Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Your Baby has a lot of Problems

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Some of you know the story of our firstborn child, Faith. Some of you walked with us through her life and death. Others of you know nothing. I do have a blog that gives a more detailed account of her story, but I thought I would do a snapshot so you can see who the baby is pictured on my header. I know there are a lot of women who have experienced lost. I hope this encourages you, ministers to you, brings you hope.
The Year was 2002.
It was the year we joined the club.
The club that no one wants to join.
First pregnancy.
Twenty-week ultrasound appointment.
Doctor: "Wendy I need to be serious with you right now. Your baby has a lot of problems."

My heart stops.

Doctor then proceeded to tell us about the defects. First the cleft lip and palate. Then the hole in the heart. Then the omphalocele (basically when the intestines are on the oustside of the body - weird, I know).

Three midline defects. Must be Trisomy 13 or Trisomy 18 she says. Most babies don't make it this far. Yours might not make it to birth, she says. If she does, probably won't live long. Most babies die in the first year. As if from a textbook we were told "Her condition was not compatible with life."

She's been a perintologist for over 20 years. Never delivered a Trisomy 13 baby because most people abort.

This was a human life. Imperfect. With defects. This was our baby. And yet, I can't say abortion didn't cross my mind even though I had always been so against it. It was always a black and white issue for me. I was shocked that it entered into my thoughts. I heard the whispers of the nurses. It was as if abortion was the only option. Who would choose to bring a suffering baby into this world? I didn't want her to suffer. But, what about the suffering abortion causes? I was torn. This internal wrestling match went on for less than 24 hours because ultimately I knew that God was in charge of human life, not me.

Man, I can remember the scene so clearly. What the room looked like. Where the phone was in relation to where I was lying because I had to pick it up and call my brother Kevin. I told him the news and asked him to call my parents.

We wept. We were devastated. We found out she was a girl. We named her Faith.

And yet, the peace of God that passes all understanding overwhelmed me even at that appointment. I didn't understand it. I was devastated. But because of what God had been teaching me and showing me the previous year, I knew that God was in control of this situation.
I had Acts 17:26 etched into my heart
From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live.

I knew God was in control even in this situation. He knew if she would make it to birth. He knew when she would go to her heavenly home. Peace.

I first prayed that she would just die in me. I didn't want to bond any further. My husband prayed fervently that she would at least live to see the light of day.

But God knew what I needed. And what my husband needed.

She was born 5 1/2 weeks early. She weighed 4 pounds, 4 ounces. A crying baby never sounded so sweet. We held her and loved her for four days straight. Then she got sick of us and ditched us for heaven.

It was my deepest pain and biggest blessing. Ironically, I experienced the presence of God and the love of God more than any other time in my life.

There is a lot more to the story so I have started a blog about our journey with Baby Faith with some of the highlights and lowlights.
I have yet to finish it, but one day I will.
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Jessica Johnson said...

She is such a beautiful and sweet baby girl, Wendy. And so blessed that Jesus gave her a brave, compassionate, Godly woman for a mom. And then took her for Himself. My heart breaks and rejoices all at once.

Erika said...

Wendy, she is so beautiful! One of my good friends had a little girl with T13. She was also diagnosed at the 20 week ultrasound and chose to carry to term (something her doctor advised against). I met her three years before I became a member of "the club"- and I am so glad I did because she taught me how to be brave even in the midst of such a hard situation. Three years to the DAY from when my friend gave birth to her daughter, Kambry (who lived for 5 hours), I gave birth to my identical twin daughters who had passed away in utero hours before. July 12th is our day...and I know what you mean about it being full of so much sadness, and pain, while also being a time of joy and connecting you closer to God. thank you for sharing your story!


Me (aka Danielle) said...

Oh how my heart aches, for you!

This club we have been initiated into, is a tough one to be a part of.

Hugs..from one mother of an angel, to another!

forever folding laundry said...

Wendy, I understand only some of the pain you went through with Faith, and I'm so sorry. I hold tight to His promise that we will be reunited with those precious little souls one day in Heaven, and I can't wait for that day.


Anonymous said...

She is so very beautiful, Wendy. My heart hurts so badly for you.

Thank you for sharing your story with us. We should plan a birthday party in heaven for all our little ones.

You know they are going to be better at rainbow sliding than us. Just sayin' :)

teal915 said...

I cannot even remember what exactly led me to your blog, but it was Faith's story that got me coming back. I found your blog shortly after my daughter, Kamdyn, was born with Trisomy 21 (Down syndrome). The fact that you went forward and fought for your baby had me hooked. Kamdyn has two holes in her heart. Doctor's are meeting next Tues morning to make a decision about surgery. Our sweet baby is only 10 months old, and while surgery is a scary thought, we only want what is best for her. Some would view that as a reason to abort, as suffering. But I can promise with every breath that is in me that my daughter is not suffering. She is the happiest, most joyful, most loved baby, and our lives are better for having her.

TDM Wendy said...

Thanks everyone. Shoot, we could have a blog conference just for those of us with babes in heaven.

Angie said...

Wendy. I didn't know! Girl, I'm so sorry... and I can say that with all my heart because we have a baby boy in heaven. He was stillborn and we named him Joshua.

I totally experienced that peace that passes all understanding when I realized in my heart (before the doctor confirmed it) that he had died. To this day I don't fully understand that peace. And I can absolutely relate to experiencing the presence of God and the love of God more than any other time in my life. I could go on and on about that.

I wish I could go back and experience those three and a half hours when I got to hold that silent baby boy. It was 3 1/2 years ago for me, and I feel like it was yesterday.

Wow. I'm glad we have this connection, as bittersweet as it may be!

grateful4babies said...

I don't have the words to truly say what I want to say. I am so encouraged by your story and the way you trusted God. Thank you for sharing what you went through. Stacey

TDM Wendy said...

Sorry for your loss as well. Man, there are way too many of us! But we sure are blessed with live, healthy children now!
Thanks Stacey.