Wednesday, April 11, 2012

The Procedure And Providence...

I should just be upfront now.  I'm going to write about a D&C.  If you don't want to know what I think about it, stop reading.

It's awful.  It's horrible.  It's disrespectful and dishonorable and it makes me feel like I am the most horrible person on the planet.  I have no earthly idea how ANY person could purposely walk into a medical facility to 'terminate' a do this 'procedure' on a LIVING being with a heart beating.

And don't bother flaming me about my views, which are obviously very pro-life.  I'm not in a great mood and seriously, don't want to hear it.

I know that really, I had no choice.  If I waited to miscarry naturally (and there was no indication that was happening any time soon), it could be when Luke and I were alone.  I could lose too much blood.  I could put us both in jeopardy.  I could not take that chance.

I would have liked to be induced to deliver naturally, but again, to do so, would have put me at great risk. Considering I've had two c-sections in a little over two years, my doctors were concerned that even a small amount of pitocin to induce labor could have really been risky for uterine rupture.  That again would have put me at risk for too much blood loss, not to mention take any chances for future pregnancies off the table.

So it was the D&C.   Leaving my perfect little baby nothing but medical waste.

I admit before losing Matthew, suffering so many years of infertility, I had the audacity to say, "I'd even take a miscarriage if it would just prove that I could actually get pregnant."

Dear Lord in could I have ever, ever known how devastating this is?

I couldn't and I am so, so sad and ashamed of myself for ever thinking that.

After Matthew died, and I met so many women who suffered miscarriages, my heart just grieved for them.  Ached for the validation that I heard so many were lacking...the way they and their babies were just discarded...treated as if it was something that just happened and they had to suck it up and it wasn't even a big deal because it's not like the baby was really real or anything.

It was for the best.  God's way of saying the baby wasn't going to make it anyway.  Better to lose it early than later.


And I must, even at the expense of offending people who have been really, really supportive of us, must ask that people stop telling me God has a plan.

PLEASE.  Stop telling me that.

I know His plans for me.  They are NOT to harm me.  They are for my good.

Losing my babies has harmed me.  In a way that is indescribable and has forever changed me.

But I know ALL things work for my good.

Including the ones that hurt me...the ones I think He ALLOWS, but not necessarily wills.

Just ask Job about that.

Anyway, for the most ugly procedure I can fathom, I have to say that we were covered the entire day with so many prayers and wishes and thoughts and so much love.

Providence.  That's all I can say.  Dr. Shonekan has now been with me for the delivery of all three of my babies.  God love that woman.  She told John that it was obviously meant to be her...she rarely has her cell phone at work, but if she does, she doesn't keep her ringer on.  IF by chance, the ringer is on, she CERTAINLY would not answer the phone at work, and never while with a patient...yet she did have her phone and the ringer WAS on and she WAS with a patient, but a friend of hers who completely understood that my name coming up on her phone warranted her answering.  She was calm, as I was hysterical.  She arranged for me to be at the hospital the next day, though I've not even LIVED in St. Mary's county for nearly a year, much less seen her in that long.  Debby in her office told me that the scheduler at the hospital didn't even hesitate to just put me right on the schedule.

Our sweet Sarah...Sarah who visits my Matthew so much and shares so much with us... was working and came to stay with me some.  Our precious Margaret Ann...the angel who held my hand when I was delivering Matthew and prayed for him and for me as the nurses did CPR...she was with me as they wheeled me into surgery.  The amazing anesthesiologist who held my hand and took care of me when all the staff was scurrying to save Matthew was the one I prayed to God would be there again...and who do you think walked in and hugged me before he gave me the anesthesia??????

Our dear, dear friends Barb and Tamla came and stayed with us and prayed with us and were such salve to our hearts.  I know it's been almost a year since we've moved to NC, but honestly, it felt as if we had never left.

Again, nothing but pure providence.

Dr. Shonekan was able to save tissue from the baby.  Again, a D&C is an ugly procedure and it just hurts my heart to think of my precious little baby being scraped and sucked out of me.  Forgive the gruesome picture, but that's what it is.  I just cannot get the picture of the baby out of my head...curled with little hands and feet in front of it...just looking out...and then I go and destroy that perfectly formed body.  I am just devastated at the disrespect I feel I've given to my child.

