This blog is about love despite a prenatal diagnosis, grief & healing after baby loss, hope, faith, pregnancy after loss and Hydrops Fetalis awareness.

Monday, December 31, 2012

Turning the page...

Here I am.  The year 2012 is almost over.  What a year!  2012, Lily's year.  I have learned a lot in the last year.  I have learned that I control nothing.  I have learned how important it is to trust God more than anything.  I have learned how painful it is to lose a child.  I have learned so much about grief.  Tomorrow, I will turn the page, I will change my calendar, 2012 will be over.  I have mixed feelings about leaving 2012 behind because as much as it held pain and sorrow, it also held love and hope.  For the year 2013, I know I still have a lot to learn.  I have hopes.  Hopes that Lily's short life will still speak about love, about how God has worked in my life because of her.  Hopes that God will continue to heal our broken hearts.   Hopes for a "rainbow"...

My middle child gave me this ornament for Christmas.  He chose it for me at Santa's Shoppe (a fund raiser at school) He told me it reminded him of Lily, he knew it would remind me of her too because of her middle name...Hope!  Reminding me it did!  It is also a reminder of so much more... Hope in Christ because God sent his Son Jesus on this earth as a baby so that all our sins could be erased, forgiven, because later He died and then, came back to life.  Hope because He promised He would carry us through our trials, He promised a future filled with hope.

"God is our refuge and strength. A very present help in trouble" Psalm 46:1

"For I know the plans I have for you" declares the Lord "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future"  Jeremiah 29:11

Saturday, December 22, 2012

I am a mother of 6

Last evening my daughter had a mini piano concert (only a few students).  The piano teacher was hosting this cozy event at her house with the support of her husband.  I had brought along all my kids which took a lot of the seats available!  Anyway, I was taken off guard at that moment when the husband asked: " You have 6 children don't you?"  I wondered if he remembered Lily died.  I didn't matter, he was acknowledging that I had carried her in my womb.   I simply answered I did and that the last one was in heaven.  Then he went on and asked, just like someone would naturally ask a mother with a little one in her arms: "How old is she?"  I think my eyes brightened up with a special spark of pure joy!  I got to tell someone, who genuinely wanted to know, how old my baby was in Heaven!...
That man doesn't know it but he made my day and probably the next few days or even weeks so much easier and less lonely for me.  He even introduced me as a mother of 6 to the people that came in...
It hurts when people say I have 5 kids.  I carried my 6th child 24 week and 3 days.  I had morning sickness during more than 3/4 of my pregnancy with Lily.  I had a sweet baby bump, I felt her kick.  I rocked her, sang to her, told her I loved her.  I was in labor for 11 hours and I cut her umbilical cord.  I held her in my arms and then, I had to let her go.  A few days after, my body started producing milk.   I did not dream all this.  She is my child.  I have 6 children.

How I would love to let that man know how his words were healing...I hope I get to...

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Remembering Lily this Christmas

Sweet Lacey...  The other day my sweet girl announced: "I will draw a Lily picture mommy!"  This was a few days after I had realized I was not going to be pregnant for Christmas, I had quite a few hard days there.  When I looked at Lacey's artwork, I thought this was surely the most beautiful Christmas decoration I would hang this year!  I still wonder why she chose to draw a rainbow?  I didn't dare to ask her because I like to think a rainbow baby is part of our future and the fact that she wrote Lily's name (with great application) and chose to draw a rainbow right beside reminds me of the hope I have for a Rainbow in my womb and in my arms!  She also draw a candle with Hope written on it like the one we have on Lily's shelf... She draw a lily flower and a Christmas wreath with a candy cane.  I just cherish this piece of art and most of all my talented girl!

