Something about her baby was off, but she couldn’t put her finger on it. She decided to take her son in for a DNA test in a desperate search for answers.
Her worst fear had come true as she stared at the results. The baby wasn’t hers.
Mercedes Casanellas and her husband Richard Cushworth were on cloud nine when they learned they were pregnant with their first child.
They had been trying for a baby for many years, and their prayers had finally been answered. Sadly, their happiness would be short-lived.
Mercedes gave birth to her son Jacob at one of the best private health facilities in El Salvador. The baby boy was delivered by C-section, and his mother was given some strong pain medication as she experienced intense pain during the birth.
Mercedes only saw her son briefly before the nurses took him away.
When the nurses brought the baby back to Mercedes, she immediately told them it wasn’t her son.
But the medical staff blamed the pain medication for her confusion and assured her that the baby was hers. But Mercedes couldn’t shake the feeling. Something about the baby just didn’t seem right.
Richard was thrilled when he heard that his son was born healthy. Before turning to the church, he had been involved with different cults and doubted he would ever settle down.
Unlike his wife, he never noticed anything odd about the baby.
Mercedes, on the other hand, was going crazy. “The days started to go by, and his features, his skin, everything started to change,” she recalls.
She was 100% sure the baby wasn’t hers. To make matters worse, the couple faced many difficulties trying to get their son back to the U.S. from El. Salvador.
Their apartment was destroyed by a fire that burnt all of their belongings. Then, Mercedes almost got murdered by a gang of gun-wielding maniacs.
As time went by, Mercedes grew to love her son despite her concerns. But now, she had a new fear that kept her up at night. She had a feeling that someone would take Jacob away from them very soon.
One day, Mercedes decided to bring her son in for a DNA test. She needed to know the truth.
She nearly fainted when she got the results back.
“I just fell on the floor,” Mercedes recalls.
“The thought that the baby I had been nursing, taking care of, loving him, bathing him…”
Richard didn’t believe Mercedes at first when she broke the news to him. He was convinced that Jacob was his biological son.
But sadly, the results were accurate. Jacob wasn’t their son.
“I remember the first trauma to me was, ‘Oh my goodness, I have a child, and my child is somewhere out there in the world. Where is he?’” Mercedes recalls.
“I just felt like a panic that my only child was lost or stolen.”
Mercedes demanded an investigation into the hospital where she gave birth to Jacob. She wanted to know where her biological son was.
Would the authorities be able to find him?
It turned out that the nurses had given Mercedes the wrong baby. “My real baby was just passed by me, and I gave him a kiss,” she recalls.
“And then he was taken to the nursery, and that was the last time I saw him.”
A few days later, Mercedes got a call from the hospital. They had found her real son. The couple returned Jacob to his biological parents and met their son Moses for the first time.
The authorities concluded it had been a simple mistake and nothing more.
“We finally saw him, and when he saw us, he was smiling; he was laughing,” Mercedes recalls.
The two families are still in touch to this day.