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"Sharing" Our Stories/Thoughts - Along this Path

Remembering Our Babies-Unknown or Uncertain Cause-Entries '97-'99

Thomas has put life
into perspective for me,
Life and Love are everything.
Dunfermline, UK

Poems and Letters

"Peter John Miller" by Jennifer (7/97)

"My Philip" by Alicia (7/97)

"Kylie Renee" by Jana (8/97) and Jana's Subsequent Pregnancy Diary and new baby...

"Spencer's Story" by Kim (3/98)

"Our son Thomas Robert, was stillborn on June 17th 1997..." by Michele (4/98)

"Calling All Angels" by Clare & Lewis (4/98)

"Hello, Samantha..." by Jacki and Dave & Shay (4/98)

"Caitlin Elizabeth Reany" by Lesley (5/98)

"Unexpected when expecting" by Jun (7/11/98)

"Our First Born Angel" by Jenny (9/11/98) and (7/20/99) and New Arrivals! TX Moms...a group to help others 2001


"Maria Paulina" by Rosana (3/17/99 and 7/8/99)

"Wee Megan" by Sara (3/30/99)

"Missing Mackenzie" by Karla (11/4/99)

Peter John Miller
Stillborn - 12-2-95

When I first found out that I was having my first child I was beside myself with happiness. I had always wanted a child, but for many reasons I had believed that was not going to happen.

I had been sick during the pregnancy and was concerned about my childs health. My doctor told me that everything was fine at every visit but I still had my doubts.

At about 20 weeks gestation, I had what appeared to be a stroke. I lost all feeling in the left side of my body and could not speak. I went to the hospital and they could not find anything wrong.

My doctor still did not show any concern. I should have changed doctors long before this point.

At 34 weeks I had this same occurance and at which point my son passed away.

This was a very hard time in my life. I had many thoughts of suicide and alot of anger towards god. I would not have survived this experience if it hadn't been for m family and the SHARE support group that I attended at Henry Mayo Hospital in Valencia, Ca.

Now, almost five years later, I have a 2 1/2 year old son named John Peter Miller III. He is the light of my life and I believe that without the horrible loss I indured with his brother, I would not appreciate him as much as I do.

Northridge, Ca

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Alicia addresses the biggest secondary loss: the role of being a mother of a living child.

My Philip

My name is Alicia. I am a mother.

I have to keep telling myself that because sometimes it's so easy to forget. I don't have a baby to hold, to love, or to love me back. My baby was born dead on April 25, 1997.

My husband and I were married April 6, 1991.I wanted to have a baby right away. All I've ever wanted was to be a wife and mother.

We decided to take some time for ourselves and then try in one year. I couldn't wait for that to happen. When the time finally came, I felt as though my life were really beginning. The joy was short-lived, however. After a few months of trying with no luck, I was diagnosed with endometriosis. So began a long course of surgeries and expensive, time-consuming, and painful fertility treatments.

After four years, I had resigned myself to the fact that I would probably never have children and my husband and I tried to plan for a life without them. Then, last August, I unexpectedly found out that I was pregnant at last. We were over joyed. I finally felt like a woman.

My pregnancy was the happiest time of my life. It was quite uneventful. We were just waiting for the day that we could finally see our baby. My due date was May 1. I lived for that day.

I woke up April 24 feeling happy as usual. I spent the morning talking to friends and thinking about the next week. It was exactly seven days to May 1.

My husband left for work at about 12:00 noon. It was then that I realized that I hadn't felt the baby move for a couple of hours. I wasn't too concerned. I heard that this late in the pregnancy, the baby often slows down in preparation for the birth. However, as the afternoon wore on, I became more and more worried.

I knew of some tricks to try to get the baby to move so I tried eating, having a cup of tea, lying down. Nothing helped. I was terrified, but I really couldn't let myself believe that there was something really wrong. But I was so, so scared.

I went to the nursery, sat in the rocking chair and cried and cried. I'd never felt more empty and alone. I called my husband at work and told him what was going on. We decided that I would pick him up and head to the hospital.

Still, even though I hadn't felt the baby move for about eight hours, I would not let myself think that the baby could actually be dead. It was too horrible to be true. I thought that perhaps he was in distress and that perhaps they would deliver me tonight.

The first nurse I saw was a student. She couldn't find a heartbeat using the monitor, but I told myself that she was "just" a student. Then an experienced nurse came in and had the same problem. I looked at my husband. He had a very intense look on his face. He was very, very concerned.

The obstetrician on call was finally called in and he performed an ultrasound. I'll never forget his words, "I hate to meet people with bad news, but I'm afraid I have bad news." My world fell apart. I wanted to get out of there. I actually thought that if I could just go home, then none of this would be true.

But, of course, nobody was willing to get me go home. Labour was induced that evening.

I then spent the longest night of my life. Labour was not what I had anticipated. I knew it would be painful, but it was also supposed to be a time of anticipation and happiness.

At 11:20 the next morning, I gave birth to an 8 lb. 8 oz baby boy, whom we named Philip Alexander. Holding my baby, I finally understood a mother's love. It was intense. It was so impossibly hard to know that I had to give him back, that I would never bring him home. He was my baby, and I had to give him back!!! And so came the hardest time of my life, and it's still the hardest time of my life.

It hasn't even been quite three months. Still, in those three months, a lot of healing has taken place.

It helps to know that Philip is in his permanent home, and that I will know him some day. It also helps to hear other peoples' stories and to tell my own.

I want people to know about Philip. He is my son. I want to talk about my child as much as every mother likes to talk about her living child. I'm glad there are people who are willing to listen.

I am a mother. I can't let myself forget.

5/33"ALMOST EIGHT YEARS LATER" by Alicia (4/14/05)

Philip Alexander Eakins
Stillborn - 25/04/97
Belleville, ON

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Everyone was waiting for Kylie - we grieve what "should have been."

Kylie Renee

I had a perfect pregnancy and at 37 weeks, the doctor no longer detected a fetal heartbeat in my first child, Kylie Renee. This was on May 5, 1997.

