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Daughter

Gracelee Hope is her name. She’s a darling red-head with bright green eyes :-) Jesus welcomed her home the day after my birthday. I wish you could have been in that room with us…”this time we see a nice strong heartbeat!” said Uncle Bill, the radiologist who God appointed to be there, then. We rejoiced together, daddy and i…gracelee ultrasound

Being a daughter of One, wife to a little King, and mommy of three in this life…the year was an absolute blur. It was middle of December when I commented to a dear friend “it’s the end of the year. practically. and i never stopped to ask God what the theme for the year was.” 2011 was CHOOSE JOY. 2012 was GRATITUDE.

Couldn’t tell you much about the beginning part of the year…until we discovered we were pregnant with Isaac. His due date was a couple days after his daddy’s birthday. The ultrasound tech didn’t mean to be cold, but her words of “there never WAS a baby” cut us to the core. We know God. So therefore we know the truth…Isaac Kyrios was welcomed home before we got to hold, rock and feed him. But golly. So LOVED is he by so many family members, angels, saints, our Mommy Mary.

Our dear Lord didn’t make us wait too long before we were pregnant again. Of course we told the kids, family, friends, prayer warriors…just as soon as we found out. Within days, Anaya said—out of the blue—”mama, if the baby is a girl, we should name her GRACIE.” When asked what the baby’s name ought to be if he came out as a boy, she reflectively paused, then simply said “i don’t know.”

Week twelve appointment. Our amazing doc chatting it up, “are y’all ready to hear your baby’s heartbeat?” Nods and “yes” answers all around. Smiles a’plenty. She tried so diligently to find this precious babe’s heartbeat. Then, shaking her head, “i’m SO. SORRY. we’re gonna have to send you for another ultrasound.” Turning to daddy, she repeated herself.

I was sick to my stomach. Crying. Calling my strongest anchors. Pleading with God to not bring this baby home so soon. Again, our oldest asked “mama. am i going to be able to hold MY baby first?” on our way to the test. Believe my response was “surely, baby, God wouldn’t take two in a row” and “i hope you can…”

She stopped growing at 10.5 weeks…and her heart had just stopped beating. Here, at least. Ryan said that day or the next “i don’t get it. she looked so perfect. but no movement this time. no heartbeat.” And I wept openly for my strong, courageous husband who openly grieved with me. We grew closer to one another and pressed into God for comfort.

The choices before us were limited this time. DNC the Friday after Thanksgiving, or the following Monday. So we could enjoy the family time and not think about loss, but focus instead on the good stuff. We opted for Monday.

Lil’ lady had other plans, ‘tho. It was a Tuesday. A friend stopped me and said “i heard. can we please pray?” Our youngest was making a beeline for the door, so i almost told that friend no thanks. But the Holy Spirit turned the no into yes. We corralled the toddler and bowed our heads, lifted this angst up to our Heavenly Father, admitting His plan is always superior to ours. Said Amen. Wiped the tears. And went about our day.

My body still told me i was pregnant, and McDonald’s cravings were totally still justified :-) So through the drive thru we sailed, noshing on cinnamelts and breakfast burrito. Stomach satisfied, I drove through neighborhoods we were considering…while the toddler napped and our home was being shown. SIDE NOTE…this was the day that the person who bought our home saw it for the first time…God indeed has perfect timing and knew we would quickly need a happy distraction. After we got the all clear to come back home, Jana (our dear friend and realtor) came by. Can’t remember for what, not important. But we were delighted to share time and conversation.

We said our goodbyes, then back in the car to go see the kiddos Thanksgiving program. We had just found a seat before leaning to a mom whose daughter is in the same class as one of ours, asking her to please cover—saturate—our family in prayers. Looking up I saw Kim. She and her family are precious to us for many reasons. Waving her over, she sat in front of us with her two youngest.

And then it happened. I handed our youngest to her as I mouthed the words “I’m miscarrying again.” Rushed out of there as quick as could be. The first person to meet me in the bathroom was the same lovely woman who took time to ask me to pray with her that morning. Becca.

Soon, there was another woman whose voice i didn’t recognize. She so soothingly talked me through what was happening and helped me call my husband and moms. Never once that afternoon did i see her face, but couldn’t wait to hug and thank her when this awful day was over. Turns out, it was Miss Kelly, who has helped out with our kids this year and especially knows our blue-eyed spirited child with the belly laugh. She has a nursing background as “luck” would have it.

