In the wee hours of the morning one year ago today, we looked at Derrick's smooth, soft, perfect little chest for the last time. 

Today, one year ago, was the first time we did the hardest thing we've ever done.  We handed "Baby D" over to have his heart touched.  It was absolutely the most difficult thing I had ever done up to that day.  The pain of childbirth quickly faded to nothing compared to the pain of watching strangers wheel my eight day old son down the hall for heart surgery.  Pain that I could feel in the veins in my wrists.  

He came back hours later a whole new baby.  He was tough to look at initially, but I knew my baby boy was under those tubes and bandages somewhere.  A baby with a special story to tell.

Over the next few weeks, his little body quickly healed

and a beautiful pink scar formed.

All of us have scars.
Some have scars that are visible to others,

and some have scars that can't be seen, but can only be felt inside. 

Derrick has touched my heart and given me a scar that will never fade. 

Scars are not bad.

They make us who we are. 

They give us personality, and they help us tell our stories.
It's what we do with ours scars that really matters.

I hope Derrick does something big with his. 
I hope he isn't embarrassed by it.  I hope he's proud of it.

A lot of times I don't notice Derrick's scar anymore.
It's always been there.
Actually, it's the perfect, soft, bare little chests that I notice now.

But sometimes, when life is really "normal" and I forget for a second that Derrick has such a special little heart, that scar will peek out from under his shirt and take my breath away.  It reminds me of the obstacles he has overcome, and the ones that lie ahead.  But most of all, it reminds me of all I have to be thankful for. 
I hope it reminds him to be thankful too.

I can just imagine Derrick sitting in a circle with his little kindergarten class for show-and-tell...
He's empty-handed and his teacher says, "Derrick, it's your turn to share.  Did you forget your show-and-tell?"  As he yanks up his shirt, Derrick says, "Nope.  Today I wanted to share the story of my special heart!" 

That would make my heart smile! :)  I bet you anything, it'll happen.  Just wait.

Scars tell stories.  They're something to be proud of, not ashamed of.  
I love that little scar, and I hope D does too. 



  1. You have me in tears Shannon! I echo your prayer that it be a testimony of Gods healing touch in his life! I told you at his party, didnt I? I got a lump in MY throat watching him dig into his cake naked with his sweet silver scar peeking out. What a story he WILL tell. What a testimony he's been given!
    love you dear!

  2. Ok, let me see if I can type through my TEARS!
    I pray that he uses his little testimony to do BIG things! :)
    I know he will make you one proud momma when he does, too!

  3. He is too cute and precious. Thank you for this beautiful post.

  4. Shannon, You have hit the nail on the head.
    He is adorable! And his scar makes Derrick, Derrick.
    He is such a shining light.
    Praying for you always,

  5. You really have such a way with words... I also am sitting here with tears in my eyes (at work, so I'm trying very hard to hide it. :) ). What a great post and a cutie patootie little man! :) :)

  6. Shannon,
    You're right, the scars whether visible or not are what make us who we are and Derrick's is very special. It makes him who he is and I am sure he will do great things with it as he does have a story to tell of his special heart. The great thing is that he has great parents who have documented his journey since before he was born and he will be able to go back and look at that. A scar, such a small thing that can mean so much!


  7. Ok..so now I have to go redo my makeup....I am balling ...You are so right!! You are so right! It is there badge of courage with a powerful story behind it! It was so hard to think of Zeb's little smooth chest with a scar, BUT now I see a Miracle! Thanks for sharing that, I needed it and am truly Blessed!

    Love you girl! and Love that D man. He is such a cutie!!


  8. Shannon~

    I couldn't agree with you more! While all of us would endure our kids' pain if we could, I don't know that any of us would change things if we could. I know I have become a different person when Jordan was diagnosed :-)

    Jordan will be right there with D when it comes to showing her scar and telling her story! She's already been pulling up her shirt showing people her scar and her second "bellybutton" (her chest tubes scars). Not a big issue now but as she gets older it's gonna have to stop! :-D

    Tracey, Jeremy, Riley, Drew and Jordan Snyder

  9. What a powerful post! You do have a perfect little boy!

  10. I soo understand!.. as a Gramma (to Madi) I wanted to take the pain away from Madi AND her parents. CHD has affected our ENTIRE family! I am so proud of how my daughter and son in law have handled the stress of CHD. It is not an easy road and faith can be tested, but faith will help you through it! We treasure each and EVERY precious milestone and have learned what is truely important in life! We have talked about the Scar from time to time and we have all decided to always tell her that we are all proud of it and that it has made her the "special" person that we all know she is!! That scar is her story and it has made our family "WHOLE"!!
    Derrick is soo cute and I hope you don't mind that Madi's Gramma checks in from time to time!
    Gramma TJC

  11. OMG I am in tears!! Again, such reminders of Andrew and his story to tell as well...I have blogged/written about his scar many times and it is so amazing to really think about the meaning behind it. How proud we are of them and how much we desire them to be proud of themselves. We will forever be teaching them to wear it proudly!

    Jen, Craig & Andrew

  12. Ah the tears...
    D was beautiful from day one, and he wouldn't be who he is today without those scars. And like I keep telling Sam, chicks dig scars!

  13. What a great post! My keyboard is full of tears! I hope our babes are SO proud of their scars!

  14. What a touching post!

    Sue Shelton

  15. Derrick you scar is very special to me. I too have a scar though mine is inner and can not be seen by the naked eye your scar reminds me gently why I have mine.
    Shannon, when I look at D I guess I stopped seeing the scar like I did with Ethin. It is through that scar that connected us! Thanks for the talk today I enjoyed it. I love you guys!

  16. This was beautifully written Shannon.

    I too know that some day Logan will be sharing his story with others. He will have many scars that tell so much about the journey he has been on!

  17. Derrick is amazing. He has been an inspiration to our Family as we deal with our sons CHD. I have so much hope for my son Aharon and all the children with CHDs. These kids are truly amazing, they are stronger than I ever imagined. I pray everyday for a cure, but in the meantime I will continue to Thank God for every blessed day with my son. I look forward to following Derrick as he journeys through his amazing life.