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Of Hope and Healing
Photo: M. Sobczyk
Pregnancy is a time of excitement, high hopes and high expectations. Yet it can be filled with stress of the unknowns.

When my husband and I found out we were pregnant with our second, we were extremely excited. We shared our news with our close families. Our two-year old son seemed delighted with the “idea” of a baby.

At six weeks we had an ultrasound and saw the baby’s heart beat. So amazing and significant, yet such a small “blob” on the sonogram screen. The weeks flew by and the 10-week appointment arrived. The doctor listened for the heartbeat with a hand-held Doppler. She wasn’t able to hear the heartbeat. She seemed concerned and told me that the growth of the baby was not where it was supposed to be at this stage of my pregnancy. She decided to do an ultrasound.

Then she sent us to the hospital for a more thorough ultrasound. It was there that we found out that our baby had died at seven weeks; a week after our first ultrasound with the little heart beating strong! My pregnancy had progressed to 10 weeks even though the baby had died weeks earlier.

As the shock set in, I was full of questions. Why did this happen to me? Why did this happen again—(this was the second miscarriage I‘d had of this kind)? What could I have done to prevent it?

Why Did This Happen Again?

The doctor performed a D & C (Dilation & Curettage) to extract the remaining tissue. She told me it was a common miscarriage and there was nothing I could have done. I was sent home to recover, no longer pregnant. How fast joy can turn to sorrow.

As I was home recovering, I received an interesting email stating that I was the winner of a Nursery Sweepstakes that I had signed up for months earlier, when I was pregnant. I wasn’t sure whether to believe the email or not, so I called the appropriate people and they confirmed that, yes, I was the winner! I couldn’t believe it. I thought the timing couldn’t have been worse. Here I was recovering from my surgery and miscarriage, and now I was the winner of an entire nursery.

I couldn’t help but get a little excited as the baby furniture, bedding and gift cards started to show up on my porch. And although it was fun to receive these items, I shared with my husband how much more fun it would have been to receive these items while I was pregnant. I mentioned the weird timing of events to my Dad and he told me, “Look at it as if this is God’s way of saying that you’ll have another baby soon to hold and love.” What a beautiful thought! I started to look at the baby items differently. I begin to imagine our next baby in the new crib or cuddled in the new blankets. I actually started feeling hope and excitement for our future baby.

Today as I write this, it has been about a month since my D & C procedure. The sadness and pain have eased so much since then. And although I don’t think these new baby items can take away the pain, they help ease it and aid in the recovery and healing process. It’s as though God knew exactly what I needed to give me hope and excitement for the next baby.

Although I will always hold a special place in my heart for the baby we lost, I also have a place in my heart reserved for the baby we will have. As I someday hold our next baby, I will place it in the crib of “hope” and “healing,” and remember just how precious and beautiful life is!

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By Erika Gladden. Copyright © 2008 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.

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