Baby E. is a miracle baby girl! Here is her story as told by her mom: “2017 was a wild year. Our year started with fear and ended with a new life. In January, I was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy, big medical words for something that sounds even scarier – heart failure. At 39 years old. With two young boys and a husband.
My cardiologist put me on medication and told Matt it was time he got the big snip. I must not get pregnant. Matt and I put it on our to do list but didn’t worry about it too much as we had to work very hard just to have the two boys we had. Fast forward to May 3rd. I was scheduled to have major surgery to resolve some digestive issues unrelated to my heart. Surgery was scheduled to start at 12:50. We were ready to go when my surgeon walked in at 12:30. He looked at us and said he was canceling the surgery. We asked why. His response was that he was 95% certain we were pregnant; he was confirming with a blood test.
To say we were shocked was an understatement. All I could think of was my family and that I didn’t want to be a statistic. We talked to my cardiologist within hours. He had his office schedule an appointment with an ob/gyn who would terminate the pregnancy. He also told me that there would be no judgment by the medical community, that this was the advised medical path forward, and that while he did not drink alcohol, if his dr told him to, he would take a shot of whiskey and keep going. Needless to say, our heads were spinning. All I could think of was that my unborn baby was being compared to whiskey and that I was being told to terminate as soon as possible.
That night I couldn’t sleep. My thoughts were spinning and behind all of them, I was hearing that quiet voice that makes you question your sanity when the sun is up. Very softly, under all the confusion and fear, I heard “this is MY plan”. Over and over. I finally quieted my own thoughts enough to just breathe and listen. Then I heard Jeremiah 29:11. And promptly thought I was officially insane. And once again I felt overwhelming fear. Then I heard Isaiah 41:10. And I calmed down. And then I KNEW, that this was not my time and that this baby was not going to kill me. Then I heard Jeremiah 1:5 and that this baby already has a name and purpose. So I prayed for faith and, when the morning alarm went off, I told Matt that we were having a baby.
The journey wasn’t easy. We had to find a new cardiologist (an amazing woman, Dr. Susan Joseph), a high risk ob (an amazing man, Dr. Paul Payne), and a team of maternal fetal medicine Drs who were very scary but also let me make my own decisions (after listening to their very scary, doom & gloom statistics). Their response to our plan was that they hoped we proved them and the statistics wrong. Guess what, at every heart appointment and ob appointment, Evie and I proved them wrong! We didn’t know the baby’s gender until delivery. Had she been a boy, her name would have been Joseph “Joey” Paul Burgess, after the two primary Drs who cared for us. As she’s a girl, Evangeline means “messenger of good news” or “angel” and Evie, her nick name, means “life”. We have a lot of life to live and I can’t wait to see what’s ahead for her and our entire family!”