In this post I also wanted to share some ideas to help remember our little ones at Christmas Season.   Whether our families count 1 or 2 parents with one or many children, the loss of our babies leaves an empty place around the table, an empty space where their Christmas stocking should be hanging.  At my house, when the time comes to decorate our Christmas tree, two little hands wanting to help will always be missing.  All my children receive a tree ornament every year, to think that they will all be represented every year in our Christmas tree, except for Lily, because she is not here with us, just feels almost like a punishment!  A lot of baby loss mothers (parents) make up new traditions, traditions that include their child in Heaven and states that their child is not forgotten, they always have a place in their hearts.  So, here are some ideas to recreate traditions after the loss of a child:

 1.  Create a Christmas candle for your child - decorate a pillar candle or decorate a jar to hold a tea light candle.

 2.  Make/Buy a Christmas keepsake and give to another baby loss mummy, include their child's name.
 3.   Find a way to take a Christmas photo of your child.

 4.   Make/Buy a Christmas decoration for your child - Make a Christmas stocking for your child. Encourage family and friends to make Christmas cards, drawings etc., to place into the stocking on Christmas Day.
5.  Buy a gift for a charity, for a child the same age as your child would be

6.Make a Christmas scrap-booking page for your child

7.   Write a poem /Finding a Christmas poem or song that speaks to your heart

8.  Make an "in memory" Christmas Card, either to keep or to send to someone special.
9.  Bring a Christmas ornament or memento at your child's grave/memorial/special place, take a picture.

10. Write a long Christmas card to someone who has helped in your grief

11.  Make Christmas cookies and decorate with the first letter of you child's name. 

12.  Perform a random act of kindness for a stranger.

Original ideas from Xavier's mother, Robyna May.

Our Christmas card, stocking hook, and tree don't need to be empty from our children's memories,  I will let my love for my precious daughter shine this Christmas, just like the love I have for my other children.

I also really like what you can find here:

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Getting ready for Christmas without her...

Waking up that morning, I was not prepared.  I was not prepared to face Christmas this way, without Lily, without any special news to announce.  I had hoped to be pregnant, to carry life this Christmas.  For two days I really thought it was happening, finally I felt like I could breath again, I felt overwhelming joy!  But reality hit me that morning, it was not going to happen.  And my first reaction was wishing we could skip Christmas this year.

So, I face Christmas season with the raw truth that someone will be missing in our Christmas card picture, a precious little baby girl will be missed preparing to celebrate, she will be missed Christmas morning...
The other evening, while I was hanging our Christmas lights, I noticed half of it would not work.  I cried, those lights were brand new from last year, my brand new baby was missing, it was as noticeable to me as these missing lights. 

In our family, Christmas is first of all the celebration of Jesus' birth.  Jesus, who came as a baby to save us.  Jesus who came to pay the price of my sins.  So I will focus on that more than ever before this year.  He is the reason for the season and reminding myself about that helps me get through preparing to celebrate with my family, my incomplete family.  I may not carry hope in my womb this Christmas but God gave me the biggest hope of all through His son Jesus, hope that I will someday meet my Saviour face to face and also be reunited with my sweet girl.

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Day 26-27-28-29-30-31

Day 26: -Their Age-

Lily was a fighter, she had such a strong heartbeat! God blessed us with our sweet baby girl Lily, alive in my womb during 24 weeks and she is a blessing that we will remember always! ♥

Day 27: -Artwork-

Pregnant with Liy, her siblings wanted to draw on my belly for the baby... I am glad I have these memories now and that my kids have a happy memory of their sister as a part of our family.

I also framed my 11 year old drawing of our family while I was still pregnant with Lily. We had all gathered in my bedroom for family pictures, we actually took tons. I love this drawing of the last time our whole family was together...

Day 28: -Memory-

  I have so many memories that are, for most of them, bittersweet:

-The surprise and shock when I took my pregnancy test.

-The joy of announcing in our Christmas card, a new life was growing in my womb...

-The first time we heard her heart beat.

-The sweet sight of my baby on a screen but the bitter memory of the words that were chosen to tell me my baby was unlikely to live.

-Having to break my children's heart when we told them the baby was so very sick.

-The belly pictures with Lily's siblings and father.

-All the uncertainty, all the prayers and the learning to trust in my God.

-The morning we found no heartbeat.

-My labor with my baby, knowing I would not hear her cry, she would never nurse.

-The morning I came home and the pain and the ache I felt in my empty arms and my broken heart.

