Through the Dark Valley

Through the Dark Valley

by Julie Erickson

rocky-valley-1340724-639x426When I first learned of Jordyn’s fatal diagnosis in November of last year, the perfectionist and workaholic in me took over almost immediately. Though I was heartbroken that Jordyn would not be with us to grow up, I imagined the good that could come of her short time on earth. I pictured building a legacy in her name which included a charity for fetal heart research, a blog to tell her story, and many speaking, fund raising, and mentoring efforts to support those who were hurting in the same way I was. Though I could not save her life, through whatever power I had I needed her memory to be preserved.

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Welcome to Paradise

Welcome to Paradise

by Sarah Grandfield-Connors

Hannah's Heart and love, babyloss, baby loss, pregnancy loss, stillbirth, miscarriage, 1There is a short essay called “Welcome to Holland” which is meant to comfort a parent who has recently received information that their child has some type of developmental disability. The premise is that you have booked a trip to Italy, but your plane was re-routed to Holland. You miss the idea of Italy, the culture of Italy may always be a mystery with its own language and art — but Holland is stunning itself. Beautiful but different.

When we first understood that things with Beatrix may not go well someone sent me this essay. It was welcome as an affirmation of the life I was embarking on — the life I assumed included a child with Down Syndrome — because whenever there’s a problem in pregnancy, that’s the “worst” that could happen, right?

 (Disclaimer here — I was excited about the possibility… there was a not so tiny part of me that was thrilled that I would be given the opportunity to mother a baby with exceptional chromosomes. I do not see a baby with Down Syndrome as a negative. It’s just the first thing that people imagine when they learn that their baby is going to be atypical.)

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She Brings Joy

She Brings Joy

by Sarah Grandfield-Connors

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I have had a difficult time writing something out for this project, as I am going through a low time. Even after four years, there are low times, when the sadness leaks out of you and touches everything around you. I wanted to begin with an introduction and a background to my daughter’s story. I hope to write here again, and would love to know that when I do- anyone reading will see the human being that my baby was, instead of the still images of a photograph.

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Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

by Julie Erickson

field-flower-1-1551147-639x426September 29, 2014 marks a turning point in my life: what was supposed to be a quick ultrasound on that day just as suddenly became a nonstop nightmare. Not 24 hours before, my OB/GYN had detected a faint noise in my baby’s heart tones that seemed a bit strange at a routine checkup. She had almost dismissed it and sent me on my way, but at the last second had decided that I should be sent for a scan, “just to be sure it was nothing.” As I left her office that afternoon, she encouraged me not to have fear, as she felt it was likely just that: nothing.

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