I am still confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the Lord
Psalm 27: 13-14

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Mixed bag of emotions...

So on Friday night Evan had his first "for real" bath! AND I MISSED IT!!!! Again, busy pumping. But I love that Brett and his mom got to watch and witness. Evan normally throws a fit because usually it is just a sponge bath wipe down. But Friday night the nurse sat him in a basin of water...and they said that he didn't make a peep! Apparently he loved it!!! At least there was a picture of the big event! He looks so hilarious, but so chilled!
The nurse who had him that night is going to try to have him tonight and she is going to make sure I am there for the bath!
Yesterday was a rough day. Brett and I went and finalized/purchased Zac's grave memorial plaque for his site. We both felt sick being there, and I fought so hard to keep it together...until we walked out the doors. Then the tears and anger came. Yup...pure anger. I'm angry that our Zac is not and will not physically be here with us. I am so angry that our son was taken all too soon. I miss him so much my heart hurts. And I'm angry that his plaque won't be on his grave site for at least 6 weeks. It means his grave site is left unmarked...just a number. SO...I'm going to go find something in the meantime. I can't stand the thought of this bare site.
Then as I headed to the hospital to be with Evan my heart felt joy and love. I got to snuggle with Evan for about an hour yesterday, and I sure needed that! To feel him against me, and feel his breathing...it was perfect. And his vitals are always so good when either Brett or I am holding him. Brett did kangaroo care with him a couple days ago and Evan loved hanging with his daddy! My time with Evan fills my heart with love and a peace that can't come from just me.
Right now it's difficult because Evan is right beside the next bay to where Zac was. Yesterday looking at Zac's spot really broke my heart. Seeing that open isolette, all these painful memories came flooding in and I felt so sad and miss Zac so very very much.
This is where the mixed bag of emotions come in! How does a person deal with this?!
Evan is doing really well. He is still on just a small amount of his high flow air through his nasal prongs. I think they will try again to take him off it tomorrow. He has been doing well with not having many brady's or apnea's. So that's good! The past couple of nights he has had no brady's. Yesterday he tried to brady at shift change when the nurses were all busy getting ready to end/start shifts. I am convinced that he does this because the attention is no longer soley on him!!! My boy is an attention getter! hee hee hee. But other than that he has been doing well with the brady's. But...KEEP PRAYING about this! He still has weeks ahead of him to outgrow this.
He is gaining weight wonderfully! At least an ounce a day, which is what they want to see. His nurse showed us the chart they keep of his weight gain, and she said that it is the perfect incline! So also keep praying that he will continue on this track as well. We definitely don't want any dips! But as of last night Evan was 3lb 5.5ou!! He's my rockstar!!
One of my most favorite nurses was in yesterday AND was Evan's nurse for the day!!!!! I was SOOOO happy!!! She had been gone for about a week, and she couldn't believe how filled in Evan is getting and how he is looking like such a little boy! She was very happy with how he is looking! OK...the bath picture doesn't give him justice, but he really has been filling in!! :)
So I have to admit that my bible has been sitting way-side these days. Truly...I am not turning my back on God...I just feel a tad bruised right now. And I feel like it is once again going to take baby steps to get myself back solid with God. I know He is here, and I know that He has Zac in His arms. But I'm jealous. I'm jealous that Zac is not in our arms. I'm jealous that God has far too many of our children in His arms. But the other day a dear dear friend of mine gave me a bible verse...and it is one of my baby steps to bringing me back to my friendship/relationship with God...
Lamentations 3:32 ......." Though he brings grief, he will show compassion, so great is his unfailing love."
I know that He does not purposefully bring pain to our lives. I know this is not the world He intended. I know that we can thank sin for this. Part of me feels the verse should read "though the WORLD brings grief"...
And this verse seems to adequately wrap up my feelings. My grief in losing Zac...compassion in sparing our son Evan. And I know that His love is unfailing. I know that it is only by HIS grace that we are making it through each day. I do not carry this strength on my own. It is not by my own doing.
Just because I'm experiencing grief and sorrow...it does not mean that in those moments I give up on my faith and God. Just like marriage...just because there are some bumps along the way...you DON'T QUIT!!! You fight hard, you work on the relationship, and you do your best to keep it going! You don't rely on your own strength. You rely on a two-way street.
God knows I'm angry at Him and the situation...but He will lovingly wait with open arms until I can fully return to where we were at. But in the meantime I won't do anything to cause great pain to either of us.
Just as I am grateful for a God who loves, I am over the moon grateful for a husband who loves me as he does. I am grateful for a husband who is not afraid to talk to me about what he feels. I am grateful to a husband who doesn't get annoyed or tired of all my tears and sadness. I am grateful for a husband who is my best friend.
When we were at the cemetery yesterday and meeting with the person who helped up with Zac's funeral, he mentioned how when the loss of an infant happens it is the hardest thing he deals with, and they always worry about younger couples. This isn't the first time we've heard this. But after we left I asked Brett what he thought about that comment. And we both agree that it's so sad that something like loss would destroy a couple. Brett and I feel closer than ever. But I know it is because of our faith, and because we loving allow each other to be who we are in our pain. We don't minimize the way we cope, we allow and support the tough days. We talk about Zac, we talk about everything. I appreciate this so much in Brett. Because I am the one still crying daily...and he doesn't make me feel like I should "get over it". He just loves me and hugs me and tells me "I know". I am truly blessed to have such a wonderful husband and friend. I love you Brett...more than you will ever know!!
Well, I suppose I should sign off for now. Few things to do before heading to the hospital for my day with Evan!
Again, thank you for your continued prayers. Please continue to pray for stength and protection for Evan. That his weight gain and growth will continue on this awesome path. That he will be guarded from any germs/bugs floating around the NICU.
Please pray for health for Brett and I. That we will be protected from colds/flus. Pray for strength for both of us while Evan remains in NICU. Pray that we will not allow fears to enter our minds, and that we will be able to live each day in gratitude, joy and optimism!


