A letter to my son


My second born. My son.

We are so close to celebrating your first birthday. And what a celebration it will be!

We have almost survived a year! A year with open heart surgery, a hospital stay (that felt endless), countless doctor appointments, medicines, holter monitors, daily pulse checks, worry, anxiety, tears.

I say we because your daddy, sister and I have gone through it with you. We have fought alongside you, and our little family is forever changed from this. From you.

You are my warrior. Mommy is so proud of you.

Your heart wasn’t the only one to change in this process. It has been a privilege to experience this with you. I watched as you fought for your life in the NICU, only a few days old. I watched you being wheeled away by a team of doctors into open heart surgery, and I watched you come back alive.


I walked into your recovery room in the CICU, and you were battered and bruised, but you were alive. We saw your heart. Your chest was still open, and daddy and I saw it beating. It was beautiful.  That teeny tiny heart that God made, and healed through the brilliant surgery team. The most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen.

The strength that I saw in you, at a mere 5 days old! It has forever changed my life.

I watched you struggle through heart arrhythmias, while medicine after medicine was pumped into your tiny body.

I watched you reject my milk that I tirelessly pumped for you. And then I watched you thrive on formula.

I remember placing you in your car seat when it was finally time to go home. I felt the weight of the world on my shoulders. I was petrified of taking you out of those safe hospital walls.


Oh but how that strengthened my faith.


We came home. We were finally a family of four.

I am so inspired by you! I watched you overcome stiffness in your hands that was caused by prolonged time in the NICU. I watched you over come feeding obstacles and sleeping issues.

I’ve laughed with your therapists about how little of their help is needed, because you are so strong!

But all of that is nothing compared to how you have daily changed my life since coming home.

Consider it wholly joyful, my brethren, whenever you are enveloped in or encounter trials of any sort or fall into various temptations. Be assured and understand that the trial and proving of your faith bring out endurance and steadfastness and patience. (James‬ ‭1‬:‭2-3‬ AMP)

You are wholly joyful, despite what has happened in your short life. You aren’t just a “happy baby”. Your smile and laugh are infectious. You bring so much JOY to our home.

Mommy had a rough time after your sister was born. Joy was the word that God imprinted on me to help get me through the tough times.

He has faithfully brought me another reminder of that joy, but this time was different.

This time, He wrapped it into my beautiful baby boy.

Meeting Derek for the first time.

Meeting Derek for the first time.




  1. That was beautiful, Katie! I’m so proud to be your sister and watch all that God is doing in your life and the life of your family!

  2. Sounds like the Lord continues to bless you all, and Derek is doing well. I’m in hopes he continues to overcome the next obstacle. Your words came straight from your heart and you touched my heart! Debbie Knox

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