The Christmas Miracle
Have you ever felt like you are in pilot mode? Like you’ve checked out? You are physically present but not mentally. You mirror others expressions. You smile because they are smiling but you don’t know what they are smiling about. You hear them talking but don’t know what they are saying. I felt like that yesterday. It was the first time in a very long time I had felt that way. You see six years ago yesterday, on December 26th, the day after Christmas, I was on my way to receive the best gift ever.
I was on my way to the doctors to find out the sex of our second child. I wanted it to be a girl so bad because I wanted Kylie to have a little sister. When I got called to go to the room, OMG, I remember the bubble guts and butterflies because this was it. In just a few moments I would find out if it was a boy or a girl. I laid down and giggled when they placed the cold gel on my baby bump. I laid with a huge smile on my face. This was it. Any moment now. The moment felt like it came and went and the room was silent. I looked over to the nurse and she had a confused look on her face. I asked her “So?” She looked at me and opened her mouth and as soon as she said
“I can’t find a heartbeat”
I went into pilot mode. I don’t remember anything else she said. All I could hear over and over in my head, in slow motion was “I can’t find a heartbeat”. She got the doctor so he could verify. At this point all I could hear was my heart. It was beating loud and hard enough for the both of us. Or at least I wished it worked that way! I looked at my doctor, he said something but I couldn’t hear. Everything was tuned out by “I can’t find a heartbeat “ and my loud, hard beating heart. I remember his face, empathetic for me, sad for me. He hugged me as I just sat there paralyzed at what I had just heard. I looked over and saw Kylie sitting next to me, so innocent and clueless to what was going on. She thought what was in my belly was magical. She thought I had superpowers. MY MOM BAKES BABIES IN HER BELLY!!!!
I had to keep it together. I couldn’t fall apart. So many things were going through my mind:
How could this be? I am in my second trimester. I’m supposed to be in the clear! I’ve had no symptoms that anything was wrong. I had just told all my friends and family. Everyone is waiting for me to come back with just one word, boy or girl. Not this! The day after Christmas I get the news that my baby is dead. That I’ve been walking around with my little bean inside me, thinking I was keeping it safe but in actuality it wasn’t. And now I must continue walking around with it inside me until my body disposed of it naturally.
I was frozen. I couldn’t cry. I couldn’t show any sign that something was wrong. So I went into pilot mode. I worked mechanically but mentally and emotionally I felt like a zombie. I had to now call Landon at work and tell him. But I didn’t know how! The nurse took Kylie out of the room to give me a moment. It felt like the phone was ringing forever. I finally heard his voice in the other line, “Is it a girl?!” My mouth opened to respond but I couldn’t say it. Saying it out loud would make it true. “It’s a… it’s a… it’s DEAD” the tears came down my face like a flood and I started crying uncontrollably. I could hear the sadness and confusion in his response “what do you mean?” . The frog in his throat as he was trying to be strong for me like I was for Kylie but feeling like the whole world had just came crashing down. I had to get myself together quickly. Any sign of sadness or crying and I knew Kylie would notice and worry. I got off the phone and walked out the room and down the hallway following the sounds of Kylie’s laugh and baby talk. I picked up Kylie and walked out of the office. I told myself this was my reality and I needed to get it together. I wasn’t the first and I wouldn’t be the last to experience this pain.
When I got home, my house felt different. All of a sudden everything felt different. It was no longer a home full of just happy memories. I sat on the couch, turned the tv on and put Kylie down to play with her toys. I sat down and I couldn’t hear anything. All I could hear was the replay of the nurses words. I was looking in the direction of the tv but I couldn’t see it. All I could see was the sonogram screen, the nurse and doctors empathetic faces. Before I knew it Landon was home from work. Landon had gotten some water for Kylie and said my name. When I saw Landon’s face I snapped out of it. The one person I could be broken with was finally here!
As soon as I snapped out of pilot mode I could hear Kylie’s voice again and Landon asking me when was the last time Kylie drank anything. I told him a few minutes ago, when we got home and he looked at me with big watery eyes, “Stephanie that was this morning”. I then realized it had been 8 hours since I last held my daughter who was very much alive and in front of me. 8 hours since I had given her anything to drink. 8 hours since I had changed her diaper. 8 hours on pilot mode not hearing anything with a blank stare on the couch. In shock. Frozen numb to the pain. I ran over to pick up Kylie and started crying and apologizing to her. How could I have let this happen. Why was this happening to our family. And from sadness I quickly felt angry. Angry at myself. Angry at God! I was completely out of pilot mode and awake and now I could now feel everything. All I felt was pain and anger! I felt sick to my stomach. I ran to the bathroom a started puking.
