What do playdough, a brain MRI, genetic testing, and glue have in common?

What do playdough, a brain MRI,¬†genetic testing, and glue have in common? Well, I am glad you asked! ūüôā ¬†These things just seem to be the normal things happening in our family right now, as it is never a dull moment!img_2788

I am so thankful that we live near the International Adoption Clinic at Vanderbilt Children’s Hospital. ¬†The doctors there have been a wealth of knowledge and insight into Lyla’s progression medically, physically, emotionally, and educationally.

Over the three years she has officially been a Parkison, there have been some red flags in some of her medical history, as well as some of her current growth charts, and she was diagnosed with a developmental delay.

After another well check this past year and not seeing a lot of growth in some of those areas, the doctor wanted us to get genetic testing done, as well as a brain MRI.

As a Mamma, I guess one never wants to hear there might be any health issue with your child. ¬†For me, I really was not scared at this point. ¬†I might have¬†played through some minor scenarios in my head about what my be in store for us as we get results from these tests, but then I would just shut my mind down and not go there. ¬†Besides, the results weren’t going to change how we feel about sweet Lyla, they could only potentially help us get more help for her needs.

The results of the genetic testing were interesting, they were not life shattering or altering.  They were more informative, and I became more fascinated with all that science and biology can show us, and how the Creator has designed us all so unique and special.

It did reveal a marker in her chromosomes. ¬†But don’t ask me which one, because I can’t remember! (Mom of the year, right here!) But it is a marker that identifies a developmental delay. ¬†The doctor did explain that this marker can mean a variety of developmental delays, and that they have seen children with these markers live full and productive lives. ¬†It also verifies several things we already knew about her, like she is a carrier for a certain gene, and if she marries someone who is also a carrier, it could be dangerous to the health of their future children. ¬†I am imagining us 50 years from now, and Lyla going on her first date (did you catch that?), and us saying, “Ok, son…now we need to draw some blood from you.” ūüôā ¬†Or the kind of in depth conversation¬†she could have on that first date… “So what do you like to do for fun? You aren’t a sickle cell carrier are you?” ūüôā

The genetic testing even showed that her biological parents were related but not closer then first cousins. ¬†Isn’t that fascinating? ¬†It just blows me away that we can learn all of these things by just drawing some blood.

Since the genetic testing did not show a whole lot of info for her developmental delay, they wanted to proceed with the brain MRI.

Because her head growth is not progressing like they want it to, they were concerned her brain may not be able to develop properly.  In addition, her medical records from India indicated she had a skull fracture as an infant, so they were also looking for any defects that could have potentially developed from that fracture.

Again, I was not really nervous about the MRI. ¬†She did have to go under anesthesia for it, but I remembered from India and her heart procedure how well she did with all of that…I was not too concerned. ¬†But I did ask¬†a few people to be praying for her.

Again, I was not too nervous until we went back for the MRI and one of the doctors said they were testing her for microcephaly as well.  I had not heard that term in concern with Lyla thus far, and it kind of scared me.  But I knew people were praying, and I also knew that potential diagnosis would not change how much we love Lyla!

The results of the MRI were clear and defect free, so we are thankful she was not affected by the fracture as a child, and that the lack of head growth size has not damaged her brain.

So, we will just keep pushing on.  She has really come so far!  And homeschooling her this year, has given me a lot of opportunity to spend some educational quality time with her.  I have thoroughly enjoyed watching her learn, and she has read three books on her own now.  We are using a program called Upwords Reading and another program called Fastforward that has really helped her tremendously.

Now for the playdough and the glue, well that could only be my fearless 3 year old- Joel Man!

The picture below is him getting looked at after getting playdough stuck down in his ear. ¬†I kept asking him if it hurt, and he said, “No, it sounds weed (weird).”

Then just a few weeks later, poor Joel was standing at just the right place and the wrong time. ¬†His sister KP came charging through the door and it swung open and cracked his head open pretty good. At a church friend’s house, mind you, that has just been redone and is gorgeous!… Blood on the floor, and the best part, well not really, is I spilt an entire cup of coffee all over myself and her steps as I went downstairs to see what I could clean up from the accident.

After a trip to the ER they just glued it back together! (Phew, thank goodness, we have had staples and stitches before- glue is so much easier to remove!)


So this is my life, and I would not trade anything for it!

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Cathy Hand
4 years 7 months ago

Loved hearing this news. I simply adore and love Lyla. I have spent much time praying for this little girl and I praise God for the news. I will continue to pray for her and that she will be who and what God created her to be. She will have all the tools she needs to be his servant. I am glad that she is learning and I am proud of her. Joel is sweet. Don’t you just love play dough. Love you guys!