Wednesday, February 23, 2011

9 Months of Grief

There are some days where I just seem extra emotional and I can't figure out why. I sit back and realize subconsciously I must be worrying about something. Today, I realized why I am so sad, and its because tomorrow marks 9 months since we said goodbye to Arie James & Hadilyn Faith. 9 months is how long it takes to grow a full term child inside your womb, it takes 9 months to complete a grade level in school, and on average it takes 9 months to plan a wedding. Why can't it take 9 months to finish the grief process?
It has been 9 months since their birth, and what do I have to show for it? I didn't complete anything, except losing another pregnancy. I strive to feel fulfilled in other areas, this blog for example, getting my charity started, and writing a book; but none of that is completed yet, and I guess I won't feel my accomplishment until it is.
It's been 9 months since their birth and somedays it feels like yesterday. I can recall so many details from that day, the way their skin felt when I kissed their cheeks, & the smell of their tiny heads of hair. The road of grief is definitely not a straight and narrow one. It has so many turns, bumps, and detours. Just when you think everything you have been doing for the past 9 months is worth something, you remember how worthless you felt on that dreadful day they told you they wouldn't live but a few moments.
I have to focus on the positive things that have happened to me since their birth. My relationship with Christ has never been stronger. I am confident that I can get through anything because God will never leave my side. Why aren't these things enough on days like today? Why can't I focus on what I do have and realize it out weighs what I have lost? I guess I am allowing satan too much control, control of my mind and control of my heart.
I have some pretty major holidays coming up in the next few months that I have to get through, Mother's Day, their birthday, Father's day, & my birthday. That is exactly how I have been looking at the them, I just need to get through. I hate that, I wish I could enjoy them but instead I just hope and pray they come and go as fast as possible. I wish these holidays weren't so painful, but they are right now and may be this way for a long time. I need to stop fearing for the holidays and milestones that are to come. I need to re-shift my focus back on today and what I can do to better myself and others. I am glad for days like today, I know God is testing me and my faith. The old me, would not have handled today like I have. The old me would have sat in my room with all the windows closed and cried. I would have sulked and persistently begged God to explain to me why He was doing this to me. Instead, I choose to except the sad day that I am having and understand it will allow me to grow. I need to rely on Christ to get me through!

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Psalm 73:26


  1. Thanks for your open, honest thoughts. I know the past year has been filled with pain and dashed hopes, I continue to trust God's best for you and Arie. Greg

  2. My heart goes out to you, Shayla. I simply cannot fathom so many losses and the depths of grief they must conjur.

    I must thank you, though, for putting such authenticity into the tales of your trials. What grace & hope you convey, and in so doing offer equally great comfort to others that may be enduring a similar heartache.

    With your permission, I will feature you & your blog on my own next blog post?

    Blessings & many comforts to you & yours,

    Kathleen Flanagan

    P.S. I just moved away from Verrado last summer, relocating to the Seattle area. Hubby and I are friends of your inlaws, former PVCers, and an ongoing part - long distance - of the Tucker Home Team. It was my great blessing to help with food during your time of loss with the twins. Hugs ...

  3. I CLING to that passage in Psalms...there are so many days it has helped me take steps forward and complete the day. I love you and I'm constantly praying for you.

  4. I pray that you will continue to find comfort in God and His Word.


    BTW, I'm a blogger friend of Sassy Granny :-)

  5. My heart broke as I read this post. You are a brave strong woman to set some of the goals for yourself that you have. Grief has no timeline--I really think God allows us to work our way through it to find even more purpose from our losses. I can't imagine losing a child. Yes, the holidays will bring strong emotions and I am praying you will put wings to them and lift up your children even more as you are doing with this blog. Blessings to you today.

  6. Praying for you....and thanks for sharing your journey, the grief steps of climbing beyond the black hole of it, even if the light seems distant.

  7. our loss was almost 21years ago...i'm eager to meet her in heaven, til then i'm resting on God's promise of His having never left her.
    Praying God's protective and steadfastness for you and your husband...His Yoke is easy; His burden is keep giving it to him and enjoy your days together :)
    His promises never fail ;)

  8. A friend led me here...

    Your grief is real and raw and required. My heart is with you in this season.


  9. I too was led here by a friend, and I'm so thankful that you continue to draw near to God. A true blessing-


  10. Dear ones:

    Sassy Granny led me here. A young friend and his wife just lost there baby two days ago who was born premature [their first].I was blessed with my 9th granchild just yesterday.... but our story doesn't start there. My oldest daughter [who is now a missionary with her family in Haiti] lost 6 babies all never made it to full term. BUT GOD....

    They tried one last time and baby #7, their son, made it through --- then another came their daughter, then still another, a boy, even though the doctors told them their chances were almost nil. BUT GOD...

    I also have a dauter-in-law [the one who just gave birth to her 3rd] who also lost two babies prior to those three.

    Our first response seems to be, "Why, God?" But it seems that the better question in any of these situations is, "What, God? What do you want to teach us - to grow us - to fashion us - for a purpose beyond us?" We may not get "why" answers but we will always get "what" answers.

    I grieve with you and pray that God surrounds you with others who will love you through this. I will see if my daugher can come and visit your site and perhaps you can share with her.

    God is good and God loves you. Even when that seems different from how you may feel now - TRUST HIM even in this with ALL your heart. His Heart grieves with you as well!

    Drawing near to God is the best place to be right now and always!

    Isaiah 26:3
    Proverbs 3:5-6

    Choosing JOY in this season,

  11. wow how sad, but God has a purpose and reason and we may never know why till we meet on the other side ... God be with you.

