Wednesday, March 14, 2012

baby boys and God's plan.

Today is not really a day for me to talk about adoption, although it's hard not to because everything is so intertwined, it seems.

Four years ago, I met my baby boys.  We had tried for so long to conceive them, and then we felt the blessing of God.  Not only twins (how special!) but twin BOYS, something I had prayed for. I loved boys!  Rough and tumble, devoted to their mothers :) :)  and perfectly sweet.  It was boys! We sang to the rooftops, and I quickly began to plan a twin boy baby shower, covered in all things blue. 

Inexplicably, and without warning, I went into labor on March 14, 2008.  I did not know I was in labor. At only 21 weeks of pregnancy, how could this happen?  Couldn't the doctors stop it? 

No.  We learned in the wee hours of March 14, 2008 that there was nothing to be done.  The labor had been going on for hours and now I was 5 centimeters dilated.  At 21 weeks, we had no choice - medical intervention could not help them.  There are complicated reasons why this is, but ventilators do not work on paper thin lungs.  There are no medications.  My life could be at risk if we tried to keep them inside of me.  The edge of viability is 24 weeks, and we were a long way from that. 

We called our families and prepared to meet our sons.  First, our little Jacob was born, then Zachary about an hour later.  We held them, loved them, baptized them, dressed them, bathed them...and then they died.  Soon our family left and we were there with our babies...trying to say goodbye.

I remember being in my hospital room after their birth, bleeding heavily from delivery and having post-partum issues...and I remember they were in a little cradle.  I remember feeling that I didn't want them to leave us, I wanted to leave them.  I didn't want to see the nurses take our now-lifeless sons away.  Instead, I wanted to tuck them in, kiss them goodnight, and leave the room as if they were sleeping.  It was a farce, to be sure, but I wanted it.  Thankfully, the nurses obliged me and that is how we said goodbye to them forever.  I kissed their tiny cheeks and told them "Sweet dreams" and then I was wheeled away into the cold, raining, night...sobbing in the car as my husband drove us home.

The dream of twin boys was over.  It had died.

I felt a sadness that I can never fully express or describe.  Over the years, it has waned.  We had our baby girl, Chelsea, and she is a joy.  She doesn't replace her brothers and never could.

I longed for a son, and I knew it was possible for us to try again to conceive.  But that wasn't what I wanted.  There was room in our family for more, I wanted a son, and I knew we could parent a child with special needs.  We reached out and found "Ian".

It would not have been possible to adopt "Ian" if we had Jacob and Zachary.  Truthfully, Chelsea would likely not be here, or if she was, she would be much younger.  Although I don't know personally, I've heard twin boys can be quite the handful. 

All of this is related, yet it is hard to figure out.  God's ways are greater than our ways, but I can't claim to fully understand why my sons died, why my daughter lived, and why we are adopting a son.  When I get to heaven, the very first thing I will do scoop up my little sons.  Then I will carry them to Jesus and say, "Okay, now explain this all to me!" :)

Today I remember two little lives who were so perfect, but over far too soon.  I remember the bible verse I placed in their bereavement announcement, "Behold, I shall never forget you....see, I have carved you in the palm of my hand."  (Isaiah 49:16).  I look at my hands and see my baby boys carved in my palm, and my daughter's face carved there, and the tiny image of a boy that we will soon be able to call our son.  I will rejoice when "Ian" joins us...and I will rejoice in sharing the history of his oldest brothers with him.  I will forever rejoice at the selflessness of my sons, who paved the way for their sister...and now their adopted brother to join us.  I don't know why that happened, but I must believe it was for good.

My heart is full of sadness, but my soul springs forth with hope...


  1. Sharing your sadness with you and keeping your family in prayers. Today is my daughter's 6th birthday but your sweet sons will be in my mind as well throughout the day. I have had two losses, but have never experienced what you've gone through. I can only imagine the pain. I've dreamed of twin boys forever. The boy were are adopting was born one week before we conceived the first baby we daughter always thought it was a brother, now waiting for us in Heaven. Our little guy doesn't replace that baby but will be loved just as much. With out our two losses, two of our daughters would not be here today. Praying & Hoping with you!

  2. I've always believed everything happens for a reason, and more often than not, we never know the reason. That's why we have faith. I love what you said about taking them to Jesus and asking for the reason, because He knows! I'm happy to donate to Ian today, in memory of your sweet boys, and in hopes that it soothes your heart, at least a little. Prayers and hugs,

  3. Happy Birthday Jacob and Zachary I donated in your name today :)

  4. Thinking of your boys today. I have a dear friend who lost an infant daughter about 2.5 years ago, and for a moment I thought I was reading her words, when you mentioned that people treat infant loss like some sort of taboo, a dark subject that isn't to be talked about, and in turn end up making you feel alone, ostracized and even more brokenhearted, if possible, than you were before. She says things like this all the time. People get uncomfortable when she talks about her daughter, or when she says she has two children but one is in Heaven. It's "Oh." And then silence. But she - and you - NEED to talk about your babies sometimes, because they're your babies! So, sending my love to you and your babies today.

  5. I too donated in Jacob and Zachary's name today. My sweet twins are Miriam and Muriel. My husband and I were blessed with 17 hours with them before they went on to be with the Lord. In less than a month we will celebrate their 12th year with the Lord. We also had a son that went home to Jesus nearly 20 years ago. He was born at 21 weeks like your two boys. These sweet babies helped to grow in me a true heart for the sweetness and blessing of all life. While some see it as a loss, I see all that I gained despite how brief their life was. And I know that they led me here today. What a blessing to be able to help you in your journey to bring home your sweet little boy! God has blessed my husband and I with 4 other children. God is good!

  6. We are praying for you as you balance all these feelings. We too donate in honor of your sons. We are your neighbors, I think. We live down in Ardmore, PA. Maybe we can be a part of something you will do locally to raise funds. We'd be glad to know about anything you plan to do. We have a four year old daughter and my husband has three grown kids. Thinking of you all, Karen and Jeff Barnes

  7. WOW, what a perspective! What a hope we have knowing that we will have an eternity in heaven with our little ones who left us far to soon!


Kind comments are welcomed. Poorly researched, ill-informed, horrifically biased comments are exploded. :)