Monday, October 12, 2015

Limb-Body-Wall-Complex Babies Aren't Monsters

When I found out my unborn son's condition was most likely Limb-Body-Wall Complex, the first thing I did - since I'm not a doctor - was google it. Now don't get me wrong, googling is very helpful. But what I wish I had known at the time was that the "images" part of google isn't always the best. If you google Limb-Body-Wall complex, you're going to see a lot of monstrous things. Most of the examples are very young underdeveloped aborted babies (who tend to look like sweet little aliens even if their organs aren't hanging out). When you combine that look with the more extreme physical problems that can come along with LBWC, the result can be a little intimidating. That's not the image that expecting parents should see.

I'd like to share with you here my son in all his freshly c-sected glory. Is he all clean? No. Is his body perfect? No. But is he a monster? Not by any stretch of the imagination.

 This one was taken right after he was taken out of me. You can see they're still wiping my blood off of him and he was letting out his first little cries!
A little more cleaned up here. They had the organ bag ready, but it wasn't necessary since his omphalocele was small. 

 Here you can see his omphalocele - his bladder was the only organ on the outside. 
 His back was a little extra wrinkly because of the myelomeningocele on his back.  
They literally wrapped him in plastic wrap to keep everything secure.   
His left leg was small and thin, and at the end instead of a foot he had one big beautiful toe (complete with a toenail). 
All wrapped up, right before they gave him to Sean. 
 Holding Sean's finger and laying on my chest.