There have been many times since Audrey Lynn has come and gone that I thought of her or ached for her mother and my best friend/business partner, Melissa, but I was afraid to mention it because I thought, "What if Melissa isn't thinking about Audrey at this exact moment? I don't want to remind her right now and make her sad." But now I know. You aren't reminding the mother and causing her unnecessary sorrow and pain. You're reminding her that you remember what she went through and that you remember her child.
One thing I can't stand is when someone acts like our loss isn't as great because it's a common type of loss. Death is common and people grieve over it daily in many different ways. Just because a miscarriage is common doesn't mean I feel less pain. That makes no sense. I'm not just grieving the death of my baby, I'm grieving that I'll never get to feel that specific life inside of me again. I'm grieving that I'll never experience the joy of birthing that child and having her placed on my chest in her first moments of life outside of me. I'm grieving that I'll never get to know my child. I'm grieving because it feels so unfair to have life ripped out of my womb by death. I'm grieving because I didn't have more time with my child. I'm grieving because at times I feel like my body failed. I'm grieving because something was wrong with our baby. I'm grieving over the plans my husband and I had already excitedly discussed. I'm just grieving all of the things that this loss of life entails. And there's a lot of things to grieve over an entire life that I'm going to miss with my child.
"Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing."Psalm 145:16
To learn more about Audrey and her precious life that was cut far too short, please click here.
Audrey Lynn Kirsch was born on February 13, 2014 at only 24 weeks. From the very start her life was so miraculous to me because she was born alive. Not all babies born at 24 weeks are.
When Audrey passed away less than 48 hours after she had been born it changed me. Audrey made me realize just how precious life is. I can't quite explain why, but she made me appreciate life in a way that nothing or no one else could. Before Audrey was born I had "plans" that God probably just laughed at. I wanted to have a boy first so badly whenever my husband and I got pregnant for the first time. Admitting it now makes me feel stupid, but I would have been extremely disappointed if we had a girl first. I also really thought I could control when we had a child.
Something I'm very ashamed to admit is that before Audrey was born I don't think a miscarriage would have affected me very deeply. I think my response would've been more like, "Aw man. This one just wasn't meant to be. We'll have to try again." And even though I'd be disappointed, it would seem more like a misfortune, not something to grieve over. Depending on if the pregnancy was planned or not I may have even been somewhat relieved if the pregnancy wasn't a part of my "plan." I'm disgusted with myself for ever thinking this way.
Throughout my life I've been around enough babies that I've always felt pretty comfortable with them. But out of the countless babies I've been around in my lifetime not one of them has affected me like sweet little Audrey did and I never even got to see her in person. She instantly changed my perceptions on life. Literally the day before she was born I still held onto my plans I thought I could control about starting a family. Audrey being born shattered those plans. She humbled me in ways not much else could. It was like her birth removed my blinders and I was able to see how irreplaceable and precious every single human life is.
My plans immediately changed upon Audrey's birth. I no longer cared about whether our children were girls or boys, how many we had, or when we had them, I just wanted a healthy baby (or babies) when the time was right. And I suddenly realized that is all SO out of our control that it seemed humorous that I used to think I could plan for these types of things. I realized that every life is so precious, it's never a mistake. If we had a girl first, if we ended up having five girls and no boys, it was because God very intentionally planned for us to have those specifically unique and irreplaceable children. Why would I feel disappointed about anything the Lord blesses us with?
Before Audrey I wanted to wait quite awhile before my husband and I even thought about trying to start a family. I thought five years of marriage was the minimal amount of time we should wait. But suddenly I realized that the right timing is when God wants us to have a child. If Audrey's life wasn't a part of my testimony I can say without a doubt that my recent pregnancy wouldn't have been so filled with joy for the short amount of time I was blessed to be pregnant. Without Audrey changing my perceptions I would have been frantic, scared out of my mind, stressed, and downright panicked that Michael and I were expecting. I think I'd probably have daily moments of paralyzing fear when I thought about how we would provide for our child. But instead I had an overwhelming peace about it all because I knew that God would not give us a child to care for if we were unable to adequately care for that child.
If Audrey had never existed I can say that it probably would've been a lot easier for me to handle this miscarriage. I imagine I would've been affected more physically rather than emotionally. But I am so thankful she was born. Even though it's made our pregnancy loss so much harder, it has also made me appreciate life even more. I can't put it all into words because there are no words. But as hard as this experience has been, it's also been such a blessing. My baby blessed me beyond measure. And she changed me in a way that nothing else could. I know that when I do have a child in my arms I am going to be a better mother because of this first precious little one I lost.