To make matter worse, if that is possible, induction therapy didn't work and the doctors would not perform a c-section. I carried my girl for 2 more weeks, until finally, induction therapy was successful on May 18, 1997. There was no reason determined by the autopsy for this to have occurred. Kylie was perfect.

This has been the worst experience of my 30-years as well as the worst for many family and friends who were anticipating Kylie's arrival.

However, it has been almost 3 months and life does go on, it does get easier, and somehow, through the grace of God and the prayers of loved ones, you manage to learn to live again, even laugh. I am still not through the grieving process and realize it may be quite a while, if ever.

I just wanted others to know that there are others out here who have experienced this horrible pain and that we care and are willing to lend a hand, a shoulder, and an ear. You are loved.

To read Jana's feelings one year later, please visit "One Year Ago" by Jana (6/98)

Jana's Subsequent Pregnancy Diary" by Jana (in Atlanta, GA)- started 10/6/00 and a new baby girl for Jana

Atlanta, GA

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Spencer's Story

On February 12th, I woke up and could not get the baby to move. I called Mike around 11:00 and asked him to come home. We drove to the doctor’s office and they immediately did an ultrasound and found no heartbeat.

We were completely in shock. How could this have happened? I was only three weeks away from having him. This couldn't be real. But it was.

The doctor told me that I was no where near ready to deliver. We drove over to the hospital because he was going to induce. It was the longest day of my life, I thought. They did one more ultrasound to make sure that he was right and they were.

They found through this ultrasound that he was transverse. So they were going to have to turn him. They put this stuff in me to make my cervix thin and only 10% of the people will go into labor with it. So I was going to have to wait until Friday and then they were going to induce.

Mike went home and stayed with the kids. My sister and my mom stayed with me until I fell asleep. I was having a lot of contractions. But they kept giving me stuff to help with the pain. I kept falling asleep but around 2:00am they came and said they were going to give me an epideral. I said I think you better call my mom and the nurse said they already had. Then after they put the epideral in my water broke, and I said they had better call Mike.

I didn't want Mike to be there so I was glad that I delivered Spencer about 15 minutes before he got there. Mama was with me and she helped me.

So when Mike got there they had him all wrapped up. We held him for a long time; mama, Mike, and me. He was beautiful. I didn't unwrap him, which I regret terribly. I wish I had held his hands and looked at his feet but I didn't. Mama watched while they gave him a bath.

God chose not to let me borrow this child. He made him for himself and I can live with that. He needed another precious angel and he chose me to make him one. I know that he is loved and warm and comfortable, but I am still in such grief. I need to be the one that is making him feel loved, the one who is keeping him warm.

We believe that it was a cord accident. It was really tight around his neck.

Thanks to the wonderful nurses at Northside (the hospital) I have some beautiful pictures of my son. I will cherish them forever. I look at them every day almost. Sometimes I cry and sometimes I just marvel at how much he looks like the other boys.

I can't say that I regret having to go through this. It has made me a stronger woman. It has made me appreciate my children that much more. I have come home to God and that is one of the paths he had in mind when he took my son. The other I am still searching for,but I believe it is to help others in this situation. I cling to the hope that in my despair and grief, will be able to help others through theirs.

We decided to have a service and the man down the street, who also happens to be a preacher and use to be Alex's bus driver, said he would do it. He was wonderful.

He came to the hospital and he cried so hard for us. Because he knew exactly where we were. See his wife and him were expecting their fourth child on the same day. We both were due on the 11th of March. That one has been a little hard on me.

I saw her often these past four weeks walking the neighborhood and standing in her yard. She had her baby this past Wednesday and I'm glad that obstacle is over with. I was really envying her, the excitement of labor and the delivery, even the pain. But that is behind me now and though I am so very happy for her, she is the sweetest person in the world, I still envy her the tranquility of peace of mind knowing that she has a healthy baby boy.

Fridays seem to be the hardest day for me now. I tend to get really emotional on these days. But they are getting easier as time passes. I have gone to a support group that meets once a month (even though that's not enough, it is better than nothing.)

The paragraph below Kim wrote to her friends - it really describes what talking about Spencer means to her. It also focuses on how important the pictures of him are to her.

So there is our story, I'm sure I am leaving a great number of things out. If any of you have questions please ask them, I can answer them. It might hurt but it hurts worse not talking about him.

I would love to share my pictures with you and if any of you want to see him I will send you a copy, but please do not feel that you have to. I am not at all offended if people have a hard time looking at them. Two of Mike's siblings did not want to see them and I can understand completely. But do talk about him if you want, remember it will always hurt me but it will also always help me. I loved my son and he was alive and well for 81/2 months.

Visit Others' Supportive Influence, "Spencer"(4 months later...) for more of Kim's thoughts. Also, read Gifts - Naming Your Babies after 41 Years.

Spencer Calvert
Stillborn - 2/13/98
Duluth, Ga

Entry #2 on 3/24/98:

I just wanted to thank you so much. I attended the women's meeting for the first time this month. My loss was February 13th, at 8 and 1/2 months. The two hours went by so fast and I felt much better after I left. Thank you for being there for us, the bereaved.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Our son Thomas Robert, was stillborn on June 17th 1997...

He was alive at 35 weeks and dead in the womb at 36. I know that it is so easy to look for someone to blame, but he slowed his movements during his last week, and I told all the midwives, but they said that this was to be expected. On the moring of the 16th, I had terrible pains. Thomas had died and I was suffering huge internal bleeding.

When they took a scan I was asked if I could see the heartbeat. I just wanted someone to say that he was dead. My husband went so white, he's very pale anyway!

The labour was induced as they tried to pump blood into me. They feared for my life, but I had a job to do, to give birth to my son, and this was worth staying around for.

I had wanted a natural childbirth, birthing pool and all that jazz, but was glad for all the drugs they could provide. I remember joking about my birthplan with the wonderful midwives who also felt this loss too.

When I held him for the first time, he looked so perfect, apart from the fact that his eyelids were closed and sore. He has my nose, (poor soul), and my lips.

The chaplain came to bless him and that was such a comfort, it was like our own naming for him, everything that he deserved.

I was very ill for a week in hospital, but was out in time for the funeral. I thought I couldn't go, but my husband told me that it was our duty to him.

