Todays spotlight is one that I am very touched by. We spent quite a bit of time together in the hospital and grew close to this family. They are wonderful people, who were blessed with an absolutely amazing little girl. Here is her story written by her family.
We loved the name Mercedes. It’s just so beautiful and it flows so nicely. It’s also a name that has a royal sound to it; fitting for our little princess. But, we weren’t quite sure… maybe Maggie or Molly?
But, Mercedes kept coming back.
September 11, 2007 was the “Boy or Girl?” ultrasound. It was at this ultrasound that we learned our little girl would endure great trials while on this earth. It was a day of happiness, but also a day where many, many unknowns were put before us. Major Heart Defects were detected, along with a few other things.
After speaking with many, many different types of doctors, the only conclusion that was come to was no conclusion at all. No one had a diagnosis; no one had a plan; no one had any idea what this beautiful little girl had in mind.
We decided that, if Mercedes was the name we would choose from our list of names, we would spell it with “Mercy” in it. Why? Because, even before her birth, we felt she was a miracle sent by God, to us. We felt we had already learned a great deal from her. And, we felt it would be a great mercy, for all of us, for her to arrive on earth and spend any amount of time with us.
Our sweet little girl, Mercydez, was born late morning on January 3, 2008, at The University Hospital in Salt Lake City, Utah. She was immediately transferred to PCMC, to the NICU, where she stayed for four months. While in the hospital, Mercydez endured several surgeries and “procedures”. It seemed that these experiences only hindered her. Sometimes, for some of these precious children, medical intervention isn’t the right choice. It was a difficult lesson.
In April of 2008 we decided we would bring our precious little princess home, where she could be loved without the beeping, the poking, the prodding, and the hurt. We decided, through prayer, that future interventions on her behalf would no longer be an option.
May 1st came and our little Mercydez was discharged from PCMC. It was such an exciting and scary day! We couldn’t be happier to have our little Mercy with us, but we were also afraid of what would lie ahead.
Bringing our little girl home was the best decision we ever made! She proved the medical team wrong by living ten-and-a-half months longer than they gave her credit! She was able to enjoy meeting her cousins, being held and loved by all of them; she was able to attend family reunions, family pictures, singing and doing actions with her daddy; she was able to experience the 4th of July Parade in Provo; she was able to go on picnics, pet doggies, take warm, spa-like baths; have her fingernails painted; she wore sunglasses; she was able to go to county fairs; she was able to meet Santa and sit on his lap; she was able to help us start the tradition of sleeping under the Christmas Tree on Christmas Eve; she had a huge six-month birthday party at Jumpin’ Jacks… pizza, cake, ice cream, and presents all included! She was able to celebrate the new year with us; She had her first birthday with us; We had her for Thanksgiving and we were able to dress her up in a beautiful dress; we watched “Signing Time” together; read childrens books; enjoyed simple therapy games and toys together.
Bringing her home also brought illness and several scary times with it. It wasn’t all “fun and games”, but we believe with all our hearts that each experience was a tender mercy from a very loving Father in Heaven. Mercydez endured a great deal on this earth. While complex congential heart defects are what ultimately took her back to heaven, Mercydez was also a beautiful little girl with CHARGE Syndrome. She taught us that being different is beautiful and absolutely priceless.
Our beautiful daughter, Mercydez, returned home to Heaven on March 15th, 2009. While our experiences have been difficult, more than that, they have been a gift of happiness, of joy. We would never, ever trade our experiences with Mercy for anything. She is our greatest blessing and joy.
Children, no matter how long we have them on this earth, no matter what we do or don’t experience with them, no matter their challenges, are the greatest blessing. We learned this through our tender Mercy.