10.15.2010

A Day of Remembrance

Today, October 15th is National Day of Remembrance for Pregnancy and Infant loss. This includes all babies who have died because of miscarriage, stillbirth, SIDS, or any other infant death.

Unfortunately, I am one of many women who has suffered a loss.

I had 2 miscarriages before I had my girls.


Ectopic Pregnancy at 6 weeks on October 22, 2002 (due date June 23, 2003)
Miscarriage at 10 weeks D&C on October 25, 2005 (due date May 26, 2006)

I still think about them & wonder.
Were they a boy or a girl?
(I have a gut feeling/instinct they were both boys)
I could have a 7.5 year old and a 4.5 year old.
But then I wouldn't have Kate or Claire.
God has a plan. His timing is perfect. Trust in Him.
This is what would remind myself during my saddest days.

In the process of having miscarriages & sharing about them, I have met many, many women who have lost their sons and daughters. I have friends, family & co workers who have had miscarriages. I have several friends who have lost their babies at full term, days & months after having them. I can't imagine the pain they have suffered.


The Lord has broken my heart for families who have to endured these types of losses. I don't fully know the pain these families have gone through, but I have felt a small fraction of it.


This is one of the reasons I felt called me to become a volunteer photographer for Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep 2 years ago. I cannot take away the pain of someone's loss, but I can give them something to remember their child by.
You can read about my journey to become a volunteer with them HERE.

For those of you who are new to my blog, here is my story of loss:
(I also posted this last year on October 15)

Kevin and I got married on August 24, 2002. We wanted to wait 3-4 years to have kids. I was on the pill and took it religiously at the same time every day. Imagine my surprise when I found out I was pregnant 2 months after we got married. We had always wanted kids, just not so soon after getting married. I went to the doctor & they gave me a due date of June 23, 2003. I was FREAKING out & couldn't believe I was pregnant. This pregnancy was our "honeymoon baby". Apparently I got pregnant on our honeymoon. Unfortunately, a few days after I found out I was pregnant in October of 2002, I woke up to an intense pain on my left side & when I went to the bathroom I was massively bleeding & then I passed out. Kevin rushed in and woke me up & we rushed to my doctor & after some tests, he informed me that I was having an ectopic pregnancy & that I had to go immediately to the hospital for emergency surgery because the condition was life threatening for me. So, that Tuesday night in late October, I was rushed to the hospital for surgery. Luckily, I have one of the best doctors in the area & he was able to save my left fallopian tube (it was already starting to rupture). I am glad that I was unaware of how serious ectopic pregnancies can be. I didn't realize I could have died if my tube ruptured. Even though my doctor saved my fallopian tube (and my life!), I always wondered how this would effect my ability to get pregnant & have kids. One of my biggest dreams was to be a mommy & for the next few years I wondered if that would ever happen.

Fast forward to the summer of 2005.
This is when we decided to start "trying". We got lucky & I got pregnant the 2nd month after we started trying. I was due May 26, 2006. Kevin and I were thrilled. I couldn't wait to have a baby & be a mommy. I was relieved that the ectopic pregnancy didn't effect my ability to get pregnant. As soon as I found out I was pregnant, I went in for blood work to make sure my numbers were doubling. My dr called and told me my progesterone was low & I needed to be on progesterone suppositories 2 times a day. Let me tell, you , those are NOT fun. Nasty. My pregnancy was progressing, at 6 weeks the nausea hit big time & I was throwing up 2-3 times a day. I was miserable, but it was worth it. We had our first ultrasound at almost 6 weeks to make sure the baby was in my uterus and not my tube. The baby was in my uterus & I scheduled another appt at 8 weeks for the heartbeat check. The 8 week ultra sound was no so great. There was a heart beat, but it was very low & took my doctor a long time to find it. He said I needed to come back in a week for another heartbeat check. At that appointment, there was still a slow heartbeat, but the baby was not growing on track & was only measuring 7 weeks. My doctor warned us not to be too optimistic, but I still had really bad morning sickness and was getting sick a few times a day. I thought that was a good sign. I had to go in again at 10 weeks for another heartbeat & growth check. At the 10 week appointment, the heart had stopped beating. We had lost the baby & my doctor scheduled me in for a D&C that night. It was a Tuesday night in late October, just like 3 years before. As I walked into the hospital for surgery, I felt like I was on Groundhog Day. Another surgery to remove another baby from my body that didn't make it.

