Friday, May 29, 2009

Heart to Heart

Infertility and Infant Loss-- two very lonely and misunderstood experiences. I remember when Kris and I began our struggles with infertility how we could not find many resources to help us figure out what we were dealing with. I went to the library and soon realized that there weren't too many books- especially Christian based books- on the subject. Not only that, but no one in our family or circle of friends, save my cousin, understood what we were going through.

There are many reasons that I hate it that we were chosen to go through these trials; one of which because you wish everyone could just understand why it hurts so much. One person actually said to me " I'm disappointed in the way you have handled things after he died". Many people just leave us alone, and others I can just tell they are uncomfortable with it all. I'm pretty sure there are folks out there who think "When are they going to get over it and move on already?" I really don't think any of these people read my blog but tonight I just feel like saying what's on my heart anyway.

Kris and I have been married now for almost nine years. For all but two of them we have desperately tried to do what most everybody tries to do- have children. We've had tests run, every aspect of our intimate life brought out into the open, surgery, and endless months of fertility drugs. From this came our beautiful son Jacob- no one will ever comprehend how grateful we are for him- he is such a joy to us. Three years, and two more failed fertility treatments later, we FINALLY conceived Grant--- all on our own-- WITHOUT having two doctors, embryologist, nurses, and med students present for the grand event. Oh, how excited we were. A good friend of mine here gave me a pregnancy test to take and we were jumping up and down and yelling and screaming! Oh and the look on Kris's face as I pulled out three positive tests out of my purse-- I'll never forget it, it was priceless! Then, at eight weeks, I began bleeding...and somehow, I just knew that something was terribly wrong. I could feel it. As the months went by and I didn't grow very big, I could feel it even more. However, I tried to push it aside..."After what we've been thru, surely God wouldn't take our baby away". And then we went in for the 20 week ultrasound and to see what sex the baby was. Instead of hearing "it's a boy" or "it's a girl" we heard, "Your baby has a fatal condition that is incompatible with life. There is nothing that can be done. " In short, I was up many a night in the computer room, planning a funeral for my baby while he was kicking in my belly.

August 2008--- he is gone. My belly lies silent, except for a few phantom kicks here and there. My body still thinks I have a baby...milk production has finally ceased altogether the beginning of April 09. I have a scar that hurts when it rains, I still have extra weight I'm having trouble getting rid of. Like many women, I had a baby this year. But I am not able to hold him and show him off to the world. Nobody knows it but me.
"You can try again after a year." It's been nine months...and I've not conceived yet. I'm almost 38 years old. Back to the infertility cycle all over again. Back to feeling like I don't fit in anywhere; back to shying away from pregnant women and newborn babies. Listening to my son tell his cousins today in the store, " Don't talk about babies it makes me nervous about my brother Grant."

Most days, we are doing better and think we might actually make it through this. Other days, we know we most certainly will NOT make it. Some have said, "At least you didn't hear him cry, or get to know him and become attached." It would not have mattered. We became attached the moment we saw the pregnancy test results. I knew my son...he was awake everyday by 10 a.m.
He hated it when I ate honey hot wings from Native New Yorker. He loved to hear his big brother's voice...he kicked hard when jake would put his mouth close to my belly and yell. He loved story time every night. He loved to hear the trio sing at church and the sound of our pastor's voice. He was a human being, and the last time I saw him alive, he was hiccuping and kicking the daylights out of the ultrasound probe.

To some, he was just the little bump in my belly, or a fetus (to the doctors). But to us, he was our child. And we lost him, we lost our dreams of seeing him play with Jake, of seeing him do all the cute and funny things Jake does. We have his pictures, his prints, and molds of his hand and foot. We have his blankets and his tiny outfits he wore in the hospital. But somehow, it just isn't enough. Why does everyone else we know get their baby, and we don't get ours? It's not that we want anyone else to go through this, but we just wanted our baby to live too.

Everytime I write out a greeting card, it absolutely kills me that I cannot sign his name to it too.
Everything is always incomplete.
Will we ever be able to have one more child? Not that another child could ever replace the one we lost- but maybe it would help to heal our hearts. We lift our request to God daily hoping He will give us the desire of our heart, but also knowing that He sometimes says "No".

I know this is probably the most depressing entry you've ever read. But it comes from the depths of my soul...and somehow, I hope it helps someone to understand better why we hurt, and why we have to help other families who are going through or will go through this in the future. This is why my passion is so great to help these families. How will they get through the anguish of losing their baby without the comfort of God's love and others?!

May we not shut out those who are hurting. We cannot ignore the pain that people feel and merely stand by waiting until they "feel" better. Those who have stood by Kris and I throughout everything will never know how much they truly mean to us. We hope that through our tears and our pain we are able to be used of God, and to be a help to others who are hurting.


  1. Jody,
    You are truly an amazing woman. I can't imagine the pain you have gone through with infertility, only the pain of losing a baby. I am amazed that you can be so open and honest about your emotions, I think it is great and helpful to you and others. I wish that I felt comfortable to express myself through words the way you do. You are still in my thoughts and prayers daily.

  2. You've really helped me grow in this area, I love how candidly you express your heart to us, it helps us get into your world and experience only a fraction of the pain you both feel everyday. We love you!

  3. Jody,
    Please know that I pray for you often. Though you may not feel it every day, you are a strong woman. I'm so sorry you have to walk this path. ((big hugs))



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