After the short service, I felt that the immense pain that stopped me from grieving fully lessened, and I could finally come to terms with what had happened.

We scattered Thomas' ashes on the top of a beautiful hill overlooking a loch in a wildlife sanctuary near where we live. Now I can walk there and remember him, we plan to go there on his birthday.

Thomas has put life into perspective for me, Life and Love are everything. Money, House, Car, all meaningless.

I look at my friends differently too, those who came through for us and those who were too embarassed to contact us, or too guilty to tell us when they had their children. I just want them to be honest with us.

Another of his gifts is the ability to know how to deal with others who have been bereaved, I won't put on a brave face for them anymore (very English and even more Scottish!)

I keep a journal in the photo album with his pictures. When I look back over it, I see how far I've come. I wanted to buy him some christmas presents so I did. Go with the flow has to be my advice, if you want to do things to celebrate your baby, just do it!

We still have a long way to go, a miscarriage in November 1997 and another massive bleed (at least we now know what causes that) held us back for some time.

We plan another pregnancy later this year after I complete a fundraising course and loose some excess "eating for 2" pounds. I can frighten myself in bed at night just thinking about how another pregnancy will be, but I am driven!

I know I will never replace my son, but he has taught me the meaning of life.
With much love, Michele.

PS: I would like to hear from other Mums who have since had healthy babies, and thank you for this page - I must have needed to talk.

Thomas Robert
Stillborn/36 weeks
June 17th 1997
Dunfermline, UK

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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At age 37, I was having a perfect pregnancy. So smooth & painless, even my Dr. was nonchalant.

Three weeks before due date we went for our 2nd sonogram and were jolted by the nurse who found no heartbeat and didn't even offer an "I'm sorry". After asking, "When did you last feel the baby move?" she rushed out of the room & reentered without even a glance our way.

Most of you know the rest - we went directly to the hospital & on January 30, 1998 delivered our beautiful little angel, Katy Lauren Smith.

We had a beautiful funeral service that was extremely comforting and played the song by Jane Siberry: "Calling All Angels" I hope you might purchase her tape, When I Was A Boy, and find comfort & beauty in this song.

We find little gifts from our Katy often - Late one night, two weeks after our baby's birth, we saw the most beautiful, bright shooting star while driving back from an uncle's funeral, and realized we were passing the town of Katy. As we saw the sign we knew we had just been blessed with a gift from God & Katy.

May you all find comfort & peace & know that you will Hold Your Baby in Heaven.

Clare & Lewis Smith - Trying Again in Texas

Katy Lauren Smith
San Antonio, TX

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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"Hello, Samantha..."

On March 3,1998 I went to the doctor for my weekly visit. As with all of you, I'm sure that the doctor always tried to find the baby's heart beat, as he did with me. But he couldn't find it. He tried for at lest 30min and could not find it.

Then he turn to me and said those words you never want to hear in all your life, "I'm sorry but I can't find your baby's heart beat." As he was saying that my heart felt as if someone was taking a knive and cutting it out of me! Dave was at work and I had to call him and let him know.

The day after they put me in labor, and I had Samantha 9 hours later.

They put her in my arms, and I saw my little girl for the first time. She had black her just like her daddy, her daddy's face, lips, and her big brother nose. My feet and hands and big ears .. But she was so pretty I couldn't take my eyes off her.

They took her back .. But I asked for her back the next day. I just had to say hello to her before I could say GOODBYE to her.

On March 9,1998 Dave and I put our little girl to rest. She is at home now with God. She is waiting for her mommy and daddy to join her.

But until then her Granpa will take care of her for us.

I know in time that Dave and I will find peace with in ourselves. I also know that one day I will see my little girl again. But until that day I hurt and will until I die !!

We just want to let the world know that our little girl was here, she was loved, wanted, needed, and she will be missed everyday of our lifes !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We love you, Sam

Love, Mommy and Daddy
and your big brother, Shay

Visit Notes/West and Family Shares Their Thoughts/Uncle John for more about Samantha and her family.

Jackie and Dave
Samantha J. Gallerani
March 4,1998
Fairfield, CA

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Caitlin Elizabeth Reany
February 9, 1998
Stillborn - 40 weeks
Parents: Lesley & Thomas Reany, Jr.
Grandparents: Bruce & Elizabeth Erts, Alpharetta, Georgia
Tom & Margaret Reany, Kearny, New Jersey

Our Story:

Sunday February 8th, 1998

Went to sleep feeling for your nightly kicks, everything's okay. It's any day now, doctor says your due Thursday the 13th this week. You got a perfect Sonogram score two weeks ago, and you haven't dropped yet.

I think your small, and I wish I knew what to expect, will it be the middle of night? Will my water break? Nothing can go wrong now...or so I believed.

Can't wait for you to get here. I never thought that I'd be a Mom since Poly Cystic Ovary Disease has left me infertile. I am now 37 years.

Your daddy and I were frantically planning our wedding, and I discovered that I was 17 weeks pregnant with you on September 17th, 1997. Wedding went on October 4th, I had my dress taken out a few inches to make room for you...daddy is so excited and so are your grandparents, aunts, uncles and future friends.

Monday, February 9th, 1998

Woke up about 8:00am feeling okay. Began experiencing some cramping, daddy left for work and took his baby beeper...waiting for the 911 call.

Called my Mom in Atlanta to talk through my cramps, something wasn't right since they weren't subsiding. Cramps let up and I called the doctor...waiting for a call back. Nurse says to come in for fetal monitor check. I believe that everything is fine. I take a shower, put the last final details in my birthing bag and hospital suitcase. Vomiting sets in, maybe the flu? Call nurse, the pain is becoming unbearable and the doctor is to meet daddy and I at the hospital.

He got his 911 call and he is on his way. I'm sorry, I'm unable to cope with the pain and I need Daddy. Maybe this is transitional labor, I don't know, I've never experienced this before. My water hasn't broke, no bleeding or other signs that your in trouble.

However, I feel like you're up in my rib cage, and you're not moving. This is not unusual for you, I know your patterns and moods, your quiet in the day and sometimes scare me. But believe me, you were an active little soul after the 19th week. You even did a few somersaults.

