Sometimes my BLESSINGS in life are hard to see and may even be disguised as tragedy or disaster at first. My post today is that kind of a BLESSING, it happened 27 years ago today, and taught me life lessons of patience, sympathy, greiving, pain, perserverence, love, support and most of all... that God is in control of my life- not me! I was 27 years old at the time, a planner, a control freek and had my life mapped out. A dream home, wonderful husband, supportive friends and Church family, great job, baby on the way, and life was good. Little Joe was born on March 19, 1980 after a perfect pregnancy, a perfect 8 pound baby boy born into the perfect all American Christian family. And everything was perfect- until we made preparations to take our son home 2 days later. The doctor came in to tell us Little Joe had a congential heart defect and that we needed to take him by ambulance to UNC teaching hospital 4.5 hours away. After a long optomistic night, we were told that our perfect little son would die. He had hypoplastic left heart syndrone and the left side of his heart did not form during pregnancy. The coming hours ticked by slowly but provided us with 24 more hours to love our son, have him baptized, and treasure the small amount of time that God had given us to spend with Joseph Lawson Carson III. He died in our arms surrounded by family and love. The trip home, the funeral, the suffocating pain, the overwhelming heartbreak, and now a life to finish without our son. But that wasn't the end, that was where our BLESSINGS begin, only to make us stronger... family that stood by us and showed us the paths to take to get through this, best friends that shared our pain and are still best friends 27 years later, a church that rallied behind us to help us through and continues to do the same today, and the faith we needed in God that let us know- He was in control- with plans for us so big that we could not comprehend it at the time. Happy Birthday Little Joe, you BLESSED our lives in ways that we never thought possible.