One memory I will never forget, is when I held Lily for the first time. Her warm, 2.2pounds little body was in my arms, she was all mine. I had worked so hard for this moment.
When I close my eyes, I can still feel her. I never want to forget how it was holding her, this is the memory that is forever engraved in my arms and in my heart.

Day 29: -Music-

Many songs have inspired and comforted me since the beginning of this journey:

"I Will Carry You" by Selah which I sang to Lily in my belly and played in her memorial video

"Still" by Gerrit Hofsink

"Hug Him Once For Me" by Erica McClure
"Held" by Natalie Grant

"Blessings" by Laura Story

and "Lullaby" by Dixie Chicks

But the song I am posting is "In Christ Alone" by Owl City.

Because "In Christ alone, my hope is found" I know I will be reunited with my baby Lily in Heaven for "I am His and He is mine".
Through this journey He has and continues to be "My comforter, my all-in-all",
"Here in the power of Christ I stand".
This song comforts me and reminds me of God's grace and the hope I have in Christ that I will see Lily again. Through this, I never was on my own.

John 14.6 Jesus answered: "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me."

Day 30: Your Grief -Tell The World-

Because Lily changed my life forever, because having her brought me closer to my God, I will speak her name. I will reach to others that experience the unthinkable of losing a baby and I will praise the One who chose me to carry my precious Lily.
"I believe every new life is a miracle.  I believe babies are blessings, precious gifts from God.  Not having Lily with us hurts and forgetting her would be impossible.  I will speak about Lily, my 6th child and include her memory in my family pictures, in our everyday lives.  I will carry Lily all my life..."
"I will give thanks to the LORD with all my heart; I will tell about all the miracles You have done." Ps 9:1


Yesterday, we had a beautiful sunset here so I took pictures because the forecast predicted a very cloudy and rainy afternoon and evening for today... Also I wanted to post a sunset that reflected the warmth and the healing this project has been to my heart. I want to thank you Carlie Marie for this event. Thanks to everyone who made my journey a little less lonely and to all of those who took the time to read and comment what I shared ♥

This made me realize I might never be able to capture my child growing up but I can and will capture Lily's beautiful and precious memory endlessly...

Day 20-21-22-23-24-25

Day 20: Charity/Organization

I have many charity/organizations that I love... is perhaps the one I was the most relieved to find because of the Dreams of You baby book that was so important for me to find...

I also find alot of healing through Carly has amazing talents and I am blessed that she shares like she does!

-Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep-
I didn't have acces to them here, but so many blm share about them that they inspired many of the pictures we took ourselves to remember every moment with Lily

Day 21:-Sacred Space-
This space is more special than sacred...

 Day 22:-Place Of Care/Birth
This is the hospital where I delivered my sleeping baby Lily. I like to say Lily was born into Heaven. The sky in that picture reminds me of how heaven must be a peaceful and beatiful place!

Day 23: -Their Name/Their Photo-

I was nervous about this one... But here she is and I love her.

I chose her name a few days after we learned she would probably not survive. We didn't know the gender of our baby so I also had chosen a boys' name;  this baby needed a name.
 Little did we know that she would be born on Easter morning -Lily Hope- ♥
Born silent at 24w and 3d. She had Hygroma and Hydrops

Day 24:-Siblings-

  My 6 children, 5 who walk and 1 who soars.

Lily also has a sibling with her in Heaven. 14 years ago I miscarried and named him/her Eden. We don't often mention Eden's name but the kids have known about this baby forever even if all we have to remember him is a name...

Day 25:-Baby Shower/Blessing-
Lily was our 6th child, no need for more stuff, so no baby shower!

The only thing I needed to buy for Lily were new born disposable diapers. I got them because they were on sale and I remember thinking I would be glad to buy ahead and save a little once the baby was here.

About the Teddy Bear, I had put aside a couple Teddy Bears that were from someone's collection that she was giving away. I thought since all my other kids had chosen some for themselves, I should pick a few for this growing baby in my belly and chose which one I would give to him/her once here with us. It took me a while to remember I had this stored and was glad I had a little something "gifty" just because Lily was here!

