What You Didn't Know About The Birth of Our Daughter

"For you created my inmost being;
    you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
    your works are wonderful,
    I know that full well.
 My frame was not hidden from you
    when I was made in the secret place,
    when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
    all the days ordained for me were written in your book
    before one of them came to be." - Psalm 139:13-16
All my life I grew up hearing "God is good". God is good, all the time. All the time, God is good! What a simple yet profound statement.

A few months ago, I was struggling with this truth. Not because anything bad had happened. Nothing did. In fact, life was good! I was pregnant with our first child, our marriage was (and is still) flourishing, the favor of God felt all over us. But I was still struggling with "is God good?" Of course I knew he was but I wanted more than just head knowledge. I wanted heart knowledge. To know his goodness first hand & tangibly. So, I asked him for that. I asked to experience his unlimited goodness so I would truly know.

Fast forward to March 18th, 2016. I shot up in bed at 2:00am from the pain of a contraction. I had been experiencing contractions for weeks prior to this day but they would always cease after a few hours so I laid back down & was able to sleep until 7:00am. When I woke up I had other signs of labor (to which I will spare you the details), so I called my midwife. She told me that I could be in early labor but we'd have to just wait and see if the contractions would pick up or die off. I explained to her that my husband was at work & depending on how soon his coworker could come in to relieve him, he was 4 to 11 hours away so I asked if  there was a way to tell if I was in actual labor? She told me to call the clinic & make an appointment for a labor check. It was 8:20am when I called & was able to get an appointment for 8:50am. When I arrived I saw the on call midwife who quickly said "oh honey, you are 4 1/2 centimeters dilated & 90% effaced, you're going to the hospital to have a baby". A rush of every emotion possible hit me in that moment. "4 1/2 CENTIMETERS? I was thinking maybe 1 centimeter but 4 1/2?? ...and today is my birthday! I'm going to have my daughter on my birthday!" I left & called my husband, "hey babe, I'm in labor & going to the hospital, you should probably come home now". I ran home & grabbed my bag & headed to the hospital. When I arrived 4 nurses rushed me, plugging in the IV, wrapping my belly with the fetal monitor, taking labs & asking me annoying questions. I was overwhelmed to say the least. I got a call from my husband saying he had to wrap up a few things first but his boss told him to "get outta here" & he would be home around 5:00pm. I was so excited!!! About noon, my midwife arrived. She checked me to see how I was progressing. I was still at a 4 1/2. Hailey must have been waiting for Daddy. About 20 minutes later, my contractions got more frequent & more painful, whatever our midwife & her magic hands did when she checked me must have kicked me into active labor. About every hour my midwife would check in with me and ask if I wanted my epidural, but the pain wasn't too severe so I kept saying "not yet" (That in and of itself is a testimony of Gods grace because I have a very low pain tolerance. I mean, I stub my toe, I'm calling out of work!). 5:00pm rolls around & my husband has made it back to town. I told the midwife that I was ready for my epidural so she called the anesthesiologist who got to my room with all his equipment right as my hubby arrived at the hospital. I got my epidural & my midwife checked me again, "oh you're at an 8 right now". About 9:30pm she checked me again & I was at a 9 1/2 so they gave me a shot of Pitocin to kick that last half centimeter. I started pushing around 10:00pm & our little Hailey Mae Rose came into the world at 11:01pm on March 18th, 2016, my birthday.

When Hailey came out, our midwife got quiet & then she said "oh... oh she's got a little bump there". I couldn't see what she meant until she lifted her up & we saw it. A golf ball size lump filled with fluid at the bottom of her spine. The moment that I had been looking forward to for nine months was destroyed by complete and total fear.

Once our pediatrician got to the hospital, he examined her. Everything on her was working perfectly. She was kicking her legs, breathing well, responding well. He told us he did feel a gap in between some vertebrae & it looked like they didn't fuse together causing spinal fluid to leak & create a cyst.

The next morning, an ultrasound tech came to our room & did an ultrasound on her spine and the lump. Our pediatrician told us these photos would be sent to specialists in Salt Lake City since we don't have any in our town. He also told us we would need to get an MRI to make sure there is only fluid in there and not part of her spinal cord.

The specialist in Salt Lake City reviewed her ultrasound pictures and contacted us. He will need to determine what is in the lump, then remove it. We have our first consultation on April 18th.

The last couple weeks have been a roller coaster of emotions but the peace we feel is unfathomable. God has revealed himself more to me in this one experience than I could've ever imagined. 

There are still so many unknowns, more tests & eventual surgery for our baby girl but this one thing remains, God is good! 
The doctors of course had to fill us in on the "possible scenarios & outcomes", but we refuse to believe anything that man has to say & will only stand on what God has to say. We have complete peace that she will be healed & whole - "by his wounds, we are healed" (Isaiah 53:5). That's a promise, and I'm standing on it! 

My heart is filled with complete peace & even joy, if you can believe that. I know who my God is and what He is capable of. 

Even now, The Spirit gently whispers to me, "Just as I showed the world my goodness through my child, I am going to show you my goodness through your child."

xoxo, kerri
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