After my D&C, I was going through the motions of life. We were told to wait 3 cycles before we could try again so that my body could heal. Those were 3 very long, hard & dark months for me. I was numb.

My 2nd miscarriage hit me so much harder than my first one.

I was mad at God for taking this baby from us.

It took me about 6 months to process it. During that time, I had a lot of support from family & friends and for that, I am thankful.

I am thankful to my awesome & supportive husband who would hold me as I cried many nights mourning our loss wondering if I would ever have a baby. I would cry myself to sleep whenever a friend told me they were pregnant. I was truly happy for them, but SO sad for me. It was just another reminder of what I didn't have.

I am thankful to our pastor who helped me process some of my feelings & emotions during the months after our loss.

I am thankful to my mom who encouraged me during this time & gave me hope (she had 4 losses in between me & my younger sister including an ectopic & a placenta separation at 21 weeks).

I am thankful for my best friend AK. She had 2 miscarriages around the same time I did. I was able to call her & cry with someone who was going through the same thing I was. She understood my pain.

I am thankful to my dear friend Lorie who had suffered 2 losses. She shared her prayer journal with me & held me up in prayer when I was too sad to pray for myself.

After we good the go ahead to start trying again, it took us 3 months and we got pregnant in May of 2006. We found out on Kevin's 31st birthday, (a week before my "due date" with my 2nd miscarriage) We were excited, but I was really nervous about having another miscarriage. I was a stress case & paranoid my entire pregnancy.

On January 23, 2007 , I gave birth to our beautiful Katelyn Grace. It was a moment I will never forget & an emotion I can't put into words.

I was reminded again at the miracle of life when Claire was born on September 9, 2008.

God has a plan. His timing is perfect. Trust in Him.

These 2 girls are a reminder of that truth...




I never thought I would say this, but part of me is grateful I have been through miscarriages because it has given me compassion & a heart for those who have also suffered losses. My miscarriages caused me to cling to God & put my faith, hope & trust in HIM instead of myself.

It drew me closer to Christ as I clung to Psalm 20:4:
"May He give you the desires of your heart and make your plans succeed."
God was faithful to me even though many times, I have been unfaithful to Him.

I am thankful to God who carried me through a dark time & showed me that He was there for me & He did have a plan for me & that HIS timing is better than my timing.

Because of this, when I hear of others who have suffered a loss, I mourn with them. I pray for them, I listen, I cry with them. My heart breaks with them.

I can't make them feel better or make their pain go away, but I can make it less lonely.

I have learned a compassion that only comes by walking in those shoes.

I was reminded again & again that God has a purpose & a plan even when I don't understand.

Another thing I have learned through this is that I was NOT alone during a time where I felt so alone and when it seemed like EVERYONE around me was pregnant, except me. God was there, carrying me through this tough time.

I discovered that intercessory prayer is powerful. To have people praying for you when you don't have the words to pray yourself is humbling.


My journey & story seems so insignificant compared to those who have suffered the loss of a newborn or an infant. To my friends Wendy, Ginny, Angie &
Julie your strength is amazing, your courage mighty & your faith inspiring. God has used your stories in BIG ways in my life because of your children.

If you have lost a baby through miscarriage or infant death, I want to pray for you on this day of remembrance.
So, if you are one of those women, will you please
leave a comment on this post and tell me your name so that I can be praying for you?
If you are someone struggling with infertility, I want to pray for you.