Angels carried my hubby to me that day, as he arrived from work at warp speed. Through the pain he kept helping me giggle as he flipped to his back and slid underneath the locked handicapped stall where I was…well, handicapped, when it came to moving myself anytime soon. Mind you, this handsome fella who asked for my hand in Matrimony is 6 foot 2 inches :-))) Repeatedly he did this, all the while trying to reach someone at our OB’s office on the phone.

Pastor Bill prayed with us on our way out and to the ER. Susan, sweet Susan, asked “where are you going and can i please meet you there?” We had just gotten wheeled back to the room when she showed up, bringing such laughter, love and distraction. Precisely what was needed. She stayed until hearing the words “pelvic exam” then chuckled “guess that’s MY cue to boogie on outta here.” Goodness. I love the gift of such amazing, faithful friends who can anticipate just what’s needed to help carry us and heal.

Jana texted how sorry she was to bother us, but check email if we needed a distraction. Yup. Our home had another offer on it, this one it looked pretty clear like it would cross hurdles quicker than the last folks we were under contract with. Yes, welcome distraction, indeed!!!

The next 48 hours were a blur, but I was released in time to sleep in our bed back home before heading out of town to be with family for the Holiday. So, praise be to GOD, Gracelee went home safely right before Thanksgiving. And we got to go back home too; an embrace from one’s mama, daddy, sisters, brothers and cousins…best. medicine. EVER!

Her middle name “Hope” reminds us how blessed we are to have three babies here on earth AND two upstairs in the Kingdom we long for. “Will there be more babies for you and daddy?” That’s a question we’re getting a lot these days. Can only reply “we HOPE so!” Have said for quite some time “we’ll be grateful for how ever many the GOOD Lord’s willing to bless us with.”

Mid to late December God whispered the theme for the upcoming year. Which now made much more sense, “it’s GRACE we will GLEAN, in 2014”   Since hearing his gentle whisper, we CONSTANTLY hear the word Grace in our everyday little lives. So cool. When you ask God to show up, wholly invite Him in, He can do things that blow your mind.

Want to see how i envision Gracelee Hope as a young woman?

Gracelee - Young Woman

Just as breathtakingly beautiful as her aunties…

When the dotted lines were signed, our last day in the home we grew our little family in for SEVEN years was three days after Christmas.

Three days after that, we moved into our new Home. Getting into this house was a Christmas Miracle. Truly. But we’ll save that for another post…<3…peace…& hope. always.

6 Responses to “Daughter”

  1. Lori Harris says:

    Totally beautiful in every way. So good to hear the story from start to finish, watching you stay in faith throughout the entire year, and even call forth Gratitude as the year’s name. Grace, indeed. Laughter, indeed. Hope springs eternal when you’re relying on someOne trustworthy and true. LOVE YOU GUYS MADLY. Proudly. Gratefully. Here’s to 2014 and the word God calls forth from you for these coming days.

    • admin says:

      Thank you! Coming from such a beautiful someOne it means the world to us. Talking tonight about confessing and creating positive change…calling FORTH God’s ability and presence…such a rekindling notion my heart was ready to receive. Love you to! To the moon and back, infinity times infinity!

  2. Kelley says:

    I enjoyed reading your story. Thank you so much for sharing it. You are such an inspiration. I pray that your family will be blessed with health and happiness, as well as grace in 2014. God is good.

    • admin says:

      Kelley, bless YOU for your kind words and prayers. God indeed is so gOod!! Praying that grace showers upon you and your loved ones in 2014 😀

  3. Jana says:

    Alicia, I am trying to dry my tears as I have a big smile on my face. It was a wild journey and I felt like God brought us together to share in laughter, tears, and joy together. Very mixed emotions in 2013 with many highs and lows. I pray that GRACE is bestowed upon your family in 2014. I love your family and you are always in my thoughts and prayers, that includes Isaac & Gracie. Thank you for sharing your life.

    • admin says:

      Jana, Forever friends are we. He knitted our lives together in the perfect timing. You’re a jewel we’ll ALWAYS treasure, and we love you so!

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