A couple of months ago I posted a blog about our new "reality", which consisted of my daughter being hospitalized trying desperately not to have her baby early and being on complete bedrest. Unfortunately no amount of prayers and trying could stop him from arriving and Jacob Austin was born still on February 10th, and now our "reality" has really changed.
I came home the other day and mentioned to my daughter, who knows all too well, what this new reality is like. I was in a Dollar General Store. I saw some really cute Easter yard signs. The first thing I thought was "that would be so cute out at Jake's grave". I no longer think of any holiday unless I think of how we can include Jake as well, and I didn't even think of how cute that would be at our house.
When we are in a store and see a mother with a small son it's almost like we have to turn on blinders and act like we don't see them and that they don't exist. The pain is just too much to have to look at them and remember that we got "gyped" out of having Jake with us. I'm pretty certain that most parents/grandparents feel this way who have lost a granchild at any age.
It's really hard to know that if he had just been able to live two more days, and had been delivered, the hospital would have been able to do everything in their might to save him. For those of you who haven't been down this path, in the United States a preterm baby is not allowed to be "saved" until they reach the 24 week mark. Jacob "technically" passed away at 23 weeks 5 days and was delivered on 23 weeks 6 days. One day before they would have whisked him to the nursery to save him if he had lived. We see photos and stories of people whos babies were delivered at 24 weeks the same size as Jake who are doing fabulously well. It's a dull heartache that never goes away just wishing the outcome would have been different.
We are just a family who loves children.
If you are reading this you probably already know this :)
We have a strong faith in our Jesus, and we know that Jake is with God now, and we are most definitely at peace with that. I'm pretty sure God understands that we still would have wanted him here with us. While I am on this subject, my daughter shared some pics of Jake on her Facebook page. To us he is beautiful. I know there are those who don't agree and who don't understand why she would post a pic of a baby who had passed away for the public to see. She's even had some people delete her as a friend. Of course they are those who have several healthy children and who have never known anyone this has happened to before. I told my daughter this. Pain comes into everyones life whether they expect it or not. Life has a way of throwing curve balls at your when you least expect it. It's a lot easier to judge when you are living your comfy little life. Empathy is a great skill to learn because everyone will at one time or another feel terrible pain and they will need someone to be there for them as well.
It also really sucks that my daughters husband turned out to be such a downright evil person. He would lie lie lie to my husband and I and act so nice and then turn right around and be so evil to my daughter. So not only are we dealing with the death of Jake she is having to deal with lawyers and going through a divorce at the same time. He called her the morning after she delivered Jake and told her he had filed for divorce. At that point he had been so mean to her during her hospital stay that we knew she would never be going back there, but it's just the way he chose to time it. He was trying to deliver the biggest punch to her he could. Really, nothing could make any of us happier than for her to be far far away from him, so we are thankful in the long run, but because of the way he did it, which basically was trying to screw her over and let him get out of paying any medical bills, it caused us to have to hire an attorney and fork over money unnecessarily(would have been unnecessary, now it is necessary to be able to afford an absolutely fantastic attorney). If he would have just been a big boy and done it the right way everything would be done in a few days. There is so much more to say but I will leave it at this. I am so happy she is able to get away from him, I just despise the way it all had to happen.
Now don't get me wrong, while we miss and love Jake, and are trying to help as many others as we can through what happened to my daughter, we are still smiling and laughing each day, enjoying the many blessings we do have including my daughters five year old son, my other daughter and son in law and their baby girl, and my husband and our many friends and extended family. It just really really sucks to see so many people living their dreams and to have to sit by and watch my daughter having her hopes and dreams get stomped into the ground.
She is in the process of rebuilding her dreams once again, she will be going back to college this summer to finish her Bachelor's degree in Social Work. I have no doubt that she will emerge like a Phoenix from the ashes and bloom beautifully once again after suffering so much pain.
If you are reading this, and you have been through the loss of a stillbirth, first let me say my heart goes out to you, I know firsthand the pain and ache. You are not alone. Please go visit my daughters blog at