Saturday, December 19, 2009

Change of Plans

So, in April I wanted to do this run called the Ragnar Relay. I can't even explain to you how awesome it was going to be. A team of twelve runs 177 miles down the California coast in 24 hours. Each team member runs three different legs of the race for a total of 15 miles a piece. I have never done anything like it before. It sounded so adventurous and bold. I had my heart set on it. It was a perfect perseverance project...

But plans have changed.

I have a different perseverance project now.

One that was just sort of handed to me. An unexpected one that cannot be measured in miles nor does it have a definitive finish line. It is a completely different kind of race.

I am one of those people who always knows what the next step is going to be. I have owned (and used) a day planner since I was in junior high. I still have the day planner I used when I was pregnant with Aubrey and Ellie. On October 7th, 2008, are written the words Babies Due. I kept it and put it in their keepsake box because it represents their existence and presence in my life at the time. That planner holds the six months of hopes, dreams and plans I had with them. Sadly on July 11, 2008 are written the words Aubrey and Ellie's Funeral 11am. I certainly didn't plan that.

That was the day it finally sunk it that not all made plans happen. Having my heart set on something is not enough. Writing it in my day planner does not make it so.

Yet even today, after all I have been through, when plans change, I am still surprised. And it takes me a while to adjust. Even when it is good news.

So, in April, I won't be running the Ragnar Relay. Not because I don't want to, but my pregnant belly might be in the way!

Yes you heard right. I am pregnant. Due August 6th, 2010. How is that for a change of plans?

Pregnancy is my next perseverance project. It will be the hardest yet. Makes a half marathon seem easy.

Pregnancy after loss is entirely different. As you can imagine, I am thrilled...and nervous...and excited...and scared. And I think I have every right to be all those things. But mostly I'm soaking in every second of it (morning sickness and all) because, well, I just can't help it.

It is just who I am.

I love my children and am thankful for them whether I have them for a minute or a lifetime. The very idea of them inspires hope that even the scariest of outcomes cannot squelch. I am not an idealist, life has taught me about its harsh realities. I know better than most what could happen. I cannot forget what I have endured.

But I also know what else could August I could be holding a healthy, beautiful newborn in my arms...or maybe two? I just don't know the surprises that may be in store.

Being pregnant again makes me miss my girls more than ever though. I have been caught off guard by the strength of the emotions it has stirred up. I am still so sad. I am learning, yet again, how to live after loss. It never gets easier. There always seems to be something that triggers more pain.

But this time, along side the sorrow, is immeasurable joy. A new baby is on the way! Hope is literally growing inside me. It's amazing.

I will keep you posted as I learn more about the baby in my belly. So far I just feel icky and tired. But that is normal for me. My son seems certain that its a girl. I explained to him that God decides and he confidently told me that he is going to tell God to make it a girl. My husband is working hard to convince my son that he wants a baby brother. But I think we all agree that any baby we get to keep is fine with us.

Please keep my baby in your prayers.

Merry Christmas everyone!


  1. Rachel, what a lovely post! Your words are amazing. I too kept the pages to my planner as I wrote all about being pregnant in it along with the appointments and their due date. I like how you said not all made plans happen. So, so true.

    Congratulations and that baby of yours will be in my prayers! What exciting news!

  2. I am so happy for you!!!! Congrats on your new journey, I am bound to LOVE being pregnant, through it all. ((hugs))

  3. Oh WOW!!! Congrats, Rachel!!! I am soo sooo happy for you :) Praying for your hope and for twins!

    "this time, along side the sorrow, is immeasurable joy" - this couldn't be more true!

  4. Hi Rachel,
    I don't believe we know each other. I found your blog here on Jen's page (re: Lydia). I read your story and I am so terribly sorry for your losses. We lost our daughter Oct. 29, 2007 at 20 weeks due to pregnancy complications. We went on to have another baby- a boy- and as you said, along with the joy, there are so many other raw emotions you are not expecting. I was so scared of getting too excited to be pregnant again for fear we'd lose another one, but I just had to keep clinging to the promises God gave me in His Word and hope in Him. And I prayed daily!
    Congrats on your pregnancy! If you ever need someone to talk to, I'm here. Blessings to you and your family!

  5. Rachel, I am wishing and hoping for the best for you and your baby or babies. I am happy for you!

  6. Rachel, I am beyond excited for you, Kirk and Dustin! What a wonderful blessing! Praying for a smooth pregnancy. I hope you have a great Christmas holiday with the family. Thinking of you and praying...

  7. Sending hopes, hugs, peace, and prayers! Congratulations!

  8. I'm so excited for you Rachel! That is a wonderful change in plans indeed.:) Praying for you and the sweet hope growing inside you! My son is convinced we're having a girl as well, and we'll see if he's right in January.

  9. So incredibly happy for you and Kirk, Rachel! I've been reading your blog for a while now - you are a beautiful writer. Merry Christmas to all of you!


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