Not sure how much time or how many posts this will take, or if my heart can handle sharing his story in full, but I wanted to chronicle Ezra’s short life in remembrance of our precious son.
I found out I was pregnant on January 11, 2013. I took a test while Paul was working at the church, but I wasn’t convinced.I was supposed to meet him there later for a surprise birthday party for one of our dear friends, Trent Cornwell. I stopped on the way to get another test, and I secretly confirmed my pregnancy in the bathroom of Vision Baptist Church!
I pulled Paul into the nursery at Vision, telling him I had something to show him (the positive test). He must have had a suspicion because he said, “No way! There is no way!” We were both shocked but so so happy. He held me as I cried happy tears. We were so thrilled to be having a little brother/sister to give to Jo!
The pregnancy was a little rough in terms of sickness as we traveled, but the Lord saw me through it, and it lessened up a bit in the second trimester. I did not gain weight as I had in my previous pregnancy, and I did not feel much movement from our little peanut. I was told that this was all normal and not to worry about it. I tried my best.
We were in a car accident on April 11. I was so happy when we we were assured that our precious baby was OK after the accident. We followed up with my OB just a few days later where they confirmed the same.
However, within a week of that appointment, something changed. I did not know it but my sweet baby’s health was failing inside of me. I don’t know if it was slow or instantaneous, but our precious baby’s life ended around 17 weeks gestational age.
I would carry our child for 4 more weeks before we had our “big ultrasound.” We were so excited to find out if our little peanut was going to be a boy or a girl! I even put a poll out on Facebook for votes. Last time I checked, girl was in the lead.
I didn’t have a suspicion about the gender, as I did last time with Jo, but I did hope for a boy! We patiently waited for the ultrasound technician to reveal the news to us! However, as I looked at her face as she made measurements, I could tell we had more important things to talk about. I looked at Paul, hoping I was reading too much into the look on her face, and that we would receive our good news soon.
But the next thing out of her mouth was, “I’m so sorry. I don’t see a heartbeat.” My heart felt like it fell into my stomach as she left to go get a doctor. We spent a few minutes crying and praying, not sure of what was going on, but trusting in the Lord to see us through it.
Our doctor was not there, but another doctor, Dr. Killingsworth came in to discuss things with us. She was very sweet and compassionate as she informed us that our baby had stopped growing and no longer had a heartbeat. She explained that because the baby had been dead for a few weeks, it was best to deliver as soon as possible. She eventually called my primary doctor, Dr. Middleton who I talked to for a few minutes about our options.
I opted to deliver our baby rather than to have a surgery. Though the surgery would be quicker, there were some risks of damage to my uterus that would effect future pregnancies. 2 of the 3 doctors at the practice that performed this kind of surgery refused to do it after 15 weeks gestational age. Also, if we opted for surgery, we would not be able to see our baby, nor would we find out the gender. Paul and I agreed that though the delivery would be more difficult and more painful, it was the right thing to do to honor our baby and encourage our family. We wanted to see our sweet baby’s face and get to hold him/her for as long as we possibly could!
We spent an extended time in an exam room waiting to see what we needed to do next. We spent many moments in silence and in prayer, and Paul encouraged me to “let my emotions out”, but every time I did he would try to fix it (oh, my sweet husband!). We watched videos of Jolynn on my phone to pass the time and lift our spirits. I’m sure everyone outside was wondering what we could possibly be laughing about!
Dr. Killingsworth performed some procedures to prep my body for an early delivery. We headed home to gather our things, to kiss Jolynn, and head to the Northside Hospital in Atlanta to deliver our tiny baby. We stopped at Buffalo Wild Wings to just spend some “normal” time together before the painful process began. The meal was spent mostly in silence but we enjoyed the time spent together and made a few decisions about the days ahead.
I kept repeating aloud, “God is still good.” He never changes, He knows that we are hurting, and He knows what is best for our family. I will keep telling myself this because while I do know it is true, I am not always able to believe it with a broken heart.