The story of our beautiful, joyfilled daughter, Charlotte, began when God created her with a plan and purpose in mind. I was thrilled to be carrying the life of my fourth child within me and thought all would be well just as it had with my other children. However, God had other plans than I did, and my mother died when I was 6 months pregnant. I went into prelabor and on bedrest until Charlotte’s birth at 37 weeks. What a glorious day! She was in my arms, smaller than our other children, but just precious.
For three years we nurtured and loved our sweet, little girl. She had difficulties during that time which included severe reflux and she just stopped growing. Every time I looked at her, I just had a feeling in my heart that she was different.
Just before she turned three we received the diagnosis that Charlotte had Turner Syndrome. This meant she is missing one of the x chromosomes in most of her cells, and has a fragmented x in a few others. I was shocked, relieved, angry, sad, and overwhelmed; until I realized in prayer that she was still our precious Charlotte. This really didn’t change anything in the big scheme of things. God had placed her in our family, He had a plan, and we were all going to grow with her.
We have learned so much in the last year and a half. Many things medical, but so much more about God’s grace, mercy and love. Charlotte is the spunkiest, joyfilled kid we’ve got. Most people don’t know that Charlotte has TS, especially since she has grown 5 inches in the last year on growth hormone. Charlotte sees various doctors to follow the different issues of TS, but it is doable (and I have 5 children!). She talks incessantly and people are amazed at her vocabulary. She has had some struggles with sensory issues and visual spatial skills, but we work through them and we all learn when to be patient and when to help. We don’t know exactly what future difficulties she might have(none of us do), but we do know that she can live a very full and normal life. Each of my children has different gifts and different struggles; that’s part of God’s plan for us to all grow in holiness.
All life is a precious gift that we are given to nurture. The miracle of Charlotte’s life is one that we are privileged to witness each day. I cannot give Charlotte back the genetic material she is missing, but what I can give her means so much more than that….my unconditional love. In this I can see that we are on this journey together, our family, living out the perfect plan God has for us with our joy reminder at our side.