Have you ever gotten a phone call with bad news that left you in the fetal position on the kitchen floor? Life is really hard sometimes and those moments can strike a family, individual, or nation. These moments freeze time and the heart ache you feel is as if it is stuck in your body, it’s hard to even swallow a bite of food, and you constantly choke back tears in unbelief.
I am number 5 out 6 kids. All of my siblings are the best of friends. We haven’t always been growing up I’m sure, but my mom instilled in our minds that despite any differences the most important thing is that we have each other no matter what. She always encouraged us to go to soccer games, piano recitals, and to be our siblings’ biggest fans. To this day I consider them my very best friends and feel so blessed that we have that relationship.
In October 2009, I received one of those phone calls I was talking about. My sister Jaymie, who was full term had lost her baby. I literally fell on the floor and sobbed. No, I didn’t go through this trial but when you are that close to someone and those of you with sisters know that their pain is yours.
I remember kneeling as a family in a circle around her hospital bed praying because we all felt so helpless. I couldn’t help but hold both my hands on my heart trying to keep it from completely breaking out of my chest as I watched my sister about to deliver her baby she that she had just learned had passed away. As I write this, those same feelings swarm back in my body and the lump in my throat comes back.
One thing my sister said as she laid there about to deliver was, “Sunday Will Come“. When a baby is born you should be hearing their little lungs scream and cry into the oxygen of this world…not the mothers. I am in awe at her strength and faith she had in such a heart wrenching time. We will forever remember our angel baby James.
Here are her words:
“I am not a blogger….. Don’t get me wrong, I have a blogspot, doesn’t everybody? I don’t think anyone, including myself, has even attempted to open my blog page in years. With that said, I enjoy reading blogs. I have a few that I religiously read everyday. I wish I were better at writing and able to express myself easier through words. My problem is I never take the time to write so thank you Aubrey for nudging me a little.
My story is a little different than most new moms. Throughout my entire life, I pictured myself marrying “prince charming”, buying a house, having my first baby while I was young because I obviously didn’t want to be an “old” mom. I had these accomplishments set out in my mind to occur by the time I reached certain ages. When I was 22 I should have finished my degree and should be pregnant with a daughter, because I grew up with 4 sisters and 1 brother so obviously I expected to be a mom to girls.
Well, life doesn’t always happen the way we plan. Although I did marry my Prince Charming, I found myself at 24 unable to get pregnant after two years of trying. When I reached 25 I had been on a few fertility drugs and still was not pregnant. The month I stopped taking the medicine, I found myself pregnant. I was thrilled. I was super sick and wondered why the heck I had wanted this so bad.
My pregnancy went without any problems. I went for my regular checkups. Even went for our 20 week ultrasound and everything looked perfect. We did find out, however, that we were expecting a boy. I was shocked but felt blessed to be able to be pregnant. I remember thinking there was no way I could do scout camp and bugs, but I was grateful nonetheless.
As I prepared for this baby, I had no idea that my life was going to change forever. I was 38 weeks along. I hoped I would go into labor soon as my body was tired. On October 17, 2009, my husband and I had been out with friends and I was feeling down. I had lower back pain and thought maybe my body was just getting ready, but I knew I didn’t feel good. On our way home we decided to stop by the hospital to make sure I wasn’t in labor. I fully expected to be sent home. I even laughed when they asked me to put the gown on in the triage room. I got the gown on and jumped up on the bed. The nurse came in to check the baby.
This moment gives me a stomach ache to even think about.
They couldn’t find a heartbeat.
My sweet baby had passed away.
My world just ended.
I remember looking at my husband wondering how I could get out of my own body and run away. The nurses left us alone and we prayed. We prayed for strength… I prayed for a miracle. 26 hours later, on October 19, 2009 I gave birth to my son. 6 pounds 6 ounces. 19 inches long. He was beautiful. He had his dads lips and my nose. He was fuzzy and perfect. When they placed him on my chest he was warm and I wished with everything in me that he would take a breath.
But he was born still.
We were not given any answers as to why this happened. We named him James. I believe with all of my heart that I will get to raise him one day. I believe that he is mine forever. I believe that he has something important he is attending to right now.
He made me a mother. I think the hardest thing as an angel mom is the worry that people will forget my baby. He counts to me. He has a spirit and a body. He changed me. If his soul purpose was to help me gain a stronger testimony of my Savior Jesus Christ, than his purpose was fulfilled. Through my son I learned that I am an individual to God. He knows who I am. He is aware of my heartache. He loves me. He suffered for me and through Him I will be reunited with my son one day. I know we all have different beliefs and reasons for our beliefs, but I would be doing myself a disservice to say my son didn’t change me in this manner.
James would have been five this year. I have a nephew I watch who is just six months younger than my James. Although it is hard to watch him, I am thankful for the reminder of what I will one day have.
Shortly after James passed away we got pregnant with our second child and have a daughter almost exactly a year younger than James. And have since had another son. What a blessing they are in my life. We include James in our lives. We talk about him and he counts as one of our children.
After loosing James I thought I would never complain about being a mother. And I haven’t… just kidding, I complain! I have my fair share of rough days. I have days that I am less than perfect in the mothering department. I remember thinking I would never complain about being sick when I was pregnant and never complain about getting up in the night or potty training a toddler. That didn’t last long. I complained. Being a mother is the hardest thing I have ever done. It is the most challenging, most rewarding thing I think a woman can do. I am so thankful to have a supportive husband that helps me in this role. Although my life didn’t pan out the way I expected it would, I would not change a thing. I do have questions. I do feel cheated sometimes, but I wouldn’t change it for the amount of love that filled my heart when James was born.”
“Some people only dream of angels. We held one in our arms.”