Monday, August 13, 2012

One Year Later

So it has officially been one year since we last saw our precious Desi.  The past couple of weeks have been really rough, but like every milestone, I am glad that I faced it head on instead of hiding from my emotions and fears.

August 2, 2011 changed my life forever.  That is the day that I gave birth to our sweet baby girl and the day that is listed on her headstone.  August 2nd, 2011 was filled with a lot of emotions and pains of childbirth.  A birth that I would not get to enjoy.  There was no bundle of joy to take home or dress or play with.  There was no introduction of our newest member to Davin.  There was no hope or joy on that day.  There was a lot of pain, physical and emotional. 

August 2nd, 2012, I can honestly say that I felt joy, peace and hope.  I have joy because I know where my little girl is.  She is in heaven and I love the fact that she has never felt pain or rejection or hunger or any of the trials that this world has to offer.  She went from the comfort of her Mommy straight into the comforting arms of our Father.  I felt peace because of all the many prayers that were going up for our family on that day.  I still don't have any answers but I have a peace knowing that God is in control and He has a plan.  I also have hope because of our little Delayne.  I have hope that I will be a Mommy here on Earth again.  I have hope that I will have my baby girl in my arms in a few short months.  I thank God for the hope that He has given my family through Delayne.

In my anxiety over August 2nd, the day that snuck up on me was August 1st.  In my mind, August 2nd is Desi's birthday but August 1st was the day that we found out that we had lost our sweet baby.  I found myself very emotional on that day this year, which I didn't expect.  On August 1st, 2011, I was going about my day completely unaware of what was about to happen.  I went to work, had lunch with Derrick, and basically went about my day until I just couldn't ignore the nagging feeling anymore.  I knew something was wrong and by 5:00 p.m. on August 1, 2011, my worst nightmare had been confirmed. 

This year, I hadn't really thought about how hard that day would be.  I found myself thinking "this time last year, I had no idea that my life was about to change forever" or "this time last year I was being wheeled to a hospital room in absolute agony".  It was such a rough day - just remembering where we were a year before and reliving the pain, not from childbirth but from my broken heart and broken dreams for Desi.

But God knew that August 1st would be such a rough day for me.  I received so many loving texts, emails and phone calls that day.  I am so thankful for a God who doesn't forget my pains and for sending such amazing family and friends who don't forget either. 

Thank you all again for all of the prayers and sweet words of encouragement.  A lot has changed in the last year and you all have been here with our whole family the entire time.  Thank you for your love!!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

So two days ago I had my first mini-meltdown with little Delayne.  On Tuesday morning I felt her kick a few times, but like her sister, she is not very active in the mornings.  I felt her move around 9:00 a.m. but we were approaching 10:30 a.m. and I was FREAKING out!  I am usually really good about internalizing it and not letting it show but Tuesday was different.  It's like I had flashbacked to August 1st of last year and I panicked. 

I drank a cold water and nothing happened.  So instead of sobbing at my desk in absolute fear, I went out in our shop and drank a cold coke.  Sip after sip there was nothing.  With every passing second I could feel the room closing in with no movement coming from my belly.  About that time my Dad walked out into the shop and I just lost it!  Fear, panic and grief all came flooding to the surface.  My Dad, of course, started to panic and I had to tell him that this is a daily fight for me.  I battle the fear and anxiety everyday - usually not in such a public way.  I assured my Dad that everything was fine and that I was just in panic mode and sure enough, 10 minutes later she started kicking away. 

It really made me think about how different this pregnancy is.  I can honestly say that I live kick to kick, never taking the next one for granted.  I know what it's like to not have a "next kick".  It is a constant struggle to give it over to God.  When I get scared, all I can do is pray.  Pray that God is wrapping his arms of safety around little Delayne.  My prayers also end up sounding more like pleading some times - pleading that He will not allow anymore babies to be taken away and that I will get to hold this living, breathing baby in a few short months.  Even more than that, I always pray that I will get to watch my babies grow old, get married and have children of their own one day.  I don't assume that it will happen anymore because it isn't a guarantee.

In addition to giving over these fears, it's really hard for me to think about Delayne's future.  With Davin and Desi, I remember picturing them on their first day of kindergarten or the day that they would graduate high school or their wedding day.  With Delayne, I can only picture the day that she is born.  That's as far as my mind will let me get.  I'm sure this is just my mind's way of going into defense mode and as soon as she is here I will mentally picture her prom night and her first day of gymnastics class.  But for now, I can only picture delivering her and holding her until they make me give her up for her first bath.  I cannot wait for that day!

Another thing that I have found myself thinking about is what I would do if she passed away too.  Don't worry - I haven't picked out caskets and headstones but I think this is just part of my "new normal".  I try very hard not to think about the details but it's hard to bury a baby and not mentally prepare yourself for it to happen again.  What happened to Desi was a freak accident and I know I have a better chance of being struck by lightning than it happening again.  But, it is something that I have experienced and I cannot help but try to prepare myself for if it happens again.

