New Blog for Nathanael

We recently started fundraising with COTA to cover Nathanael's medical expenses, so updates about him will be on his new blog from now on: Please check out the blog, pictures, and opportunities to help, and feel free to pass along the link to others. We appreciate your concern!

Friday, September 11, 2009

The Beginning of the Road

Today, I (Brad) am sitting at my desk in my office in McKinney, Texas, having an idea of what the next steps are but having no idea how far this road will take us.

On Wednesday, August 19th, at 3:18 in the morning, our second son, Nathanael Zachary Banks was born. His length and weight were fantastic, 8lbs 70z and 20 inches long. Roughly an hour and a half later, we were in our recovery room and as I was holding Nathanael in my arms, a group of three nurses walked in and one told us that his platelets were low and that they needed to remove him to an isolation room for further observation. It was at this point that we knew the answer to a difficult question.

My wife Bree is a carrier for a disease called Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome or WAS. It's a genetic disease that affects 1 per 250,000 live male births per year which categorizes it as a rare condition. I can remember the conversation Bree and I had on the couch in my fraternity house in college where she told me there was a 50/50 chance she'd be a carrier. I can remember when we got her test results that meant that, if we were to have children, each girl would have a 50/50 chance of being a carrier and each boy would have a 50/50 chance of having a disease where his white blood cells can't fight off infection and his platelets were too low and immature to curb any significant bleeding, not to mention a dramatically increased risk for leukemia and lymphoma as he grew older. The statistics held true. We have two boys. The first one didn't get the gene but the second one did.

The only cure for Wiskott-Aldrich Syndrome is a bone marrow transplant. In a few weeks, we will be traveling to Cincinnati so that Nathanael can be treated at Cincinnati Children's Hospital. Why Cincinnati? One reason is our health insurance. More of the treatment will be covered if we go there for transplant but the second reason is expertise. More Wiskott babies have been successfully transplanted there than anywhere else in the world.

I love Cincinnati. It's where I grew up. It's where I graduated from high school. It's where I practically went to college and thus, it's where I met my wife. Most importantly, it's where I met Jesus. Whenever I have the chance to visit, which isn't very often, my heart sings. I love the Queen City but I hate the reason for going. My beautiful infant son will have to endure a hell whose redemption is found in the chance at having a normal life and the blessing of never having to remember a single minute of any of it.

This blog is Bree and mine's attempt to share with you, our family and friends, what's happening and also to help us process how God is working in us, for us, and, we pray, using us and this situation to bring about His glory. He is sovereign and we are doing our best to trust Him today.

Sometimes the postings will come from Brad. Sometimes they'll come from Bree. We'll let you know what's going on and how you can pray. What a great day it is that stuff like blogs, Facebook, Twitter, and email can be so easily used to connect with so many. To God be the glory.

In Christ


  1. I'm so excited about your blog. I'll get to keep updated on life. I'm so excited for you all. And Bree thanks for the birth story. I know you must feel so relieved to have labored. That has always been my heart's desire as well. I hope the recovery is super quick.

  2. You are bookmarked on my Blackberry. I will be following closely and praying for you.

  3. Brad and Bree - you and the boys are in our daily thoughts and prayers. If there is anything we can do please don't hesitate to call. Dianne Carswell