Thursday, December 27, 2012

The Story of Miracle Noel

I know I have LOTS of catching up to do on this blog; however, today I felt like writing about the little baby we lost. December belongs to Miracle- he/she was due this month, so I will dedicate this month and this post to him/her. Spring pictures last school year came in and as a teacher's aid I was trying to help my coworker remember to pass them out to the parents when they came to pick up their children that afternoon. At some point, she had to leave the room for some reason so when the next parent came in I picked up his child's picture packet and handed it to him. His words brought tears to my eyes: "Aww! My little princess!" After he left with his little girl I went into the restroom to compose myself and I remember thinking "I wish I could give my husband a little princess. Lord, can we have just one more biological baby? Please? Just one and I won't ask anymore". After that, I didn't think much of it again. A few weeks later (I believe this was end of March 2012)I began having weird symptoms- the first was a strange rash on my arms, legs, and belly. Noone was really sure what it was and eventually it went away. Soon, I began developing other symptoms- fatigue like I've never known before, and nausea. And then one day it hit me while watching the kids on the playground- I called for someone to come outside and relieve me and then I proceeded to run to the bathroom where I vomited in the sink. It never occurred to me that I might be pregnant until a friend of mine at work suggested I take a pregnancy test. I waited a few extra days just to be "extra sure" and that Saturday morning I woke up so sick and I just knew that that was what it was. I sent Kris to Walgreens for a test and because those things usually say "negative" for me, Kris didn't stick around to hear the results. In fact, he handed me the box and went for his shower. (Gee thanks for the support, Honey) :) A few minutes later I was staring at a postitive test in my hand. Was this the answer to the prayer I had prayed in the school restroom? It had to be!! I ran to the other bathroom and shoved the shower door open and stuck that test right in my husband's face and said "Look!" He smiled slowly, and I could tell that he was as scared as I was. After you have lost a baby, being told that you're pregnant really means nothing. A positive pregnancy test does not necessarily mean that you are having a baby in nine months. You are no longer naive and feel that you can just expect that everything will go fine. So that day, as we looked at the pregnancy test, we were scared. SCARED TO DEATH.
Immediately we decided to tell noone, other than our family, my supervisors at work, and a couple close friends. In hindsight, I see that this was a mistake because we could have had so many more prayers lifted up for us. Lesson learned, I guess. The pregnancy started out just fine- I was very sick- couldn't get much food down. I was throwing up all kinds of times throughout the day but I didn't complain because I was so happy to be pregnant again. I was hoping that the sickness was a good sign. After a few weeks, we decided to tell our son what was going on. So we took him to Cracker Barrel and told him he was going to be a big brother again. The first thing out of his mouth made me want to cry- "Really? Well I hope it comes out alive this time." You could tell he was very concerned about it. I hate it that he even knows it's a possibility that babies die. Jacob was so sweet about everything- from that moment on he prayed every day for "Mommy's baby" and after baby passed, it broke my heart the first couple of nights where in his bedtime prayers he would forget for a second and say "pray for Mommy's...oh never mind". We all prayed for this baby- on one hand I thought it has to be too good to be true. On the other hand, I thought that the signs all pointed to it being God's gift to us, our rainbow after the storm; an answer to my prayer. But then the bleeding started. I made several trips to the doctor and each time I went we saw and heard a perfect heartbeat as well as a growing baby, and all my labs came back fine. Just to be safe though, my doctor put me on an oral regimen of progesterone. The bleeding stopped for a couple of weeks and then just as my husband got ready to leave on a business trip for a week to begin a new job, I began bleeding again. Two days later, I was at the doctor's office again. As soon as he turned on the ultrasound machine I knew. All I could think was "The nightmare is here again. My lifeless baby on the screen. AGAIN." My doctor said "I'm sorry, I can't find a heartbeat." Again, the second time in four years I have heard those words. I sat there on the table gripping the sides and trying not to cry as he told me what to expect when I miscarried at home. It went in one ear and out the next. I was still stuck at "I'm sorry..." As soon as the doctor and assistant left the room I got dressed and practically ran down the hall and out the door to my truck. I got in and as I began to drive the tears finally came. I called Kris, and then my mother, and by the time I pulled into my garage I couldn't even see where I was driving. Jake figured it out by this time and said "Did our baby die?" I said "yes" and he said "Oh no, mommy, not again." I told him it was okay to cry and he sobbed when we got into the house. That was on a Monday. On Tuesday evening, after nonstop pain and bleeding since the previous Saturday, and an hour of hard contractions, Miracle Noel was delivered in the privacy of our home, with Kris still gone to Texas, and my mom entertaining my son at the other end of the house. Our little baby was perfect- all the way from his ten fingers down to his ten toes. He looked like a little boy to me, but by the time I could get him back to my doctor's office a few days later he was too delicate to move to be able to tell anything. So this is why we came up with the name "Miracle"- something neutral just in case. The original names we had picked out were "Grayson Monroe" for a boy and "Hope Noelle" for a girl. I have photos of Miracle. Since this baby was only ten weeks gestation, I will refrain from posting them. People who haven't gone through this just don't understand; and besides, I don't want to take the chance of someone doing something with them out in cyberspace. I could post ultrasound photos, but at this time it's just too painful to even do that. They are put away with all of Grant's things. My favorite photo is the one I took of Miracle's tiny hand resting on my finger. It turned out very sweet. I know that one day Miracle, in his/her new body in Heaven, will touch my finger again. And this time we can look into each other's eyes and never have to fear being separated again. I look forward to that day. We were able to bury our Miracle when my husband returned home. My doctor's office is linked up with a Catholic Church in town who buries miscarried babies under 20 weeks for free. We just were not able to afford the cost to bury him with Grant so we went ahead and had him buried here. I love the fact that my doctor's office is pro-life and was able to offer this program to us. I highly doubt many other doctor's would do that for someone so for this I am so thankful. Here is a photo of the stone near the spot where Miracle is interred-
Tomorrow, December 28, 2012, was my due date for Miracle. With the recent adoption of our daughter, it will be a bittersweet day. If Miracle were here, than Sabrina wouldn't be here. If I dwell on that and try to understand why it all turned out this way, it makes me crazy. So I won't. I do not think that it is God's will that any baby die. However, I do believe that He can take something awful and turn it into something beautiful. There will come a Day when all of our questions will have answers; and for now I have to accept that reality and find comfort in the fact that in Heaven there are no more "Goodbyes". For that I am eternally grateful.


