Luke - Bringer of Light and Truth

July 20, 2010 by Audreys · 3 Comments 

Luke - Bringer of Light and Truth


Here is the story of baby Luke, born in Heaven on May 24, 2010.  I am thankful that his mom Lindy was willing to share him with us.  Her testimony reminds me of how much we need to lean on Jesus to get us through the loss of an infant.  It has been almost 2 years since we lost Katelyn Grace, but the only thing that keeps us going is the knowledge that we will see our little girl again, just like through their strong faith Luke’s family will be able to see him again. I am reminded again of 1 Thessalonians 4:13-14 “But we do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope. For since we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so, through Jesus, God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep.” (ESV)

“Luke Braedan Cummings was born on May 24, 2010 @ 10:22pm weighing 8 lbs. & 14 oz and was 21 1/4 in. long. I was 38 wks & 5 days and scheduled to be induced in 2 days. At my regular visit I was sent for observation. All labs came back normal & an ultrasound revealed no problems. Luke came off the monitor & it was a while before they came in to find him. That’s when everything changed. They put oxygen on me & said they found his heart rate but his baseline dropped…again they said he was fine. The doctor on call said Luke probably wouldn’t tolerate labor but we’d try.  I watched the monitor but his heart rate was not coming up. When the dr. came in a couple of minutes later I told her to do a c-section. I just wanted him here & safe. I was in the operating room within 10 min. but the atmosphere was very lighthearted and they weren’t in a hurry. My husband was brought in with the camera ready but I knew the minute he was born something was wrong. I asked why he wasn’t crying and the doctor told me it would take a minute. The last thing I remember saying is “God please let my baby cry”  When I came to in a room I kept telling my mom “He’s gone; my baby’s gone”. As a mother I just knew. My worst fears were confirmed when my husband came in with the NICU dr. She looked at me and said “Mrs. Cummings Luke didn’t make it”. My mother says at night she can still see my face and hear me repeating over and over “My baby, my baby”. NILMDTS came in the next day & provided us with the only memories we’ll have with Luke. We buried our little boy on 6/1/10. The doctors have no idea what happened & had no idea it was going to happen. I went into the operating room thinking I was doing what was best for him but my efforts were useless.

We have 2 beautiful children with us: Bryleigh is almost 7 & Ethan is almost 6. I’m not sure we will try again. That is something I’m torn over. Anyone who has been through this suffers from what I call “Empty Arm Syndrome”. We know God knows what is right for us & in His time it will be revealed to us. I just want Luke’s story out there so maybe it can help others. His life had meaning and purpose and it is up to me to be his voice! I tell my kids that Luke was so special that Jesus decided to bring him home but that we are just as special because Jesus doesn’t give everybody their own special ‘angel’. I tell them this because I don’t want them to grow up feeling like a victim of some random tragedy. I also tell them this to reassure myself that I’m not a victim of some random tragedy but sometimes that is what I feel like. “He knows the plans He has for me” and I have to cling to that. I am so blessed to have been given the chance to carry Luke in my womb & I rest in knowing that he knew me. He never saw me but he knew my voice; he knew his mommy. Thank you so much for taking the time to read about my angel. If there is one thing I can ask it is please pray for my husband. Sometimes I think we forget how much daddy’s hurt & how hard it is for other men to reach out to comfort a friend.

Luke means “bringer of light and truth” and God has used that little man’s 35 minutes to heal this hardened heart and bring my husband Tommy & I closer than we have ever been. Luke has already fulfilled so much more than 35 minutes worth of purpose and God uses Luke every day to draw me closer to Him.   Sometimes God draws our children into His arms so every time we look to our child we see Him. What a powerful statement! I just thought you should know that Luke has brought the light and truth of God back into my life and I will forever be changed.

A Unique Opportunity – Offering Advice to Doctors

June 25, 2009 by Audreys · Leave a Comment 

Scott and I were asked to tell Katelyn’s story this morning to a group of about 50 doctors at Northwestern Hospital.  They wanted to learn more about our experience with losing Katelyn and how the medical community could better handle cases when an infant dies. 

In my heart I know God was there with us, because although we have told our story countless times, the content was a bit different this time.  We had to vocalize the most painful parts we endured with the doctors, the initial grief, the ‘event’ itself and then tell them what could have been done differently.    

Remembering back to 10 ½ months ago when we first learned Katelyn’s heart stopped brought tears to my eyes.  I felt like I was taken back to that ultrasound room where I received a head nod when I asked if she was dead.    God gave me the grace and composure to continue on with our story and the advice we had for the doctors.

Our advice to the doctors was first and foremost “Listen to your patients.”  When a mother calls her doctor because she instinctively knows something is not right with her baby, listen to her and insist that she come in to the office as soon as she can.   Some of the other advice we gave them was:

    • When a patient comes into the office after calling to tell you that she has not felt her baby move for a long time, don’t make her sit in the waiting room.  In our case, I had to sit in the waiting room for 35 minutes before they would see me. 
    • We know how these families feel and we also know that a connection like this was something we needed and wanted after Katelyn died.
    • Never refer to the baby as “it” or “IUFD” (Intrauterine Fetal Death or In Utero Fetal Demise) in any conversations with the family or on any paperwork given to them.  To this date, the doctor will not put Katelyn Grace’s name on her medical records.  Even though she was born without life, she was Still Born.
    • Do the thinking for the patient – take a mold of the footprints, make an ID bracelet for the baby with his/her name on it, etc.
    • When the patient asks for something, try to accommodate them.  Losing a child is not only unbearable, but unknown territory for the parents
    • Remember that the baby might be a statistic to society, but he/she is a big part of someone’s family
    • Offer the option for a NILMDTS (Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep) photographer to come in and take pictures.  This was offered to us and we can’t imagine going a day without looking at her pictures.  She was truly beautiful.

    Do I blame the doctor we had for Katelyn’s death?  I must admit, I actually did at first.  I think it is a natural thing when a child dies with no medical explanation.  Do I blame myself?  I admit I do that sometimes too.  But then I remember that we live in a fallen world and only God has control over life and death.  I know in my heart that the pain of losing Katelyn Grace will never go away while Scott and I are here on this earth, but there is comfort in knowing that she is with Jesus and we will see her again someday.  In the meantime, we can rest in the knowledge that she is without pain, without tears, without fear or loneliness.  She was made perfect in the image of God and remains right there with him. 

    She was Stillborn, but she was Still Born.


    Time spent with Katelyn - Video

    January 23, 2009 by Audreys · 1 Comment