On December 19 2015, we welcomed the newest addition to the Buffone family- Luccia Jade. Our angel quickly entered this world at 10:15pm weighing 4lb, 14oz and measuring 18in long at 38 weeks gestation. Within 7 minutes of arrival to the hospital, she was born. Mommy briefly held her after delivery prior to her being taken to the NICU. Luccia was very stable at birth with near perfect apgar scores and strong vital signs. She breathed very well on her own and did not require additional support.
Luccia was diagnosed with complete AV canal at 22 weeks gestation, which will require open heart surgery between 3-4 months of life. We learned after an initial and a repeat echocardiogram that Luccia also suffered from a narrowing of her aortic arch, which is called coarctation. She underwent her first surgery at 5 days old to repair her coarctation. Luccia was also diagnosed with an intestinal issue at 24 weeks gestation, which required surgery at 10 days old to repair a blockage caused by an annular pancreas. She remained intubated between the two surgeries and fought for the first 27 days of her life in the hospital. We brought her home to become a true family of four mid January. Her bigger sister, Giada, has loved on her unconditionally since that day!
In the midst of health issues diagnosed in utero, we learned that Luccia would also have Down Syndrome. While our priorities were to find the best health care providers and facility to have Luccia, we also prepared ourselves for her arrival by reaching out to local resources in the DS community. The fears and sorrow we had throughout the pregnancy were crippling at times, but every kick from within gave us strength… As did the unrelenting prayers that surrounded us.
There was no preparing us to feel the immediate love Luccia gave us when we first laid eyes on her. She has amazed us from the first time we saw her heartbeat on ultrasound… Her fight for life is astonishing. While we still carry worry about her underlying heart condition and impending open heart surgery, she assures each day of what a true warrior she is and will always be! As a family, we have grown. We have become more than just a family of four… We have learned to love unconditionally, we have learned to be patient, and we have learned to center God in our lives. Luccia’s purpose in life is so vast and she has already touched the lives of so many! I have learned more from her in the past 8 weeks about the meaning of life than in my 30 years here on this earth. Our lives will never be the same… They will always be brighter with our light, our Luccia. Luccia strong.
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