Mom to Seth

Miscarried March 2006

and Jack Oliver

Stillborn June 30th, 2011

It still doesn’t seem possible that this has happened to my family and I…
This was my 7th pregnancy. Not a surprise, a bathed in prayer, highly anticipated baby. Children #1-4 were all wonderful pregnancies, delivering at home. Baby #5 in late winter 2006 ended in miscarriage at week 12. Up until this time, I’d always been impatient with women that felt the need to talk about their miscarriages, especially early ones. The loss of this pregnancy definitely caused me to feel much more sympathetic to miscarriage survivors.
I got pregnant for the sixth time in October of 2006 and had an amazing pregnancy, delivering in July of 2007. This pregnancy, since we thought it was our last, we decided to try a birth center…almost delivering our daughter in the car en route to said birth center! very nerve-wracking. All in all, another wonderful experience, made sweeter by previous miscarriage.
My husband and I prayed about having our 7th pregnancy, asking God to bring JOY into our hectic home. Since our last name begins with a Y, we thought it’d be cool to give this child initials spelling JOY. When we found out it was a boy, we knew Jack was a perfect fit to our children’s name line-up.
The pregnancy was challenging…chalked it up to being 4 years older, tired, and very anxious. And I was…I was worried the whole time, more so than ever. Reading back on my journal now is almost eerie. It’s like I knew, subconsciously, what lay ahead. My blood pressure was good, my appetite wasn’t too horrible, but the heartburn was obnoxious. I kept telling Jack and anyone that would listen that this little guy had better have an amazing head of hair. (he did…it stood straight up and was light brown. I’d never had a child with hair quite like this)
Baby Jack’s heart rate was always amazingly strong, and he moved, hiccuped and wiggled consistently. My little hiding friend who I was eager to meet. The day before delivery (which was 5 days past my June 24th due date), my midwife (we’d decided on a home birth again, found a wonderful midwife) did a 15 minute check on Jack’s heart, moving him to speed it up and he responded very well. I was dilated to 3 cm. When she examined my cervix and felt his head, he moved away from her. 
Labor started in the middle of the night and stalled mid morning. I mowed the lawn to encourage labor to pick back up, checking his movements frequently, and he responded well, as he always did.
My kids, husband, sister and I swam all afternoon, timing contractions, which were not painful at all but becoming more consistent. We got out at 4 p.m. to go shower and get ready for midwife to come check me. By 5 p.m., I told David to get on the phone and tell her to hurry up, it was getting more intense, very rapidly.  I moved up to the garden tub, which is where I wanted to deliver. Midwife arrived, and so did the urge to push. She told me to go with it. Push. 
The cord came out. She yelled for David to call 911, proceeding to tell me that I had to get this baby out. He slithered forth in less than 2 minutes, completely limp and with a true knot in his cord. I remember looking down at him, thinking he’d start moving any moment. He had amazing hair, his daddy’s sweet chin and long feet like his big brother, Levi. 
This is where I proceeded to drift above the room….My midwife and her assistant did an excellent job, trying to oxygenate Jack and doing infant chest compressions. Local volunteer firefighters arrived but didn’t know infant resuscitation so midwife’s assistant resumed doing them…once ambulance arrived, they handed sweet Jack over and my husband went with them to the local hospital. He was pronounced dead at 6:41 p.m. It still doesn’t seem real…like this sad story has happened to someone close to me. 
The initials JOY meant more than we could have ever imagined! Even though we grieve him immensely, we know he was born straight into Jesus’ arms. Yes, I want him here more than you can even imagine…the stories we hear from people that we don’t even know, who
have been touched by our sweet boy’s life bring comfort. His life was not in vain.
Katie Couric said it best…grief is like a wave. You can be going along, busy, distracted, happy even and then it hits me, and I sob. I’ve wailed and sobbed like I never have. It comes from down low in my gut. 
I praise the Lord for this valley…
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  1. tara bell says:

    Laurie, your story pulled at my heart in so many ways. My son Jaxson (Jack) was born still at 37 weeks ; it was such a blur of moments but I remember clearly his dark hair and just holding him…. Waiting for him to open his eyes. He’s been gone for over 3 years now but everyday I still think of him and how much his life changed mine. I see your son came into this world on 6-30-11 which is my birthday as well. Please know that all my future bdays will now also be thinking of ur son and sending him prayers. Our babies will not be forgotten and forvever loved

    • Thank you so much, Tara! It’s the weirdest yet deepest moment, isn’t it, when you gazed at that little still bundle??? still hard to process. I am very sorry for your loss of Jaxson, and I will be thinking of you on June 30th! God bless you.

  2. Rebecca Thompson says:

    I am so sorry to have heard when this happened. I met your sister during church service about a yr ago. She is amazing and I love her… When I heard your story, all I could think about was my baby I had lost in 2002. 8 wks pregnant and at the time going through more than I could bare..losing a child, even one that I had never met nor really had time to buy anything for was one of the hardest things I have had to endure but actually birthing and seeing and preparing for had to be devastating.. I pray for you and your family still to this day that u will have joy in your hearts and know that little Jack is up there. Waiting to meet u, waiting to feel your hands, arms, and love all around him.. I guess Jesus needed little Jack more than this world.. It is a much nicer place up there anyhow… Just wanted u to know that your story will touch many and open the eyes of those that may have once judged those mothers that have experienced it too and thought it was rediculous to grieve over a child that was barely created…. BUT MOST DEFINITELY WAS… love and prayers always headed your way…

  3. I lost my boy at 38 weeks 6 days on June 3rd 2011. It was 4 months ago today and still hurts as much as if it happened yesterday. I do not cry as much but still do every single day. I am so sorry for your loss.

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