If you are waiting to adopt, you will also be lifted up in prayer.
If you want, you can include the nature of your loss, and the child's names so that we can pray for you. If you want to leave an anonymous comment, you can do that also.


If you haven't lost a child, will you join me in praying for those who have?

36 comments:

  1. I've been folowing your blog for a while now. Your two girls are beautiful. I'm sorry for your two previous pregnancy losses, that must have been hard.

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  2. Mel - I can't thank you enough for posting this today. I am so sorry for your losses and think your 2 girls are beautiful as well. I tihnk that by you writing this post, it will help a lot of people get through one more day. I am going through the emotions still of having a miscarriage at 6 weeks and trying to conceive still. My husband and I have been trying to conceive our first child for 1.5 years. I thank you for talking openly about this difficult topic and sharing your story. Your words today have truly reminded me to trust in HIM and not myself. Thank you...

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  3. Thank you for posting this. I have followed your blog a while but don't think I've ever read back far enough to know this about you. I had some complications with my first pregnancy and we list our firstborn daughter shortly after birth. It was so difficult, but with time got a bit easier. We are so thankful to have had a 'normal' pregnancy the next go round, and now our happy 2 year old. :)
    I think the one thing a lot of people don't realize (and what I hate the most now) is that after a loss, pregnancy is just not the same. Faith in God helps tremendously, but the worry always creeps in. It's hard not to let it consume you.
    Praying for you!

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  4. Hi, I am a fairly new follower to your blog so I didn't know this about your history. I too lost a baby back in january 2007. I was 18 weeks 3 days. I had an abnormal AFP and when we went in for the ultrasound our baby boy had no heartbeat. He had Trisomy 18. Since then, we were blessed with our second boy, Colin after having IVF. Just wanted to say hi, and thinking of you.

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  5. Oh I thank God for your precious heart! One of my best friends Kim lost her baby 7 hours after birth to Trisomy and had a photographer from NILMDTS there to capture every second of her life. I think that it is incredible how tender hearts like you can walk in to someone else's pain and give them a gift that will be the only tangible memory they have of their child. THANK YOU for helping, praying, and supporting these families!
    And thank you for sharing your story. I will join you in praying!

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  6. Mel.. what a testimony. It hits home with me as well. It does make you wonder what those babies would have become. But, God does have a plan, a good plan, a righteous plan and an all-knowing plan. Even through painful situations, He is there holding our hand. Thanks for sharing that beautiful post.

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  7. I have not had any losses but I am praying for:

    Jon's sister who had a miscarriage in January and is suffering secondary infertility

    Jon's brother's wife who had a miscarriage two years ago, a molar pregnancy a year ago, and a failed IVF cycle last month (also secondary infertility)

    I hope you can add them to your prayers as well.

    After our NICU experience, I wake up every day grateful I have two healthy children.

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  8. That was a beautiful post Mel.
    It is so hard to understand why those things happen though isn't it. God does have a plan, but sometimes we have to be in the dark to later understand why. I had several miscarriages before Hannah was born, and when Hannah was 13 months I got pregnant again, and miscarried 5 weeks later. Then a month later got pregnant with Claire. It is scary hoping that you pregnancy will be smooth and the baby will be healthy.

    We have friends who lost their baby girl who was just a couple months old very recently, and two years before this baby, they had stillborn twins at 6 months premature. I think of them everyday right now. I pray that God's plan for them will reveal itself one day. My heart aches for them.

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  9. His name is Nathan, and he would have been 4 last month.

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  10. Mel,
    Thanks for sharing your story, your journey, your faith and your heart.
    Heaven is so much sweeter knowing that we will get to meet our little ones when we go home.
    Praying for you today.

