April 2, 2013

A Big Surprise, A Bigger Loss

After last year, my prayer for 2013 was that it would be boring. Uneventful. Nothing to report.

That wasn't to be the case at all - in wonderful (and not so wonderful) ways.

As I rounded the corner in my post-race recovery and fended off the flu, Bradley and I got a pretty big surprise: two pink lines. A very unexpected, wholly undeserved blessing.

Mary Brooks was only 11 months old at the time; after running the numbers we realized our third (third!) baby would be born just eight months later. Whew.


The day before MB turned one, we heard a gorgeous, perfect, super fast heartbeat and confirmed we'd be meeting the third baby Smith in late September.

By then Mac would have been a week or two shy of four years old; for a brief moment we'd have three under four this coming fall. We were overwhelmed, overcome with gratitude and excited beyond words.

It felt like getting away with a bank heist, like winning the lottery. We got something wonderful for nothing! My heart had healed just in time, and we were wide open to the joy a new life would bring.

We celebrated Mary Brooksie's first birthday knowing she'd be a big sister this time next year. We giggled and dreamed and joked.

I went back nearly a month ago, at 11 weeks, to hear that tiny heartbeat again and be reassured it was safe to tell the world. A veil of cautious optimism lifted, and it felt safe to set things in stone.

There were plans for an SUV, as our Altima couldn't squeeze in another car seat if it tried. There was talk of sharing rooms.

A date the week of Mother's Day was circled, and we hoped to know this baby's gender by then. What an unforeseen gift.

This morning I got a peek at my tiniest baby, just shy of 15 weeks along, and saw that it no longer had a heartbeat. Our little bean, our third child, was gone.

There will be no baby in September.

There will be no SUV for now, no moving Mary Brooks into her big brother's room as he has fervently requested for months.

Tomorrow morning I will go into the hospital for a procedure to do what my body has not yet done itself.

I'm sad. I feel guilty for being embarrassed at first about our tremendous blessing, at how close our babies would be in age. For putting off telling clients and the "world." For worrying about insurance and paperwork and the lack of sleep to come.

I'd do anything to give this baby a heartbeat back, to fill that empty third car seat in my mind.

The moment we found out, almost two and a half months ago, we added a fifth member to our family. We planned names, we envisioned three Smiths growing up, we laughed at how we never saw this coming - the unanticipated joy of a new baby so soon.

I never saw this coming either, but I'm thankful all the same. Thankful for the time we had dreaming about this baby and the blessing it was to us. For a life that now turns our hearts heavenward; we know that's where this child is.

I know there's a plan here, that a God who works miracles (and we are living proof) didn't create this child - the one we didn't even think to pray for - for no reason.

We are sad and shocked, but we are held.

This morning, amidst the flood of emotions, I was terrified - my heart had just mended. I didn't want to spend another year as a zombie, muddling through a field of heartache to get to the other side.

The post I had written for today was about Joel 2:25, how the Lord had restored my wasted year. How He had healed me, brought beauty from ashes. I'll post it another day, and I'll add a new chapter.

I know the Lord will do that again, that He'll heal us and make something glorious out of what we're living. Out of what feels wretched and aching and awful this minute.

I'm asking for His peace in the meantime - and your prayers.

xoxo

35 comments:

megantree said...

I am so very sorry to hear this. Your post is beautifully written and I can feel your heart through it. I will be praying peace for you all.

Trish {Pink Preppy Lilly Lover} said...

Anne I am sending you big, soft, sweet hugs my dear friend. I am so terribly sorry to hear this but I know sweet Baby Smith is being cradled in God's arms right now. Lots of love and prayers darling girl xoxoxoxoxo

The Kinards! said...

So so sorry :( praying for your strength & peace during this difficult time.

melissa said...

Oh Anne, I'm so sorry. My heart breaks for you and your family. Words of sorrow and sympathy hardly seem enough but know that you're in my thoughts. I admire your courage in sharing this loss. Sending love your way.

Liza Jones said...

Anne, I'm so sorry for your loss. I've had a similar experience and I know all too well the pain you feel right now. No words can take the pain away, but just know I'm thinking about you and hope you take comfort in knowing we're praying for you and your family. I'm truly sorry.

Sarah Owens said...

Sending much love and many prayers your way, Anne!

the tichenor family said...

You have such a beautiful heart. Sending you so much love from Texas. Praying for the overwhelming peace of Christ Jesus to come over you and comfort you this week and in the days to come. I have no doubt He has wonderful things in store for the Smith family. A third car seat included. Love to you my sweet friend.

Lauren said...

Praying for you ALL, sweet friend, and thinking about you tomorrow!!

April of A. Liz Adventures said...

Beautifully written, Anne. Thinking of you.

Blue-Eyed Bride said...