And then providence stepped in again when Dr. Shonekan reminded me that we as humans feel like we can create and destroy...but only the Giver of Life can do that.  We just use processes as means to ends, but that precious little soul was with Him long before we followed through with what we felt was disgusting destruction.

We have been inundated with messages and emails and I just cannot emphasize how every single thought and prayer and sentiment of love sent has been so treasured.  I was not able to immediately feel enveloped (though we VERY much were) after Matthew died, but now with that perspective, I am so cognizant of aware of how it sustains us and has been used to give us peace like we really just don't understand.  My heart simply cannot speak enough gratitude, but know that it is overflowing.

That said, if you are praying for us, please continue and if I may, specifically pray that the tissue that was saved will be able to be cultured and give us chromosomal information.  I of course would like to know if there was anything chromosomal that was the cause of the baby's death, but more, I'd like to know with certainty whether it was a baby boy or baby girl.

I may have allowed its precious little body to be left as nothing but remains, but I am desperate to honor him or her with the name that will always be his or hers and maintain his or her unique and special and loved place in our family.

Make no mistake.  As I've said before, this was no blob of tissue, no almost-baby.

This was my child.  Will always be my child.  Will always be loved and missed by his or her mother and father.

Will always be honored as best we can.

It's the least I can do.


  1. Oh my, bless your heart. Mine has been so heavy thinking of you and your little one. I mentioned before that I had two D&Cs and that they were easy... What I failed to mention is that one of them was to remove a blighted ovum and the other placenta left behind after my daughter's live birth. Clearly, my experiences were very different in that I was not removing a child. I was surprised that I didn't suffer a whole lot of down time and wanted to encourage you on that end of things. I cannot imagine how difficult it was to go through that so far into a pregnancy. I will keep y'all in my prayers. I am do glad to hear you say that you will hopefully find out the gender of the baby!! That was one of the first things i thought of--how it would be so hard not to know who was waiting for you in heaven. Big hugs.

  2. Oh honey my prayers go out to you to at least know the gender so you may honor your child. With our second loss there was no definitive on gender and truly, it still bothers me, so that will be my firm prayer for you! Continuing to send you love and lift you up in prayer, as I just know these feelings, I know the things that are swirling through your heart!!! I know that feeling of destruction, but I believe as the doctor said, that your baby has been with our Maker long before this procedure, and you had to be safe! I personally couldn't stomach walking around with a dead baby in me (yep, that was my morbid brain, and my poor husband got the brunt of that!!). Sending y'all continued love and prayers and you know I'm always here if you need me--anytime!!!

  3. I am so so sorry Lori. You have been on my heart these past few days. I wish people would stop telling you that too, my goodness. God having a plan doesn't in any way negate the real PAIN that comes with losing a child. Sending you big big hugs friend. Wishing so much you didn't know this pain again. Wish I could give you a real HUG!!!


  4. Always thinking of you and praying.

  5. Oh, sweetie. I wish I could give you a big hug, in person, and just cry with you. I never thought I would make that choice, either, but with my third loss, my Gaelen Evangeline, I decided to do the MUA after weeks of struggle and hoping and praying and no signs of miscarrying naturally. It was awful. I was awake and knew the exact moment my baby was taken from my body. Continuing to pray for you, Lori.

  6. Oh, sweet Lori. I am so sorry. I still do not know the right way to offer comfort. I guess because there really is nothing that anyone can say that will ease the pain or make this situation less difficult. You are such a beautiful woman and mother. I don't understand why this happened to you. My heart is broke with yours. Huge hugs.

  7. Lori, I am so sorry. Yes, D&C's are awful and I cringe that people walk in with live babies and choose to do that to them. You had no choice at all. Luke needs you and the risk was too high for you to keep carrying your little baby. Always holding you in prayer.

  8. Oh Lori... I have been holding you, you family, and little Dash in my heart. There aren't words at times like this. Please, please know that I have been praying so much for you. I am so happy to hear that you will be finding out the gender. Please know that my family is praying for you and yours. Much love....