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  11. This is a beautiful post. I cried for you, family, myself and others. I'm sorry for your losses. I myself had a miscarriage in Dec 09. right around the holidays, and got pregnant right away (with our daughter Elodie Jayne) She was a surprise a beautiful one too but it was a short mourning process for our Angel Baby I wasn't that far along and it all happened so fast but I do remember the wait I had to wait forever to see the E.R doctor and they told me something I already knew but didn't want to admit it. I didn't even want the pain medicine because I never take meds even for headaches and I'm stubborn. I eventually gave in and took the pain meds. but I still didn't want to, I wanted to take on the pain myself. But it did help me take my mind off of it because I didn't want those looks-like I'm broken even more or fake/sad apologizes people give you I just wanted my baby back. Looking back now I was kinda numb and in shock for awhile because I don't think when any women thinks pregnancy/babies do they think death/miscarriage/still birth/ SIDS etc. but it is a reality for me now. But it is true God had a plan and our angel baby was meant to be with him because Miss Elodie Jayne wouldn't be here if I didn't have a miscarriage. Plus, my SIL had a m/c as well (back in 07) so I reached out to her for help and my MIL has had some too. So, we got to bond even if it wasn't the best subject. Then when I found out I was pregnant again my other SIL lost her son at 20 weeks and my heart ached for her because I didn't realize that you have to deliver your unborn baby and wait hours for a baby that's body is here but spirit with God. I wish I could be more like her, she's a trooper thru this all and I don;t think I could of handle it as well as she did and it makes me want a better relationship with God. I rambled on too much but I love your blog and your story is beautiful and so is giving back with the beautiful pictures you give those families to cherish for years to come. I'm going to pray for everyone today on this day of remembrance. Thank you.
    Karin Marie :)

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  12. Joining you in prayer..I too lost my first baby @ 10wks, same as you no heartbeat and D&C. I can't wait to meet our sweet baby and rock him/her in Heaven :)
    Beautiful post...

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  13. thank you for this beautiful post. i'm so sorry for your loss. our sweet baby boy who was 6months old and due in a few weeks is now in heaven. the day we found out that it was a boy was the same day we were told he would not survive outside of the womb. we prayed and asked God for a miracle but it didn't happen. samuel is now in heaven and today is a really hard day. every day is hard but today especially. my husband and i joined a support group called 'empty arms'. it's helping. i'm also reading a book called 'a grace disguised' which is very powerful. God is good and we know that one day we will be blessed with children. but today my heart is broken and my arms ache for my baby. we named him samuel because i'd been reading the story of hannah over&over while pregnant. God heard my prayer too...and blessed us with a son. thank you again for your post and prayers.

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  14. Thank You for this post. It touches my heart in ways I didn't know possible. My husband and I have been trying for five years between deployments,trainings, etc and have just now have been able to try for an entire year consecutively without success. I feel encouraged though because we're both healthy in our reproductive systems, it's just not happening in OUR time, but HIS. I think perhaps HE's waiting for us because all my cousins, sister, and Mum have had multiple miscarriages and I don't think I could process that after waiting so long to have a baby. My BFF just recently had her first baby at age 37 after years of trying as well and the baby is diagnosed with achondysplasia, meaning she'll be a short person. Her heart is amazing going through such trials as well..
    I think we can all relate in small ways to this posting.
    Thank You.

    http://jenandhermarine.blogspot.com

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  15. Lovely post, Mel. I have not suffered a miscarriage but know deeply the pain of infertility and wanting a baby for long before they were given to me. I've walked with many friends as they mourned the loss of their hopes and dreams with miscarriage. Every child, every pregnancy is a blessing, and we should be reminded each day of just how blessed we truly are.

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  16. Thank you for including those of us on the long lonely road of infertility in your prayers. Infertility is a loss... an intangible loss with no "date" or beginning or end... just a journey of grieving and of trusting God in deep dark corners of your soul that you never would have visited had you not endured the agony of feeling "less than", of feeling like God stripped you of being who you were created to be and of the dream of nourishing life in the womb and at the breast... Our journey is well into the sixth year of waiting, asking, trusting that God has a purpose in allowing my womb to remain empty.

