Couple weds so dying infant can be part of ceremony
INSIDE EDITION - For Patricia and Christopher Armstrong, there was nothing else to be done except get married, and hold their dying son between them.
Conner Armstrong lived for 40 days. He died Tuesday, two days after his parents were wed.
"I'm trying not to feeling anything at all," his North Carolina mother told InsideEdition.com Thursday night. "I feel like it’s not real, do you know what I mean? I’m just kind of lost.”
There wasn’t a gala ceremony with a bridal gown and a long train – just close friends and family and 4-pound Conner, who was born with three holes in his heart.
He was diagnosed in utero with Trisomy 18, a rare genetic disorder that causes an extra 18th chromosome and severe birth defects. Conner was given weeks to live, if he made it past birth.
"Our baby was a fighter, he proved so many doctors wrong, so many people wrong, by making it as long as he did," his mother, Patricia, 24, wrote on her Facebook page.
"We gave him the chance to live, love and be loved. We gave up everything to be closer to our son. We fought for Conner, and in return, he fought for us," she said.
The couple was married at a hospice center, where their tiny boy was being cared for. His family stayed there with him.
"Conner’s medicines aren’t working at helping him breathe,” she wrote at 5:38 a.m. on the day he died. "Been up watching his breathing all night, sat in the bathroom with hot shower running for an hour... nothing is working."
He left the world at 11:13 a.m.
A GoFundMe account has been established to help the family with funeral costs
Patricia and Christopher, 30, have one daughter each from previous relationships: Aubree, 5 and Graci, 6.
“We wanted all of our kids to be together” as the couple said their vows, Patricia said.
Her doctors advised her to have an abortion when tests showed her fetus had the often-fatal condition.
“I didn’t want to choose his fate, not knowing what could happen. I didn’t want to just get rid of him.”
Despite every heartbreak along her journey, Patricia says she has no regrets.
“I wouldn’t change it. I’m not God. Only God can choose who lives or dies.”