  1. Oh Heather, he's SO sweet and definitely filling in; just look at that little chubby tummy! He definitely looks like he's enjoying his bath, that tub is smaller than our doggie's water dish, they're going to have to find him a bigger one before too long! DH and I are continuing to keep you, Brett, and Evan in prayer, especially for you as you're grieving your sweet Zac and that Evan is protected from setbacks.
    ~Molly/MrsOrman from HP/PAI

  2. What a difference already and I just LOVE this pose.....it's like he's lifting his little hands in praise to God!! Just sent you an email my friend. Love you dearly. You,Brett and your sweet little growing boy are daily in my prayers. I have no doubt that Zac is watching over all of you and smiling and laughing. Missing your sweet angel with you every day too.


  3. Oh Heather! I disagree with your statement that the bath photo "doesn't do him justice". I can TOTALLY see that he has gotten a little fatter! He is SOOO cute! Jim and I continue to praise God for Evan's beautiul progress! My Sunday school class is in love with little Evan. We enjoy praying for him and for you and Brett every week. I'll be saying some extra prayers for your Mommy heart this week. Here is a verse for you:

    Psalm 30:5

    "For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning."

    In the span of eternity, your intense grief and sorrow will be but a blink to God. He knows this. One day, you will be reunited with your family. What a wonderful day that will be!

  4. I've been out of town for a few days, but I can see how much he has grown!! Evan is so precious.

    I continue to pray for you and your family.

  5. hi this is Caley, my mom is Barb Ridgewell i believe she is your in-laws niece. I remember following brett around at family events when i was like 3 or so. we just heard about you and your family tonight and i just wanted to write to you saying we are thinking about you and our prayers are with you. my first born son was born at 26 weeks and weighed 2 lbs. 3 oz. he was in the NICU for 4 1/2 months and just about everything that could've gone wrong did. we got called in a few times to say good-bye but 9 years later he is the biggest miracle in my life. i is perfectly fine now. i just wanted to say that although i didn't lose a baby i do know what you are going through with the beeping and ringing and stress of entering that room everyday. trust me the relationships you build with those nurses is wonderful. i hope things continue to go well with Evan and my sympathies are with you and Brett for your loss.

  6. Hi Heather and Brett And Evan!
    Evan is growing and is just ADORABLE! Look at how good he is filling out..he is just SO CUTE!!! I am sorry that your heart is hurting for Zac. It is a very long road and one that has many bumps along the way. You are wise to take it slowly and to address each part of the grief as it comes. We still do not have a headstone for Isaac and Isaiah's site yet. We just ordered it last week. IT has been SO VERY tough not having it up for the past year. It increases the emptiness of their deaths. I bought a small white cross to put on it and I put their names and "safe together with Jesus" on it...it made me feel alot better to have their names there! I am SO glad it is coming in soon--I will be lifting you up in prayer as you wait. Grief is incredibly hard on a marriage but certainly MUCH 'easier' (right, for lack of better word!) for the couple who communicates as well as you two do! We did not communicate as well and Chuck had a hard time (denial) admitting that our boys even existed. He did not get a relationship with them because they died right before birth and that really caused us so much turmoil. I will be praying SO hard for you both--the Lord brought us through some really tough months after Isaac and Isaiah's deaths and I know He will carry you through as well. You are showing such a wonderful testimony in His mercy and grace-hang in there! And kiss that beautiful son of yours for me--he is so precious! (happy tears)