After his own family rejected him, there was a loving home and a doting family that was waiting to take him in.
Editor's note: This article was originally published on February 27, 2019. It has since been updated.
When he was born, nobody ever thought that baby Adam could have a normal life, not even the doctors. What was worse is that his own mother abandoned him at birth. And no one in the family was willing to take him home. Adam came into this world with severe physical deformities and was even called a 'curse' at the time, according to Live Action. He was born with a cleft lip and palate, didn't have eyelids or a nose, and had fused legs and hand abnormalities. As horrifying as it may sound, the innocent baby's parents threatened to take his life if they were forced to return home with him. Just when the doctors were concerned over the baby's situation, a nurse and her husband who, too, works in the hospital paid him a visit. Learning about the situation, they came forward to adopt him. Little Adam found a safe home and loving parents that he deserved, just like any other newborn.
His new parents, Raja Paulraj and Jessica Cooksey Paulraj, were married for just 6 months before they found out about Adam. They knew that he was diagnosed with Bartsocias-Papas, and the couple was told that he wouldn't live past a few weeks. Despite this, they decided to take him home and make him a part of their family.
With the help of friends in the US, they were able to get in touch with specialists at UNC Hospitals. A number of surgeries later, his eyelids were built, his cleft lip was fixed, he had a palate that helped him to eat, and the cysts in his ears and nose were removed. But the physical improvements weren't the biggest change to happen. What began as a heartbreaking story of an abandoned newborn turned into a life-altering event for his new parents and two younger brothers.
"In September 2014, we will celebrate our oldest son’s 3rd birthday. His name is Adam and from what medicine and logic predicted, he was not supposed to live past 2 months. Three years? How quickly they seem to have passed as I look back," wrote Jessica for the Michaela Evanow blog on July 16, 2014. "Fourteen surgeries have come and gone for Adam. Nearly $300,000 was given on his behalf. Two brothers, Elliot and Rohan, joined the ranks of our family, and Adam became an older brother. Our family has traveled from India to America and back again."
Most babies with Adam's condition pass away when they are still in the womb or a short while after birth. But maybe it was the fact that he was given a loving family and git to experience a lot of love, laughter, and warmth in his little world that he went on to outlive his condition for a few more years. Despite the battles his body had to fight (and 14 surgeries it underwent), his spirit was cheerful and affectionate.
"There have been setbacks. But, still, he has amazed us. Adam crawls and bounces across the room when he hears his dad come home. He loves to look at books and inspects toys incredibly closely. He has the most adorable glasses and looks quite dapper in all the caps that have been given to him over the years," wrote Jessica. "He is learning to make sounds with a valve over his trach tube and he is slowly learning to eat by mouth. Throughout all of this, he is wrecking people’s lives (mine and my husband’s most of all) with the Truth of the Gospel, namely, our own adoption and the power of love and life."
While he had almost 5 years, Adam's physical suffering came to an end in 2016. "Our little bird met his Maker and Sustainer…the Shepherd of his soul early this morning. There was incredible peace that enveloped his fragile, swollen body," wrote Jessica for her blog, we: unformed. Although he was in the Paulraj family for just a short while, his presence changed their lives forever. It may have been hard for them to say goodbye without having another choice, but they made peace through their belief that he joined his maker at a new and pain-free place.
Jessica adds, "He will be missed by so many. It’s indescribable to explain this ache. Yet to imagine his body restored and to imagine him surrounded by glory and welcomed by his Father…it’s a pretty good balm to our weary souls." Watch the beautiful family bond over fun and laughter.