Thank God for Landon! He was my rock! I was at my weakest and he had strength for both of us. I had so many questions and so many doubts. Was God punishing me? What did we do to deserve this? I was giving God credit for something he didn’t do. I know God is a creator, he gives life to the dead, he gives strength to the weak, and comforts the weary. God is love. But I just wanted to know how, why this was happening. So now that I reminded myself of all the things that God is, I thought I should get a second opinion. After all I serve a God of miracles! This could be the miracle that changes my life, changes my testimony that can change other people’s life.
After 3 second opinions nothing had changed. I still didn’t have any symptoms of a miscarriage yet every sonogram said no heartbeat! My belly was still there. My morning nausea was still there. But there was no heartbeat! I knew and believed with all my heart that the only one who could take a mess and create something good out of this was God. I decided to hold on to that promise. I’m happy to say he came through like I knew he would. Not in the way that we would have hoped. I never heard our baby’s heartbeat again but he did bring something good out of something so horrible. Never, before this had Landon and I been closer. I fell deeper in love with Landon than ever. He took care of me with such mercy and love. I was able to trust him on a whole new level. I saw Kylie in a way that I had never seen her before. She was precious, perfect and very much a gift from God! A treasure! I looked at them and knew God had not forgotten me. He put in my life people who love me unconditionally and selflessly and that is a great gift. One that I treasure!
Two weeks later on January 7, 2013 at 3:00am I woke up to a horrible pain. A physical pain I wasn’t familiar too. I tossed and turned for three hours. I could not sleep. This was worse than any stomach virus. At 6:30am I went to the bathroom. Placed my hands on the faucet and ran some water to wash my face. I felt a warm flow go down my legs. I first I thought “Did I really just pee on myself?” I looked down and saw something much worse than being 25 and peeing on yourself. I saw blood. My water broke. I was 17 weeks pregnant and in labor.
Landon had already gone to work and Kylie was sound asleep in the very next room down the hallway. I didn’t expect this. I honestly didn’t know what to expect. What I did know was that the pain was getting worse. On January 7 at 7:03am I miscarried our second baby in our bathroom. It was the scariest moment of my life. One that I didn’t expect, let alone go through without Landon next to me. Even though he wasn’t there I wasn’t alone. I didn’t feel alone. I felt God was with me every single moment. I know this may sound crazy, and I promise I’m not (although I think crazy people always say that they are not, but I promise I’m not) but I felt Gods presence like never before! And I knew that I would see my baby again one day in heaven! In the midst of the pain and bloodbath I felt peace. A peace I had never felt before! My baby was safe.
I cry sometimes because I’m human, I would have loved to hold my baby and love it and watch it grow. I’m human. Just because I know our baby is in heaven with our Heavenly Father, doesn’t mean I don’t miss him. It doesn’t mean that I don’t think about him everyday and how he would have drove his sisters crazy. The beautiful and perfect chaos it would have been.
I look back and reflect this time of year every year and think how blessed we are. That Christmas was the worst Christmas of my life. There is no sugarcoating it! My child died. A piece of me died! Yet Christmas is a time when we are celebrating the BIGGEST gift given to all of us. Gods only Son. For God so loved the world that He gave His only Son and whosoever believes in Him will not perish and shall have eternal life.
Jesus came as a baby willingly to pay the price for us. So that we could be saved. He knew he’d be rejected, hated , beaten and persecuted! Why would God send his only Son to die. Why would Jesus accept to go through such a thing. He’s God! Having lost a child myself I can’t imagine that it was anything less than painful for God to watch Jesus be persecuted and executed. Why would he do it? I mean I know I wouldn’t and can’t think of anyone who would! It comes down to the why?! Because he loved us! His love for us was greater. Jesus came so that we could be saved. How blessed are we to have such a loving, selfless merciful God. A God who seeks us and loves us unconditionally. A God who would pay the ultimate price for us. Even if we think and know we’re unworthy, He says we ARE worthy of his unconditional love. I can’t think of a better, safer place for our baby to be with than our everlasting, loving, heavenly father until it’s time to meet again!