Skip to main content

6/16 Regrets That Creep In

June 16, 2018 | Week 2

I need to go back and read my own birth story. We left that hospital with no regrets.

But weeks later, regrets have crept in. I should have sung to Mila after she was born. I should have prayed with her. I should have read Scripture to her. I should have prayed for her by name. All the time she was in the womb, I only referred to her as "baby" because we didn't know whether we were having a girl or a boy (although, now when we look back at the pregnancy, we realize it was Mila all along).

I should have called the kids earlier to come to the hospital so that they could meet their baby sister sooner. I look back at the timestamps of the digital pictures (technology...too much info...sometimes better just not to know) and maybe Mila was no longer alive when they finally came in. Her heartbeat was slow at 4:20. We cut the cord soon after. The kids arrived another ten minutes later. I don't remember whether she moved or not on me once they arrived. We didn't check her heartbeat again until 6pm, and by that time, I knew she had left this world long before. But for whatever reason, in that moment I felt like she was still with us when the kids entered in. And it is impossible for me to know otherwise.

So I need to go back and reread that birth story, and remember God's mercy and goodness. And kick out all these doubts and regrets that are trying to creep in and discourage me in my weakness. We did the best that we could with what we knew at the time. We honestly were not expecting a live birth at 31 weeks. We were still preparing for a still birth at this point, so our memory making list did not include talking to the baby and singing to the baby and praying with the baby. We were just so stunned that she was with us, wiggling on me, and we cherished every moment we had with her, but we were in such shock that we simply didn't know what to do.

Really, though, we treated her like any other of our kids at birth. We greeted her with excitement as we met the newest member of our family. We were just so amazed that she was alive, that we didn't treat her like she was dying.

And I still can't believe she died. But even more, I can't believe she lived. She seemed to defy all odds. Her story didn't match up to any of the others I read. Under her circumstances, she should have been a still born. She should have survived only a mere few minutes outside the womb. But she was born, alive, moving, wiggling. With a little bit of life still left inside of her. Life is life. And she remained with us for at least an hour. And, by God's mercy, that stiffness of death never set in while we held her. All our memories of her that day were sweet & precious.

I need my own words to remind me: "We went home, hands empty but hearts full. We had no regrets."

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

5/31 Baby Mila is Born

. May 31, 2018 | 31 weeks Our baby Mila was born today. 3 lb 1 oz and 14 3/4 inches of pure bliss. She stayed with us just long enough to meet her brothers and sisters, and then she breathed her last and went home to our Lord. We had been looking forward to May 31 for weeks. I was impatient about it, even. It was the day that our second opinion was scheduled. I was eager to find out more information about our baby. Instead, I got to meet her face to face. The Day Before Wednesday afternoon, just after 3 pm, I noticed that I had some sort of a discharge come out of me, out of the birth canal side. It was only a little bit. When I wiped, it kind of looked like diarrhea (an olive brown color), and I thought I must have leaked something when I passed gas. Super embarrassing. But anyway, when I wiped my other end, there was no sign of diarrhea whatsoever. So I googled it and concluded that it must be the beginning of some sort of infection, and I resolved not to eat any more chocol

Daddy's Reflections

As a husband I can’t directly relate to my wife through pregnancy and motherhood. Those things are uniquely feminine, and I am of no help to guess what Delia is feeling. I can learn from what she expresses, and I am really glad that she has been open to me and that she has now written these posts. It gives me a glimpse into the mind of the strong, Christian woman that I married going through the trial of her life. I always need to be the leader in our marriage, but I’ve had to walk that delicate balance between being a dictator and being aimless. The decision to choose hospice after birth was the direction I saw Mila’s health going, but I let Delia get as many opinions and counsel as she desired. I would have supported intervention if she insisted, because I love her and she is the mommy. Whatever she wanted for that day she would get, such as how she wanted to capture the day on video, or what personal items she wanted to have nearby. I trust her judgment, and so I trust being patie

7/26 Letting Go

July 26, 2018 | Week 8 It's funny how feelings can change in just a few days. Today, I'm feeling like I took a step backwards in the grieving process. As my final days of pumping approach, I find myself holding on and afraid of letting go. Seeing Mila's milk every day, writing her name on each bag every single day throughout the day has been so sweet & so special. I'll never get to fill out a form for Mila & write her name down on it. This is it. This is all I've had. These milk bags have been my only opportunity. I love writing her name down. I love that I think about her multiple times throughout the day. I don't want to stop thinking about her. I don't want "out of sight, out of mind", but I know that's how it's going to be. And I know that that's ok & probably even necessary. I'm feeling that all-too-familiar tension between life & death all over again. I want to choose joy and rejoice in life, but when I place