Today June 3rd was our sweet baby boys due date. Tragically we lost him several weeks ago. Although he is not here physically with us, today we celebrate his life and give thanks as he has forever changed our lives.
On January 15th I sat holding my father’s hand as he took his last breath after his courageous battle with cancer. Jesse and I were completely heartbroken, yet we still had a light inside us because of our unborn son and we knew we had to stay strong for him. The very next day January 16th, we pulled ourselves together to go to the twenty-week appointment for our baby boy. At that appointment the unthinkable happened. Our previously very active baby had no heartbeat to be found. In a 24-hour period we had lost my father and our son.
There are just no words to describe that dark day and the devastation we were suddenly engulfed in.
The next several days were a living nightmare. Many excruciating decisions. A 14-hour delivery and surgery. Leaving the hospital without our son. A painful recovery. Realizing we had to miss my father’s memorial as traveling post-delivery was too dangerous. And that was just the first week.
In those extremely dark hours I questioned life and everything about it. And despite the hell we were currently burning up in, I knew in that moment there was choice. I could choose to fight for life or not. I knew it was going to be the hardest decision of my life, but I chose the former. I chose to live.
To begin the healing process, I had to step away from the world as I knew it for a while. Every ounce of energy I had needed to be focused on the very next step in front of me and nothing else. And I have found that I spent every moment of the last 4 months fighting. Fighting to breathe through sadness. Fighting for answers. Fighting to smile through devastation. Fighting to navigate the awkwardness of child loss. Fighting to seek wellness. Fighting for hope.
Yet that is not the full story. Because even in the midst of such darkness and despair, we have been showered with such incredible light and love. Family and friends have rallied around us every single step of the way. Doctors and nurses went above and beyond the call to hold our hands through the entire journey. Our new church community loved us and treated us as if we had been lifelong members. Strangers who happened upon our story would stop us to let us know they were thinking and praying for us. Despite the physical, mental and spiritual pain I was feeling, I simply could no longer question God nor humanity, because we were witnessing the very best of both.
I know with every fiber in my being that there is purpose in our pain. Miscarriage and pregnancy loss happen. They create a terrible silent lifetime membership club that no one wants to be invited to. But once you are forced to join you suddenly realize its membership is large, loving and so supportive. And its allies are kind, understanding and present.
As I continue to grow stronger physically, mentally and spiritually, I will share more of our story. Because if telling about our journey with the loss of our son can help one single person, then it will all be worth it. If letting them know that the loss will never go away but you can make it through dark times, then it will all be worth it. If sharing resources that I’ve found to be helpful in the grieving process can help one person, then it will all be worth it.
Today Jesse and I stand in a place stronger together than we ever have been before. Today we are able to experience joy in the little daily gifts while balancing the sadness from the what could have been. Today we focus on living in the moment without worrying about tomorrows.
While I move forward in my healing journey, I will continue to take the personal time necessary, as grieving is a process and unfortunately not a destination. In addition, we will continue to find ways to honor our sweet son David Jacob.
Lastly, we want to thank everyone who has walked with us in this journey. There are so many of you I still need to reach out to with deep thanks and love. Please know that every single prayer, text, call or act of support means more to us than we can ever put in words. Thank you. ❤
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