I think your a boy and so does everyone else. I know Daddy wants a boy and I a girl but neither of us care as long as your healthy and happy. If your a boy your name will be Sean Michael Reany and if your a girl your name will be Caitlin Elizabeth Reany. Elizabeth is my Mom's name.

Get to the hospital, it's now about 12:30pm. They make me wait for a room. Fetal Monitor is on, and the nurse can't find your heartbeat. She's confusing yours with mine which obviously is low. Sonogram heartbeat. Questions, people in and out. Daddy is smiling over me now saying that everything will be fine.

2nd Level Sonogram - you've definitely died. Daddy's still saying everything is okay but I know it's not. Stupid doctor says "you can have more children" I wanted to scream " I don't want more children I want my baby back, you've made a horrible mistake!"

I tell the doctor that I can't be awake and wait for you, it's to painful. Not an option, they give me Potosin to induce my labor, Demerol and Magnesium Sulfate (my blood pressure is soaring).

We had a great pregnancy, I wish I knew about you sooner than I did so we had more time together. You were with me at my bridal showers, wedding and honeymoon. Remember all the pretty fishes we saw in Central America, remember the Manatees?

Did you hear Daddy and I fighting? Sometimes over you? I love you.

I'm still waiting at the hospital in the labor room, the pain is intolerable. Diagnosis: Placenta Eruption with massive internal hemorrhaging and clotting. Reason: Unknown.

11:07pm: You are born. The hours before are a blur. Three pushes. I don't look and they don't ask if I want to hold you or I don't remember.

I keep looking over a the baby warmer where you lay, I think something's wrong with you and I'm afraid. I ask if your a boy or girl sometime later. Your a girl, my daughter. The nurse and friends call and visit over the next 6-8 hours and say I must see you and you are beautiful. My friend Maggie from work visits first thing, holds my hand...I'm still in shock. Doctor says that there is nothing for my family.

Your grandparents flew in from Atlanta, grandma's holding my hand, grandpa's crying.

We plan for the funeral for Friday. They finally move me to a new room, I lost 50% of my red blood and they say I have to stay two more nights. I just want to hold you and for you smile back at me. This I will discover is never going to happen.

Karen, a nurse here is expecting her first child, she asked me if I wanted to bath you. I'm sorry Caitlin, I'm not strong enough for this. About an hour later she brings you up to Daddy and I. She begins to place you in my arms, I tell her to hold your head, please don't hurt you. Your lovely, you look just like Mommy, round cherub cheeks and brownish hair, the family button nose.

Your so cold and your eyes are closed, oh honey I'm sorry. What have I done?!

I can't bear this pain, the nurse comes to take you and I scream once your gone. I can't accept this. She brings me your little footprints and hair along with your blanket and things that you wore when you were born. I ask "what are you wearing" are you warm?" Grandma took all your things out of my bag and took them home, except your snow suit that I donated to the hospital. Daddy will bring you a new nightgown to the funeral home, I'm too sick to come angel, I'm sorry but I'll see you Friday.

Friday, February 14th: 11:00am

Small service with our families and a few friends. Daddy put some of your toys and our wedding pictures along with a picture of Samantha our cat in your little casket. Everyone's brought or sent you flowers and cards. Ironic that it's Valentines Day. I will never celebrate this day again without a new meaning and memory.

Casket is open and people are standing in the back...slowly they walk forward and say good-bye. I kiss your nose and begin unwrapping you, daddy pulls me away gently.

Valium and cigarettes are my only friend today, I'm sorry Caitlin...I know you hate cigarettes, there bad for me. It was to easy to go back to them.

Funeral is lovely and you are being buried with your great-grandparents in the lovely spot. I know that your grandfather will plant flowers for you next week, he comes here often. Your beautiful name is being carved in the stone this year sometime in honor of your memory. Where are you sweety? Are you happy? Do you know who I am? That I loved you?

Now I will descend on my journey of grief, darkness, madness and guilt.

Today, April 17th.

Back to work Monday. Daddy and I are moving to Atlanta as we always planned. We hope to make a brother or sister for you soon, I'm ovulating normally now thanks to you.

We fight a lot,I'm sorry. I hope that things will get better, I'm so bitter, angry, guilty and depressed.

No one one wants to hear about you anymore. I know they think "why can't she go on"? Even Daddy, but I know that he thinks of you each day and is strong for me. I will not forget you.

"Those who cannot hear the music, think the dancer is mad..."

Lesley & Thomas Reany
Jersey City, NJ

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Unexpected when expecting

I started this pregnancy by accident. My husbant John relocated to Arlington Heights about the time I got pregnant. I stayed in Los Angeles to finish my dissertation. When I found out I was pregnant, I was afraid of I would not have enough time for both my baby and my work.

My baby did take good care of me during early days. I was so lucky that I didn't have any uncomfort from pregnancy, no morning sickness, nothing at all that I even doubt if I was really pregnant. Because of that, I was able to finish most of heavy work during the first three months.

John and I decided we should name our baby "Bo", a Chinese name, meaning "Ph.D" which I was working on.

I don't know how John got a feeling that we were having a son. My mom started to buy only baby boy's clothes after she learned the news. I insisted on calling the baby BB through out the whole nine month as I know even the ultrasound could give the wrong impression.

I learned that from fifth month on the baby can hear the voice so that I started to talk to my BB almost everyday.

My only trouble was that I was a little underweight, partly because I am Asian. My doctor was not that much concerned that she did not told me, not to make me worry too much. Gradually, I gained some 35 pounds at the end and the whole pregnancy went on so normal and perfect.

My baby was so active that it moved almost every time my doctor tried to pick up his heartbeat. Everybody was waiting for his arrival.

We had a lot of sad news from our families already. John's mother found out to have cancer, has been under treatment since the end of last year. My dad had been diagnosed with lung cancer some time this year and had lung operation without notifying me, just didn't want to disturb me and my baby.

We all hoped that my baby would bring joyfulness to our families and we were almost sure it would. We were expecting.

I finally finished my proposal on 4/23/98, a week before I moved to Arlington Heights to join John. It wasn't that fast if it wasn't because of my baby. In Arlington Heights, I was at home most of the time.

