Our Turner Syndrome Story…
On December 11th, 2017 I was at work anticipating a call to find out the gender of our baby that would ultimately change our lives. From week 7 I had a feeling so strong she was a girl but I decided to do the blood test to determine the gender at 11 weeks pregnant despite my husbands request not to. The test had the potential to tell us if there were complications but I thought to myself we are both young, healthy, and don’t have any history of health conditions on either sides of our family that could play a factor. The call came in shortly after my lunch break ended and I had missed it, our OB left a voicemail and I instantly knew something wasn’t right. I immediately went to call her back she informed me over the phone that our baby had a chance of having Turner Syndrome. She gave me a brief description, however I wasn’t able to fully comprehend what I was hearing due to shock. One of the first options she gave me without even giving me time to process or look into what T.S. even was, was to terminate the pregnancy! I was shocked and heartbroken to hear that even suggested so I thought this must be something pretty serious. I knew in my heart that wasn’t an option unless it could take both of our lives. She had informed me that most cases result in a miscarriage regardless so I needed to be prepared, I simply responded with “every moment of my pregnancy is a gift, no matter how short it may end up”.
After receiving the news I left work in a hurry and went home to my husband who was getting ready to leave. Of course I was an emotional wreck and with what little information I was given I was left to Google search more information on the condition, HORRIBLE IDEA, Google seems to show you the worst possible scenario. Fear took over but I knew I had to trust God’s plan. We were advised to meet with a high risk doctor over a month after receiving the news. The day of our appointment my anxiety was so high, they did in depth measurements of her and checked multiple organs as best they could. The only thing that they could find that may be related to T.S. was short legs, I am only 5’2 so I wasn’t alarmed at that at all. They had suggested doing amniocentesis to confirm whether or not she did have T.S. to ease our minds, although with technological advances and skilled doctors, it was not a risk I was willing to take. We continued going to our regular OB and the high-risk doctor and they both couldn’t find anything alarming. She was a very active baby and I worked out intensely until I was 34 weeks pregnant. I had no complications and loved being pregnant. At one of our final check ups the OB suggested I get induced that day, out of no where. She informed me that Avery could potentially have a bowel obstruction and an imperforated anus. I had planned on a natural delivery and trusted my gut and told her I didn’t feel it was necessary so she advised we go to the high-risk doctor yet again. The high-risk doctor informed us that she didn’t see anything alarming yet again, surprise surprise. I am very thankful for them being so precautious but the constant fear tactics used were a bit much. The OB had given me an induction date if I didn’t go into labor before then. I had tried everything to naturally induce labor but it didn’t work.
The morning of my appointment my anxiety was high yet again. We delivered at Wesley hospital in Wichita, KS on June 12th, 2017. Despite having to be induced I was still set on having a natural delivery, which I succeeded at! They had a full team lined up and ready due to all the potential “problems” that they had expected. After 11 hour of labor she arrived! As soon as she was born she pooped which proved their assumption of her having an imperforated anus wrong. She instantly nursed off both sides and did great. They took so much blood from the bottom of her feet over the couple days we were in the hospital and yet it didn’t seem to fade her at all. They continued to not find anything wrong. We had to have an echocardiogram done before we could leave the hospital and her results came back just fine. A geneticist from KU Medical Center came to meet her and said she would be surprised if she actually ended up having T.S. We finally went home and patiently awaited the call to confirm if she did have T.S., I had months to mentally prepare but getting the confirmation still hit me like a brick and I cried for 5 straight hours (lets be honest, I think post partum hormones were to blame).
Our daughter is now 7 months old. She has hit developmental milestones earlier than most and is a happy, healthy girl. Our only concern right now is having to put tubes in her ears in the near future. The endocrinologist will be meeting with us again in 6 months to discuss growth and the possibility of growth hormones. She has consistently been on the charts around the 2nd-5th percentile for height and 10th-15th for weight. Avery is constantly on the go and brings a smile to nearly everyone she meets.
DON’T LET THE DOCTORS SCARE YOU! They may be educated and great at what they do but remember to trust your gut. Had I listened to ours we wouldn’t have an amazing little girl in our lives. They are always prepared for the worst and we need to stay hopeful for the best. Our future may come with challenges but I know with God we will conquer all that comes our way.
The Cochran’s: Avery, Rachel, and Todd