Lamar Xavier Dunn

On August 2, 2008 at 11:47pm my son, Lamar was born premature at 32 weeks at 4lbs 4ozs. My first words to my son was ‘He is so hairy’, I saw nothing and felt nothing else but happiness. The very next day when I awoke in the hospital I replayed the eight months of my pregnancy. I felt lost and had lots of questions that I could not answer. It finally hit me that my son is an amputee, Lamar was born with Amniotic Band Syndrome. ABS affected his left leg so greatly that it amputated before birth, and it
webbed his toes and made slight indentations on his fingers.

It was then that I got my laptop in my hospital bed and researched what is this condition. Then once again I replayed my pregnancy and I remembered getting a script from my OB/GYN that had written on it ‘Amniotic Band ultrasound stat’, this was when I was only 2 months pregnant. Throughout my whole pregnancy I had ultrasounds every month along with fetal biophysicals (which are supposed to be full length ultrasounds) and no one except for the first initial ultrasound tech saw an amniotic band. As I sat in my hospital bed I didn’t feel sad or asked why my son, I felt more of my son could of died. I felt angered because my OB/GYN had the attitude ‘oh you know things happen’, yes it is true but I felt I was not educated on the
seriousness of this condition and as a patient especially a first time mom I should have been informed of all of the worst possibilities.

I replayed going into the OR, getting my epidural, waiting for the anesthesia to kick in. My body did not absorb the anesthesia quick enough so I was put under general, I was put to sleep. No one was allowed in the room while a patient is under general anesthesia. I was told that my son was born healthy, screaming and crying with new life but his left leg right below the knee was gone. My doctor told me that he searched my uterine cavity for the remains of Lamar’s leg but it could not be
found. Lamar leg was gone in the first trimester, I am convinced of this. I sat back and swallowed my anger cause I know my son is alive and well, God did not take him away from me so know it’s my job to protect and educate him. Lamar is an inspiration to everyone he meets from his teachers at daycare to strangers on the street, cause with all his joy and excitement his amputation does not hold him back.

Lamar actually crawled and climbed better without his prosthesis and knows how to put on his prosthesis on his own. Lamar sometimes get stares from other kids or even grown ups but I actually encourage it. I want as many people as possible to know about ABS, and to not to be afraid of feel sorry for someone who has something less of them. I believe that the only way to educate is to inform first. At two years old I believe my son understands his differences, I think he understands that he has only 5 toes, he understands that he looks different but his abilities are not restricted at all.

When I think back now I know God makes no mistakes, He gave my son to me this particular way for a reason, He did not let me know that Lamar leg was gone months before birth for a reason. I know God did it to protect me and my son from my emotions, He let me enjoy my pregnancy knowing that the pain that I would feel would only be temporary. I love my son and would not change anything about him, Lamar gave me and still is the best days of my life, and God knew that this outweighs the few days of tears.

Natasha George

(The Proud Mother of an ABS kid)