CAPTURE YOUR GRIEF day 15-16-17-18

Day 15: -Wave Of Light-
On October 15, 2012, a Wave Of Light for baby Lily Hope and so many others who are missed...
I wish I would have explained more on this blog what was the Wave Of Light...  Here is some information I got on the FB page of the event:
"Everyone around the world is invited to light a candle at 7pm your time (all time zones) in remembrance of the babies and pregnancies lost.  If you let your candle burn for 1 hour it will create a wave of light over the entire world for Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness day October 15th."
Here is an interesting link:

Day 16:-Release-

I had never released anything for Lily before. Last evening, we went to a pond nearby and released a "homemade" origami waterlily lantern. It was beautiful, I plan on doing this again...

Day 17: -Anniversary/Birthday/Due Dates-

  I made this cake for after we came back home from Lily's memorial service. I plan to bake and decorate a cake for Lily's birthdays just like I do for all my other kiddos.
I was so sad the moment I realised I would not be able to do a cake for this child I had been carrying and expecting and dreaming about her birthdays to come, expressing my love and gratitude for that child with a cake on her birthday...
Sure, I won't be making cakes on her birthday for her because she is obviously not here to enjoy it with us, but I think my kids want to express their love for their sister by remembering her on that special day as much as I do...

Day 18:-Family Portrait-

I wasn't sure I wanted to post this picture. I decided I would so you would be able to put a face to all my posts. I am wearing my pendant of Lily's footprint. I love being able to include Lily in my family pictures!

                                                                   Day 19: -Project-

I had time to prepare losing my baby. I just can't imagine if I couldn't have, how much less memories I would have of this bittersweet day, the day I said hello and good bye to Lily all at the same time...

In my mind a memory box filled with tons of little things to help remember and to comfort would be what I would like to donate at my local hospital. But, for now, I am donating what I can, and I think those items are the most important ones.

-Disposable footprint ink sheets (hospitals don't do them here)
-Blank card (for prints)
-Baggies for mesh of hair, cord clip, hospital bracelets and measuring tape.
-A soft baby washcloth
-A list of things to note every details about baby (eye color, height etc)
I am also including a list of photo ideas with a reminder that it is OK to take the time to borrow a camera or ask a friend/family to take pictures for them. (NILMDTS not available here)

It feels so good (almost a relief) to think that some families will receive these and it might make a difference.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Day 14 Capture Your Grief

Day 14:-Community

In my local community, there was no event or gathering organised on October 15, Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day.  I decided, a little more than a month ago to try to create a Remembrance Banner to honor my babies and other families babies short lives.  In all, I have been able to write 26 names of precious babies.  I was humbled to be able to write every name with love...

Day 8-9-10-11 Capture Your Grief

Day 8:-Jewelery-

This is a pendant that made for me with the picture (scan) of Lily's footprint.

On day 8, it just so happened to be Lily's 6th month birthday in heaven.

                                                              Day 9:-Special Place-

I wasn't quite sure what I would share for this one.  I decided on what makes me the happiest, home with my husband and children.

                                                                   Day 10:-Symbol-

Lily was born on Easter Morning and Easter lilies just are a perfect symbol. Also, I'm not quite sure why, but everytime I see a butterfly I think of her and it seemed that butterflies were everywhere last spring! Lily's oldest sister draw these last summer on her younger sister's arm and on her own♥
Day 11: Supportive Friends and Family

  My children get me out of bed every morning. And I also have to mention how my husband who has been my rock from the first day we were told Lily would die up until now.  He bears with my lack of focus and the fact that I lost alot of intrest in what would keep me busy most of the time (aside from my kids).  It seems parts of me died with Lily... 
 My family supported me when drs said there was no hope, when it got tuff, they were there to help. Family and friends prayed and still do. My beautiful sister who took pictures at Lily's birth. My friend Audrey, she is always there to listen to me. Hubby's coworkers showed sympathy and generosity, but what touched me the most is that perfect strangers to me considered Lily as a precious baby and not just something that died.
 My midwife was there all the way.
 And my friend sent from above, Jenn, helped me with my grief more than anyone would know.
Not shown in the picture, CH and H support group along with all the others on the web who value the lives of all babies.♥

