Grace Shiloh

Monday, August 21, 2006

Our Story

Hello everyone.

Many of you know that over the last two years Kelly and I have experienced various troubles with our pregnancies, which resulted in three miscarriages. This past April we found out that we were pregnant a fourth time. We were hopeful and excited that this would be the time that our dreams of a family would finally come true. We passed the 8-week barrier months ago, seeing a heartbeat for the very first time. It was incredibly exciting, and we were certain our dreams were coming true.

Last Wednesday, however, we began to experience some worry. Kelly was having some issues, but a trip to the doctor showed that the baby was still healthy, and so was Kelly. Saturday night, however, proved to be something more than just concern.

We went to the emergency room around 9:45pm when Kelly was experiencing slight cramping and discomfort. We checked in to a room and again heard the heartbeat for the baby and the doctor and nurse felt, upon seeing the ultrasound, that everything was fine. He wanted to check visually, and that’s when he discovered that we were in serious trouble.

Kelly’s cervix was not functioning properly and the cramping she felt was actually contractions. Considering the advanced state of her conditions, there was only one procedure that was an option, and it provided nearly zero chance of things changing. Unless something happened, Kelly would go into labor within 48 hours, delivering a 21 week old baby that was much too young to live very long outside of the womb. We went to sleep that night praying that our God would provide a miracle. He did, but maybe not how you think…

After checking to make sure that nothing had changed through the night, Kelly was placed on a medicine to bring about contractions. It was better for her health to have the baby quickly. After the doctor broke her water at about 4:00pm, Kelly gave birth to Grace Shiloh Bell at 4:45pm, August 20th, 2006.

Grace Shiloh, or Gracie, as we’ve taken to calling her, was beautiful and perfect. Small and too soon, she was nonetheless perfectly formed and so beautiful. We spent a little less than two hours with her while she was alive, and then she returned to her Heavenly Father, who graciously allowed us so much time with her. We love her infinitely, and cannot wait to spend Eternity with her creating all of memories that we won’t be able to have on this earth.

We had other names picked out, but both of us were prompted to create a new name. Grace was the name we chose for a girl, grace being one of the greatest gifts that Jesus gave us. Grace in Greek means “that which affords joy, pleasure, delight, sweetness, charm, loveliness.” Her middle name, Shiloh, means “place of rest”, indicative of the place she now lives, holding hands with Jesus until we can take her into our arms again.

So many of you that mean so much to us are scattered around the country, and we wanted to use this space to tell our story and to honor the memory of our precious first daughter. Please feel free to leave as many and as lengthy comments as you’d like; I know that we’d appreciate it. Please tell us who you are in the comment as well, if you can.

We love you all very much, and are so thankful that we’ve got you in our lives. We don’t know what tomorrow will bring, but we know that God will be there with us. Thank you all, we love you.

Pictures of Grace Shiloh Bell
(She's dark because she wasn't getting alot of oxygen.)