Halston Schroder Speaks

OUR STORY

Halston’s story has been filled with love and determination from the start. We prayed endlessly for God to bless us with a child. We went through multiple failed IVF attempts and were finally given a less than 1% chance of it ever happening. But God…he intervened and as miracles would have it, we found out we were pregnant. Our hearts exploded with love, and we cried tears of joy when we heard her heartbeat for the first time. I remember praying every day for God to take care of her and ensure she was healthy. When the initial NIPT testing came back, and all was normal we were praising God. We also learned we would be having a baby girl and named her Halston that same night.
During our 20 week scan we knew something was wrong when the doctor took nearly 45 minutes to come back to our room. Our hearts sunk and shattered when we were told she had not developed Kidneys or a Bladder and would likely not survive much longer. Her diagnosis was Bilateral Renal Agenesis. We were given the option to terminate the pregnancy or anticipate a stillbirth. It just did not seem real that our miracle already moving and kicking in the womb would be taken from us. We were told the same fatal diagnosis after speaking to multiple doctors. I remember the next days to follow crying on my knees praying to God for a miracle. I was sick with anxiety and could not even pull myself out of bed. A little voice told me to keep going. That day I started typing in her diagnosis on different social media platforms and discovered other families with Halston’s diagnosis. We began to learn of life saving amnioinfusion treatments to save Halston and got in contact with 2 of the few doctors in the country willing to perform them at the time. I remember dropping to my knees, sobbing, and asking God for his guidance. We put everything on the line, relying solely on faith, packed up the car and moved to Dallas from Miami. We vowed to do whatever it took to save our little girl.
Halston was fighting right alongside us! I had 14 weekly amnioinfusion’s to give her the fluid she needed to develop her lungs and provide a safe haven for her to grow. She continued to defy all odds making it to 37 weeks and joining us in the world on June 7th. Halston Lynn Schroder was 4.2lbs and 15 inches of pure love and inspiration.
I remember praying so hard that she would be ok. The doctors immediately rushed her to the NICU before I could even see her. Danny followed and stayed with her. Alone and terrified, I laid on the operating table thanking God and asking him to heal her. I asked him to completely take over.
A few hours later I was finally rolled into her NICU room for the 1st time and saw our beautiful baby girl. She was perfect. Our hearts were filled with love. As we stared and held her tiny little hand we listened as doctors told us she was in very critical condition and would likely not survive. They had not yet learned how fierce she was.
Halston is a beacon of strength and determination. She had a unique way of doing things, always in her own time and in her own way. Halston was sassy from the start. Did not like to be woken by the nurse to get adjusted. Hated diaper changes and getting her temperature taken. Loved getting a bath, especially a good hair wash as long as it was from mom.She had her unique ways of communicating to both of us…..we were beautifully all 3 connected. She kept the medical team on their toes and in the end taught them a good deal. Her nurses and doctors fell in love with her. Halston was a fighter, showing resilience and courage beyond her tender age.
She battled through 5 intense and complicated surgeries along with peritoneal dialysis during her short 33 days. She had 2 different ileostomies to repair perforated bowels. More than most will endure in their lifetime.
Halston felt the love that surrounded us from the beginning, the circle of support that got bigger with every step of the journey. So many were praying. Family, friends, and perfect strangers across the country were praying for our warrior.
We truly learned the power of prayer and felt God with us every step of the way. Our relationship with God grew as a family. We prayed together as a family each day, holding Halston’s hand, asking him to protect her and take control.
During the night and early morning hours of July 10th her body began to grow weary, and God was letting us know he needed his Angel home. He was taking control just as we prayed he would and although it did not match our wish to keep Halston, it was his plan. This is something I struggle with daily, but I have trust in our heavenly father.
We took turns holding and comforting her. Letting her know we loved her; we were incredibly proud of her, and that Jesus was waiting to now hold her hand – along with very anxious heavenly great grandparents and loved ones. Through the tears and the pain, we told her it was ok to go, run to Jesus, and that we would join her one day too.
All of the machines were turned off and they took the breathing tubes out…..it was the 1st time I had ever seen our baby girl without them. She was at pure peace in my arms. She took her last breath in the comfort of my arms. We lost our heart in that moment and continue to deeply feel the pain of losing our daughter. I envisioned the angels’ hands lifting her out of my arms and into the arms of her heavenly father.
Together we bathed our little girl and dressed her for the 1st time. Held her one last time before walking out of the NICU for the very last time.
We will never truly understand his plan while on earth. But what I do know is that she has touched the lives of those around her in profound ways, leaving a legacy of strength, courage, and love. God has sat with us through this painful 1st year and will continue. He has also brought people into our lives to help us through. I try to feel comfort knowing that he has her safely in his arms, and I’m blessed that he lent her to us for the short time he did. She is now fulfilling her purpose each day. My hope is that her story allowed at least one more person to know Jesus, and to spend eternity in Heaven. Halston’s spirit will continue to live on in the hearts of her family and all who cheered our little warrior on.

PAYING IT FORWARD

From the moment we learned of Halston’s diagnosis, God introduced us to the right people at the right time. He has been with us every step of this journey and will continue to be.
When Abel Speaks learned of Halston’s story, they stepped in and gave us an entire community of families willing to share their stories and help us not feel alone. They have celebrated the bittersweet milestones and gifted the sweetest memorabilia to help us keep her name alive.
We want to support Abel Speaks by raising money for them so families who are unfortunately walking this same road don’t have to walk it alone.
In honor of Halston’s 1st Birthday, we pray that you will consider donating on her behalf.

By faith, Halston still speaks!

-Amanda & Danny Schroder

SUPPORT ABEL SPEAKS IN HONOR OF HALSTON

Your generous giving allows Abel Speaks to support families like ours. Thank you for your partnership as we seek to ensure that every family will cherish their child’s life and have hope in the midst of sorrow!

Abel Speaks is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization and all donations are tax-deductible.

2001 W Plano Pkwy, Suite 1909

Plano, TX 75075

(972) 688-6405