John tried to make up the time he missed with the baby while I was alone in LA. He could talk to the baby directly now, not like when I was in LA, I had to put telephone to my tummy in order for him to say hi to the baby. We went to hospital tour and childbirth class. We were all ready for his arrival.

On 6/1/98, I was given another ultrasound as my new doctor thought my baby was measured small. But the result came out so perfect that my baby was measured (by ultrosound) 75%. It was thrilling for me as I was afraid that my baby could not gain enough weight. My doctor estimated my baby over 7 pounds.

On the ultrasound, we even saw his face(we were told he was a boy). At that moment, I felt in love with him already. The technitian tried to shake his little hand away from his face to get a clear picture, instead, he sucked his finger. John believed that his son has his face. I didn't say anything because I think it was so obvious he has my face. One thing we were sure that he had John's eyes as they were so big and cute. We couldn't wait to see his smile.

6/12 is my birthday. Jonathan's due day was on 6/17. I even wished he could come out a little earlier to have same birthday as mine, but I know I should wait for his own time. On his 39th week, my doctor said I probably had alot of contractions without pain, meaning the baby could come anytime.

During the whole pregnancy, I had no pain, not even any uncomfortable feeling at all. I was so anxious about what contraction would be like, but could not imagine. Three days after doctor's weekly checkup, I still felt Jonathan's movement, much less but still his pattern. There were no kicking, but some kind of waving as I would describe.

I think he must be too big that my tummy was not big enough for him to dance, instead he could only roll back and forth once a while.

On Friday (6/12) morning, about 4 am, I felt something came out. It was so little that it didn't fit into the description of water breaking. I did saw bloody show, but according to my doctor's instruction ("not to report bloody show as we may tell you to wait"), I went back to sleep. John went back to work that day as usually. I slept the whole morning until 11. For the whole day, I did not find anything unusual except excitement as I thought it might be the big day.

I wanted to see the labor started, in the meantime I told myself not to be silly to want my son to have the same birthday as mine. I waited for those pains as people talking about, but nothing happened. I only got some mild uncomfortable kind of feeling somewhere in my body on and off through out the whole day.

Later I knew those were my contractions as I felt my tummy hard when those feelings came along. It was so irregular that I thought it might be false labor. I could walk along without any problem. I didn't call John.

I tried to set up camera for my computer to take pictures so that I can put some picture of the baby on the web for my parents back in China. It was only the second day that I realized I was too excited about labor to be able to notice any baby's movement. Besides, I usually felt baby's movement during the night, not in the daytime.

The last movement I definitly was sure was around 3-4pm on 6/12. It was probably only once, not like his usual waving kind. He was probably gone that time which I did not know of. I can not forgive myself for so ignorance for that day.

About 7pm, John came home. He kissed me for happy birthday. He wanted to take me out to celebrate. We also went outside to take some picture and shoot a short video, just in case I would go into labor that night. We went out and had dinner, on the way home we picked up some milk in supermarket.

I started to feel some contractions, but not too strong, not regular at all. Sometimes, it was 10-15 minutes apart, then 2-3 minutes later another one came alone, kind of short in duration. I could still walk along, talking during contraction. John was told that it wasn't in serious labor yet. We went back home. I even took a shower and wash my hair.

I did not really sleep that night as I was trying to count my contractions. It was until 4-5 am the second day. John called my doctor and we were told to go to hospital. We thought we probably would be sent home as I did not think I was in serious labor. When we got to hospital, I thought it was funny to escort me in a wheel chair because I didn't feel I need one.

I didn't even think anything could go wrong. Eveything was so normal and perfect. All we need to do is waiting for Jonathan to come at his own time. I was still imagining that I would be examined and be told not yet and be sent home waiting axiously.

John caught up with me as we got to LBR. I was told to change into hospital's gown with two monitors. The nurse didn't have trouble with the one for my contraction. She murmured that she could not find the baby's heartbeat. I thought she was just "inexperienced". Another nurse came to examined me internally.

With pain(only painful internal exam I had), I was told 5 center dilated and station -1. She then did something and asked me when my water was broken. I was a little nervous then.

I also saw somebody take an ultrasound machine into my room. An on-call ob doctor came short after. He then raptured my membrane, I felt "hua"--a gush of water came out. He put two long wires in, but the nurse still said no. I didn't know that they already knew.

John was at the corner to put my clothes away. The ob doctor did the ultrasound quickly and told me something. I only remember he said "we will know when we see the baby". John did not even know what happened, me either. I thought they just did not find heartbeat. It was there.

They could not pick up by the machine. I would wait for my doctor to come to prove them wrong.

The on-call doctor left, so did the nurses. The first one was asking us some admission kind of questions. She left too.

Two minutes later, my doctor came in, his first words was "I am so heartbroken". At that moment, my brain went blank. How could you say that? I said to myself. It was not true. I turned to John: "they said BB is gone?" in Chinese.

Tears bursted out. My doctor held my shoulders. He did another ultrasound for us. It was all still, deadly still. What happen to the heart, it didn't move at all. It used to move so happily everytime I had ultrasound. They said my BB is gone? Impossible!

I could not believe what I heard. My doctor held me and John. Everything turned to the wrong direction all of sudden, so fast. It was not even five minutes since we got to the hospital. I still could not believe what had happened. John hadn't have time to put away my clothes yet.

We thought we would be sent home waiting. Instead, we were told our baby was gone already.

A new nurse Jeanne came to help us. She was of great help. Thanks to the God, I went into labor already. It took me only 5-6 hours from then on, I gave birth to my first son. But I didn't give him life. He could not breathe, his heart could not beat. I was so sad and hopeless.

They expected to see some evidance of cord accident, like cord around baby's neck or dead knot. Instead, they found none. My doctor examined my baby and found no reason to explain his death. All he could tell us was that the cord was a little long and my baby was a little big. Somehow baby might pinched the cord which cause a sudden cord accident.

John didn't believe that Jonathan was gone. He insisted the doctor see if baby was really gone. My tears kept rolling down.

I kept saying that I should have came yesterday. How could I not to ask doctor what was about that small amount of water? Maybe he was still alive then. I felt so powerless about myself that I could not bring my BB alive to this world.