    Like you, I now know a compassion for others like never before. My heart breaks for the sorrow that families have to endure when their children go to Jesus way too soon.

    Thank you for your post today and for your heart:))

    "We grieve, but not as those who have no Hope..."

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  17. Thanks for leaving me a comment. So sorry to read about your miscarriages:( But, very happy to read about your beautiful daughters! Love your blog too, glad to have found it.

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  18. Thank you for sharing such a wonderful story with us. I have been very lucky to not have suffered the loss of a child. My husband and I have our 3 year old, Ava and she is a true blessing. We are hoping to try for another next year. Unfortunately, my mother does understand your pain. She carried my younger sister Tara to full term only to find out days before she was due that there was no longer a heart beat. I can not imagine what my mom went through, still having to go through the full process of labor knowing that she would not be taking home her much wanted little girl. My mother is such a remarkable women for many reasons but her strength and faith is amazing! I will join you in prayer for the many women who have experienced such a difficult loss.

    Kelli
    xoxo
    loveoursimplelife.blogspot.com

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  19. A friend of mine posted a link to your blog on facebook today and the funny thing is that I was supposed to deliver today last year. Reading your story about your second miscarriage just brought it all back to me since I went through the same exact thing with the tests and the ultrasound and the slow heart beat and no heartbeat...i was at 10 weeks also. Thank you for your prayers...Todd and I had been trying for 3 years when we had gotten pregnant and now we're going to start fertility treatments soon since I have polycystic ovaries and one side that's blocked...my husband seems to think i never ovulate :) Thank you for your heart and your volunteerism. It really is such a lonely place when you're going through it and the mourning seems to be forever but you're right that God's plan is not our plan and that His timing is perfect. So I'll just keep waiting patiently. Thanks for your prayers for Todd and I.
    Blessings!
    Angie

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  20. Thank you so much or sharing your story. I found your blog a long time ago and bookmarked. today I decided to check out blogs i have bookmarked. yours was top of the list. like it was meant i read this post.

    I had an ectopic pregnancy in feb. 2009. I had an IUD in but got pregnant. it was a huge surprise! We thought our family was complete, we had 2 boys. I wasnt sure how we'd be able to handle another baby. We didnt have the room and needed a bigger car. i cried for days. we finally were accepting the pregnancy and then i found out it was ectopic. the baby was on my ovary instead of in the uterus. we had to terminate it, which was done with Methotrexate. If i had surgery, there was a chance i could of lost my ovary. I was lucky I didnt lose my ovary. Even tho I was only pregnant for acouple of weeks, i still think of the baby. It makes it harder when I see a friend's baby who was born around the same time I should of been due.

    after my ectopic pregnancy, we thought "what if we have another baby?" We had to wait 6 months till we could try again. we got pregnant the 2nd month trying. We had to go for an early ultrasound to make sure the pregnancy was in the uterus. Now I am blessed with 3 boys :)

    praying for everyone who lost a baby

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  21. Wow...what a post. Thank you for posting this! I also had two miscarriages prior to having my first child. They were both very early on in the pregnancy, but the feeling of a great loss was still there. I wondered what was wrong with me and my body. I wondered why God was punishing me. I was so sad when my sister had her baby just a few weeks before mine would have been due. At the time everything just felt so dark. But looking back, it is amazing how I see things in a different light. It wasn't the right time for my husband and I. There's always a reason for things like this, though we may not understand it at the time or ever. After my son was born in April 2006, my husband said to me, "Just think, if you wouldn't have had the miscarriages, we wouldn't have had Jacob." So true...I am now blessed with two beautiful, healthy children and am okay that I had went through theses tragedies. I am a better person because of it now. I just wish I had known more people that also had miscarriages when I was going through them. Thanks Mel! God Bless!

