Sunday, January 29, 2012

A Day Before Dalton, A Dad's Journey

There is not a great place to begin telling my story, and in no way will I be able to express our journey as well as Kara has, but I will share a few thoughts I’ve had along the way.    

If you had asked me 9 months ago if I was ready to be a father, you would have received a quick and definite, NO.  That would have meant that one of my biggest fears could possibly come true.  What if I wasn’t a good dad?  What if I wasn’t able to raise my kids as well as my parents did?  Although I have amazing role models in my parents, I was scared of the idea.  Would I make the right decisions for him even when it wasn’t easy?  How am I going to afford a child?  Would I be able to provide for my family?  

When Kara so eloquently told me she was pregnant, my mind went into panic mode.  All those questions raced through my head.  I didn’t say very much, and we both had to take some time to process everything.  Kara didn’t believe the 3 pregnancy tests so she quickly made a doctors appointment, and I was already thinking about buying a house to take care of our growing family.  Although I was scared of what having a baby meant it didn’t take long for the excitement to grow. 

Weeks 8 through 20 were filled with joy and anticipation, but as all of you know that follow Kara’s blog, our world came crashing down.  We went from the highest of highs to lowest of lows in a matter of minutes.  When Dalton’s original diagnosis of full Trisomy 13 was given to us, my whole body hurt.  It shook me to my inner core.  How could this happen to us?  I don’t ask why anymore, but I would be lying if I told you I didn’t ask it at first.  This wasn’t supposed to happen to us.  We just got married a year ago, how were we supposed to overcome something as great as this?

As difficult as the news was for both of us, I truly believe God used that news to prepare us for the road ahead.  Without a doubt in my mind, I know that my heart has changed, and my outlook on life and having children has made a change for the better.  When we were given the initial news that our son wouldn’t live more than a couple of days, my perspective changed instantaneously.  I no longer thought about if my son would be athletic and want to throw the baseball in the back yard on a Saturday afternoon like I always did with my dad, or want to come out and learn how to change the oil in the car, because he thought it was cool that dad could do it.  Perspective quickly changed, to simply wanting my son to live, so I would be able to know him, his quirks, his passions, and see him grow up to become a man.  All of a sudden, those things were stripped away.   

Kara and I had no place to turn.  We went to each other, but were both so broken that we didn’t have much to give.  I still remember sitting on our couch, staring at each other, and the only image I could think about was Jesus holding Dalton in his arms.  To this day I can still see them together like he was standing right there in front of me.  From that point on, there was no doubt in my mind that Dalton was in the best of hands.  All of my anxieties were turned over to God.  I realized that the only one in control was Him, not Kara, not the doctors, not me, just Him. 
Even with a diagnosis of severe partial Trisomy 13, so much of Dalton’s future is still unknown, but I know in the deepest depths of my heart that God chose us to take this journey, not only for Dalton, but for us as well.  I know that no matter what, God will provide us with the strength to carry on. Dalton has already changed our lives more than we could ever imagine.  He has changed the lives of those around us, and I believe he will continue to change lives when he is here with us.  We just have to keep our hearts open for God to fill them up with his love and grace. 

Ever since I relinquished my control, I have become nothing more than a proud father to my son Dalton.  I will talk about him to anyone that wants to listen.  It isn’t always easy to share our story, especially not knowing what’s in store, but he is my son, and I love him with everything I have.  I can’t wait to meet him. 

Thank you all for your love, support, and prayers.  Please continue to pray for Dalton and Kara as she is being induced on Monday morning.  She has been so strong throughout this whole process and I pray that I can be as strong as her as Dalton’s arrival quickly approaches.  Kara has been ready for this moment for a long time.  She will be the best mother in the world.  She is so full of compassion and she already loves our son more than I could ever imagine.  I pray that the doctors will be blessed and our families will feel comforted by knowing that we are doing ok.  The road ahead may not be easy, and it might be full of hard times, but I think we are up for the challenge.  We have God that will carry us when we need Him. 

-Jonathan, Dalton's Daddy


  1. Jonathan, Kara, and Dalton,

    Andrew and I will be praying for each of you. Jonathan and Kara, you are both amazing parents. Dalton, you have the best parents (and grandparents, and aunts and uncles) one could find.

  2. Jonathan, I think you expressed yourself very eloquently. I am amazed at your strength, as well as Kara's. I'll be thinking about all three of you tomorrow.

  3. You are in my prayers - you all have been since week 20. Sweet Dalton has the best parents.

  4. Kara and Jonathan,

    Your strength is inspiring. Praying for you...

    Isaiah 41:10 fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.

    Samantha Osby

  5. Well written and good heart truth Jonathan. Praying for you three tonight.


  6. I'm praying for your family today. You are wonderful parents to Dalton already.

  7. Thanks for sharing this. God bless you, Kara, and Dalton.

  8. God bless you both and may the wonderful love of Jesus carry you through this time. God loved him first and you were very blessed to be given him to love and care for. HE trusted you. Feel loved and very thankful.

  9. Prayers for the 3 of you, already a remarkably strong family. You are such an inspiration. God has given Dalton wonderful parents for this journey. I pray you find answers today, that it is filled with peace and joy, and that Dalton defies all the odds. God bless you both and this beautiful boy you welcome today. (jeremiah 29:11)

  10. Long story short, I found your blog after linking to it from another blog. I've read all of your posts. Sounds very stalker-ish, but to be honest, I find your testimony and faith to be very encouraging. Today you came to mind and I wanted to let you know that I'm praying for you. I'm not sure what today brought, but God does and He is sovereign and good. He is MIGHTY to save. I pray expectantly for a miracle, to a God who is able. Dalton is a miracle. - Katie from Grand Rapids, MI

  11. Praying. Found you from Katie. :)

  12. Thank you all you trisomy dads for sharing. You dont realize how many dads you are a witness to. God bless you and thank you for sharing.