Sarah even had strangers approach her and inquire “What’s the matter with your child’s nose? It’s unlike anything I’ve ever seen.”
Chris Eidam and Sarah Heller were overjoyed when they learned they were expecting a child.
And, like most parents, joy and excitement washed over the young couple right away.
An ultrasound indicated that their kid had a cleft lip and palate at 24 weeks of pregnancy.
Both Chris and Sarah were taken aback, but this was their child, and they would adore him no matter what.
They thought the boy was stunning and wanted the rest of the world to know.
“It’s fine to be proud of your child no matter what,” Heller remarked. “We wanted to update the look of our ultrasound/newborn/first year images on Facebook/Instagram.” “We wanted to raise awareness of cleft lips and palates,” said the group.
When tissues do not fuse during pregnancy, cleft lips and palates develop.
2,650 newborns are born with a cleft palate, and 4,440 are born with a cleft lip, whether or not they have a cleft palate. The lips and palates of children with clefts are frequently repaired through surgery.
Then they go through therapy to learn how to eat and communicate.
Heller and Eidam snapped images of their son and shared them with the world on social media. They believed that posting images would help to normalize cleft lips and palates, but people may be cruel on social media.
“What’s wrong with your baby’s nose?” wrote someone on Instagram, asking Sarah what was wrong with her child’s face. That’s the first time I’ve ever seen anything like that. It doesn’t appear to be a positive situation.”
“I wasn’t prepared to defend my 3-month-old and explain why he seemed to be ‘different’ from other newborns. Rather than provoking a confrontation, I chose to teach because that is what I want Brody to do in the future,” she explained. “I’ll want him to educate and advocate for younger cleft children who don’t yet have a voice.”
Sarah and baby Brody were out to dinner with several of her friends a few hours later when the waitress brought over what seemed to be a folded napkin.
Sarah believed she had received a message of some sort, but when she opened it, she was astounded to find a $1,000 check with the notation “For the Beautiful Baby” written in the memo line.
“My eyes welled up with tears, and the joy in my heart was incomparable,” she added.
Brody underwent lip surgery on January 3, and the money helped him pay for some of his expenses. He’s a tough little guy who responds well to therapy and heals rapidly.
He’s a lovely young man!
Because eating was still challenging for Brody, he has a gastrointestinal tube for nutrients. Brody will undergo another operation to fix his palate when he is between nine and twelve months old.
Sarah believes that the emotional support she receives from others reminds her that, despite harsh criticism from some, there is a lot of good out there. There’s more good to be found!
“This experience has demonstrated the strength of the cleft community.” People from all around the country have contacted us, praying for us and urging us to reach out if we need anything.”
People all across the world are in tears as a result of this incredible story of hope and love! Play the video below to learn more about Brody’s story!