Dear Beau: 1 year post-palate repair

Today is our one year anniversary of Bowie’s palate surgery. One year anniversary of one of the most stressful days of our lives, here in the Gill household.

While his lip surgery transformed his face, this palate surgery would forever impact his voice.

This is the surgery that led us to our surgeon Dr. Woo.  He is THE MAN when it comes to palate surgeries, doing new procedures that are being used now nationwide.  We came across him during our hours and hours of research online…and wouldn’t you know, he worked at St. Louis Children’s hospital. Sometimes the stars align.

He has now moved to Rhode Island {where we will follow him to for Beau’s next surgery}, and we are forever thankful for the work he has done on our Beau.

So for today’s post, I just want share my thoughts on raising this one-of-a-kind kid with a little letter to my baby.


You are hands down the toughest kid I know. And I’m not just saying that because you had a physically rough babyhood…I mean you are actually tough. You fall down, and rarely cry.  You are strong and stoic. No doubt God created you this way on purpose.

I worried about you more than I’ve ever worried about anything in my entire life during my pregnancy. Big worry.  But swear, the moment you were born, I stopped.  Deep down in my gut I had this feeling that you were fine, and that you always would be.

I am not naive, and know the world can be ugly and that kids can be mean. They are probably gonna be. And some may even say some pretty stupid stuff to you as you grow up, but I gotta tell ya, I think you’ve got this. No…I know you do.

I won’t always be standing right by your side to say, “ignore it” or “they don’t know any better” or “you are perfect”…but I think you already know all of that. And your brother and sister and dad and I will spend our entire lives reminding you of this. Because we see you for all that you are: Funny as hell, clever, brave, so damn cute, bold, strong, silly, and kind.

I wouldn’t be so quick to share your story with the world if I didn’t think we were raising a pretty freaking spectacular kid, one who could handle all that’s coming his way.

Your life is going to be 100% what you make of it.

Own it Beau. Your life. Your actions. Your attitude. Your decisions. and Your cleft.

It will never define you. but it is a part of you. A part of you that makes you so very unique. And a part of you, that at only 1 1/2, has impacted so many lives. What a blessing you are.

Now, you are almost two, with lots of stuff to say {or you are trying to say ;-)}. And you are a handful in the most awesome kind of way.

You are gonna do some really big things Beau Gill. And I can’t wait to watch.

Love you real big kid.
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17 thoughts on “Dear Beau: 1 year post-palate repair

  1. Katie Wilson

    Omg I literally just read this a cried my eyeballs out. Our daughter just had her palate repair in September and it has been the hardest yet. These kids are my heros. They are so strong and don’t even know it. It’s just how they were born. It’s amazing to watch. Thank you!

    1. Anonymous

      Yay! Am so glad palate is behind you! It was a hard one for us as well! Hopefully now smooth sailing for awhile for you all and your daughter!!
      They are pretty bad awesome kids huh?!❤️

  2. Maria

    This really touched my heart!! How special, is he and your family! My little guy is having his palate surgery next week. I’m a nervous wreck! Any tips or words of advice from you or any other moms out there? Really enjoy following your family :). Thanks so much for sharing.

    1. Anonymous

      Oh I wish I had some wise words for you, but for us palate was much harder recovery than lip. It was a super hard probably 72 hours, and then touch and go for a week or so. But babies are so spectacular is how quickly they heal and return to normal! I’m sure he remembers nothing of it!!
      I’ll warn you that post surgery Beau was SUPER swollen (face and tongue), kinda scary for a mom to see but normal since they had been in his mouth for so many hours.
      My advice is just prepare for lots of rocking and walking and comforting those first couple days. And that even tho those nights are gonna seem long, they will quickly pass…and before you know it you will be a year out and life is full speed. You got this mama!!!!
      Oh, and I seriously never changed clothes or brushed my teeth or hair or annnnything those couple of days in the hospital bc I felt so needed by Beau, so wear super comfy clothes ?
      Will send some prayers your alls way.

  3. Kimberly Essner

    He is one tough kiddo with one tough mama! God knew what he was doing when he put him in your belly! Love you guys?

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