I love you all. I am so very sorry. I will continue to pray for you as you grieve and heal. Baby Smith #3 won't be forgotten as he or she has a place in heaven now. Big hugs, friend. Xo

The Parkers said...

Oh Anne, I am so sorry to hear of your loss. Covering you and Bradley in prayer; prayers for peace and healing. I'll also be praying for you and your doctors tomorrow. Love to you, Sweet Friend. Xo

Kate said...

I am so, so sorry Anne. I am thinking of you and Bradley and all three of your little ones.

HRP said...

Saying a prayer. God has His reasons. Just hold on for that truth.

creativintage said...

you are one of the strongest women i know. don't ever forget that! praying for you, bradley, mac, and mary brooks!

Lesley said...

Oh, Anne! I'm so sorry for your loss. I'm praying and sending wonderful healing thoughts your way.

Day Old News said...

I'm so sorry for your family, Anne. I'm sure this will be so hard and you've proven over and over how tough you are when I really wish you wouldn't have to. I think you are due to win the lottery soon. Good luck, friend!

Heather said...

I am so sorry for your loss! I am praying for you and your family that God with provide the peace that only He can!! Hold on to the promise that you will see your sweet little one again!

Maggie said...

Oh Anne, I'm so very sorry, and sending you all the healing that I have. I know your bravery in sharing will help others. Big, big hug.

Meredith said...

I can not even imagine what you are going through. I am so sorry for your loss. Sending prayers your way.

Samma said...

Anne, my heart just aches for you and your family. I am thinking and praying for y'all. Much love, Samma

Angie said...

Oh Anne. I am so very sorry. So sorry. I know the deep hurt and pain and I just ache for you. I have been through this and wish I had the right words. Just know you have someone praying for you and love you, dear!!! Always here if you need to talk!! Love you and praying!!

La Dolce Vita said...

So so sorry to hear this Anne! I will be praying for you and your family, especially tomorrow. I experienced a miscarriage with our first pregnancy and certainly admire your courage to write this beautiful post. It is certainly a strong testament of your faith. Again, lots of hugs and prayers for you in the days ahead!!

Timsha Coleman said...

My heart aches for you and your family. I am so sorry for your loss. I will be in prayer for you for comfort and peace over the next few days. Hugs! -Timsha

Amy said...

Anne, I am so sorry about your loss! Such a beautifully written post! Sweet baby smith #3 will always be "counted" and hold a special place in your heart. There is that saying floating all over Pinterest: because someone we love is in Heaven, we have a piece of Heaven in our heart/home. I came to know, understand, and appreciate( and eventually even treasure) this concept after we lost our 2nd baby in a miscarriage last fall. Even in the pain, and dark grieving, I met Jesus in a new and deeper way. As much as I still wish I could physically hold my baby, I have come to find comfort in the fact that Jesus is now the one holding my baby. Two songs that have brought great comfort (and many many tears) were 10,000 Reasons by Matt Maher and Even If by Kutless. Will be praying that you feel the arms of Christ holding you tightly tomorrow!

MRU said...

Praying for you sweet friend. What a beautiful post. I agree, God has great plans for you and your family and I can't wait to see them revealed. I wish I could give you a big hug and have Mac and MB over for a play date tomorrow. Praying especially hard for you in upcoming days, weeks and months.

Rachel said...

Oh Anne. I'm lifting you up in prayers. I'm so sorry to hear about this heartache you're going through right now.

Angela Gardiner said...

So sorry to hear this. Lots of hugs and prayers to you and your family.

Naturally Caffeinated Family said...

I am so so sorry that y'all have to go through this, Anne. I am praying for you and for your sweet sweet family. And I am praying for you today. Sending you so much love and big hugs.

Sweet Caroline said...

Anne, I am absolutely heartbroken for you and your family right now. I will definitely be thinking about y'all and praying for you and the doctors this morning.

Steel Magnolia said...

I am so sorry. I know your pain all too well as I also have a Baby Smith in heaven we never got to meet. This is all according to God's plan, and we will find out what that ultimately is one day. Thinking of you and sending positive thoughts your way.

Leslie Barrineau said...

Oh, Anne! I'm so sorry to learn of your loss. My prayers and thoughts are with you now and in the healing days ahead. XOXO

Fabiola said...

It is awful and the pain in unbearable. I've been there twice and I still mourn my two babies in heaven. Praying you find peace amidst your grief.

Sweet Simplicity said...

Sending you prayers for peace and comfort.

Dishy Decorator said...

Just wanted to let you know....you're still on my mind & in my prayers. When we lost our sweet baby, it was overwhelming (and strangely comforting) to know that MANY other women have experienced this type of loss. You're not alone.

(HUGS)

ESB said...

So sorry to hear this. Praying that you are blessed with peace and comfort with your procedure tomorrow.

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