  9. I am trying so hard not to be mad about what I don't understand ... I don't understand any of this for you. Maybe it's my own pride at thinking I understood more than God does. I thought, "yes, I feel it. I know this baby will be in her arms in just a few months." And now I'm mad. I feel cheated for you. I have cried as much over this sweet baby as I have with Jori. Sometimes people don't realize how hurtful their words are ... especially when they try to speak for God, instead of praying for Him to speak to us. I know I lost Jori so early. I never got to see all those amazing things you did ... those ultrasounds, beating heart and the pregnancy tests. I'm told often to not count it as a pregnancy ... but she was there. The Lord prepared me for her and then he cradled me and reassured me of her life when her life ended.
    I dont think it's foolish to hope and to plan, like some think. I was already planning this babys blanket, like Matthew and Luke's ... I was SO anxious to find out this babys gender so I could order it special ... this baby is still so loved and now we all mourn. I am so broken hearted.
    I know He never belittles our grief, our desires, or our dreams. He never misunderstands our joy during our mourning or second guesses where our hearts are during our pain. He knows. He is so pierced with your pain and I just pray that you can let Him take it all ...
    This baby, boy or girl, was created for such glory and treasures we cannot fathom. Just as you were and I was. Your sweet baby knew, from that first second of conception, what it would look like, how tall s/he would be and what interests it would have. This baby was not made to be forgotten ... and s/he wont be. I am so sad that you are hurting ... but I am so, so, so thankful that you are hurting out loud and accepting all the love, prayers and hopes that we all can gather for you. I truly love and adore you. Always.

  10. Lori,
    I don't understand your pain. The only thing I think of is that when our bodies betray us, and we can not do anything to stop it or change it, it seems so wrong. Our deepest longing desire is right there with us and we can't have it. No matter what we do right, or how we beg God to change it. I only think of ..."but that the son of God be glorified." Because otherwise. our pain and suffering just make no sense. You have truly overcome, He is our glory and the lifter of our head.

  11. I know that nothing said to you in this time will help the hurt, so Lori, Im just praying for overwhelming peace in that gaping hole in your heart that only God can fill.

    Hugs from Australia XXX

  12. Sweet Lori...I have no words. My heart is just aching with you...

    Continuing to pray...

  13. I'm praying so very hard for all of you. I have no words but you are so close to my heart. Sending so much love to the Ennis family.

  14. Oh Lori - I am so sad for you, mad for the situation, and wish that we could somehow turn back time and make this not happen to you and John.. love prayers and many many thoughts are going out to your family at this really sad time....

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  16. Lori, I know it may not sound like much, especially coming from a guy, but I am so sorry for your loss. After meeting you and hearing your story at the respite retreat, I was amazed at how God had sustained you and your faith in him. You were broken and hurting, but so hopeful. Thank God that we do not grieve like unbelievers that have no hope, but we certainly do still grieve deeply, don't we? After reading your last few posts over the last couple nights, I have been in tears and praying for you. I am supposed to be studying to finish seminary in a month (I am so far behind), but this time of reading your posts and praying for you with tears is more important. I know I need it. While I might be able to relate in some small way, and I can share a little bit in your sufferings and lift you up to the throne of grace, I don't pretend to understand what you are going through right now. I know from my own experience that nobody else can really understand, which is why people say such stupid things. Sometimes, when people ask about our sweet Magdalena Grace and I tell them that it was three years ago that she passed away in our arms, I can see them lose interest as if to say that it is now too long to still be grieving. Well, I grieve. And I still need to. They don't understand because they can't. And now I am reading about your journey and your immense pain, and I am so thankful to be able to cry and pray for you (it is probably helping my healing in some way too). I pray that you will find out the gender of your baby and find some peace in knowing. I pray that God will strengthen you and help you and show you that his mercies truly are new every morning. And I pray that you will know what it means to be sorrowful, yet always rejoicing with hope.

