On my drive on home from Arizona, out in the Texas panhandle,
I did not want to listen to the CD’s, so I turned on the radio……finding nothing on the FM stations, I went to AM and the strongest station that came in was a religious one. I listened a minute and a woman was telling her story, but the words that caught my attention was that she had lost her baby. Turns out, the one station that came in fairly clear was a Catholic radio station and then…………. a Station break………
The woman’s voice came back on, her name is Susan, and I listened intently to her story about the baby she was carrying which had a chromosomal defect called Tri 18, what? I was not clear on what I’d just heard. I turned on my digital recorder so that if I heard the word again I could record it. She briefly told about the pregnancy and how she chose to name her son, John Michael and that she’d written a book, entitled Triumph. The interview was short, but I did get the name of the radio station www.marystouch.org and knew I had homework to do when I got home Yet, I had so little to go on. I did not know Susan’s last name, so how was I going to get a copy of her book?
As I continued the drive toward home, my mind was whirling, and then it hit me……I am supposed to share Susan and John Michael’s story as my first blog!! I continued the long drive home, eager to unpack and fire up my computer so that I could learn more about Susan’s story.
After getting home the search was on……….first I looked on Amazon for a book titled Triumph by a woman named Susan, and found nothing. However, I had the radio station website address and eagerly checked into that, but I did not see anything about the story I’d heard the morning before. What to do? I found the contact information and wrote an email, then waited. The next morning I received a response with the link to the radio interview and also the link for purchasing the book, which I promptly ordered. Oh Yay I just struck the glory hole!!
It is my privilege and honor to share this beautiful story……….
Her name is Susan Yurkewicz a devout Catholic, the mother of 6 children and this was her 7th pregnancy. She and her husband learned early in the pregnancy that this baby had a chromosomal defect called Trisomy 18, a condition deemed “incompatible with life”. Some of these babies are born stillborn, and if they survive their birth, they usually do not make their first birthday. Some mothers choose to terminate their pregnancy, however, Susan was adamant that she was going to meet her son alive. She asked God to help choose her son’s name and John instantly came into her mind for it was John the Baptist who prepared the way for Jesus. She also felt that with this diagnosis, they would need protection and she admired Archangel Michael and so it was, his name was to be John Michael.
Trisomy 18 was a death sentence for Susan’s baby and she initially went into despair not wanting to talk to anyone. However, a visitor came to the house and she was very upset about this, but then she remembered Mother Mary. When the Blessed Mary gave birth to Jesus in the manger, she too wanted her privacy. However, visitors promptly came to see her newborn son, it was then that Susan knew her baby was special and that he was to be shared.
Susan’s book is entitled TRIumph: A Story of Finding Hope in a Love That Knows No Bounds, in which she shares her pregnancy and birth of John Michael, the despair, love, hope, trust due to her unending faith in God, and then joy upon meeting John Michael alive and cherishing those precious moments. Although their time together was brief, only 48 hours, John Michael touched many lives and continues to do so. If you wish to read Susan and John Michael’s story first hand, the book can be purchased from this website http://www.triumph-story.com/.
I am in awe of the rawness and courage it took for Susan to vividly share her personal struggles of carrying and birthing her beautiful son, John Michael. It is my hope that others will want to personally read their story and share it with others who also may be touched by this courageous mother and her tiny angel’s short life. I feel blessed and honored to have crossed paths with John Michael and to be able to share his story as my very first blog.
I know that it was through Divine intervention that I chose find a radio station and then to hear Susan’s voice. I also sense that John Michael’s tiny hand was a big part in this connection. Thank you for the blessing, John Michael.