  12. I came from Kathleen's site. We lost our youngest at age 4. That was 2002. There are days that it feels like yesterday. And then there are many days that it doesn't. Grief is a journey, to be sure. Hugs to you as you travel this road, my friend.

  13. My bible study leader, Lexi, recently gave birth to stillborn, Ruthie. She writes about her journey on a blog called Mourning Into Dancing: You might find encouragement and comfort from one another. I'm happy that you have decided to share your story. God bless and peace to you,

  14. I am visiting from Kathleen's site. Your story touched me deeply. I cannot imagine the grief you have experienced. Remembering you and your husband in prayer in the days ahead.

  15. Bless your heart!

    How could any of begin to understand your pain?

    But I know someone who can, Jesus...

    Praying you feel His love, His compassion and His grace for each day ahead.

    You are never alone. I'll look forward to meeting all those beautiful treasures you have waiting for you in heaven♥

  16. Dear Shayla:
    I came over from Kathleen's page too. My heart breaks for you and for the loss you have gone through. As to the emotions, and the grief... those very emotions were created by God Himself, so He ALWAYS understands. He shares your grief and the process it involves... there is no 'right way' or 'best way' to grieve, only YOUR way.

    I pray for special comfort in the days ahead, and I will be praying for you and your hubby.

    Thank you for the beautiful and honest sharing of your heart.

  17. I share your grief and understand, even though I did not carry one of mine to full term, I insisted on seeing my baby before they took it away. That sight is still so fresh in my mind after 33 years. But when I think back to that time, the pain has lessened, thanks be to the Lord, and I rejoice that my baby is in Heaven enjoying the presence of God. One day I will be there to see my child again. I pray for the special comfort that only the Lord can give you through this trying time. It is not an easy road, but by traveling with Him, it will get easier. Sending you a big hug today!

  18. Dear Shayla, I think most mothers can empathize with your feelings even if they have never lost a child. Your post is beautifully written and honest. I lost a son at two days and later a daughter at 29. Strangely they were both nearly as painful as the other. I cannot imagine trying to deal with the loss of a child without God in my life. I wish I could say you get over it but you don't. You come to terms with it, you go on with life, but you never get over it. That ache is always there, but God gives us the strength to deal with it. May God bless you and strengthen you with His love and constant presence. Prayers for you and your family!

  19. Shayla,

    I am a friend of Kathleens and wanted to come let you know that I am joining all the others in praying with and for you and yours. Bless your heart. I know the Lord holds every one of your tears and knows your heart as no one else does. You are a precious Momma and Hadilyn and Arie were blessed babies! I miscarried my 2nd pregnancy.(16 yrs ago ~ we never forget!) In honor of our sweet baby I bought the most precious Christmas ornament. A little girl Angel. Each year my husband and I hold our hands together, lifting the sweet ornament to the tree, and place it on our tree.... and we remember. Knowing that one day we will hold our precious baby and we will have forever with her. we all do what we know to do to walk to long road of grief. Every one is different. I love how you have shared your heart, your grief, and despite your pain you have reached out and helped others! May you continue to feel the Lords strength and on the days you wonder where HE is, please know there are many who are lifting you up and walking beside you!
    My heart is with you and my prayers too!
    In HIM,

  20. I have been through it to a lesser extent than
    yourself. Yes as a husband and father, not a

    But now that I am away down on the other end of
    life, I can declare that the Lord does heal. That is,
    after his purpose for us is accomplished.

    The present hurts while he is moulding us. But
    we both have some "small angels" to get acquainted
    with when we get over into glory with HIM.

    Praying for you.

  21. I came from Kathleen's site also. My heart and prayers go out to you, my dear. It is hard to understand His ways sometimes, especially in circumstances as heartbreaking as this. Know that today you have touched many hearts though, and that your faith has lifted that of others around you. Blessings, LInda

  22. I came over to visit you when Kathleen shared about your blog. Sassy Granny and I are blogging friends and also real life friends. I live in Phoenix, AZ.

    My heart hurts for you. I cannot imagine carrying a babies to nine months and then losing them. Words cannot express my sorrow at this news.

    I dealt with infertility for many years. However, despite surgeries and treatments I was still unable to conceive. I grieved for my loss for some time. At this point in my life, I have lots of nieces and nephews to spoil and I also teach little children. So I'm fine.

    But don't rush your grief. Everyone is different and processes differently. Be patient with yourself.

    Our blogging community is a praying community. We also love to encourage one another. So welcome to our world. So glad you began blogging. I will follow your blog so I can read more. And I will be praying for you too.

    Blessings and love,

  23. I came to visit your blog via Sassy granny's blog, and I read through your post with a heavy heart. I can't possibly imagine what it all feels like to have been through all that you have. It brought back memories of my oldest daughter's bedside a few years ago. I sat there after she had delivered a stillborn little girl named Hope. That pain was so real and it came back as I read through each of your words. A ectopic pregnancy, a miscarriage and then this stillborn little girl. I say that to you only to let you know I that I know only a touch of your painful journey. Today, she has a 4 year old, 3 year old, 2 year old, and 1 year old twin boys.

    I am so thankful to have been led to your blog and I promise to remember you in my prayers. Your post really spoke to my heart today. You have a beautiful way of sharing.

  24. I just came from Sassy Granny's. My heart aches for you! I lost one baby, but 5?! Can't begin to fathom. I'm so sorry, and I will remember you in my prayers...