After losing my daughter, Trinity, I am writing to share how her short life has transformed mine. She was like a flash of lightening, a bright light gone in an instant, but the thunder that resulted is still reverberating today. It shook me to my core, but I’m still here, albeit rearranged.

(This "complete" blog is a 12 chapter mini-book, with a few stray posts at the "end". To read it like a book, please start with 02/12 at the top of the archive on the right.)

Monday, April 2, 2012

EASTER FROM A DIFFERENT PERSECTIVE


PART TWO: MILESTONE 7
The medical conference, an event I’ve been anxious for and dreading at the same time, is finally here. Will we get answers? I suppose there will be answers, but what kind? Definitive ones, vague ones, upsetting ones? Regardless, I guess there will be some kind of closure, but will it sit well? This meeting is set for early evening in some conference room in some medical building. There will be a lot of medical professionals there, those who cared for Trinity and me, before and after her arrival.

Riding up the elevator, I feel nervous relief. I don’t know what I am going to hear, but I am glad that it will be over soon. We join everyone in a small room with a large rectangular table. I wonder how often they have meetings like this one. We sit on one side with all sorts of doctors arrayed around the other three sides. To me, the room feels is a little awkward, slightly heavy, and a little tense. They tell me how good I look. Some didn’t even recognize me. The last time they saw me, I was in the hospital in pretty bad shape. I can’t relate to all those pictures I’ve seen of moms holding their newborns. They are sitting up in the hospital bed looking oh so happy, and maybe a little tired. Jealousy is oh so bitter, and I beg God to take it away every time it strikes. I find real relief simply by admitting these nasty feelings to myself and confiding in God.

As we settle down at the table, there is very little small talk, and the doctors begin their explanation. However, we quickly learn that we are not going to get an actual explanation, only a best guess. Trinity was severely anemic, and the little blood she had was clotting massively. They have no idea why she was so anemic, but she probably had a clotting disorder, and the field of medicine knows very little about clotting disorders at this time. We were told that they may or may not know in another twenty years. They guessed that the unusual clotting was triggered by the cord being around her neck, but did not classify her death as a cord accident because they think that any other baby would have survived. Cords are wrapped around babies’ necks in a large percentage of births, and most of the time the outcome is fine. Had she survived, something else may have triggered it, like a long flight or birth control pills. The likelihood of this happening again with our next baby would be like lightening striking twice. They had tested us for one known clotting problem, but there was no indication of trouble. Statistics no longer comfort me, though. Something not only rare, but unknown happened to us. When people use odds to talk about the negligible chance of something happening to a person, it’s almost like they are forgetting that the one in a one in a million chance is actually a person, with a name, and a face, and feelings. But I’m probably a little sensitive these days. When we do get pregnant again, they’d like to see me right away. I will probably be put on low dose aspirin during the pregnancy as a precaution. And that was pretty much it. The whole thing took maybe forty-five minutes to an hour.

Riding home in the car, I feel relieved that it’s over and that there were no curve ball surprises. I think I’d gotten used to the idea that it was just a medical mystery. It also feels a little anticlimactic for some reason, a bit of a letdown, probably because we had to wait so long. But there are still miles to walk to get through this, with zero visibility ahead, no point on the calendar to reach. At least the most treacherous parts are behind us. On second thought, I am dreading Mother's Day and Father's Day and whatever else may pop up until we've cycled through a whole year. Just keep breathing. Keep going.

As I'm going one day, Richard stops me in the kitchen. He has really struggled with anger at God over our medical mystery, and tells me how he’s wrestled with “why?” Why did God let this happen to us? And then he shares how it occurred to him that God let it happen to his own Son. I am sort of stunned. I hadn't thought of it that way. The why question is still unanswered, but this realization somehow brings a small measure of relief.

Since it's almost Easter, this adds new meaning to a story I’ve grown up with and am somewhat desensitized to. I hate to admit that, and I try to recapture the wonder and amazement each year, but honestly I’m often a little disappointed. When I think of Easter, I think of Good Friday first, and the hideous way Jesus was beaten, made fun of, spit on, nailed to a wooden cross, and then left to suffer until His last bit of human life waned away. I never want to stay too long gawking at this gory scene. Even worse, this year I find myself thinking about Jesus’ death from God-the-Father’s perspective, as a fellow parent. This is a whole new way of thinking about God, of relating to Him, certainly not as an equal, but relating to Him nonetheless. Thinking of God in this way changes my perception of Him, expanding my view, but also narrowing it to a much more personal focus.

Someone told me when I was grieving heavily that God understands and mourns with us, but that just didn’t bring much, if any comfort. Maybe I just couldn’t get my mind around it. But I’m reconsidering that now. It’s like God and I have something in common. A funny thought.

I am also incredibly grateful that my baby girl didn’t suffer the way Jesus did. How did Mary get through that? No doubt with divine help. I, too, have had plenty of divine help on this less than pleasant journey.
 
And we know how this story ends, not with death. Jesus came back to life. Not an earthly life, but a Heavenly life not to be touched by death again. My little Trinity did not come back to life as I know it, but because He is risen, she is risen! My wonder and amazement are back and better than ever.

6 comments:

  1. sarah in st. paulApril 2, 2012 at 8:11 AM

    this is beautiful, stacy! thank you for sharing your innermost feelings with us.

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  2. Thank you so much Sarah. I'm so blessed that you and others are gaining something from my story.

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  3. Oh, wow, Stacy - yet again you've touched me to my inner core. I hope you realize how amazing and helpful your story is. I don't think women realize how often things like this happen and the feelings they feel are REAL and OKAY!! I hope more women dealing with loss read your blog. It is horrible 'club' to be part of, but it is always helpful knowing that others have gone through it and made it through. I feel myself on this journey with you and recall going through very similar feelings myself. One of the few things that have always comforted me is that Oliver is living a much better life in heaven, than he EVER could have on earth. I love this post. Thank you :) You'll never get over it...you WILL get through it ...

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    1. thank you so much shiyrah. it has brought me comfort to be in touch. i'm so glad you shared oliver with me, and i'm so blessed that you have been touched so deeply.
      love,
      stacy

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  4. Hi Stacy, For some reason I wasn't getting the notices then today I got one and went Oh shoot, I have missed a few weeks!!! So I'm starting here!

    First off your story is so right on and I want you to know that I have passed your blog on to another woman who is currently walking a very similar path to you. Her name is Julie so please be praying for her to find God's love as you have.

    Tying your story to Resurrection Sunday is so brilliant. What I kept thinking was that we never know God's plan nor do we know how he will use something to his glory. Clearly with his own son, he allowed a horrible death even though the son begged him to take that cup away... Ultimately Christ acknowledged that it was God's will not his that he would follow. Just as we all have to do.

    I continue to be amazed at how an event so tragic is being used for God's glory and I can't help but to wonder what the impact of this blog will be. Like I said before, it has already become a resource to another woman walking on your path.

    You have a voice that rings so true... We all know this journey isn't an easy one and that even though we know we have God's love and that he has our back, it is so easy (and human) to get hung up in the whys. I'm amazed at how you and your husband moved on but I'm also touched by the real human struggles that have also gone on.

    My prayer for you is that God continue to strengthen and heal you as you continue with your story and that he continues to use you as a vehicle to bring glory to him . May your writing desire continue to grow and may it turn into a very profitable business for you.

    As always, I love you and your story!!!

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    1. thank you julie for your continued support! i am late in replying to your comment, but read it a while ago and prayed for julie. i am overwhelmed by the unfortunate people who have shared this sort of loss, and other losses, and continue to pray for each reader.
      love you too my dear!
      stacy

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