On a happier note, I am way more prepared for little Delayne than I was with Desi in terms of the "fun stuff"!  When we lost Desi at 33 weeks pregnant, her nursery was not even close to being done.  We still have 4 months until Delayne makes her arrival and her nursery is pretty much done and she has a closet full of clothes, bows and shoes!  It makes me so happy to walk into her room!  With Desi, something always held me back from buying her clothes and bows.  I now know it was because we were going to lose her and God knew that I could not have faced all of her pretty things after she passed away.  With Delayne, I am enjoying the shopping and maybe in the back of my mind it's my way of telling Satan - "You aren't going to take my excitement about little Delayne!".  I refuse to let him have any of my joy.  He does a good job of planting seeds of fear and doubt in my head but I can overcome that with prayers and a sweet little dress for my princess! 

Please continue to pray for our family and this little life inside me.  Desi's one year anniversary is fast approaching and I find myself in tears at the drop of a hat.  I have so much excitement for the arrival of Delayne but I am also still grieving my sweet Desi.  It's a complicated web of emotions that I have to continue to embrace as part of this "new normal".

Love - Meagan

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Last month was a very special month for me.  The day before Mother's Day, Derrick and I hosted a gender reveal party to find out if we are having a boy or a girl.  I read about this idea on a blog and decided that was how I wanted to find out.  We went to our big ultrasound that Friday and instead of having the technician tell us what we were having, I called our cake decorator and then we stepped out of the room while the tech told her what we were having.  The cake decorator tinted the inside of the cake blue or pink, based on the gender.  We, along with our family and friends, would all find out the gender of the baby when we cut the cake.  It was so exciting and our families were more anxious than we were!

After a big meal of BBQ and a game of girls vs. guys baby pictionary (the girls won!), we cut into the beautiful Bee Hive cake.  It was such a joyous moment that we were able to share with our friends, family and eventually on facebook with people who have been walking this path with us.

As most of you know, the inside of the cake was pink!!  Derrick and I were in a state of disbelief!  There were many reasons that I was convinced that we were having a boy.  First of all, my cravings were very similar to when I was pregnant with Davin.  I had moderate night time sickness like I did with Davin, but not as long as I had with Desi.  And the main reason Derrick and I thought we were having a boy - the ultrasound technician found the sex in about 2 seconds.  She told us to turn our heads so that we couldn't get a sneak peek and as soon as we had them turned she told us she was all done.  I thought for sure she saw a little something that so obviously belonged to a little boy!

I have to say, I am extremely grateful and relieved to be having a girl.  Before the party, I had said "it doesn't matter, as long as it is born alive".  I wouldn't even say healthy because in my mind, Desi was perfectly healthy.  I want to believe that if we would have been able to catch the umbilical cord kink that she would still be here.  Sure, she probably would have been in NICU for a month or two, but I choose to believe that she would have survived.

Even though my response to the baby's gender was genuine, there was this overwhelming feeling that I would never have another little girl.  I began to think about all the things I would miss out on and how horrible it would be to have my only baby girl pass away.  It was almost like losing Desi again.  When we cut into that cake and it was pink, my heart was so overjoyed.  I have thanked God a hundred times a day, not just for this healthy baby but also that He has given me the opportunity to be the Mommy to a little girl on this Earth.

With the cutting of that cake, a weight was lifted off of my shoulders and a love filled my heart.  Desi will always be my baby girl and I still grieve all of the memories that we do not get to share, but God is faithful and He gave us exactly what we needed.  He has given us another little girl to dream about and to love on.  I cannot express how thankful I am for this gift.  A little boy would have been awesome and I would have loved him with all of my heart.  But this little girl has helped to heal my broken heart in a small way.  I get to shop for bows, dresses and everything pink again.  I get to experience that mother daughter bond that I still grieve with Desi.  Even though Desi took a piece of me with her, the anticipation of Delayne has helped heal my heart in a small way.  And for that, I am so very thankful.

And for your viewing pleasure, pictures of our Gender Reveal Party!

Picture of our sweet Delayne - she was posing with her fist under her chin!

The beautiful Bee Hive Cake

Davin cutting into the cake


We cannot wait for your arrival sweet girl - October 10, 2012

Thursday, May 3, 2012

It has been nine months since the most tragic day of my life.  I remember it like it was yesterday.  I remember this nagging feeling that something was wrong.  There was no movement from my belly all day long, which was not like my little acrobat.  I remember the smell of the room that we were led to in the hospital.  I remember the girl trying frantically to find Desi's heartbeat and me trying not to throw up.  I remember hearing the people behind the curtains next to us as they happily listened to their baby's heartbeats on the monitors.  I remember those four words that have haunted me ever since - "there is no heartbeat".  That was the second time I had heard those words.

