Monday, April 25, 2011


Potential: n., a latent (present but not visible) excellence or ability that may or may not be developed.

From the moment a mother's pregnancy is confirmed, once the shock has worn off and acceptance has settled in, she allows herself to dream of the possibilities and that potential.  At least this is how it works for me. A few weeks ago when I found out that we were to expect baby number seven, I first of all freaked out a little, then became nervous of all the large family naysayers, and then I began the dreaming.  The list of names, began that Brian quickly rejected; the research began for the van we would soon have to purchase; the kids began to discuss how the sleeping arrangements would change; I began looking for maternity clothes at the thrift store.
Because, I know that there is potential at conception

I started to ponder the baby's temperament.  Would he or she be kind and tenderhearted, would they be energetic and outspoken? I wondered if this next baby would have Jace's thick tresses and share his sense of humor and compassion for the less fortunate.  Would it be quirky like Brynna and have her passion for God's plan in it's life?  If it's a girl would they be obsessed like Ryleigh with clothes and shoes and want to be a nurse so they could help mom's and babies?  Could it have Keely's dimples and want to help those who can't help themselves(or who could help themselves, but she won't allow it)?  Would he or she be like my Vance?  (Lord, help me!) Fair-haired with an energy for life that frustrates and makes us laugh all at the same time.   Would it take after our petite Sadie and be content in pretty much any situation? I pictured the mass chaos of Christmas morning this coming year and for the next 20 years from now, and smiled. 
Because, I know that there is potential in every life.

With six healthy pregnancies, I always focused on the excellence and never really worried about the second part of the definition, "may or may not be developed."   Then I began spotting.  I prayed, knowing full well that it was in God's hands.  I know my petition was heard, but the request was not answered.  I was surprised by the great loss I felt.  I thought the fact that I had six others would lessen the grief, but it didn't.  I assumed the fact that I had never held the baby in my arms would make it easy, but it still hurt.  Ryleigh's comment of, "In heaven we will be a family of nine," meant to bring comfort, made my heart even more sad.  Sad, that I won't experience life here on earth with that baby, because my children no matter how crazy they drive me or how angry I get with them, they bring me immense joy.  I hold tight to the belief that God is at work in this situation and to Him I give it so that He can use it for good. 
Because, I know that there is potential in every situation and only with Him can it truly develop.


Annette W. said...

Wow. Despite your grief (or maybe due to it) you wrote this post beautifully. Your loss is real, as is your sadness, and yet you still allow God to be God. As it should be.

Sorry to hear you lost your baby. May God bring you comfort.

Malty Mama said...

I love the woman I've gotten to know over the past year. Now I am bundling up all that positive light and sending it to you, as there are no actual words or actions that can soothe a hurt like this. There is only love.

Lorraine Avila said...

I am so sorry u had to go through this great loss. I have also been threw this and i know it is very difficult to get through but as i know you already know when we give it up to god he always comes through for us in one way for another. You are in my thoughts and prayers :-)

fiveofakind said...

I started following your blog because I am inspired by your personal perspectives, close-knit family and faith that your posts always reflect. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. Take care.

Riahli said...

I'm sorry for your loss. Every life is so precious and does have so much potential that it is understandable that you are grieving so. This post was so beautifully written, I don't believe I could ever write about such an experience so eloquently. I was afraid to leave a comment because the words seemed hard to find, and I don't know that I found them, but I wanted you to know that I feel your sadness and you are in my thoughts and prayers.

Tonya said...

Oh Erica. I haven't checked your blog in a while. I'm so sorry to hear of your loss. I've lost 2 babies myself, so know all that you are feeling. My heart aches for you all. Those babies are precious - each and every one of them. My Beka likes to talk about the babies we've never met. I guess in heaven we will be a family of 9 too. Love you Erica!!!!!

Sarah said...

I'm so sorry. (((hugs)))