At some point between our arrival at the hospital and the arrival of Paige that early August morning, I remember Robert quoting Romans 8:28 "And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose." I held onto that scripture many times that night/morning and still do.
After I was all cleaned up our pastor and his wife Doreen came in carrying a bunch of beautiful red roses, that at some other time I would've oohed and ahhed over. Doreen was woman with a mother's heart. Robert and I had watched there two children a number of times. Her daughter felt Paige's first few kicks in my tummy. And here Doreen was looking at me with such compassionate, caring eyes. Eyes that wanted to hold me and make it all go away. She was at my side when our nurse came in and told us that Paige didn't make it. She was there to comfort and to strengthen. Paige lived for 7 minutes. She never cried and never had to suffer. For that we are forever grateful, grateful beyond words. We still hold to the fact that if she had to go, we are glad she passed the way she did. I can't begin to imagine parents who have to say good-bye to older kids.
Even after the devastating news, especially after the news, I wanted more then ever to see our daughter, to hold her, to see what she looked like. When our nurse brought her in to us she was swaddled in a soft, pastel yellow receiving blanket. All 1 pound 1 ounce, 11 3/4 inches of her were in that blanket. We were not prepared to see a baby so, so not yet fully developed, so small. Yet, I felt the same pride most moms feel while hold their first born. As they placed her in my arms I noticed how fragile she looked. Her skin was so thin we were afraid to touch it, but we did. She had Grandpa's crooked pinkies. Something every baby in our family gets inspected for. Her eyes were still sealed shut. Little brown eyelashes were forming ever so sotfly. Her fingers and toes were still partially webbed, yet we could tell they would have been long and graceful. She even had a few wisps of brown hair starting to grow on her tiny head. It was a special peek into God's handiwork, that even at that very development of a baby, just how everything was perfectly formed and protected. We also did the normal new parent, "She has your nose" and so on.
Though we will never know what color her eyes were or what her voice and laughter sounded like. Was she a happy child, outgoing or shy? Did she like to play dress up or play in the mud? We won't know the answers to these questions, yet I have the answers hidden in my heart. One day we will get to know. We will get to hold her talk to her. And that day will be glorious!