Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Blessings of Anencephaly (an introduction)

I have often said Amelia has blessed our lives in countless ways and continues to do so, even now. A year after losing her our family continues to be blessed by her brief but impactful life.
As we prepare for and celebrate Thanksgiving & Christmas we are reminded almost daily that there is one less baby to bundle up as the fall chill turns to winter freeze, one less rosy cheeked girl in family photos, one less high chair at the Thanksgiving dinner table, one less child wildly unwrapping their Christmas gift underneath our tree...

In my preparation for the holidays this year,
I would like to share both my heartbreak and my blessings with you all.
More specifically the blessings of carrying an anencephalic child,
the blessings abundantly given in our sweet little Amelia Grace.

Let me start by stating that there is nothing I would rather have than my little girl back in my arms again and to see her growing and changing. A piece of my soul will remain empty until I see her sweet face again. I would trade each of these blessings to see her smile, to hear her voice, or to hold her little hand. On this side of heaven, I will never know a "good enough" reason that she is not here. I refuse to believe that it was God's plan to let her die or to harm her in any way. I do believe that our Lord loves each of us and loves her fiercely. I believe our God is an awesome God who uses all things for our good and blesses us richly in both joys and sorrows. Our Lord had great plans for our sweet girl. So although, I prefer my plan of having her here with me, I know full well, that God's plan for her is greater than I can even fathom.

When Amelia was first diagnosed I found myself at a loss for how to pray. Yet, somehow even from that very first day, though I knew God could heal her if he chose to, I felt led to pray a very different prayer. I felt led to pray that God use her for His glory, that He use us. I would pray over and over again when I didn't have the words to express the deepest desires of my heart. Use her Lord. Use me Lord. Use us.
I knew He would answer my prayer, I just wasn't sure how.
It seems strange to me looking back I can only recall a few prayers in which I pleaded with the Lord to heal her and let her live. You would think that every one of my prayers in those months would have been for her healing! My only explanation is that the Holy Spirit was at work, holding me, carrying me and guarding my heart, leading me to a hope and healing that is not of this world; hope and salvation in Jesus Christ.

For those of you who know me only as a Baby Loss Blogger, it might surprise you to know that although I have always been a Christian, my faith is not something that I share out loud in my daily life as easily as I am able to share it here. My weakness in evangelism is not something I am proud of but I want to share it here because I want you to understand that I am no different than anyone of you reading this. I am not a pastor or theologian. I don't have all the answers.

Today, there is a song I want to share with you. The text is beautiful on so many levels. I hope you agree. :)
The song asks a question that we are all faced with when tragedy invades our lives.
What if your blessings come in tears, sorrow and heartbreak?
For me it asks, What if your blessing is a baby with a terminal prenatal diagnosis?
How should we respond to the blessings so intricately intertwined with struggle and loss?

I have been led to respond with joy, hope and with thanksgiving, and if you will indulge me over the next several weeks (each Wednesday until Christmas) I would like to delve into those blessings, one by one, here on her blog.You can think of it as me sharing my gratitude journal with you. I'm going to think of this time reflecting on the gifts the Lord has given through Amelia as a thank you note of sorts. A thank you note to God in anticipation of the greatest gift we will celebrate together on Christmas Day; salvation in His son Jesus Christ.

I can't wait to share more of my daughter's story (and His) with you.

Blessings - Laura Story 
We pray for blessings
We pray for peace
Comfort for family, protection while we sleep
We pray for healing, for prosperity
We pray for Your mighty hand to ease our suffering
All the while, You hear each spoken need
Yet love us way too much to give us lesser things

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops

What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
What if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

We pray for wisdom

Your voice to hear
And we cry in anger when we cannot feel You near
We doubt Your goodness, we doubt Your love
As if every promise from Your Word is not enough
All the while, You hear each desperate plea
And long that we'd have faith to believe

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops
What if Your healing comes through tears
What if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
And what if trials of this life are Your mercies in disguise

When friends betray us

When darkness seems to win
We know that pain reminds this heart
That this is not, this is not our home
It's not our home

'Cause what if Your blessings come through raindrops

What if Your healing comes through tears
And what if a thousand sleepless nights
Are what it takes to know You’re near
What if my greatest disappointments
Or the aching of this life
Is the revealing of a greater thirst this world can’t satisfy
And what if trials of this life
The rain, the storms, the hardest nights
Are Your mercies in disguise

to pause the music at the bottom of the page before viewing!


Shauna said...


Thank you for sharing this beautiful song and your thoughts about Amelia. It is exactly what I needed to hear today. I look forward to your future Wed. posts.

Shauna Cox

CynthiaS said...

I think that is one of the most beautiful songs, ever! It still hits a spot in my heart everytime I hear it. I agree with this post on so many levels and I cannot wait to hear of all of your blessings :)
It is so much easier for me to share my faith in writing. One of the great gifts I received through carrying Olivia was a much greater boldness with my faith in everyday life but it still does not always come easily.
You are a living example of Christ living in and through you. The way you present yourself is a great testimony in itself :)

Holly said...

I think this is such a great idea you are doing this. I may do it myself!

I love the song Blessings. I think many of us connect with it.