I pray and lean on the Lord for His strength to make it through without 3 of my precious babies. I will long for them until the day I never have to let them go again. I am a blessed woman to be the mother of 6 amazing, precious gifts from the Lord.