The Children We Never Got to Hold

This teeny tiny blurry spot is the only picture Lane and I will ever have of our 4th child. There are no pictures at all of our 3rd child. She passed away too early for us to even catch a glimpse of her. This 4th child, though, we were blessed to get this beautiful picture. We were blessed to hear her heartbeat.

Anna's Ultrasound Pic

In this picture she measured 7 weeks, 3 days. A week later when we found her heart had stopped beating, she only measured one more day of growth. She had passed away just one day after we were able to “see” her for the first time.

So tiny, but at 7 weeks she already had a beating heart. She wasn’t what many would consider “fully formed,” but she already had a little nose, ears, eyes, arms, and legs.

gestation 7-12 weeks

I would have been 37 weeks pregnant with her yesterday. Our third child would have been about to turn 1 year old. As I look around my home at my first two healthy children playing, I often feel like something/someone is missing. I imagine our third baby chasing these two active boys around. She probably would have been walking by now. I look down at my belly and am very aware that there is no one inside me. None of those giant kicks in the ribs that I experienced from my boys. Or those giant roll-overs where you can see your entire stomach move. I mourn the loss of these two children, and I am so much ever more grateful for the two I am able to raise, cuddle, and laugh with during my days.

On days like today, I mourn so much more. Life is sacred, and I’m angered to live in a culture that murders these precious little ones. I think of the babies who have beating hearts today, but whose mommies will have no one inside them tomorrow. I wonder what those mommies are thinking as they near the due-dates of their babies. Do they feel the same way I do today? Do they have the added pain of guilt? Or are they still happy that they aren’t having to “deal” with that? It simply breaks my heart, both for the babies and for these women. We would LOVE to take one of these “unwanted” babies and raise him or her as our own, and we’d also love the opportunity to help these women make the right choice, and then care for and raise her child.

May we as Christians never forget to #Stand4Life. May we never fail to step in and be a life-line to that struggling single mom. May we always be willing to care for the fatherless. May we be the voice for those who have no way to be heard.
May we always speak and act as though every life is a life worth living–that every life is a life that was ordained by God Himself.

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Rachel

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