Written By: Christy Mobley
I was having an out of body experience. At least I think that’s what you would call it.
Actually it was more like levitating over myself while watching the doctor deliver the news. It was just like you see in the movies, except I wasn’t an actress and this wasn’t a movie. An actress can’t conjure up goosebumps that dot her arms and legs at a moments notice. She can shiver, and do the tears yes, but goosebumps … no way.
The goosebumps were the telltale sign this was me. This was my life, my doctor’s office, my conversation. Funny how your mind can do that—make yourself feel as if you aren’t there and you’re watching the whole thing.
It would have been kind of cool if it weren’t for the crushing news.
I was in the sonogram room five minutes earlier and over-the-top excited. And yeah, okay, a little nervous. Today was my 20 week appointment where I would finally see my baby for the first time.
As the technician rolled the wand across my small baby bump, I sensed something was awry. Sonogram lady didn’t utter a word. There was no chit-chat or smiles. Her blank expression said it all. And the words she didn’t say, I concocted in my mind for her. They really need to teach those people to do a better job at “not” delivering bad news. They’re so obvious when they tell you nothing.
I have to admit, I actually had a gut feeling weeks earlier. Mamas just know these things. My belly didn’t look as big as I thought it should, but I passed it off as having a crazy hormonal imagination and put on a happy face.
After the ultrasound technician was done , I dressed, and a nurse ushered me into my doctors office where the whole “out of body” thing began. In hushed, direct tones Dr. P. told me the sonogram revealed I had very little amniotic fluid in my uterus and the problem was likely renal-a-genesis.
That was Latin to me, but translated it meant, my baby boy had no kidneys.
It was a death sentence.
Our baby was born on January 16th.
An interesting term, stillborn. It means “dead at birth,” but to me our little boy was still born. Born to us, his mama and daddy. Born without a breath.
Our first baby bypassed the pain in this life and went straight on to heaven. We held him and kissed him and said our goodbyes.
Family, friends, and neighbors, showered us with love and a lot of really good food.
But the love didn’t stop the grief from coming in waves like the drawing in and out of the tide. Each day I saw a little more sunlight but then without warning I’d get yanked back into a sea of tears. However somewhere in the midst of pain I felt the presence of God’s comfort. A peace that whispered, all would be restored.
Over the months and years that followed I came to understand the real meaning of the verse 2 Corinthians 1:3, where it says our God is “…The Father of compassion and the God of all comfort who comforts us in all our troubles, so we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.”
I couldn’t give breath to the baby I lost but through the experience of his death, God uniquely equipped me to breathe live-giving hope into other mamas. Mamas who suffered the heartache of encephalic births, miscarriages, ectopic pregnancies, stillbirths, down syndrome births, all sorts of high risk pregnancies and fetal anomalies. Opportunities to love on those hurting, popped up all over.
Every time I gave out a dose of hope I received back a heap of healing. A circle of comfort within the fellowship of suffering. A plan of restoration only God could arrange.
We went on to have more children. Our last son, Aaron, was born on January 16th, the very day we lost our first son. The morning we brought Aaron home I noticed the calendar date and I felt God smile. There was no coincidence here.
By no means do either my husband or I feel our third son was a replacement for our first but rather a “God wink”. An assurance to us of His great and unfathomable love. A gift of hope.
Dear friend, have you suffered a loss? If you have, know that God feels your hurt and holds your tears.
“You have collected my tears in a bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.” (Psalm 56:8.)
He’s also uniquely equipped you to be a presence of His love for someone else walking a similar path. I pray you will be able to find peace as you bring the comfort of hope into the fellowship of the suffering.
Christy is a wife, mother, mother-in-law, mentor, and a first time grandma! Her passion is to help women find their joy in experiencing God at work in their everyday circumstances.
You can find Christy on her blog Joying in the Journey.