Tuesday, October 09, 2012


Last weekend was Canadian Thanksgiving.  Usually, at my family meal gathering, we each take a turn saying what we are thankful for.  I was not quite sure what I would say this year.  I have so much to be thankful to God for.  First, this whole journey with Lily has brought me closer to the Lord.  I have learned how important it is to trust Him at all times.  I have experienced His mercy, love and comfort more in 9 months than in my whole life.  Then, my wonderful husband and my precious children, including Lily in heaven.  And for my health, after being so scared for my uterus and the fact that I am still able to nurse my almost 3 year old.  And then all the material things that God says that he will provide for us,(Matthew 6:26), our house is bigger this year and this makes our lives so much easier and peaceful.   I could go on and on and the truth is, I am truly thankful and my heart really wants to praise the One who chose me to be Lily's mommy.  I am still deaply missing my baby every single day but I am so comforted that she is in His glorious presence waiting for us to come Home to her.

Day 7: -What To Say-

I was blessed, looking back, more kind words were spoken to me than harsh ones.  Those written on the picture are just a few of the ones I instantly remembered while I reflected on it.  They touched me and comforted me.

I also have to add: "She's in your heart".  My midwife said this to me when she saw how broken I was handing over to a nurse my precious baby Lily's body.  I still tear up thinking and writting about it.  The memory of Lily is forever in my heart.

When I shared Lily's picture to other babyloss moms I was told: "She's beautiful".  Somehow these moms were able to see her the way I do... Fearfully and wonderfully made... Psalms 139:14


Monday, October 08, 2012

Day 4-5-6 Capture Your Grief

 Day 4 -Treasured Item-

Lily's Footprint:

With Cystic Hygroma and Hydrops, I was not too sure what to expect when I would give birth to my baby.  I also somehow knew that some people are not always promp to think pre-term babies are also beautiful and thought I absolutely needed to have something to remember Lily I could show off without the fear of unkind comments.  I also never took the footprints of any of my babies right at birth and  some I don't have at all!
The edema was so severe that we were able to get Lily's left footprint only, but I am so thankful I have this one and only 2.7 cm print.

Baby Memory Book "Dreams Of You":

I enjoyed and loved writting all I could about my babies growing up!  I looked and looked for a Baby Book that would not remind me of all I was missing on with Lily but rather would enable me to write down and cherish  memories we had made during the short life she had here on earth.  My new awesome friend told me about Sufficient Grace Ministries where I found the precious item I was hoping for.  It is so perfect, I love it!

Ombilical Cord Clip:  I kept all my babie's clips and forgot to take Lily's before leaving the hospital.  A week after, I went to the funeral home where Lily's body was and asked for hte clip.  I almost cried when they handed it back to me.

Pictures:  I took tons of pictures while pregnant (with the help of my 13 year old) and God allowed my brave and loving sister to be there to take photos when I gave birth to Lily.  I cherish having photos to remember this journey with Lily in our lives.

Memories are important with any one of my children that are here with me because they grow up too fast.
Memories of my child who soars are important because this is all I have left of her.
Day 5: -Memorial-

I made a collage of picture for this one.

Memorial Card:

Jeremiah 29:11-  "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

When we had the memorial service for Lily, I had made a card with that Bible verse that I still hold on to.  We also made a Memorial Video (youtube:Lily Hope) (I will try to look into adding the link!)

Lily Garden:

We knew the "tradition" calls for flowers at a memorial.  We didn't want flowers that would die and never grow again so my husband had the idea to suggest bulbs of any kind, but if possible lilies.  Co-workers and alot of friends and family that came to the memorial service gave us everything we needed to plant a Lily garden in our backyard.  Many agreed and told me afterwards that this was a good idea.

Lily's Name Photos:

I have a sweet friend who collects pictures of her son's name.  As soon as I saw this, I knew I wanted to start an album of  Lily's name photos.  I don't get to take pictures of Lily growing up and taking pictures of her name makes her real and shows how an important member of our family she truly was.  I included a beautiful picture of Lily's name that my friend Jenn took and sent me.