I remember crying out in absolute agony - it was the worst pain of my life - the pain of my heart breaking.  I often think of what those people on either side of the curtains were thinking.  Did they cry?  Did they say a little prayer thanking God that their baby was still alive?  I remember being wheeled to our room as I yelled "No" the whole way there...the nurses behind the counter of the desk looking as if they might break down with me.  I remember watching my husband lose it - one of the very few times I have ever seen him cry. 

There were a lot of tears that day.  I was in shock.  I had no answers - what happened?  Why me?  Why Desi?  Why my beautiful baby girl that I had dreamed of and desired?  It's kind of fitting that Desi's name means "desired one".  She was so very desired!!

October will mark the beginning of a new life in our family but there are things that I want to do to remember Desi's life.  Free time will be hard to come by when the new baby arrives so there are things that were started months ago that need to be finished and things that I want to have done that are very special to me.  

Here is a list of the things that I want to have done by October:

1) Finish Desi's scrapbook - I started a scrapbook for Desi a few months after she passed away.  I haven't worked on it much since then because it is exhausting!  I want for everything to be perfect but I think when I try to finish it, I will give myself some grace.  I want this to be a fun thing to do in her memory.  Please pray for me as I work on letting go of the perfection - I just want it to be fun!  Also, if any of you have pictures, poems or scriptures that remind you of Desi, please email them to me.  I want to include things from other people who have walked this journey with us.  Those things are so special to me!

2) Rodger's Baby Gallery - There is a wall in my hallway that I want to turn into my "baby gallery".  I want to have a picture of Davin when he was a baby and one of Desi blown up and framed in a beautiful frame.  This is something that I will continue with all of our future blessings.  I want her to have a visible place in our home for everyone to see.  It's also a way for me to share her story to others who may visit our home in the future and not know our story.  I want everyone to know that she will always be my daughter and she has a place in our family.

3) Birthday Announcements - Expect to find a little something in the mail this August for Desi's 1st heavenly birthday.  This is probably the only year that I will publicly celebrate her birthday.  I want to have a small birthday party for her and more importantly, I want to send out a birthday announcement so that everyone remembers her special day.

4) Create her spot in the house - With the new little one fast approaching, it is very apparent that I will have to take down Desi's nursery to make room for our new bundle of joy.  I had been struggling with this a lot!  It brought me to tears to think that she wouldn't have a place in our home anymore.  Then a good friend of mine who has also lost a baby suggested that I create a memory box for her.  This box would include her bedding, clothes, bows - anything that was bought for her or given in her memory.  That box would then be placed in our closet or under the bed.  It will be her little spot with everything in it.  I can go to that place any time that I want!  That made me feel so much better.  I am still not looking forward to filling the box but I will feel much better just having it there as my little Desi Spot!

Please pray for me as I try to check off each item on the list.  I will never ever "get over" Desi.  She will always be my little girl and I will forever be changed.  But there is a new chapter of my life that will be starting soon.  I do pray that people will continue to bring her up and ask how I'm doing.  This is something that I will carry with me the rest of my life.  It isn't over just because a new baby arrives. 

Thank you so much for all of the prayers and sweet words of comfort.  They mean the world to me!


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

We are now eight months into our "new" normal and I have to confess, yesterday came and went and I actually didn't realize it was her eight month heavenly birthday.  As things get busier and life keeps going, I find myself stronger most days and thinking about the tragedy less and less.  I still think of Desi all the time, but it's usually happy thoughts.  I always think about what she's doing up there. 

In my heart, I just knew that she would be a little tomboy!  I wanted a girly girl so bad that I just knew God was going to give me a little girl who wanted to do everything her big brother did!  I imagine her up in heaven chasing frogs and rolling down hills of grass.  I guess I will have to wait until I get there to find out!

As you all know, Derrick and I are expecting what the babylost community calls our "rainbow baby".  I like this term because I think it is very accurate.  You can't have a rainbow without a storm.  You endure the storm, all of the wind, rain, lightning and thunder.  Sometimes the storm is scary.  Sometimes you feel lonely.  Sometimes you are left with tragedy when the clouds roll away.  But at the end of it all, there is a beautiful rainbow.  It brings a smile to your face to see it, even when you are still standing in the debris of that storm.

That's where I feel like I am right now.  We have experienced such a tragedy and there is still debris left all around us.  There are reminders of our sweet girl, there are times of anger and still quite a few tears.  But, God is faithful.  He has given us a beautiful baby that I get to dream about and plan for.  We will never be like we were before the storm.  The storm has shaped us into who we are today.  Everything after the storm will be even more beautiful, but the storm still happened and the tragedy will always affect our lives.

