In May 2007, the night before Mother's Day, Jacob and I discovered we were pregnant. YAY! Whoa, what are we gonna do?!! OH...my goodness. These were just a few of the thoughts that went through our minds at our surprising discovery. We wanted to have children and were, in fact, discussing when to "try" to get pregnant, but we just weren't expecting it so soon! But here we were, overjoyed, overwhelmed, and completely in love with the baby growing in my belly.
Towards the end of the next day, Sunday - May 13, I knew something was wrong. I had never been pregnant before, but I knew that some of the things going on with my body were not supposed to be happening. We couldn't get in to see a doctor until Wednesday and by Friday tests results came back...showing we had been pregnant, but had lost our baby. I had lost the baby on Sunday evening...the time when I knew something was wrong.
24 hours. That is as long as I knew about my baby before she died. 24 very short hours. But in those 24 hours, I dreamed. And I planned. And I wished. And I hoped. I dreamed about what she would look like and what it would be like to hold her for the very first time. I planned what her room would look like. I wished for her smiling face. And I hoped that she would love Jesus from a very early age.
This loss was the biggest blow to my life. But we valued her life from the beginning...from the very second the word "Pregnant" appeared before my eyes. We still value her life, because she was a life lived, if only for a short time. I gave her a name, Mary Grace. I don't know 100% she was a girl, but through prayer this is what was impressed on my heart. Mary (from the story of Mary and Martha in the Bible) - because I knew she was sitting at the feet of Jesus, listening to him. And Grace, because I know that because of God's grace, I will see and hold my precious child who lived such a short time. I wrote her a letter, telling her my dreams and wishes and hopes for her and all that went through my heart and mind in those short 24 hours. We have a piece of paper with her name framed on our bookshelf because I don't have a picture, not even an ultrasound, of my child.
We will tell our chlidren about Mary Grace and they will see her framed name in our household. Why? Because we want them to know that her life is valued. We want them to grow up understanding the value of every life...no matter how long or how short that life is. God had numbered Mary Grace's days to only a few...but her life mattered and she was - and IS - loved.
And, I know, that I will hold her heaven.