Lily's Grave Site:

Since we haven't been able to get a headstone yet, I wrote Lily's name today with colorful fall leaves.

Day 6:-What Not To Say-

I was not sure I wanted to share these words.  I was afraid people who said them would think I was resentful or wanted to get back at them.  I will never let anyone know who said these things to me because it is not important.  What is important is that the Bible says that we all make mistakes and that controlling the things we say is very important. (James 3: 1-12)  I am the first to admit I have said many stupid, hurtful things in my life, and most of the time, I did not intened to hurt feelings.  I am sharing as a reminder to everyone including mysef, that we have to be careful at all times about what we say, especially to someone grieving as this person is in a very fragile place in her life.


Wednesday, October 03, 2012

Day 1-2-3 Capture Your Grief

This October for Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month, Carly Marie Dudley created and is hosting a beautiful event called  CAPTURE YOUR GRIEF 2012.  This is a special and wonderful project for parents who have experrienced losing their baby to speak about  their short but precious lives, honour and remember them.  This is a unique way to document and share our grief and healing.  This is also to raise awareness for pregnancy and infant loss.
So finally, I am taking some time to include what I have already shared, the first 3 days of October.

 Day 1:  Sunrise 6:44 am Qc, Canada

That one, I was looking at it like a big challenge!  I had no idea at what time the sun was rising at this time of  the year since I have a tendancy to try to sleep or should I say stay in bed as late as I possibly can!  So I set my watch to "wake me up" at sunrise and put my camera by the window the night before.  I think I was excited about this, I woke up before my watch ever beeped!  Well, that morning was a cloudy one, I snaped a shot and went back to bed thinking it was too bad that it was not a memorable sunrise.  It even reminded me about how cloudy and gray the last days had been for me.
But the beautiful bright colors of the fall leaves are like God's promises I hold on everyday, tying to make it through on cloudy, rainy days. Jeremiah 29:11

God has said, "I will never leave you; I will never forget you."  Hebrews 13:5

Day 2: -Self Portrait, Before Loss-
On this picture, I was very pregnant with my 5th child who was born very much alive and healthy. With every pregnancy, I have always dreaded coming home with empty arms, and maybe thinking if I ignored this awfull reality, it would never happen to me. Last April, I lost my 6th baby and came home with empty arms and a broken heart.  Even if I do everything right and healthy, control is just an illusion, the truth is, we don't choose our blessings, we don't choose our hardships. ...In sickness and in death, we are helpless without Christ... "This is Grace" Matt Hammitt

Day 3:-Self Portrait, After Loss-
This picture was taken a little over a month after giving birth to Lily. My first lily flower had just bloomed in our Lily garden. I remember thinking of Lily healed and well in Heaven to try to hide my pain when I had to smile for pictures.  I was still a mother to living children who needed me to smile and who truly made me want to smile. This grief journey has been a mix of  tears and smiles because our lives were still going on.  I have alot to be grateful for and this helps me smile now...

Saturday, September 08, 2012

5 Months in Heaven

I am a mother who wears maternity pants… No, I’m not pregnant and I don’t have a brand new baby in my arms… I delivered my silent baby at 24 weeks and 3 days, 5 months ago today. Three weeks earlier, I was told my baby would most likely die inside of me. This is what explains my pants with elastics all around my waist.

If you are reading these words and like me don’t have your precious baby in your arms or you have received a fatal diagnosis, I share your pain… I hope you are surrounded by love and people who care as you have to go on and face life without your baby.

“Lord, have mercy, because I am in misery. My eyes are weak from so much crying, and my whole body is tired from grief… you heard my prayer when I cried out to you for help.”

Because of God’s love and grace, I am able to write these words. He gave me a wonderful family and put on my path amazing friends that supported me from the start, I am so grateful for them all! Like David in Psalm 31: 9 and 22, I cried out and still cry out sometimes to God, for His comfort. He is the One who carries me through this journey of grief, this journey of being a mother to a baby that I never met eye to eye and who is safe, in Jesus arms in Heaven.

"Children are a gift from God, babies are a reward." Ps 127.3