Josh and Katie Butler had always dreamt of having a big family. And when I say big, I mean BIG.
Katie once found a note belonging to Josh, where he wrote that he wanted to have 13 children.
The couple eventually decided that they would try for two adopted children and also adopt two.
But they had no idea that fate had other plans for them…
When Katie and Josh Butler dicovered that they were expecting a baby they were both ecstatic. They decided that their first son would be called Dewey and had everything prepared to welcome the family’s new arrival.
But only 20 weeks into the pregnancy, things took a scary turn.
“In January 2015, we went in, and they told us there was some thickening of the neck and that the baby had club feet,” Katie tells The Advertiser.
“Those were all markers for genetic conditions.”
Both Josh and Katie had a lump in their stomachs hearing the terrible news.
“They said that (ultrasound) machines could only do so much and that we might just have a small baby. But as Dewey grew, things looked bad.”
After 39 weeks the doctor was forced to perform an emergency C-section. Katie got to hold Dewey for a few seconds before they rushed him away to the hospital’s neo-natal unit for intensive care.
The doctors told Katie and Josh that their son had been born with clubbed feet and a webbed neck, as they had suspected. But the situation didn’t seem as bad as they had thought it would be.
“For the first two weeks all he was diagnosed with was diabetes. But then they discovered that chromosomes 6 and 10 had broken off and flip-flopped, but it didn’t happen equally. Basically, he was missing some genetic information and some was duplicated,” explains Katie.
Sadly, when Dewey went back to the hospital for a routine check up, everything took a terrible turn for the worst. Dewey was rushed in for an emergency heart surgery, but sadly he passed away at only 4 months old.
Katie and Josh were completely crushed by grief.
Days and months went by, but Katie was still paralyzed by dark thoughts. She couldn’t understand how she could lose her precious son, now she had a massive hole in her heart.
But destiny was about to change their lives again, this time for the better.
“While we were in the hospital, we got to be good friends with everyone,” Katie explains.
“Since we were discouraged from having any more natural kids (because Dewey’s condition was genetic), we were talking to different nurses about adoption. In November, it was a Wednesday, I really poured out my heart to God, crying, that I needed another baby. We had so much love and poured it into Dewey and now he was in heaven … I needed more kids to love,” explains Katie.
As it turns out, there was a baby called Braxtel who had been born in the hospital in the same wing as Dewey. But Braxtel never got to go home from the hospital. He had severe breathing problems, but was on the road towards recovery.
There was only one problem: Braxtel didn’t have a home or parents.
One of the nurses who had got to know Katie immediately thought of her when Braxtel’s situation became more urgent.
They asked Katie and Josh if they were interested in adoption and the couple decided to meet Braxtel a few days later.
“Like Dewey, Brax was on a ventilator and had a trach, and when doctors told us, we were like, ‘We got this.’ With Dewey, there was no chance of his lungs getting better, but with Braxtel, he could get better. It was an optimistic situation,” explains Katie.
‘Brax’ biological parents couldn’t take care of him, they couldn’t afford his medical expenses.
“His biological mom decided to let him be adopted because she recognized that she couldn’t provide the best care for him,” Katie says.
“And that’s a hard decision. But I am so grateful she did, so we could love him and care for him.”
In February 2016, Katie and Josh were able to take their baby home. It wasn’t what they had imagined when they started out, but they couldn’t be more grateful for Brax and how he came into their lives.
”There have been a lot of emotions,” Katie says.
“Our highs are really high and sometimes, we just get sad. I just cry. I had to start singing worship songs to get me to focus on the bigger picture: God is in control, Dewey is healed, Brax has a second family, and there is so much to rejoice about.”
The couple could not be happier and they say that their marriage is so much stronger because of everything they have gone through. Their captivating and emotional story really shows the power of love!
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