Joi Rawitch was getting ready to welcome her second child into the world. But with everything going well, the expectant mom had a strange premonition that something wasn’t quite right with her baby. When her son finally arrived, he seemed perfectly healthy, though. However, then she looked into his eyes, and his face began to change. And what happened next completely baffled doctors.
The strange sensation struck Joi when she was driving home from the movie theater with her husband David. She told Beyond Chance, “I remember going underneath the overpass and I had this overwhelming feeling coming over me that something would be wrong with my baby.”
David tried to calm his wife’s fears, reassuring her that everything would be fine. And Joi’s doctors, too, thought her concerns were nothing more than the natural worries of any pregnant woman. But when a mom knows, she knows. And this mom was adamant that something wasn’t right.
However, when the baby arrived, the doctors’ assessments seemed to be true. The couple’s newborn son – whom they named Andrew – was indeed fine. In fact, David said, “When he was born, he was perfect.” Unfortunately, an hour after Andrew’s arrival, things began to change. Joi had a second premonition that something just wasn’t right.
“I remember looking at my son laying in a bassinet and looking at his eyes,” Joi recalled. “I told my husband that nothing was there behind those eyes. He just had a blank stare. Thirty seconds later a nurse came by and saw him and was stunned by his color. He was gray.”
“That progressed to a point where he turned such a dark shade of gray the nurses described it as black,” David continued. So Andrew was quickly moved to the intensive care ward of the neonatal unit. And things didn’t look good for the little boy: all his vital signs were fading, and he had stopped breathing.
David described the horror to Beyond Chance. “They had to revive him 14 times,” he recalled. “It was more than once every hour.” Meanwhile, Joi was obviously distraught, and even more so because she’d known there was a problem. “I [was] sitting on the side of the bed, bawling my eyes out. I knew all along that something was wrong with him.”
Medics realized that the little baby was having grand mal seizures triggered by a brain haemorrhage. These seizures are signaled by severe muscle contractions and unconsciousness, which occur in epilepsy. And unfortunately for baby Andrew, it was only the start of his health problems.
Andrew’s pediatrician, Dr. Carlos Monzon, explained, “Andrew had been born with a very rare condition – a left hemiatrophy. Hemiatrophy is a condition in which the brain has shown impaired growth or development.” In short, a large part of the left side of Andrew’s brain was missing.
“When I saw the results of the MRI, you could really tell that something was wrong,” Joi explained. “There was a big void there. Instead of a part of a brain there, there was fluid.” And doctors informed the parents that the best outcome they could hope for was for their son to be severely mentally handicapped.
Moreover, unfortunately doctors feared that Andrew wouldn’t live very long at all. “I could not give them any hope whatsoever,” admitted Dr. Monzon. David further explained, “It was a situation that didn’t have any possible happy ending based on what they were telling us.” Sadly, Joi’s premonition had been realized.
Just three days later, however, Joi would have another premonition. As she sat staring at the TV screen, a voice spoke to her. She recalled, “I remember sitting on our bed watching TV, and all of a sudden I heard this voice saying that he will be okay.”
Given that Joi’s previous premonition had materialized, could this one come true, too? Because up until then the parents had actually been terrified of getting close to their son for fear of losing him. From that moment on, though, they took matters into their own hands.
David said, “We had basically made a vow to one another that no matter what the outcome we were gonna do everything we could to raise him in a normal fashion.” And so the couple made the incredibly brave decision to take their son home, where they would try to give him the care he needed.
The move was not an easy one, however. First of all, Andrew had to receive regular medication to keep his seizures in check. Furthermore, he was attached to a machine to monitor his breathing so that he could be resuscitated if it stopped. And yet, despite all of this, there was still no cure for his undeveloped brain.
However, then something amazing happened. As Joi recalled, “My son was sitting in his baby carrier holding his bottle by himself. Usually babies don’t hold their bottles until they’re around six months old. But there’s this baby that’s supposed to be severely retarded holding his bottle at three months old.”
And the good news only continued. For a start, Andrew stopped having seizures, and he was weaned off his medication. But then, as he approached the age of six months, he had another MRI. And the results were miraculous: Andrew’s brain had developed to be perfectly normal.
Joi recalled, “The neurologist called and I remember standing in our dining room [and him] saying that he could not explain it, but the MRI results were fine.” Moreover, Dr. Monzon said, “Medically, to my knowledge, I have no clear-cut explanation why his brain repaired and why it regenerated.”
Today, Andrew is a happy, healthy 21-year-old who is planning on becoming a doctor himself. And as proud mom Joi said, “There’s a lot we don’t understand because he’s absolutely perfect. There’s nothing wrong with Andrew at all. He’s so bright, he’s wonderful, he enjoys life, he’s extremely lucky. Mommy is very happy.”