Christine Grounds still recalls the moment nine years ago when a neurologist told her that her newborn son, Nicholas, had microcephaly. His head was too small. His brain had not developed properly. He faced an uncertain future. “Didn’t you know?” the doctor asked.

No. She had not known.

If she had, she would have terminated the pregnancy.

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Grounds and her husband, Jonathan Mir, share their story — and Nicholas’ story, too — in this powerful video from STAT contributor Emily Hager.

They were moved to speak out, in part, because microcephaly has been very much in the headlines lately. Thousands of babies in Latin America have been born with the condition in the past year, most likely because their mothers were infected with the Zika virus during pregnancy. The cause of Nicholas Mir’s microcephaly is genetic, not viral. But Grounds knows what all those mothers and all those babies overseas will face in the years to come.

She has lived it, every day, with Nicholas.

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