It Is Well With My Soul

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There are some things in my life I find it very difficult to talk about.  They live in the darkest regions of my heart and I don't often revisit them.  But I want to tell you about someone beautiful today, and I can't do that, without reaching into those stormy parts of myself, so you'll understand why it all matters so much to me.  Why I think what she's doing is so very moving and important.

Before my oldest son was born, I dreamed often of being a mother.  I imagined it probably like many women do.  You work your life plan out and then it just happens, when you decide you are ready to make it happen.  But sometimes, life isn't like that.  Weeks turned into months. Months turned into years.  And no baby filled our home with laughter and new responsibilities. I watched my friends get pregnant and held each child, rejoicing and continuing to hope.  After about 3 years, my husband and I decided to seek the counsel of a fertility specialist and then spent a year, and many  long months implementing the doctor's plan.  I could never express in words, the feeling I had when that test came back positive.  It was indescribable and beyond amazing.  Jimmy was born a month early and there were a few minor complications but in the end, all was well and he came home and has graced our lives with his presence for nearly 17 years now.  We were happy, and I thought, "This is it."  I've arrived.  I'm a mom...yay!:)  All was well.  We thought it would be nice to have one more child so we returned to the doctor, but nearly 4 years went by with no results so we thought we were done.  We settled into a comfortable life ... the three of us found a rhythm that worked for us and we marched to it quite nicely.  But when we found out baby #2 was on the way, we were ecstatic and I started making plans and cleaning out the guest bedroom almost immediately.  I had two ultrasounds early on, due to previous complications and everything looked fine so we joyfully told all our family and friends.   I believed the baby was a boy and started calling him Samuel, right from the start.  In the mornings when Jimmy would crawl into bed with me, he'd touch my belly and ask if he could talk to Sam.  My heart was full.

At 13 weeks, that all came crashing down.  During a routine exam, my midwife was unable to find the baby's heartbeat.  That's not always unusual, so they scheduled another ultrasound, which revealed that my little Sam had not progressed beyond 10 weeks and was in fact, no longer alive.  I barely remember the minutes and hours after that.  Somehow, I managed to get dressed and follow my husband to the car, and I don't think I spoke a word for the remainder of the day. It was honestly one of the most painful experiences of my life and it will stay with me forever.  I have three beautiful sons now, but there are still times I pause and think of who he might have been.  I mourn for a child whose spirit lived within me for only a very short time.  He was joined later, by our twins, who also left us at 13 weeks. 

I am often amazed and humbled by extraordinary women who rise up from the ashes of the most profound grief, and create rainbows, where storm clouds might otherwise linger.  I met one such woman recently, and the work she is doing is moving to me in ways I couldn't begin to describe to you.  Her story will squeeze your heart, but her subsequent actions, will make you cheer.  I hope every one of you who reads me, will read Heidi's incredible story and then share it with others.  I believe so strongly in what she is doing.  I urge you to visit and like her Fan Page and to like and spread the word about her  charity: Butterfly Kisses .  This is so important to me.  If you ignore every other link I post, please do not ignore this one.   Here's what Heidi's blog is all about:  Buttons and Butterflies

And Heidi, I want you to know ... I think you are extraordinary.  Truly.

Word to the Wise:

Think about re-examining those dark places in your soul and let a little light in there.   If Heidi can rise up, so can we.  And if the man who penned this hymn during such terribly painful times can see the light, perhaps we can all reach down and do the same.