Our Family Story
I met Sarah while I was still serving in the United States Air Force in her hometown of Valdosta, GA. I went out one night with some military friends and saw this gorgeous girl with some of her friends. After some small talk I convinced her to be on my team in a game of pool (she’s actually pretty good). After a few wins and a lively conversation, I eventually earned her phone number and a kiss goodnight. Needless to say, I was pretty proud to have won the interest of such a beautiful girl, but my pride was short lived considering Sarah played an excellent game of hard to get. Eventually Sarah gave me a chance to take her out on a date, we chose to go to an ice-skating rink. During our skating Sarah said that she needed to take her medicine, she explained to me that since she was 2 years old, she has been a type 1 diabetic, which meant that she had to manually regulate her blood sugar by taking insulin. She taught me how to give her a shot and I gave her one, she also explained that she hasn’t historically been the best at keeping up with her insulin injections, to which I promised her that I would help her.
Eventually I separated from the Air Force and made plans to move to San Francisco, I asked Sarah if she would be willing to move with me to California. After some careful thought she agreed. About a week later, Sarah kept saying that she was feeling a bit off and decided to take a pregnancy test, I can still remember the rush of excitement, and nervousness I felt when she showed me the positive test. We were going to be parents! It was a bittersweet moment when we packed up our things and said goodbye to her family to drive across the country to start a new life together in California.
Sarah’s pregnancy with our son Jonah seemed to go pretty well, it definitely took some extra effort considering that her blood sugar needed to be run perfectly. However her feedback from her doctors was positive and I was very proud of her for being so committed to having a healthy pregnancy. Doctors started to become concerned at about 28 weeks due to some lab work that resulted in diagnosing Sarah as having preeclampsia, a condition that can quickly become a very dangerous situation for both the mother and child. Jonah ended up having to be taken out via emergency c-section at 32 weeks. He weighed 4lbs and except for having an excess amount of fluid in his lungs he was fortunately very healthy. After about 2 years living in California, we decided to move back to Georgia. Sarah was pregnant again, this time with our daughter Frankie. This pregnancy proved to be more of a challenge. It started out good, Sarah had noticeably less nausea this time, but her doctors kept a closer eye on her. At about 20 weeks, her doctors began talking with her about doing another premature c-section delivery due to Sarah’s noticeably decreased kidney function. This time she was hospitalized at 26 weeks due to a more serious diagnosis of preeclampsia. Sarah and I were of course very worried, survivability rates for 26 weekers weren’t nearly high enough to give us peace of mind, and the doctors were also worried about how Sarah’s body, particularly her kidneys would handle the stress. Doctors decided to go ahead and do the c-section. It was a very scary time for both of us. Ill spare you the ups and downs, but this time Sarah spent about a week in the ICU, and our daughter at just 2lbs went directly to the NICU were she stayed for about 100 days.
Fast forward to today both our 4-year-old son Jonah, and 2-year-old daughter Frankie are both very healthy and happy kids. However, Sarah gave just about everything she had to grow and take care of them. While the first pregnancy stressed her kidneys, the second one broke them. Even still to this day Sarah says she wouldn’t have done anything differently, she wanted both of them and loves them with all of her heart. For me, it’s a very powerless feeling to watch a person that you love being slowly drained of their vitality due to a bodily function that most people, including myself, take for granted. My hope is that by tirelessly helping my wife search our network for a donor I can help repay her for her sacrifice to provide us a family and do whatever I can to help ensure that she gets to watch her babies grow up.