Keith and I (Jennica) have three fantastic kids: Adelaide (born 2008), Clarence (2010), and Eloise (2011). Adelaide was born with a port wine stain on the right side of her face, which looked like a big, red-wine-colored map of China masking half her face. The port wine stain is a proliferation of blood vessels that grows with her. If left untreated, the mass of blood vessels would continue to grow thicker and darker, eventually getting nodular and interfering with functions like eyesight.
Luckily, treatment is available in the form of regular laser surgeries at Children’s Hospital. After her birth, the dermatologist originally estimated that she would need between 12 and 20 surgeries, but her stain is turning out to be more resistant than anticipated. Every time she grows, the blood vessels beneath the skin grow, too; it’s a constant weed-whacking battle. We’re well past 40 surgeries now, and the stain is still quite visible. (Luckily, Addy loves it and wants to keep it!)
Due to the effective treatments and our awesome surgeon, the stain has (in Keith’s words) faded “from grape jelly to strawberry jam.” It’s a lovely shade of pink now, especially in sunlight! However, each treatment bruises the blood vessels beneath the surface for about a week, usually in a grid pattern, turning the stain a mottled dark purple – that’s usually when people ask about it.
Our goal is to raise a confident girl in today’s world who loves herself, loves her beauty, loves people, and shows grace and gratitude even when people are less than perfect toward her. Please feel free to leave your comments, experience, & insight!
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