My precious gift
Christian Dierkx was born at approximately 6pm 2007 at the Hills Private Hospital. He was healthy, happy, and gorgeous. I wanted a natural delivery so I decided against pain relief but after 36 hours of contractions and no baby. My OBGYN started preparing me for a c-section and decided to administer an epidural and with the aid of vacuum and forceps Christian made his entrance into the world.
After a long and challenging delivery I was exhausted and needed some rest. I asked the nurses to watch him in the nursery so I could take a nap. But it wasn’t long into my nap when I heard a baby screaming from down the hall. Even though there were a number of babies in the nursery I wasn’t surprised when one of the nurses knocked on my door and said "your baby is hungry". I thought ‘what do I feed him with’, and it was though the nurse could read my mind. She said, ‘no bottle love, breast milk is best for newborns’. So there I was, tired and exhausted but I had to try and get the energy for this all too important breast feed.
After 3 days in hospital the day had come for us to finally go home and frankly by now I was over the well meaningful nurses telling me what to do. But before we leave the hospital there were a few protocols to be completed. We had to do a number of newborn checks which were fairly standard and Christian passed all his checks including the all important hearing test. However, during my pregnancy I was informed that I was a carrier for mucopolysaccharidosis or MPS-II which could affect 50% of male babies I have. Therefore, we decided to test Christian for MPS-II prior to leaving the hospital.
As the nurses proceeded with collecting the blood sample, I watched them poke and pulled at my newborn baby which was heart breaking but he was a champ and I was tough for him. The next day we packed up the car with all the many bouquets of flowers and gifts we were given and headed home. We were very excited as first time parents to finally bring our gorgeous bundle of joy home.
But deep inside I was a bit anxious about being a new mom at home and slightly concern about the test result we were expecting. But we had faith and believed he would be fine. Finally two weeks went by and we were called to come into the hospital for his test results.
We met with a genetic doctor and a counsellor which wasn’t a good sign. They opened up by saying ‘we have unfortunate news’, your son has tested positive to hunter syndrome. The news was the most devastating news we have ever had and our greatest fear had come through. Since that day, our journey with our beautiful Christian began and the chapters of his life and our journey are still being written.