Monday, October 01, 2007

Theresa's Story

Sometimes there just isn't an aswer, and this is one of those times.

Today during my routine 10wk OB visit I was heartbroken to learn that our beautiful little baby has passed away, joining a brother and sister in Heaven.

There is no known cause so far as can be told by the ultrasound, everything appeared to be normal, just very still.

It was a very long and painfully teary day as first no heartbeat could be found...and I clung to the hope that this little one was just hiding deep in my retroverted uterus, but after two anguishingly silent attempts to locate that little heartbeat, I went in for an ultrasound to determine what was going on. I already had a sinking feeling, and my dread was realized by the sonographer's face- she was pulling for me as much as anyone. The ultrasound showed that the baby must have passed 7-10 days ago (around 9wks gestation).

It is amazing what peace FAITH can give one in this situation. I know that no matter what the "reason" for such a short earthly existence was, that our baby belonged to God from day one, and that is a security that dries my tears and gives me the hope to move forward. We now have THREE "angels" in Heaven; perhaps not the winged kind, but they are perfect spotless infant souls, whose mission is to pray for their family on earth. Anthony was our first (2003), Gianna our second (2005), and today (Oct. 1), in honor of the feast of St. Therese of Liseaux, we have named this baby Theresa. St. Therese is nicknamed "the little flower," she is known for her deep yet simple spirituality that may be best summed in her own words: "Love proves itself by deeds, so how am I to show my love? Great deeds are forbidden me. The only way I can prove my love is by scattering flowers and these flowers are every little sacrifice, every glance and word, and the doing of the least actions for love." She offered every little thing to God; as a mother I find her way of life inspiring, for motherhood is all about the "little things" and there is often a lot to offer up! Through her example I can find fulfilling joy in the sacrifice of even the smallest things like sticky floors, flying food and sleepless nights, and even the pain of miscarriage.

Most importantly, it goes without saying what an impact this little soul had on our family from the minute we found she existed. She was instantly a part of us- instantly ours, instantly a sibling of her two brothers, even claiming space in our house! She was embraced by our entire network of family and friends, all who prayed for her safety and that God's will for her life be realized.
Perhaps that was God's will for her life. She re-centered and refocused our family, and made every other thing in life pale to the importance of her tiny presence within me. Most importantly, as I constantly pondered her miraculous development, she awoke in me a greater awe in the majesty of our Father & Author of Life.

"Theresa" means "late summer." Fitting, as she was the sum total of every last day of this late summer/early fall during her short journey from conception to Heaven. On our minds and hearts and lips, she was even in my dreams.

In fact, I think God may have graced me with a dream that in looking back may have been baby Theresa's farewell to me. It was a simple dream, a vision of little curly haired toddler about 16 months old....I only saw her from the back- tiny brown curls bouncing on her little head, chubby slightly bowed legs wobbling in baby confidence. She was toddling away from me; I never saw her face, just her little body from the back. She was excited and giggling- enjoying the freedom of her movement. Perhaps that was the day she passed away; I would now like to think that she was going towards Jesus. I didn't know at the time that we would be losing her, but now that dream that was so vivid and memorable is something I consider a gift. I have never dreamt about any of my unborn children before, so I am honored to have had that little glimpse.

And so it is. There is so little that I can say. I am exausted- with that soul-tiredness that comes from overworked emotions. And yet I am not quite sad. I miss our little baby, but I do not regret a moment of her time with us, and I am truly grateful for it. Even though I felt so sick, it was such peaceful time for me. I am glad that she is in God's care now- certainly there can be no better place for her....for while her brothers were eager to meet her....they certainly wouldn't play with her as gently as the angels she now has for company!! And I find strange peace that she is not "alone" heaven, her two siblings Anthony and Gianna have surely welcomed her and are breifing her on their watch over those two wild earthly brothers who will certainly need all possible intercession on their path to Heaven!!!


Audrey said...

Oh dear friend, our love is with you. Cling tightly to the Faith!! Remember that St Therese is the patroness of missionaries--and that your family will be one of the missions that your little Teresita will intercede for.

Mama Knucker Hatch said...

Oh cousin, my eyes are welled up with tears for you and your family. I was so happy for you. You have written your feelings down eloquently.

The Lord's grace and mercy will be sufficient for you during this time. My most tangible and unforgettable moments with the Lord have been over the loss and gain of children. He loves you dearly. Cherish your beautiful dream of your free spirited little girl with curls. What a touching vision.