But my doctor told me it was not to do with water broken because I had no sympton of any infection at all. Then what is it? I had a perfect pregnancy and my BB and I was so healthy.

Jonathan was 8 pounds 4 oz, 21 inches. He was even bigger than what I have expected.

He could be very healthy and would cry too much during the night. Why could not I bring him alive like millions of other mothers do? I started to feel so guilty about myself. My doctor kept on telling me it wasn't my fault, but I just could not help.

Jeanne washed Jonathan and brought him to me. I held him in my arms with tears in my eyes. I could not take my eyes of his face. He had headful shining black hair, just like mine. I had headful shining black hair when I was born. He had my nose and lips. He had John's hair line. His face looked exactly the same as we saw on the second ultrasound, except for his eyes were closed. He must have John's eyes, big and cute.

I kept looking at his eyes, only afraid of missing the chance when they open, and smile at me. But he never opened his eyes. He looked so peaceful, like he was in a sweet dream. I told John not to wake him up. I unwrapped him. His body was pale and no color of blood. Jeanne put on a diaper and name tag on his wrist and his ankle, like she did for all other newborns. My heart was broken and tears rolling down my face.

I was speechless and mind blank. When three of us were alone in the room, John finally burst into tears, saying he could be a good dad.

We had no relative in town and a very few friends from John's work. I moved in town only five weeks ago, just for Jonathan, only to find out that we lost him by a day or two.

We have prepared everything except for the loss, nobody would! We didn't know what to do. John finally find some number of his friend through operator but nobody was at home. It was a Sunday.

We didn't know how to tell our families. I just phoned my mom last night and told her the baby was fine. Jonathan was the first grandchild in my family and first grand-grandchild to my grandparent from my mother side. My grandparents are very old and ill, I haven't seen them for a long time. I planned to take Jonathan back when he could travel overseas.

I cannot bring any joyness to my families now. I felt so hopeless.

It was the sadess morning when I woke up the second day. I cried the minute I saw John beside me. We still have each other, but Jonathan was lying somewhere lonely. We could not hold him, feed him, change him. We could not do anything for him.

I felt so unsuccessful as a mother. We asked to see him again, I couldn't leave him without saying goodbye. John arranged a small goodbye service a week later. We got a lot of help from John's friend's church. The minister came the night Jonathan was born. He touched Jonathan's head for a long time, did not say a word. John told me that our Jonathan is in God's hand. We will reunion when we get to eternity.

I miss my son Jonathan. He was my baby and will be forever. Three weeks have passed, I kept thinking over and over again what had happened and still could not find a clue. Every morning I woke up with my mind empty, not to know what to do for the day.

I came to Arlington Heights to give birth, but I could not bring Jonathan home.

For the next few months, all our plans were for Jonathan. But now, we had no plans. We have nothing to look forward. One minute I wish my tummy is still there with Jonathan, or I would be pregnant again very soon, the next minute I would be scared that what if it happened again.

It has no sign at all. We have no control at all. Why can other mother can bring baby home, but not me? This would haunt me forever.

We have pictures taken and video taped Jonathan's goodbye service. I told myself not to cry the second morning in hospital as I knew if I don't hold myself I would cry for the rest of my life.

But when I got home for the first time, tears came out. John hide almost everything we got for Jonathan, but it didn't work. I knew they were there.

Whenever people came to visit, I would told my story. My friends all called in after my due days. They cried with me. I know so many people love our Jonathan. John told me to get well and we will bring brother or sister for Jonathan. We already have names for them as "didi" or "meimei", younger brother or sister in Chinese. Jonathan is always our first and forever son.

Jonathan Bowen
Arlington Heights, IL

Part of Marcia's e-mail: You did so much for him as you cradled him and loved him. Your story touched on so many feelings of loss that a parent goes through...being a parent, having a grandbaby for your own parents, the loss of innocence(this can really happen...), etc. You also very clearly express the emotions of denial, shock, sadness, guilt and confusion. Your letter covers all of these reactions that so many parents cannot express. The loving "goodbyes" that you were able to share with Johathan are so special. They will be special memories forever...

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Our Firstborn Angel

Hi. My name is Jenny Coffey. I am 27 years old and have been married for four years. My husband and I found out we were pregnant last September. I was so excited about things to come. My husband was a little more worried about financial things and stuff husbands think about. So we went along into pregnancy, both willing and ready to have a child.

My pregnancy was a wonderful experience. I was happy the entire time - no morning sickness or other irritating side effects. I was just happy to be carrying our first child.

My husband started to get excited around the second trimester, when I began to show and started working on the baby's room. He painted it and I decorated it. He assembled the furniture and we basically got things ready.

At four months, we did an amino and found out we were having a girl! We were so happy. I started buying all kinds of little girl things and had so much fun with it. We had a couple of baby showers and got lots of cute little pink things.

At 36 weeks, we had the entire house ready. I work at home, so we had a daytime crib and swing, etc. out near my computer. Everything looked great.

Three weeks from my due date, I went in for a heart check. The evening before I had noticed that Brittany wasn't moving. I had a bad feeling about it, but told myself it couldn't be true. I am so young and healthy and I was doing everything right in my pregnancy. So I went in for a heart check and there was no heartbeat.

My doctor was in disbelief and we went in for a sonogram just to be sure. I can't express the shock and numbness I felt when I looked on the monitor and saw her little heart just sitting there, no movement.

I called my husband and gave him the news. I actually can't remember what I said to him, but hearing the tone of my voice and the tears I was crying, he knew without me having to say much. He rushed over to the office right away.

And then came the shock. I still had to go through labor.

Oh, God. I don't know how we made it through the first few hours of inducing labor. I think we both hoped that the doctor was wrong. She was in there, maybe she was okay. My first contraction happened and I thought Brittany was moving inside me again. I felt her push up to the top of my abdomen and I think I began to hope again.

We went through labor and delivered Brittany Marie at 9:30 p.m. She was such a beautiful baby. She had my lips and nose and her daddy's ears and forehead. They let us hold her and take pictures with her.

