A Loss is a Loss

March 16, 2009 by Audreys · Leave a Comment 

I finally made it to the point where I was beginning to heal enough so that I could talk about Katelyn without crying and bring her up in ordinary conversation with a smile on my face.  I would try to imagine how much fun she was having with all of the other babies that were born in Heaven, and try to imagine how Jesus was holding each of them at once.  I was healing.  But yesterday morning, for the first time in a long time, a wave of grief hit me so unexpectedly that I was unable to cope with it on my own.

Yesterday marked 7 months since Katelyn went to Heaven to meet Jesus.  To be completely honest, I wasn’t paying much attention to the dates until it hit me right in the middle of a church service yesterday morning.  It was a family-centered service where the children who normally went off to classes stayed with their parents for the service. Surrounded by children, and watching some of them run up to the stage to volunteer to sing in a special ‘volunteer choir’ and listening as they sang their hearts out brought tears to my eyes.

Toward the end of the service, there were a few guests who spoke about adoption and how God placed a desire on their hearts to adopt one or more special needs children.  The one couple spoke of a very early miscarriage (after just a few weeks) and how devastating that was for them.  I then thought to myself, how can a loss that early on be nearly as devastating as losing a child who is within days of being born. I admit I was ashamed at my thoughts, because a loss is a loss, but I have trouble relating their situation to ours since we were within days of holding our newborn baby girl and then her little heart stopped for no medical reason at all.

I just sat for the remainder of the service weeping.  I was emotionally spent and feeling very guilty about my thoughts about the other couples’ loss.  I took one look at Katelyn’s picture that was in my Bible and tears started to stream down my face.  I honestly could not have stopped them on my own.  Sometimes people may say I am too sensitive and emotional, but I would rather be able to show my emotions than keep them to myself.

So what helped? Praying for God to forgive me for my thoughts and asking one of the pastors at Harvest to pray for Scott and me.  I felt as if we just lost Katelyn yesterday; the sadness was that overpowering.  After he prayed with us, I felt completely covered with such a peace that I can’t even describe it.

Why am I telling you all of this? Because even though Scott and I launched this website to help other parents of stillborn babies, we still struggle ourselves.  After all, we are only human.  Our strength comes from the Lord.  The only way we will get through this is through Him.  He loves us so much, and holding on to His promises keeps us going every day.   

So, for those parents who have suffered early miscarriages, late miscarriages, stillbirths, and early infant death, I want you to know that God loves you so much that He was there with open arms when our babies took their last breaths.  And I learned a valuable lesson yesterday; no matter when our babies died, we all suffered, and one loss is not greater than another.  Know that my prayers are with you, even though we have never met.         

King David’s Baby

February 9, 2009 by Audreys · Leave a Comment 

“David therefore sought God on behalf of the child. And David fasted and went in and lay all night on the ground. And the elders of his house stood beside him, to raise him from the ground, but he would not, nor did he eat food with them. On the seventh day the child died. And the servants of David were afraid to tell him that the child was dead, for they said, “Behold, while the child was yet alive, we spoke to him, and he did not listen to us. How then can we say to him the child is dead? He may do himself some harm.” But when David saw that his servants were whispering together, David understood that the child was dead. And David said to his servants, “Is the child dead?” They said, “He is dead.” Then David arose from the earth and washed and anointed himself and changed his clothes. And he went into the house of the LORD and worshiped. He then went to his own house. And when he asked, they set food before him, and he ate. Then his servants said to him, “What is this thing that you have done? You fasted and wept for the child while he was alive; but when the child died, you arose and ate food.” He said, “While the child was still alive, I fasted and wept, for I said, ‘Who knows whether the LORD will be gracious to me, that the child may live?’ But now he is dead. Why should I fast? Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he will not return to me.”” 2 Samuel 12:16-23

This portion of scripture begs the question, why didn’t God save David’s baby?  After all, he pleaded with God, he fasted, he spent 6 days praying for God to change His mind and save his son.  These verses were preceded by David’s affair with Bathsheba, a married woman, and his successful plot to kill her husband so he could have her as his own.  God was well aware of David’s sin, and Nathan the prophet was sent to tell David that his son would die.  God’s punishment for David’s sin was the loss of his son. 

For days David called out to the Lord for His mercy, and was inconsolable until the baby died.  Once the baby died, David’s grief-stricken heart seemed to be at peace. It is hard to comprehend until you read the last verse when David verbalizes what he believes to be true. “Can I bring him back again? I shall go to him, but he will not return to me” 

David realized that the child’s suffering was over, and that his son was now in Heaven with his Heavenly Father.  David did not turn his back on God for this loss, rather he accepted his ‘discipline’, confident that he will see his son again.  David knew that there was nothing that he could do to convince God to bring his son back to him, so rather than continuing to grieve, he showed his inner peace by those simple words. “I shall go to him…”

If there is any verse that you keep close to your heart when you go through the hard days, deeply mourning the loss of your child, be comforted by the knowledge that through the saving grace of Jesus Christ, you can and will see your baby again. 

You might be asking, does that mean that God took away my baby because of my sin? The answer is absolutely not.  Even as Christians we might struggle with that possibility and start blaming ourselves.  No matter whether or not we find out what caused our baby to die, we often shift blame to ourselves.  It is important to tell yourself over and over again that it is not your fault; that your loss was not a judgment from God for your sins; that God did not cause your baby to die. 

David knew he would pay the price of his son in atonement for his sins.  But that was before Jesus came to live among us.  Jesus Christ came here to save us and ultimately died for our sins. Jesus bridged the gap between God and man. Once we confess our sins to our Father and repent, He is faithful and just to forgive us.   So, if you are trying to find a reason, or a sin that God is punishing you for, wipe that thought from your mind.  Instead, pray for peace and God’s mighty strength to get you though this trial, not around it.  

Always remember, our babies were stillborn, but they were Still Born.