(trigger warning, baby photos at the bottom of the page)
On the first day of spring we found out that I was pregnant with our first child. So many emotions and excitement and trying to keep it a secret until we could tell our families in person which we were able to do a few weeks later.
Jason and I found out at my 20 week ultrasound that we were going to have a little girl and we were so excited. We would have been happy either way but we were hoping for a girl.
Unfortunately shortly after, our world turned upside down. I went into early labor and she was born on July 13 at 20 weeks, 6 days old and weighed 8.8oz. Due to a fatal birth defect Aveline Hope only lived for 5 1/2 precious hours before we lost her.
Even though it was not nearly long enough, I’m so grateful for those moments, getting to see her heart beating and taking little breaths, feeling her lightly squeeze my pinky with her tiny hand.
It's hard to describe and it was unexpected but after she was born was one of the happiest moments of my life. I was just giddy and smiling for hours. I knew before she was born how it would end but I am so grateful for that gift of happiness and time with our daughter. I was able to hold it together to sing her a song I had been singing throughout my pregnancy. "Still" by Hillsong
Shortly after that of course, reality sinks in and I was devastated. The next morning, walking away from that hospital without our baby was one of the worst feelings in the world.
This is not how we imagined things would go, it’s not what we wanted, it’s doesn’t seem fair and it hurts so much. However though all of this pain, we have seen God working, which sounds crazy with everything that has happened. But we have seen Him, we have seen little miracles, not the one we wanted, but they have been there. He has has brought us closer together and has been carrying us every step of the way, giving us peace, bringing us comfort, and putting the right people in our lives at the right time. Without Him I don’t know how we would get though this. With Him we have this hope, hope that one day when He returns we will get to be with Him and we will get to hold our little girl again.
Our hope is that others who have experienced this terrible pain and loss would find comfort, not just here on earth, but comfort in the fact that if we know Jesus as our savior and have a relationship with him, we will get to hold our precious babies again. We will get to see them in heaven where there is no pain and no suffering.
There have been so many days that the only thing that got us through was that hope, hope that through Jesus we will get to hold Aveline again. It doesn't erase the pain, but it has been the life preserver that I have clung to this past year.