Saturday, July 20, 2013

God is gracious

I haven't written in so long. In mid-April we had a confusing ultrasound, but my OB didn't seem concerned, so we didn't let ourselves worry either. Then, at the end of April, another ultrasound confirmed that not only was the baby measuring small but also that the baby simply wasn't growing. We began seeing a group of perinatal specialists and each one told us the same diagnosis: our baby would most likely die in the womb within days or weeks. They had zero idea of what was causing the IUGR. It was horrible and devastating and confusing and sad. I wanted to curl up in a ball and never leave my room, but I fought that temptation as hard as I could and tried to smile and laugh and hang on to my personality. As the days passed I chose to adopt an attitude of thankfulness and focused on being grateful for the time left that I had being my baby's mother. Then June came, and my grief hit full force. I didn't feel grateful anymore. I was angry. If God wasn't going to give us a baby, then why couldn't He make it easier on us and just take the baby already? I hated myself for wanting it to all be over, but it was so hard to feel the baby move and know that all of my baby dreams were being dashed. I was terrified by the idea of delivering a dead baby. I didn't think I wanted to hold a dead baby. I didn't think I wanted to know the gender. I wanted this horrible chapter of my life to be closed shut and for a new chapter to begin.

Living in a state of pre-grief was unimaginable and I know we only survived it by the grace of God and the encouragement of our friends and family. I have more to say about the last few months, but I'll save those stories for another time.

By the beginning of July I was resigned to the idea of making it all the way to my due date (the doctors said if that happened then the baby would only live for seconds or minutes). I couldn't believe our baby was still hanging on! I had no amount of extra amniotic fluid for the baby to move around and grow in, but our little one seemed content to chill out all scrunched up in my uterus. I couldn't help but fall in love with our baby with every passing day, even though a part of me tried to put walls up to keep me from getting too attached. I began fervently asking God to surprise us all and give us a perfectly healthy baby. I had visions of us needing to run to Target after my delivery to buy a crib and diapers and all of the things that we registered for but never received.

This time last week I was being prepped for an emergency c-section to deliver our stillborn baby. I had arrived at the hospital at 11:30 p.m. the night before due to excessive bleeding, and in the early hours of Saturday morning I heard my baby's heartbeat slow down until it didn't exist anymore. I was 34 weeks pregnant carrying a baby who was only measuring around 20 weeks.

We had a boy, and we named him John Andrew. John means "God is gracious/generous." Andrew means "man" and "strong."

It's been one week since we lost our son and his name seems more fitting than ever. God is gracious, and we are being carried by Him right now as we learn to live without the presence of our precious baby.

More to come when I am able.

Psalm 13

How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I wrestle with my thoughts
and day after day have sorrow in my heart?
How long will my enemy triumph over me?

Look on me and answer, Lord my God.
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death,
and my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,”
and my foes will rejoice when I fall.

But I trust in your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in your salvation.
I will sing the Lord’s praise,
for he has been good to me.


  1. Laura,

    What an incredible post of hope and faithfulness. My heart breaks for your loss, and you both will be in my prayers. Thank you for sharing such a personal, painful, but incredibly powerful message. You were, and will be, an amazing Momma, Laura.

    Love to you both,
    Sara C

  2. Laura,
    You are an amazing person. And an inspiration to me. I will continue to pray for God's blessings on you, Andy and all your family.

    Mrs. P

  3. Been thinking of you both often, my soul aches and grieves with you, I pray for His comfort! The Lord is near to the broken hearted, he grieves with those who grieve, He restores our spirits in tragedy, He hears when we cry out. The prayers of your brothers and sisters in Christ are with you!

  4. The most beautiful and honest blog post I've read. Thanks for being real and for loving and trusting Jesus even when it's not easy. I love you dear friend! Sending lots of prayers and hugs your way!

  5. Laura, when I first heard I wondered how hard it must have been for you to not write about this since April... although I'm sure you must have in privacy? What an amazing example you are to others. Not that you would rather be an example than have John Andrew with you...I know. I just want you to know that your strength and weakness and therefore, His strength in you is inspiring to say the least! thank you for sharing with us.

  6. I've thought about you so much and my heart just aches. What you've been through is unimaginable, and I'm praying for peace and comfort. You're so strong to share.

  7. Laura: You are a great writer and I'm so very sorry that this had to be your story to tell. Thank you for sharing it with us - your words have brought comfort to me as I think about you, your family and little John Andrew.



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