I thought the worse part of it was over now. I was wrong. Labor was nothing. It was hard, yes, but it was nothing compared to having a funeral for Brittany.

We went the next day to the funeral home and picked out a plot for her and a casket for her. Both sets of our parents had driven up to be with us by this time, and everyone was so sad.

I think I went deep inside myself at this point and hid out in there. I watched everything as in a distance, yet I remember every little thing that happened. Watching my baby be buried, receiving support from my friends and family, seeing how it affected everyone differently, that was hard.

I love my daughter. I went out every other day to visit her gravesite at first. I took fresh flowers out there, as if anything I could do for her would help me feel better and like I was a better mother for her.

We still go to visit her now, but not as often as before.

I feel like she is still here with me. I talked to her so much in the beginning about anything and everything. I have spent so much time in her room with her things that she never got to enjoy or wear or play with. It's heartbreaking.

I found this web site while looking for help in grieving for Brittany. It's almost scary, because we had the saying "Forever in our Hearts" placed on her headstone before I knew this site existed.

And now we begin a new chapter in our lives. We found out last week that we are pregnant again. I am carrying Brittany's little brother or sister around with me now.

I feel like we were destined to be pregnant again this soon. The new baby's due date is just two days before Brittany's birthday. It will be hard for me either way, but maybe with a little baby brother or sister to hold on her birthday, we will begin to heal a bit more. I know that a new baby won't replace Brittany in our hearts. How could it?

But we have so much love to give, I can't see waiting too much longer in our lives to start a family. Brittany will always be our first child, and I think we will tell any siblings that come along that they have a guardian angel in Heaven to watch over them. I am comforted by the fact that she is up there with her two grandfathers, who I'm sure are holding her and loving her up.

I also know that I will need lots of support and love during this new pregnancy. I'm quite sure this will be the longest nine months of my life. So, if you feel like it, feel free to e-mail me. I work at home, so I'm usually around.

Thanks for taking the time to read about Brittany. We'll never have out innocence back, but I think we can make it through if we stick together. She is forever in our hearts.

Entry #2 - 7/20/99:

We now know that Brittany died from a cord accident

We are handling her loss much better after a year, but we still miss her and think about her every day. I thought it would be appropriate to send you some pictures of Brittany to go along with her story. She's still our firstborn angel.

Pictures of Brittany and her family in our Keepsake Album.

New Arrival!!

We also have had a baby boy since we last spoke with you. He was born on 4/26/99. His name is Kyle Alexander, and we have all his pictures at the following location:
Click on Butterfly to visit the Coffey's site...

I want to thank you again for helping us through the loss of Brittany and the healing process we went through.

I have made so many friends over the internet through SHARE Atlanta, and I love them all dearly. You provide a very valuable font of information for all of us. Thanks again.

TX Moms Of Tiny Angels-a group to support other families

Brittany Marie Coffey
Plano, TX

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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My husband and I lost our first and only baby on December 30th, 1998. She was stillborn for reasons still unknown. Her little heart was beating all through labor, but she just couldn't make it on her own. The grief and pain is unbearable. People who don't know ask when we had our baby.

Kaylee, we love you.

We'll never forget you.

You are forever in our hearts.

Kaylee Olivia
Salt Lake City, UT

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Maria Paulina

Entry #1...3/17/99

My baby Maria Paulina born out death on Feb. 26, 1999. After my baby, the placenta came out in pieces.

Nobody can explain me what happened. During my pregnancy my doctor always said that everything was OK. I would like to know why the placenta came out in pieces, what happened in my belly with the placenta. I felt my baby alive and moving about seven hours before she born. If somebody has information about it, please e-mail me.

Entry #2 - 7/99:


On July 9, 1998 I did a home pregnancy test and came out positive. It was a happy news, because my husband and I lost our first baby. So the next day I went to the hospital for a blood test to confirm the good news.

The second test came out positive. In my 7th week I was bleeding and I went to the hospital, the doctor ordered an ultrasound. The ultrasound showed that the baby was fine.

After that I received a call from the hospital recommending me that I needed to be treated in the fifth floor (OB/Gyn) because I was high risk, due my asthma and previous miscarriage.

During my whole pregnancy all the doctors did was measuring my belly, listen to my baby’s heartbeat and few blood tests.

About my fourth or fifth month of my pregnancy, my husband and I request an ultrasound during one of the appointment to see if the baby was fine, but the doctors answer was no the baby’s heart is fine.

During the first five month of my pregnancy I visited the ER at least once at month sometimes more than once because my asthma. This was the primary reason why my husband and I request the ultrasounds.

By my 28th week I begin to feel back pain that moved to the front, two or three an hour. On my next appointment I described to the doctor about the back pain. He told me that those were contractions. He did a vaginal exam making sure that everything was fine.

On my 30th week was my next appointment the doctor did another vaginal exam to if my cervix was close. I did not receive any treatment for the early contractions other than keep monitoring them no more the three per hour next appointment.

THE LAST WEEK OF MY PREGNANCY February 22 to 26, 1999

On February 22, 1999, I began to feel contractions. The next day, on February 23, 1999, I went to my first one-week appointment. When I was in the waiting room I got asthma. The nurse took me to the doctor and she measured my belly and heard the baby’s heartbeat, sent me to ER to treat my asthma. It was so quick; I couldn’t talk with the doctor about my contractions. The nurse took me to ER in a wheelchair.

In ER I talked with the doctor and I told him that I am having contractions, and he said that that baby would come soon, in a few days. It was on February 23, 1999 and my due day was in March 15, 1999.

When the treatment finish they sent me home. They didn’t do anything about my contractions or monitor my baby.

On Wednesday 24, 1999 I was feeling more contractions, so I called to the hospital to find out what I have to do, and the nurse said that I had to wait until 10 contractions or more in one hour, to go to the hospital. I said that I was asthmatic patient, but she said the same.

On Thursday 25, 1999 I called again to the hospital because the contractions, but the nurse said again that I had to wait. I felt my baby move before going to sleep.

On Friday 26, 1999 about 1:00 a.m. a felt a strong contraction with a short of breath and pressure in head. I thought to go to the hospital but I remembered what the nurse said, so I stayed at home. I fell asleep again.

