Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Well Worth My Now-Puffy Eyes

As you can imagine, I can't feast my eyes on too many birth stories these days.  I'm not naive enough to think our own story won't be completely unique, and I realize we won't know how that story goes until life and time has written it for us.  Still, I find myself thirsty for the inspiration and knowledge during a time when all I can do is wait.  I'm always moved by these stories, no matter how they happen or end.  Today, however, I came across one that made me unabashedly sob at my desk in the middle of the day, made me love life and its beautiful twists and turns all the more than I already do.

I must warn you: this birth story is absolutely heart-wrenching.  For me, particularly, it brought back a lot of emotions of a time three and a half years ago when my precious nephew Gavin was born. My heart broke again while reading this, thinking of all the varying emotions my sweet sister went through that day and in the many months after.  Don't say I didn't warn you, but if you have tissues on the ready and want to go along for a very honest, emotional journey that will leave you feeling inspired after all is said and done, you should definitely go read this birth story.

An extra note
I feel the need to give my sister's situation some clarity.  She and my brother-in-law had far more to bear than just an unexpected surprise the day Gavin was born...there were severe health issues and scary "will he live?" questions to go along with the raw emotions.  And so, when I say my heart breaks reading this story, I guess what I really mean is that it actually soars...  Because our Gavin - against all odds - is with us today, by the grace of God.  And while I will never truly know what my sister went through during that experience, this birth story helped put at least a little of it into words for me.  (To my big sister, Alicia: you amaze me every single day...I hope you never forget that!!)


  1. Holy cow...CONGRATULATIONS!!! I can't wait to hear all about your pregnancy journey. I'm so excited for you!

  2. Great! Now I'm in tears!

    Not because of this family's story though.....

    I've actually read it before and I was definitely touched by it! Although, when I read it, I was actually thinking how BLESSED she was, because I knew what a gift she had been given in her daughter! And, also just how blessed she was that her daughter was born healthy, despite having Down syndrome.

    .....anyway, I'm in tears because of your sweet words to me! Thank You!!!

    I remember our day very clearly and I often say to Joel, "It's crazy how one second can change your life forever!" I separate my life into two halfs: Before Gavin and After Gavin.

    Joel and I went to the hospital to deliver Gavin as two people and we came out of it as two very different people.

    But, despite having changed as a person, I am so thankful for this change!

    I also need to give you some words of praise!

    I clearly remember the way that you treated me in the hospital after Gavin was born! And, I only have words of thanks for you! I never felt that you felt sorry for me when you found out that Gavin had DS and that his life expectancy was uncertain. You were plainly happy for me and that is just what I needed at the time! I was sad that Gavin was so sick, but I was still so happy to have him! And yet, so many people acted weird around me after he was born, like they shouldn't be normal around me or happy for me.....I never felt this way around you. You just stepped in as a person with lots of information for me and a person full of love for their sister and new nephew.....So, Thanks!

    Love you!!!

    And, I can't wait to be an Aunt to your Chickpea!!!

  3. this made me cry like a baby. now you know i really do have a heart. i love how honest the story was. how truthful the mother was with her emotions and sharing them with everyone.
    i'm hoping and praying that you get through your pregnancy in good health and deliver a happy and beautiful lil' chickpea!

  4. I loved reading your sister's comment. :)

    I remember meeting Gavin at your wedding. As much as I'd heard amazing things about him beforehand, I couldn't have been prepared for how quickly I fell in love with him. What a sweet little boy! I don't think I've ever felt that way for any baby, other than my niece and nephew (and they're family!) Anyway, this is kind of off topic but I did want to say, especially since Alicia might read this, that Gavin rocks. :)

  5. It's difficult for me to type b/c I am crying so hard right now. Not for the story, which is precious and insightful, but for my special blessings....the gift of MY GIRLS, first Alicia and then Amy. I am so PROUD of you both and feel so blessed to have you as my daughters (and friends.)

    Conccerning Gavin...well, that little guy had my heart from day one! When we found out that it was another boy (the 4th!) I felt sad, especiall for Alicia b/c she wanted a girl so badly, but I remember telling Alicia that this boy was going to be so special, and by the grace and love of our merciful, Heavenly Father, HE IS! Our lives have so changed post Gavin, so enriched and so Heavenly Blessed.

  6. Oh my gosh, I read this a few weeks ago when Fabulously linked to it somewhere (Facebook maybe???), and I am so very glad I was at home when I did. I sobbed uncontrollably. What an amazing woman and what amazing insight! A beautiful story, through and through.

    I have no doubt that your child, be it male or female, brown or blue-eyed, tiny or chunky (am I allowed to call your child that without being stoned? ;-)), healthy or with special needs - no matter who your special little person might be - will be fully loved for exactly who he/she is. That child is already blessed in every way to have you as a mommy. From the first time I read your blog until this very day, I have been and continue to be in awe at your positive, understanding, and loving outlook on life and on people. You are wise beyond your years and compassionate beyond the emotional means of many. I love you for it, and I think one of the reasons I am SO very excited for you, in particular, to be pregnant, is that I know that yours is going to be one very lucky child. I truly think the reason you conceived so quickly, when you weren't sure you would, is that God knew you were BEYOND prepared to be a mother, had a child all picked out for you, and probably did a happy dance and said a "YES! It's about time!!!" when you decided you were ready. I know that is cheesy, but I mean it. You will have a beautiful birth story and an even more beautiful life story. This I know.

    Ok, long and emotional commenter signing off.

  7. P.S.

    I am further Blessed as I anticipate and await the birth of my first Burton grandchild!

    I love you.


  8. Their story and these comments here are why I personally feel blessed and all too lucky to have you as a friend. And yes, I count you as a REAL friend even though I've never seen you in person. I don't care.

    And your child, no matter the situation, will be perfect and beautiful and loved by so so SO many!

  9. Annnnd now you all just made me cry AGAIN! Admittedly this isn't hard to do these days, but you guuuuys! I LOVE YOU! Thank you for your kind words and your love. Really, a gal couldn't ask for more. (((hugs)))


Please leave a comment! It will be fun for Tate to look back on some day... :o)