Goodbye Ezraela Eaven Inman (12.31.2013), Momma Loves You.




Last night, January 3, 2014, I said goodbye to my sweet baby girl, Ezraela Eaven.  Ezraela meaning “God is my help”, Eaven meaning “fair radiance”.  I only carried her in my belly (as my 2 ½ year old, Alexandria, would say) for 18 weeks, but to me, her mother, it might as well have been an eternity. 
 

I remember the day I took the pregnancy test that told me she was there.  I remember the tears of joy that streamed down my face.  We kept the news of her quiet for quite some time because we were afraid that we would lose her.  


My first visit to the nurse midwife was riddled with anticipation and anxiety.  I was afraid they would tell me the tests I took had been wrong, but because of spotting and cramping they did an ultrasound.  That day I truly fell in love with that little blob on the screen.  I was only 10 weeks along, but she was mine.  

10 Week Ultrasound
My second visit was more of the same.  They couldn’t find a heartbeat at first, but after a few minutes that sweet little pitter patter was heard.  She was alive.  She was okay.

16 Weeks
I went to my third appointment on New Year’s Eve hoping that I might get an ultrasound to find out the baby’s sex early.  Once again the doctor couldn’t find a heartbeat, but I brushed it off.  I told myself there was nothing to worry about.  I was ushered into the ultrasound room and after several minutes they brought the doctor in.  His ultrasound confirmed it.  “I’m sorry, but we can’t find a heartbeat.”  My baby was dead.  Suddenly everything went into slow motion.  My baby was gone.  My baby was gone.   

My baby was gone.


I was hoping that they could just give me a pill and make it go away, but they couldn’t.  I found out I would have to deliver the baby.  I would have to endure the labor and pain of childbirth without the hope of a cushy, pink baby at the end.  My baby was gone.


The actual delivery was like something out of a horror movie.  The only thing I remember thinking (thanks to the epidural and morphine) was that I wanted to go to sleep and was praying to no one in particular that please could this just be over.  But I could feel every tug and pull from the doctor and nurses.  It was horrible.


Later I was transferred to another room.  After I was situated (and no longer sick and nauseous), John Mark asked me if I wanted to see the baby.  A few minutes later the nurse brought my baby girl to me.  She assured me that she knew she was loved and that there was nothing I did that caused her to die.  


It wasn’t my fault. 


My baby was long, about the size of my hand.  The doctors said that she was truly only 12-13 weeks old, but she looked much bigger than that.  I could see her little nose and chin.  Her arms and legs.  She didn’t look like a fully developed baby , but she was beautiful.  We also found that it was a girl.  Alexandria would have been a big sister.  She would have made such a great big sister.  Every time I think of it, I weep.  John Mark and I held her and spoke quietly to her.  We cried and told her how much we loved her.  Eventually, though, we had to say goodbye.  

Alexandria Proudly Donning Her Big Sister Shirt
The following days have been difficult.  I’ve cried a lot.  I keep remembering her in my hand during those precious moments we had together.  I keep wondering what she would have looked like.  If she would have had a spicy temperament like her big sister or a calm and demure one.  Most of all I keep wondering why.  My life has been plagued with sickness and death, why did this baby have to die?  I still don’t have an answer.  I don’t know if I ever will.  



And to be honest, I’m a little angry at God.  Okay, maybe more than a little, but we are on speaking terms.  The only comfort I can find is that he knows exactly how I feel.  He watched his son die.  Just like he could have saved my Ezraela, he could have saved his son.  But he didn’t.  He knows what it feels like to face that ultimate pain.  And he did it for us.  He did it for me.  He did it for my Ezraela.  I find great comfort in knowing he understands and feels my pain and agony.  On January 2 it rained and snowed.  I felt as if all of creation was crying with me, just as it talks about in Romans 8:22, “We know that the whole creation has been groaning as in the pains of child birth up to the present time”.  And the Holy Spirit groans with me, praying for me because honestly right now I do not know how to pray for myself.  “The Spirit helps us in our weakness.  We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express (8:26).”

This Little Bear That the Hospital Gave Me Has Been Cried on Quite a Bit
At Ezraela’s memorial our pastor read from Lamantations 3:16-26.  He said it probably wasn’t the most seemingly appropriate passage, but in my heart I knew it was the perfect passage.  



He has broken my teeth with gravel; he has trampled me in the dust.
I have been deprived of peace; I have forgotten what prosperity is.
So I say, “My splendor is gone and all that I had hoped from the Lord.”


I remember my affliction and my wandering, the bitterness and the gall.
I well remember them, and my soul is downcast within me.
Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:


Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.”


The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him;
it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the Lord.


The passage speaks of the affliction that the writer, Jeremiah faced.  He was persecuted, thrown into a well and left for dead.  He saw his city destroyed and taken into captivity by barbarians.  This is the first time I have understood what Jeremiah meant when he said that God had broken his teeth with gravel and he had been trampled in the dust.  I too feel that my splendor is gone and all that I had hoped for from the Lord.  But I know from past experiences that his mercies are new every morning.  It’s not morning yet.  And I’m not even sure when it will be morning.  Probably not for a long time.

I Painted This for My Sister For Christmas
As I picture my little Ezraela Eaven sitting on her great grandpa Ted’s lap (something that my Alexandria didn’t get to do when she was a baby), with her two cousins to show her the ropes and Jesus the apostle Peter and even the prophet Jeremiah himself close by I can’t help but know that morning will come.  And I pray that it will come soon.  And when it does those mercies will be shining as bright as the noon day sun.  

Goodbye Ezraela Eaven.  Momma loves you.  

Comments

  1. I know I've told you this already, but I am so heartbroken about your loss. I know this is one of those things that will get better with time, but will never fully leave you. Nor should it.... how could it? It's the loss of your second daughter before you had the chance to know her.

    As always, you write beautifully and straight from the heart. I hope it offers you some sort of therapy in this very trying time.

    Much love to you, Dorothy. You are a strong and sincere soul.

    ~Melanie Banzer MacEachron

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  2. Sorry doesn't begin to help, but I am truly sorry for your loss my friend- and how beautifully you have written about her, from the perspective of eternal life, and in knowing, that one day, you will meet her again for eternity.

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  3. In tears. My heart aches for you.

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  4. I am so so sorry for your loss! We are praying for you and your broken hearts. Losing a baby is the hardest thing we have endured as a couple. Saying God will comfort you is true, but no where near enough.

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  5. My heart aches for you. I have never had the experience to carry a child, so I don't fully understand how you are feeling right now. But I remember when my mom went through something similar and how upset it made the whole family. A lot of people try to avoid talking about the loss of a baby, but I think it is wonderful that you have this outlet to talk about how you are feeling, and that you did. I appreciate your honesty- you have every right to be angry. I would be. But this post was beautiful, and I hope you are able to take some comfort in knowing that your sweet baby is watching over you from above.

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