Monday, April 11, 2011

Mixed Emotions

I went for my ultrasound today at the doctors to follow up from the first one.  I wasn't nervous at all going into this one since I had the last one at Options go well.  It was still in the back of my mind though that baby measured 6 days small the last two times, just like Rachel had.  I can tell myself a million times a day that everything will go okay, but at the end of the day I'm still a mother who lost a baby and I know it can happen to me

When we were in Florida, I woke up having a nightmare that I was losing the baby and got up to go to the bathroom and found that I was spotting.  I can't help but compare everything to my journey with Rachel...and I had mulitple dreams that she was going to die long before I knew it was true.  I have come to a place where I just say "okay, God" and keep going (or in this case, went back to sleep) but it sadly feels almost like a defeated surrender...instead of a happy surrender - if that makes any sense.  I guess I'm still waiting for the ball to drop...

So anyway, a couple minutes into my scan, I said "I know this might sound strange, but can you tell if the baby has a head?"  to which she shifted her body akwardly and said "it... has a head...  what do you mean like is it anencephalic?"  I said yes and told her that my daughter had anencephaly and then she remembered who I was... "oh, that's right, I'm so sorry"  and in my protective Mama way I told her "don't be, she was awesome."  So she looked a little more and pointed out the baby's brain and said "well, you can see here that the brain is developing"

I started crying and didn't stop for about an hour or more... I blubbered like a baby and told her "I am ashamed to say that I have never fully appreciated my children like I should have.  I never went to an ultrasound wondering if my baby had a head...that was a given in my mind... I just wanted to know girl or boy.  I never thought I would have a baby without a head.  I never thought in a million years I would go through this." 

She told me it's still too early to see fully if his/her cranium is all there, but that as of this gensational age (which by the way was moved up to 8 weeks 5 days,putting my due date exactly on track! - I guess I take it back, I wasn't wrong about my cycle!!) :o) the baby looks great.  The heartbeat was 167, which according to old wife #1, that's a girl :o)  Rachel's first one was 163.

Here (s)he is...
(s)he was doing some twists and turns (but only has little nubs for arms and legs right now) and looked like it's definitely following in big sister's footsteps with the dance moves.  I was laughing through my tears watching this little miracle dance around.  I can't believe how much a baby can grow in a week and a half.

I left and sobbed the whole way home.  I was teetering between happiness that my baby has a brain and sadness that I even have to ask the question, does my baby have a head?  I hate that I know the pain of hearing "no".  I hate that hearing that my baby has a brain is a relief.  I hate that it doesn't just make me happy....instead it makes the reality of what has happened to Rachel even more real.  I spent most of the ride home crying so hard I had to catch my breath.  I know I was happy that this is good news for now, but I can't help but wish it could have been this way for Rachel too.  I caught myself appologizng to Rachel as if I could have done anything to change it... as if being here on this earth is better... as if she is the one who suffered.  None of those things are true, and yet I feel guilty that I couldn't have this with her.

Every time I heard the words in my mind "you can see the baby's brain" I cried harder.  And every time I told someone "they could see the baby's brain" I cried even harder.  I came home with a red puffy face and couldn't even say anything to my sister (who was babysitting) except "I'm not crying cause anything's wrong" - saying everything is good is scary...saying the baby has a brain in an excited tone feels wrong.  It almost feels like I'm dishonoring Rachel to desire something that she wasn't.  (here I go again trying to put words to a feeling that is impossible to describe.) 

Anyway, I could go on and on and probably not make any more sense of it so I'll just say that today was a day of serverely mixed emotions.  I am so grateful for good news.  I am still so sad about Rachel.  I've been walking the fine line of grief and joy for a long time now (since August) and I'm getting weary.


  1. Your babies, all of them, are so, so beautiful.


  2. soo very sorry for your loss...Racehls story is...heartbreaking and at the same time heart warming..the love that precious angel had and still has today will indeed surpass the hevean above and hug her tiny soul in heaven. Thank you for sharing..many prayers for you new lil rainbow..i believe Rachel is already whispering lil secrets of love in abundance to he/she who is growing healthy in your womb.Rachel may be in the arms of our father, but i truley believe that Jesus will comfort you with love and healing....and with answered prayers he shall also fill your empty heart and empty arms....
    God bless you for sharing your story. your strength in jesus Christ and HIS plan is so verrry comendable..Carry on my Christain sister in christ..carry on..
    much love

  3. What a gorgeous picture! I am so happy for you!
    The mixture of emotions can be so overwhelming! Just keep on clinging to your Lord sweet friend. He will walk you through this pregnancy just as He did with Rachel and your other kiddos. :)
    Rachel has got to be one proud big sister.

  4. I am so glad that you got some good news! I have not stopped thinking about you!

  5. I'm so happy to hear that you have been given some good news. I can pretty much relate to the pain you've felt over Rachel. I don't say that easily. I can relate because my unborn baby girl, Sophia, was diagnosed with Anencephaly on Feb 23, 2011. I've thought alot about trying for another baby in the future, but at the same time I'm afraid it will happen all over again. I'm praying for you, your unborn child, Rachel, and your entire family daily. I hope you continue to receive good news! Keep us posted :)

    (I've decided to create a blog to follow Sophia's journey with us, like you have for Rachel. Feel free to stop by,

  6. Your mixed feelings are totally comprehensible! I will keep on praying for all of you!

  7. what a beautiful baby you've got in there :) so glad your appt went well. BIG HUGS!

    ~ Lisa

  8. I really don't know what to say ... but I want to leave a comment to let you know I'm praying for you!
    Walking that fine line between grief & sorrow has got to be tiresome...prayers for peace, strength & ENDURANCE!
    With love,

  9. So glad today went the way it did! I have been praying for you! The mixed emotions, totally normal and understandable. (S)he is beautiful! Can't wait to "meet" him/her in person! Love, Hugs, and Prayers,
    Carrie :)

  10. Grow strong and healthy under your mama's heart, little one and know that Rachel will never, ever, ever be forgotten, even by those you don't even know!! :)

  11. "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest" Matthew 11:28

    "I will refresh the weary and satisfy the faint" Jeremiah 31:25

    God knows, Stacy, and in Him you will find your rest. God Bless You! Stay strong. We all love you.

  12. I sit here crying tears of joy. What a beautiful picture. This baby is just as precious as his/her siblings, Des,Isaiah, baby #3, Sam, and Rachel. So happy for you all.:) Continued prayers from our family to yours.


We so appreciate your words of encouragement!
Thank you! ♥ The Aubes