Enzo’s Story

As told by his mother, Milena.

“Most people only dream of angels… I held one in my arms!”

On a day when most like to play practical jokes, I found out I had nothing to joke about but, rather, jump of joy. On April 1st 2011, I found out I was pregnant with my first child. I was filled with complete and utter joy! I had wanted to be a mother my entire life. I went through the three months of morning (or should I say, everyday) sickness. The weight gain. The doctor visits. The careful diet. All of those wonderful and amazing things, that most of us take for granted, but that I never will again.
On one very special doctor visit, we were going to find out the gender of our beloved baby. On July 19, 2011 we happily arrived to Dr. Green’s office to see and witness our little miracle. We went in, we saw, we heard, so we were happy. Who would have thought that even after hearing our baby’s heartbeat, there can still be something wrong? Right after the ultrasound, we had a doctor’s appointment where his words froze us all: “If I’m worried, then you should be worried.” With that, we were sent to a specialist for further examinations. We went to two different specialists, with two different machinery, in two different hospitals but with the exact same diagnosis; my baby had Potter’s Syndrome.
Potter’s Syndrome is when the baby is lacking kidneys. Lacking or his kidneys are malformed. In our case, his kidneys were malformed. He had one extremely small, non functioning kidney and another extremely large, full of cysts, and also not functioning. Along with that, our baby didn’t have a bladder (no kidneys and no bladder usually go hand in hand). Not having functioning kidneys or a bladder, our baby didn’t produce urine. By not producing urine, he could not make amniotic fluid to live in. Not having amniotic fluid prevents him from forming other major organs, such as his lungs. By not having lungs, he is not able to live outside of my womb. I quickly learned that Potter’s Syndrome is not compatible with life.
We were given two options: 1) induce labor or 2) have a full term pregnancy. Either one, our baby was still given only hours of life. They even prepared us for delivering a dead baby as there was the possibility that he could die inside of me. Nine days later, I gave birth to Enzo on July 28th 2011 at 11:18pm. I began induction at 2:50pm and started having my first contractions shortly after, at 3:14pm. By 11pm the contractions were 1-2 minutes apart. At exactly 11:18pm my beautiful baby boy was in my arms. He was miniature but yet so strong. With only 21 weeks gestation he lived 4 hours and 25 minutes. He fought to stay with us for as long as possible. I have never been more in love and more proud of anyone in my life!
Enzo was with us for 4 hours and 25 minutes. In those 4 hours and 25 minutes, we bathed him, clothed him, held him, kissed him, photographed him, loved him… and he loved us. He gave us his all. His entire life, his unconditional love, his will power (he had such a strong will to live), his strength, his courage, his bravery, and much, much more. He passed away on July 29, 2011 at 3:43am leaving behind nothing but beautiful, amazing memories and all of the life lessons he taught us.
The 4 hours and 25 minutes he gifted us were truly the best moments of my life. I will cherish and treasure every second of his entire lifetime forever and for always. The pain, heartbreak, and devastation we feel is honestly immeasurable. As is our happiness to have become first time parents to our baby angel, Enzo. He is sincerely remarkable in every possible way.
Since his birth, we have found out that Enzo had developed Potter’s Syndrome due to having a chromosomal abnormality called Trisomy 16 Mosaic. Trisomy 16 Mosaic is when most, but not all of Enzo’s cells have an extra 16th chromosome. There are normally two of each chromosome per cell, but on my son’s chromosomal structure he had three on most of them. We have since learned that Trisomy 16 Mosaic is the most common cause of early miscarriages. The specialists said that Enzo is a miracle beyond miracles! I did not miscarry him, and I was able to carry him until I was induced. That further proves his strength and the connection we have as mother and son. This has awed me, and I have been left speechless with gratification.
My sweet, perfect, beautiful Enzo. No matter how heavy, I will never put him down… I will hold him high for the warmth of the sun and for all to see. He is mighty and flawless and his presence is way too big to ever be forgotten. In our hearts, souls, and lives forever Enzo lives. Fly high my beautiful little darling, we shall meet again. Until then, you will forever live through us. WE LOVE YOU, ENZO!
“A luminous light remains where a beautiful soul has passed.”