Thursday, April 29, 2010

Fearfully and Wonderfully Made

Our lives changed forever one year ago today.  At 11:47am if you want to be exact.  We felt like the floor had given way beneath our feet.  Nothing has been the same since.  We had to tell the world and that may have been as difficult as telling ourselves.  But here we are 1 year later.  Completely changed.  Healing.  Learning that life goes on even as one earthly life ends.  We are different people because of the past year.  We've aged but not necessarily matured.  Life and therefore every single precious day, now has more value.  Little laughs and crocodile tears from cute little red heads now have much more value.  Life's sad days are even more sad, but we've found more hope than we ever imagined possible.  The funny things that each day brings are 1,000 times more funny(and we really do enjoy a good laugh in our family).  We have found our genuine smile again.  We have found love that we never knew possible from our family, our friends, ourselves, and most importantly from ous Savior.  We know without a doubt that His peace passes all understanding.  We know that our Father hurts when one of His children hurts and He also heals His child.  He has proved more sufficient than we knew possible.

Today marks 1 year since we learned that Johanna had Trisomy 18. It was a thought incomprehensible to us at the time but 1 year later it's part of our new kind of normal.  I've been asked if I could have a healthy 6 month old Johanna would I change our circumstances and the events of the last year.  And I can finally honestly say NO.  To take away Johanna's Trisomy 18 would be to take away who she is.  God created her fearfully and wonderfully.  So No I wouldn't change her extra chromosomes.  I wouldn't change one thing about Clayton and I wouldn't change one thing about Johanna.

I journal every day.  It's usually short(but not always sweet).  And my journal entries are usually more of my brief written prayers.  Writing makes my thoughts more concrete and it also gives them a permanent place to dwell.  Last night as I was journaling I looked back to last April and I read through the uncertainty. 

April 27, 2009
Thank you for all of your blessings today.  Thank you for keeping the baby alive and for allowing the baby to be otherwise healthy.  Thank you for putting your hand on the baby and keeping it safe.  Please touch the results of the CVS(Chorionic Villus Sampling).  Help us to accept those results with grace and wisdom. Thank you for this baby and for what we are learning every day.  It's my desire for the fluid to dissolve no matter the ultimate chromosomal outcome.  Thank you for your blessings.

April 28, 2009
Thank you for a great and resftul day.  Thank you for our children and for all the joy that they bring to our lives.  Thank you for  the privilege to raise and love another person in this way.  Please provide calm and peace tomorrow as you have your will and way.  Thank you for what you are doing and how you are working.

April 29, 2009(later in the evening after we received the CVS results)
Thank you for loving me.  Please help us to trust completely in you.  Please put your hand on Johanna and have your way in her life.  Thank you for allowing us to be her parents.

April 30, 2009
Thank you for a great day.  Thank you for providing peace and comfort.  Thank you for protecting Johanna thus far.  I want to be able to hold her before you take her to be with you.  Thank you for choosing us to be her parents.

I don't know how I wrote those things on those days.  It's amazing how God gives us exactly what we need when we need it.  I've seen that so many times in the last year.

This is the way we choose to remember Johanna.  Not sick or unhealthy.  But fearfully and wonderfully made.  Made in God's image and exactly how He planned her to be. 

"I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made:  marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well." 
Psalm 139:14


Pam said...

Once again I am amazed at how He works. I am so thankful that I found your blog. I am so thankful that you blog about your precious Clayton and Johanna. What a blessing both of them are.
I work in Ob/Gyn and I think of you so very often. Johannna has blessed me so much thru her Mommy and for that I am truly thankful.
One day, We will see her and that is the day that we look forward to. Praise His Name!!!!
Secure In Him,

Adrienne said...

You're amazing Nikki! Your story has touched me so much and I'm so glad you have shared Johanna with us.

Lucy and Ethel said...

What a year it's been for you. You've handled your Johanna assignment with grace and shared your story eagerly with others, no doubt helping grieving families heal and others realize their own blessings.

May your second 'angel' year be even better :)


Jamie Lynn said...


Jennifer said...

as i sit here with tears running down my face it still amazes me how much that one tiny, precious, beautiful, girl affected so many of us and how those 63 minutes forever changed not only your life but those of us around you !!! i try to imagine often what it must be like there where she is, and i always think to myself that if i am this honored to call you friend and, if i am this proud of you and chad how much more must she feel about it and even more than that how must our Saviour feel when He looks at you and the way you have shown His love and grace during this past year!! love ya!! ~jennifer

Jennifer said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kelly said...

Thank you for sharing this. What an amazing testimony of God's grace! I think I started reading your blog just a few days after you found out. Through this last year I have laughed with you, cried with you, and prayed so so much for you. Thank you for letting me have a peek into your life and your story. You are a blessing!

Rebecca said...

Beautiful testimony.

It was one year ago this last week for us finding out about Olivia's T18 as well.

Remembering with you.

Holly said...

Your words really resonated with me b/c I feel the same as you. I wouldn't change Carleigh in any way. The way she was made is who she is and even though it hurts I know that God made her with a definite purpose and I trust Him.

Sending you a hug!!!