Wednesday, December 5, 2012

She's Here!!

Well, we finally got "The Call". It's a really funny story, actually. I was at an ASCI teacher's conference in Tempe, AZ on Friday, October 19th. Since this was the second day of the conference I only had to be there a half day on Friday. My husband had sent me a text picture of our son because he had suddenly broken out into an awful rash that covered most of his body. So the last couple hours of the conference I had a hard time concentrating because I was concerned about our son. As soon as the conference let out I got in the truck and headed home as quickly as I could. After awhile, we decided we should call our primary care physician and see if we could squeeze Jacob in for an exam to see what was causing his rash. (turns out it was just from the antibiotic he was on at the time)While I was on the phone making the appointment, I heard my phone beep but I ignored it since I was on the other line. Here it was the adoption agency, and I didn't know it! In the meantime they called my husband's phone and let him know that there had been a baby born the night before and her birthmom wanted to place her for adoption and were we interested?! WERE WE INTERESTED??!! What kind of question is that?! hahaha Well, we were supposed to call them back as soon as Kris talked to me and we made a decision. He comes out to tell me that we had a call and it took me a couple of minutes to realize what he meant! So we called the agency back and told them "yes of course we are interested" and they said they wanted us to be at Banner Thunderbird Hospital asap. Well first off, that's over an hour away. Secondly, we had yet to take Jake to the doctor. Needless to say I was an emotional wreck trying to get him to the doctor and concentrate on all of that!! (I'm thinking wow can this be real, and oh no, we aren't all prepared,!! among other things!) So fast forward to the hospital- the birthmom wanted a closed adoption, therefore, we didn't get to meet her. It was kind of nice not to have that anxiety of meeting and talking to her, yet I was sad because of Sabrina because I feel it's so important for her to have her birthmom in her life. But there is nothing we can do so we will just have to help her cope with all of that later on when she is old enough to understand. By all accounts, everything went smoothly in the hospital and we were able to enjoy being there and holding her and loving on her every second that we could. We were so blessed to have our friends put us up for the night in town so everything worked out very smoothly and we were thankful for that. We named our baby girl ourselves- Sabrina Hope. I think the name speaks for itself and why we chose it. She is living proof that there can still be hope after suffering. We just love her to pieces and we are enjoying every minute with her! Please be in prayer that we find her birthfather very soon, or if we don't that our 60 day wait period goes quickly and at that time the court will sever his rights. As always, thank you for your prayers and support!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

The Aftermath

So much has happened the last few months. Many of my close friends and family know, and in time I may blog about it. But for now, I just cannot talk about it. 

Have you ever been stuck in a particular season in your life that you just want to get out of? Do you feel like you have taken three steps forward only to take five steps back? That is the place where I find myself at this time in my life. I am so broken. Yet there are many days when I have no more tears left. Sometimes I even laugh because I cannot cry any longer. The one thing that I desire most in this world is so far out of reach. I wonder why the door seems to keep slamming in my face. Is this really it? Is this really how it's going to end?

My motto has always been "Never give up on your dreams." But what if your dreams give up on you? And why? What is the reason for it? What is the point? I have all of these questions; yet no answers for any of them. The only thing I really know for certain is that I am TIRED. I am SPENT. Physically, every way possible. There is a song by Matthew West entitled "The Reason for the World." And yes, the lyrics to this song are also full of "maybes". But as long as we are in this life; nothing is for certain. When I listen to this song, some of the confusion and uncertainty in my head goes away; and at this point in my life even a small amount of that goes a long way.

  The Reason For the World 

There are no words in times like these 
When tears don't hide the tragedies 
And all you want is a reason for the world 
No comfort in a greeting card 
Cause "God is good" 
But life's still hard 
and your heart just wants a reason for the world
"Cuz maybe the reason for the PAIN 
Is so we would pray for strength 
And maybe the reason for the strength 
Is so that we would not lose hope 
And maybe the reason for our hope 
Is so that we could face the world 
And the reason for the world is to make us long for HOME. 

Well I know your past the point of broken 
Surrounded by your fear 
I know you're feet are tired and weary
from the road that you walk down here 
But just keep your eyes on Heaven 
and know that you are not alone 
remember the reason for the world- 

No ear has heard 
No eye has seen 
Not even in your wildest dreams
the beauty that awaits beyond this world 
When you look into the eyes of grace 
and hear the voice of MERCY say "Child, welcome to the reason for the world."