One of our patients just published a children’s book entitled “I Love You Now, I Loved You Then.” We think it’s fantastic. We will have some copies in the office, but if you want to get your own you can get it here from Amazon. Way to go, Kate!!!
When Jake was born with a cleft lip and palate, there were a lot of of unknowns. Suddenly, the perfect childhood we had imagined for our son would be filled with multiple surgeries, countless doctor visits, and years of therapy. Would he recover easily? Would he be happy? Would he be teased? The questions were endless. But my husband and I decided from the very beginning to treat him just the same as his twin sister. He was never “our poor little guy with a cleft.” He was and always will be “our son, Jake.” The twins being our first kids, we didn’t have a pediatrician yet. At the hospital, someone mentioned that Southpoint Pediatrics was a good place to go. So for our first check-up, we had the good fortune to land an appointment with Dr. Lash. About half-way through the appointment, he said “You know, I had a cleft just like that.” We were so surprised! We’d barely even noticed that Dr. Lash had a scar. It was such a relief to hear about his experiences, and to see that he’d grown up into a happy, successful person. But, in passing, he mentioned that he’d never seen a picture of himself before his cleft was repaired. I’ve since heard the same thing from several people. I couldn’t imagine that for my son. I wanted him to know that we were every bit as proud of him with a cleft as we are now that it’s been repaired. I didn’t ever want him to think that his cleft was repaired because it was ugly or something to be ashamed of. So, as he and his sister wiggled in their baby swings, I sat down and wrote “I Love You Now, I Loved You Then.” And, because in other countries children born with clefts are often hidden away in shame, we donate the proceeds from Jake’s book to Operation Smile. All I meant to do was make my son smile. But through the love and support of family, friends, and the amazing cleft community here in Utah, we’re working towards bringing smiles to lots more kids!