Sunday, August 13, 2006

A Cradle Song
by William Blake

Sweet dreams form a shade,
O'er my lovely infants head.
Sweet dreams of pleasant streams,
By happy silent moony beams

Sweet sleep with soft down,
Weave thy brows an infant crown,
Sweet sleep Angel mild,
Hover o'er my happy child.

Sweet smiles in the night,
Hover o'er my delight.
Sweet smiles Mothers smiles
All the livelong night beguiles.

Sleep sleep happy child
All creation slept and smil'd.
Sleep, sleep, happy sleep,
While o'er thee thy mother weep

Sweet babe in thy face,
Holy image I can trace.
Sweet babe once like thee,
Thy maker lay and wept for me

Wept for me for thee for all,
When he was an infant small,
Thou his image ever see,
Heavenly face that smiles on thee.

Smiles on thee on me on all,
Who became an infant small,
Infant smiles are his own smiles,
Heaven & earth to peace beguiles.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Our Son

Our baby boy was stillborn on June 30 at 12:44 am, at 37w4d, due to eclampsia. I was hospitalized for 13 days. Thanks to the prayers of friends and family, and the goodness of the Lord, my physical health has been restored.

I never blogged about my pregnancy—I was always very protective of it. I never e-mailed our baby's ultrasound pictures to anyone—I kept them private and fiercely guarded. Our son was always very healthy and active, but I was fearful almost from the time he was conceived.

If the current speculation about pre-eclampsia is correct, there is a strong biological reason for my fear and trepidation. As a Christian woman, I struggle with the fact that the Lord put the conviction in my heart that I would never see my child born alive. There are days I appreciate the kindness of being forewarned. Other times I struggle, as all of us do, with trying to change the past.

I have debated blogging about it at all, but it is one of the most important events of our lives. Unfortunately, as well, stillbirth is not rare, and those of us who have experienced it find ourselves in a silent sorority. When I was in the hospital, nurses would come up to me quietly and say one of two things: "I am so glad to see you—we thought you were going to die!" or "I lost my baby, too." Even today at a follow-up appointment a medical technician shared her story of loss with me. I feel like a ghoul because, right now, stories like these are all I want to hear.