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  22. Mel,

    How very sorry I am that you lost your first two babies. We have October 22nd in common. Our stories are a little different though we wanted babies right away because we wanted my husband's mom to be able to see her grandchildren. She had several medical issues among them MS. We got married in June of 2006 and after a year and a half we thought about foster care adoption and found two sweet girls. when that fell through 9 months and a lot of paperwork later we decided to concentrate on ttc full time. 3 months later my husband's mom died and we held her wake on mother's day. Yet another year would go by and I went to a new doctor and we tried fertility drugs for the first time and it worked that same month. Sadly just shy of finding out the gender I went into labor the night of Oct 21st. Our son Luke was born the next night on Oct 22, 2009 at 8:56pm. I was due on my birthday.

    So far we've spent 47 months of our marriage ttc, over 3 for Luke and almost 1 year for our second.

    Your girls are so beautiful and I am so thanful their healthy and with you today.

    How sweet of you to volunteer for NILMDTS. We have photos of Luke and we treasure them.

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  23. Thank you for this post....for this day of remembering. We have had 6 miscarriages in the past 4 years. It is a long hard sad road. Intertwined with the immense joy of the adoption of our son and the healthy birth of our daughter. God is big and good and knows more than me. And I will look forward to the day when I get to meet the little ones I've lost.

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  24. Thanks for letting me know you stopped by.

    I'm so sorry for the loss of your two children. I cannot begin to imagine that type of pain. Yet, through it you have brought glory to our Heavenly Father by trusting in Him. Your two daughters are just as cute as can be! Bless you for sharing your grief and your joys. I will join you in praying for those who have lost their babies.
    In His Grace,
    Teri

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  25. Thank you Mel...for a beautifully written post! my heart aches for all who have ever lost a precious child...our heart were broken seven years ago...I look forward to holding our son again in Heaven! I will be praying for you today!
    Many Blessings,
    Jill

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  26. Thank you for sharing this heartfelt post. You are so kind and caring. It's hard to understand why pain and suffering occur. There are some things that I don't think we'll ever understand. You reminded me that God is faithful, and we must trust in him even when we don't understand. Thank you for putting into words what so many women go through and feel when they suffer such a great loss.

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  27. Wow, your post made me cry! A good cry though. Thanks for posting. I had a loss as well this year. It does make me appreciate every day with my daughter and family. I'll keep you in my prayers too!

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  28. I lost twins in September, 1998. They were due on March 7, 1999. I can't think about it without getting teary eyed....

    Thank you for your post.

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  29. Such a sweet, thoughtful post. Praying for you and the many families affected by child loss. Thank you for sharing your sweet, gentle heart. {hugs}

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  30. this is such a powerful post and i'm so moved by the number of people that have written comments about their own losses. sharing the burden of loss is eased when we can do it together. i'm so sorry for your losses, but i'm so glad you let God use them as an opportunity to open your heart to the pain others feel. that is a gift!
    praying for you and this work you are doing.

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  31. That was beautiful...and sad....and uplifting....and heartfelt. I popped over because of your nice comment at Yoga Gal, but I clicked Follow because I love your blog. :)

    And your girls are precious!!!

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  32. thank you for sharing. i'm sorry you had to go through that but i'm glad that you're on the other side and can be grateful to God for your experiences. thank you for volunteering to help others! and congrats on your two beautiful girls!

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  33. Thanks for sharing. I'm sorry for your loss. Your girls are beautiful though! I'm glad your faith brought you through it!

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  34. Love your blog and thank you for this post! My husband and I had a miscarriage at 6 weeks in March of 2006. Our son was born Feb 2007, our daughter was born Nov 2008. We just went through another miscarriage September 2010 at 8 weeks. Hard to understand the plans God has for us. Children are a blessing! Your girls are beautiful. Thank you for the prayers...greatly appreciated!

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  35. i am almost sure my baby was a girl.
    it was the worst time in my life.
    but you said it so perfectly....it made me cling to HIM instead of myself.

    you are brave to post this.
    that is awesome.

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