At 6:30 a.m. I woke up with a strong contraction and I begun to feel it every 15 minutes and then closer. So before 8:00 a.m. I was in the hospital with my family.

In the hospital the nurse took me to a room to wait for the doctor. When the doctor came, told me that I was in labor and did the first ultrasound to see the baby. She asked me when was the last time that I felt my baby move and I answered her that the night before. She said, “the baby is not alive, I’m sorry”. I asked her what happened and she said the she doesn’t know that may be was problems with the placenta or the umbilical cord.

We asked her if it was placenta previa, but she said no that the placenta was up and OK. She said again “I’m sorry”, so she said to the nurse that, take her to labor and delivery.

It was a very very hard moment for all of us. I started to cry, I couldn’t believe it.

The doctor sent me to labor and delivery floor and a second doctor went to my room and he did another ultrasound to confirm if the baby was really dead.

The nurse gave me by IV with pitoson for induce me in labor. I felt so much pain for the contraction, but the doctor ordered a dose of Demerol without asking me if I really needed it. Did not explain side effects. I made me very sleepy.

At 10:56 a.m. my baby has born dead and after that, the placenta. We had ready photo and video camera to record that moment. But nobody was thinking about that. It was a very sad moment to all of us, my mom, my cousin, my husband and I. All of us were in the room.

From Demerol I was to tired and sleepy to see the baby, I fell asleep as soon as I give birth. I felt to bad and angry when I woke up, because I never had the opportunity to really hold my baby, kiss her, see her, and touch her. When I woke up from the Demerol she was gone and I couldn’t see her again.

They wanted to discharge me the same day, about 4:00 p.m., but my husband said no. So the next day at 8:00 a.m. The doctor went to my room to check me and to discharge. She asked me if I had any questions and I said, “yes, what happened?” She said that really does not know. That it was a problem with the placenta, that it happen to woman that smoke, use drug or have high blood pressure, etc. So she doesn’t understood why happened to me. The only answered was “That “these things, just happen”.

The hardest moment after the lost was coming back home without my baby girl, and the second - living the rest of my life knowing that I couldn’t hold, touch and kiss her.

I pray a lot for a baby and a good pregnancy. Today, four months later, I am pregnant again. I thanks to God for this new opportunity and I hope that I can keep the baby that now lives inside of me. I am sure that I will because I feel blessed. I have no morning sickness and no asthma, everything look fine.

Maria Paulina
Fort Polk, LA


Marcia's thoughts: May I suggest several ways to try to learn about what happened during your loss. First, please, return to your doctor and ask him to explain to you what he feels happened. Explain to him that this means much to you. Most doctors try to help their patients understand the medical events around their loss. If he doesn't know and says so, then you always have the option to get a second opinion for your own knowledge and reassurance. This can be especially important if you ever plan to try again. It can give you some peace.

You may want to go to our Medical LINKS and look under High Risk Pregnancies for sites that discuss placental problems to see if any of these sound like what happened to you. You may find some information on these sites that will aid you in your discussion with your doctor.

For some in our group, there never seems to be a clear cut reason for what happened. But it helps to know that we have done all we can to understand the events..then we can work with our doctor to keep our risks low during a subsequent pregnancy. Often just knowing the doctor fully supports us is a huge step in our level of peace.

As important as finding out if you can understand all of the medical events, healing our emotional pain must also be helped. Please read some of the information about grief on the site, and give yourself time to heal.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Wee Megan

On Thursday March 11 1999, I was woken up at about 4am having contractions, I was so excited cause I'd had a lot of Braxton Hicks contractions, but these were the real thing, but by 10 am they had stopped.

I rang my midwife told her I was comfortable, she said she'd be here about midday. I had a bath and Megan was having her usual bathtime fun, making her own waves.

4 hours later when my midwife arrived, she went to check on Megans heartbeat and couldn't find it. She wasn't in a panic, she thought it must be her equipment. So I phoned my husband, my midwife took me to hospital and my husband followed.

When we got to hospital she still couldn't find it, so she called in the doctor. Using a portable scanner, he found the heart and it was still. I will always see that scan, I think that's the exact moment my own heart broke.

My husband and I went for a walk and waited for my mum to come so my husband could go and get our other daughter so we could tell her. My mum came, my daughter aged almost 5 cried and I went totally numb.

They induced labour at 5pm, labour started at 5.30pm, and she was born at 8.20pm. The perfect labour just short of 3 hours, my oldest girl took 49 hours to arrive. The perfect labour for my baby who had already gone.

We declined a post-mortem, so we will probably never know why she died, unless the tests they did on me show something, I still have to follow that up.

We spent the next 4 hours with her, we bathed her, and dressed her in the clothes we had to take her home. We had many cuddles and photo's. She was so perfect it was unbearable to think that she was never going to breathe.

We left her in the hospital, although they kept asking if we wanted to take her home. I was worried about the effect that would have on, Caitlin, our older girl. We went back in the morning. We gave Megan to the undertaker, I didn't want to let her go.

On the sunday we went to the funeral home to see her again and give her some presents, and also wrap her up in a blanket, she was still so beautiful. We spent a long time cuddling her again.

We had a graveside service on Monday and that was so nice, but heartbreaking at the same time. We let go 4 balloons, one for each of us in the family. 4 red ballons carried off in the wind, it was special.

It's only been 3 weeks, and I miss her so much, she consumes my every thought.

My wee angel Megan,
you're always in my heart.
I will always love you, Megan Emma Harriet.

Megan Emma Harriet
11 March 1999
Christchurch, New Zealand

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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Missing Mackenzie

We were lucky to experience your presence for forty weeks and you gave us so much joy and excitement knowing you would be our beautiful daughter. When we got worried because you wern't moving, our world was turned upside down.

Forty-eight hours prior to your birthday you left us. We were left with bringing you into our world with our hearts broken.

All the dreams we have for you have stood still except those we carry in our hearts.

Our daughter is greatly missed,
oh how we love her and miss
her every second of everyday.
Born still 5-lbs 17-1/2"s
and amazingly beautiful.
Karla & Ward
Mackenzie Emelia Bailey
Flagstaff, Az

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Forever in Our Hearts~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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