Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Four Weeks Ago

Four weeks ago, today, the doctor put little Angelica on my chest for the first time. We were finally meeting our special little girl after 9 long months awaiting her arrival. The past four weeks have been the hardest, saddest weeks of my life as well as the happiest and most wonderful. I miss Angelica so much, but I know that she will be part of our family again someday and I am grateful for the five days we got to spend with her in this life.

Maybe the most important lesson I learned from this experience is that Heavenly Father is watching over us and listening to our prayers. This has been very clear since the first ultrasound when we found out that our daughter had severe abnormalities. Although we didn't have any answers at that point, we knew that the baby we were expecting was going to be a very special baby. We were obviously confused, sad and worried. But as I said my prayers that night, I felt peace and knew that Heavenly Father was watching over us and everything would work out for our good.

And it has. Heavenly Father has been there for us, answering our prayers and strengthening us when we needed it. I prayed so hard that Angelica would survive the birth and that we would be able to meet our little girl, if for only a few minutes. I am so grateful that Heavenly Father not only answered our prayers, but gave us five days of precious time with our daughter. He didn’t cure our baby; that was not part of his plan for our family. But he strengthened us and brought us peace. Our experience reminds me of a scripture in the Book of Mormon: “And now it came to pass that the burdens which were laid upon Alma and his brethren were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord.”

It would have been a lot easier if the Lord had simply healed our baby. But if Heavenly Father always answered our prayers in the easiest way, we wouldn’t learn all the lessons that we were sent to Earth to learn. He didn’t heal Angelica, but he strengthened us so that we could bear the burden. And although we were not always cheerful and patient, I was amazed at how much joy and happiness we felt during this experience.

I am grateful for our belief in a God that can turn a tragedy into a tender learning experience. And I am grateful for the knowledge that this good-bye is only temporary and we will have our daughter again with us someday.