In May of last year, my husband and I were expecting our 3rd child. I had finally gotten through all the yucky-ness that the beginning stages of pregnancy can bring: morning sickness and extreme exhaustion (especially trying to keep up with my amazing yet rambunctious little boys). I had reached the halfway point-20 weeks!
That morning, May 8, my husband and I were going in for my ultrasound to find out what we were having. We were so excited to see our baby, and to find out what was inside of me, a boy or a girl!! We had gotten a baby sitter for our boys that day, just because we wanted it to be so special for just the two of us and to be able to come home and share the most exciting news with the big brothers’ to be. We arrived at my appointment, I anxiously waited for the ultrasound to begin, and that’s when our entire world turned upside down. As we waited for the tech to talk through what we were looking at, she did just the opposite. She sat there, silent. The silence was completely deafening as we waited for her to speak. She finally broke the silence and asked me, “Have you experienced any cramping/bleeding?” I swallowed so hard, and replied, “No..?”
She excused herself and began to get up and walk out of the room telling us she needed to get the doctor. My husband asked her, “Is everything okay?” She responded quickly as she was leaving, “That is what I am going to find out.”
I was in shock, I just lay there not sure what to feel, think, or even do. We waited for what seemed to be 10 minutes, and the doctor came back in with the nurse and put his hand gently on my shoulder and said, “It’s not good news. We can’t find a heartbeat. I am so sorry.” My husband asked, “ What does that mean?!” And the Doctor responded so sadly, “Your baby has passed away.”
That day forever changed my entire world. What happened next was the most excruciating time of my entire life. I had to check into the hospital and deliver our baby because I was too far along for any other options. They began my labor, which lasted a total of 35 hours. My body went through so much during those 35 hours, but what my heart went through is indescribable.
On May 10, a little after 8, I delivered our baby boy, Kolten Matthew. He weighed 6.9 ounces. He was so tiny that he fit into the palm of my hand. He was so perfect though as I looked at him. I held him and just examined his entire body-I wanted to engrave in my mind forever what he looked like, because this would be the only time I would be able to hold and look at my sweet baby. After we spent time holding and looking at our sweet boy, the nurse came in to see if we were ready for her to take him. I thought to myself, “How would I ever be ready for someone to take my baby away from me?”
She took him away, and we sat there-broken and feeling the most empty feeling that we had ever felt in our entire lives.
Just weeks after we lost Kolten, God gave me this song. As I sat there weeping one day, and hadn’t desired to worship or anything, I just felt Him calling me to worship Him. So I sat down with my guitar, and just began playing these chords over and over and humming, not having any words to even sing or pray. And suddenly out of my mouth, came this prayer, “God, teach me. Teach me how to suffer….how to suffer well. Help me to trust You that Your plans are good. That your word in Jeremiah 29 are true, and that You are going to prosper me and get me through this, Lord.” This song came out of that moment and I am forever thankful that God used this in my life to teach me, but also to help others express a prayer of asking God to teach them as well.
My heart is in need
Of being refined
Into the likeness of Your heart
In joy or in pain
Your love it remains
Help me live in the freedom of You
To suffer well
To endure the pain for I know that it will come
To trust You Lord
To know Your hands will guide me through this storm
For I know your plans are good
I’m daily needing Your grace
Your word to show me the way
So I can live a life so full of faith
And when the enemy roars
I pray your strength would endure
Help me live in the freedom of You
In my joy or my pain
Your love it remains
Thank you Lord
For Your plans they are good
In my victories won
Defeat that will come
Thank you Lord
For Your plans, they are good
Over the past almost 8 months, God has really been working on my heart. I have been through an array of emotions while grieving our baby. I have felt anger, anguish, hopelessness, confusion…..why would God allow this? How could He do this to me?? Is it a punishment? Did I do something to anger Him and He needed to show me? Suddenly my walk, my understanding and knowledge of God-seemed shattered in those dark moments.
But here is where the beauty lies. God knew……He knew my heart. He knew my brokenness. He knew my hopelessness… And HE loved me anyway! He allowed me to question. He allowed me to be angry at Him. He allowed me to wonder how a God of Love could take away a precious life. He met me where I was, and comforted and loved me anyway.
I am not saying I don’t still question at times or feel angry and confused, but God has used this tragedy and loss as a way to love and bring me closer to Him.
Kolten was due September 19, 2012. I have been thinking already going into this new year, “How will I feel when that date arrives this year? How will I get through that day, knowing he would be a year old on that day?”
Here is the other beautiful part of my story.
I found out a little over 4 weeks ago, I am expecting again. God’s timing never ceases to amaze my heart. I found out on January 1st – No doubt God’s perfect timing to say “This is a new year full of new chances, new starts, and a new life.” Here is one of the other absolutely incredible parts of my story. My due date for this new baby inside my womb is September 11. Almost exactly a week before Kolten Matthew was due. Now if THAT doesn’t blow your socks off then come on people!!!!:)
So know this year on September 19, when we should be celebrating Kolten’s first birthday, we will be holding his little brother or sister in our arms while remembering his short, yet unbelievably impactful life in our lives.
What has God taught me, among many other important lessons? He is a God of restoration. He is able to take any situation, any circumstance, anyone, and is completely able to restore, heal and comfort.
Never thought I would survive
The ever-growing pain inside
Filled with fear and disbelief
Needing You to comfort me
And You restore
And heal my soul
You take what once was lost
And make it whole
All that I am
I praise You Lord
For you restore
Now I can see why
You let me break and hurt inside
You met me on my knees
To show the plans You have for me
You make all things new
You caused the blind to see
Through the captives
Are all set free
You heal, You comfort
You stood in my place
So one day I can see Your face
Read other posts in this series:
Stephanie is a Daughter of the KING. She is 27 years old and a mom of THREE precious boys; ages 4, 2, and our youngest, Kolten Matthew, is walking with Jesus. She is married to her best friend and love of her life, Craig. They minister together through music at their church in Kentucky.
NOTE: Hopefully we will be able to share these songs with you via video. As soon as they become available, this post will be updated with them.
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