On December 26th, 2014 we said goodbye to our first baby, Keller Johnson.
This was not the news I was hoping to share in 2015. Although I know nobody hopes for this kind of news. No family, no woman wishes to join the one in four (or three or whatever the statistics may say) - to know the immense sorrow, grief, and heart wrenching pain that coincides with the loss of a child.
Our sweet baby Keller was and is so very loved. We feel immensely blessed to have been his or her mommy and daddy for a short nine-weeks and while we've felt more pain in the past two and half weeks than we knew possible, we're encouraged that we follow a God whose plans are good, whose love is unfailing, and who goes with us. Always.
"For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses." (Hebrews 4:15) Jesus knows and lived all that we experience, from life to death, He knows and He offers us His comfort, hope, grace, and presence.
And not only does God know us, our experiences, but He has fearfully and wonderfully made us (Psalm 139:13-14). Keller was fearfully and wonderfully made by God. He or she did not happen by chance but was made by the providence of God.
I pray with open hands, acknowledging that God's plans are far greater than my own, that one day we will see Keller in heaven. I hold to this image of Jesus holding sweet Keller on His lap in His eternal Kingdom. And one day we will meet our first child.
Keller has brought us so much joy. And December 4th, the day we learned we were pregnant, will always be a day we celebrate Keller's life. Lord willing our future babies will know and celebrate Keller alongside us.
And while the pain continues to render me speechless most days - to hard to speak of for fear the tears will start again and I'm unsure if they will be able to stop this time - we press on and into the one who goes with us. The One whose plan for us is good. Whose love is unfailing and whose mercies are new every day.
For the mamas who know this pain. I am so very sorry. And I celebrate the life of your sweet baby alongside you.
Today, the day we were supposed to be going in for our first ultrasound, the day we were so supposed to hear our sweet baby boy or girls heartbeat is no longer. In it's place are the motions of life continuing on, work, dinner, sleep, repeat.
A woman I admire wrote these words last week on Instagram, unbeknownst of our families circumstances, they spoke life and hope into a circumstance that feels so painfully dark and bleak at the moment.
"In life, we have plans and dreams and when they don't happen, or, in my case, they do but then something goes terribly wrong, we face our faith, in whatever or whomever, head on...
We are not promised tomorrow, or that tomorrow will look like today.
Who is your rock? Who is your constant?
I choose Jesus."
- Breena Holt
So today. And tomorrow. And the next day. And the next. I choose Jesus.