  17. You, John and all your kids are in my prayers Lori. I'm just so devastated to hear this sad news. It takes me back to our Bible Study - I understand the story of Job, but to be honest, I can't totally relate - our rainbow is now here, but I still miss our angel and being selfish, wish that I could have both. The only thing that offered me comfort was that poem/story of the weaver needing dark colours in His piece and that only He can see the patterns that He weaves - praying for you all

  18. No one can 100% understand unless they have been in your shoes. Even then, it doesn't really help that someone understands. Your baby is still gone and people telling you God had a plan only makes you angrier because that plan sucks. I do understand to a large degree how you feel but not exactly. You comforted me during my worse d & c-the last one-the awake one and I wish I knew what to say to comfort you now. But I don't. I just imagine our babies playing together in heaven. Cousins. Waiting to be with their mommies again one day. Safe under Grandma Jane's watch until then...

  19. Amen! Lori momma, you amaze me. You've got an amazing medical team who surely have earned jewels for their crowns with how they've cared for you over the years.

    I whole heartedly support you in finding out boy or girl so you can name your lil bubby Dash with a full proper special name. I couldn't handle that when we lost Julia (and I kick myself for not finding out).

  20. lori, i wept as i read this. be gentle on yourself. there was no good option. how could there be? thinking of you and hurting for you...

  21. Just crocodile tears...with you always in spirit and holding your hand xoxoxo

  22. xoxoxoxxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

  23. No words can be a salve for your broken heart. I am praying fiercely for you and your family. Praying for answers and healing. HUGS

  24. Oh Lori, you have been so heavy on my heart lately. I am so glad you have felt the prayers of others as I am sure there are hundreds of prayers being lifted for you and John.

    I always hated it when friends would tell me "God has a plan". Usually they were just trying to think of something to say...but you are right, God's plan are to give you a hope and a future and not to harm you. When bad things happen, it is not God's plan, it is the enemy doing what he does best, steal, kill and destroy.

    Praying for you constantly and also sending you huge hugs as you wait for answers. Love to you Lori.

  25. =**********((((((((

    I love you...Matthew, Luke, and this little miracle so heart has been heavy since monday. I cant stop thinking of this child...this baby, that was to grow before our eyes....and now we all sit here with tears because we know that physically this baby will not grow, but instead will grow in our hearts. NOT a way to watch a child grow...this you alread know...but I hope you know that the baby IS so upset. I was pretty angry and someone said to me "but this didnt happen to you, so how can it hurt so much?" (refraining from punching them lol) I said "This happened to MY friend. I grieve with her not for her...this was a happy time and now its become a sad time. How can I NOT be angry?"

    Im here..holding your hand (again) virtually...xoxo

    Antoinette n the whole A-team send you prayers and love always

  26. PLEASE know that you and your precious family are in my thoughts and prayers...

    MK Hucko

  27. My thoughts and prayers are with you. It truly is unfair for all you have gone through, it flat out sucks!
    But through it all you remain an inspiration to so many of us.

    I had an D&E at 12 weeks years ago. My little angel Alixandra. It was mind and heart numbing and no one seemed to understand that this was my baby.
    My heart breaks for what you are going through and I only hope you are able to find some peace soon.

  28. Lori...I have prepped many a patient for the procedure as a nurse, and even remember recommending it to my sister who also had a heart beat-less ultrasound a few years ago. I hated it for all, but understood the necessity in those cases.

    But never I have heard it described the way you have and the pain...thank you for describing the pain they all went through. It brings me one step closer to all of those who have walked in the same footsteps. I always in my mind said maybe it would be better if my Jamie had just left us earlier...but now I understand that it would have been no less painful. I wish I could take all the pain away for all of us. And I wish I still lived in VA so I could march over the border to give you a hug!!!!

  29. I am so sorry. For you and for anyone else reading, I am attaching a link to a blog specifically written to help others with what NOT to say to someone grieving the loss of a child. If you want to read the whole series, select February from the Archives dropdown and scroll. There are 14 posts in this series.

    You and your family are in our prayers. Again, I am so sorry.

  30. Lori, you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. {{Hugs}}

  31. sending you a hug, Lori, and wanted to let you know my thoughts and prayers are for you