We are so thankful for this little life that we have been given.  I pray everyday for this baby and for it to make it's way to our home alive.  Please continue to pray for me as I deal with all new struggles as I still grieve Desi and prepare for Baby #4. 



Wednesday, March 7, 2012

A lot has happened in the Rodgers' household since the last time I posted.  Another month has gone by since Desi passed away, which always ushers in lots of tears and emotions.  Another month to be reminded of where she is and that it isn't here in my arms.

The past month has also been very emotional because Derrick and I found out that we are pregnant!  I am currently around nine weeks pregnant.  We are both so very excited about adding more children to our family.  We are excited, and cautiously optimistic.  We want more children and hope that this baby will be healthy and living.  Even Davin says, "Mommy, I hope this baby makes it to us this time."  It's amazing the things that he thinks about at just 4 years old.

For me personally, I have been a lot more excited than anything.  I do deal with fear every now and then, but I also have to remind myself that what happened to Desi was a freak accident.  The chances of it happening again are so slim.  I also have to remind myself of how faithful God has been, not just in the tragedy of losing my baby girl, but my whole life.  Looking back I can see His hand in every major moment of my life.

Even in the excitement of having a new baby, I have gotten very emotional.  Not because of fear for this new baby's health, but just missing my Desi.  I am sure that the pregnancy hormones have a lot to do with it but I just find myself so sad and missing her more and more lately.  With all my heart I wish she were in my arms as we are preparing for Baby #4. 

I have also been dealing with balancing the two emotions.  I want to enjoy this pregnancy and the little life that will soon be moving and kicking inside my belly.  It's just so hard when the last person to do that is no longer here.  My last memories of pregnancy and childbirth ended in tragedy and heartbreak.  I just want to be happy about this new pregnancy but also balance that with the part of me who still needs to grieve my loss.  The two emotions are on opposite ends of the scale so it is difficult.

Thanks to everyone who continues to read this blog and pray for me and our family.  I know that I would not be where I am if it wasn't for the support of our loved ones. 



Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Six Month Anniversary

This is going to be a very rough week for me.  This Thursday, February 2nd, is our six month anniversary since losing our precious Desi.  Some days have crept by but looking back, it seems to have flown by.  Also this week, on Friday, I will be celebrating my 28th birthday.  I use the word "celebrate" very loosely because I am not sure how much "celebrating" I will really be doing.

I am not sure if it is because I am inching my way towards 30 and I think naturally, the older we get, the less important birthdays really are.  We seem to focus more on the kid's birthdays than our own.  But I know deep down, the reason that the spark has been taken out of this birthday is because Desi isn't here.  Just like all of the Christmas festivities, they were fun and I am glad that I didn't boycott the celebrations, but there will always be that tinge of grief.  I wish that she was here and in my lap as I blow out the candles.  I wish that there were pictures to be taken of us with our growing family and of her trying to unwrap Mommy's presents or eat the bows.

My heart is aching for all of the "should have been's".  All of the memories that we were supposed to make with Desi.  I hate it that I only have pictures to look at and a few hours of memories with her in my arms.

My life has changed so much in a short six months.  I now know and experience a grief beyond words.  Everyday I am reminded of this loss in some way.  Whether it is words to a song, a commercial on TV or simply watching a mother and daughter shopping.  I know that I will continue to get stronger and the grief will only come in waves, but for now, I continue to live it in some way every single day.  I do not cry as often, but I think about her a lot.

In the midst of the pain, I know that God is here.  He has shown me so much comfort and given me strength when I simply had none.  God has a plan for my life and I know that He will use this tragedy to bring Him glory.  I am thankful for all of the friends and family that He has used to bring me comfort but ultimately, my happiness and hope comes from Him.

As we prepare to grow our family, I have to keep my ears and eyes open.  To hear Him when he speaks and to recognize the path that He has for us.  I have to be faithful that He has a plan for us and I know for a fact that I would not have this kind of relationship with the Lord if I had not lost Desi.  I am not at the point where I can say that I am happy that it happened or that I wouldn't change the outcome.  But, I am thankful that God rescued me from the pit and continues to encourage me everyday to live a better life as a light for Him.

On the other side of this tragedy, I often ask myself "Am I making them proud"?  I want for our children in heaven to look down at me and say "we are so proud of you Mommy"!  But ultimately, I want God to look down and say "That's my girl!  That is my daughter and I am so proud"!

Happy six month birthday Desi!  We miss you and love you so much!  I am so proud of you!!  You have changed so many lives, even if you never took your first breath.  You have reminded us to count our blessings, to love one another as God loves us and that life is too precious to be caught up in things that are not really important.  Thank you for showing me a love that I have never known, not just the love that I will always hold in my heart for you, but also helping me recognize the unconditional love of our Lord.