As each day passes, I am finding more and more women and families who have experienced losses late in pregnancy, stillbirth, and infant death. When we learned something was wrong with our daughter, we didn’t know where to turn. Thankfully, our answer became very clear. Our church blog had been posted the morning we were going to have the amniocentesis performed, where several couples had come together to help each other through their own losses, while walking hand in hand with God. The day we were told Sephora’s abnormalities were caused by an extra 13th chromosome, I spoke with the woman who wrote the blog, Lisa, through email. A few days later, we were headed into the hospital to meet with the palliative care team. As we were walking out of the house, Lisa called me. She informed me that an elder of our church was actually the head of the NICU department at the hospital, and was also a member of the palliative care team. A week later, we met with the couples involved with the original blog about loss. Through all of this, the only place to turn to was God. Every detail came together incredibly easily. Each act was a sign that we were not in control of our situation. The one aspect of life that connected each of these instances together, was God. Let me tell you, if I wasn’t signed on to my faith before, our entire experience with Sephora, her life, and the people we met and continue to meet, could only be directed by the hand of a supernatural power.
As I reflect on our pregnancy before we received Sephora’s Trisomy 13 diagnosis, I have to admit that I took my pregnancy for granted. We got married in September and pregnant in October. I didn’t experience much morning sickness. In fact, I can count on one hand the amount of times I actually did vomit. I was hungry all the time, and thought about what I was going to eat for dinner while I was eating breakfast! I cherished every little movement and every hiccup Sephora made. We watched the ultrasound screen in awe of the precious baby girl we created together. We sobbed in each other’s arms when we learned there was something wrong. Our hearts were crushed when we learned her internal abnormalities were caused by an extra 13th chromosome that snuck in during her conception. One tiny little chromosome caused our Sephora Angeline to be taken from us only 4 1/2 hours after she took her first breath of life. Her spirit does live on. Thankfully, her story continues to touch the lives of others around us…some that we know, others we don’t. As I continue to write this blog and tell Sephora’s story, I am able to see how many lives are invested in her life’s story. Thank you to everyone who continues to support and encourage Chris and me through your kind words, responses, prayers, and continued interest in our blog. We almost have reached 20,000 viewers of Sephora’s blog from all over the world!
Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for he who promised is faithful. And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.
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