Mom to Molly Susan
Born July 22nd, 2010 and Went Back to Heaven on July 23rd, 2010
Rexburg, Idaho

I was a couple days short of 37 weeks pregnant. My belly was growing bigger and bigger and sleeping was become more and more difficult. Poor Lucas had to try and sleep next to me with my constant rearranging and repeated trips to the restroom. As hard as it was to get no sleep, I loved being pregnant. I loved feeling our little girl wiggle around in my belly. I loved watching the way it changed shape and would dance as she did.

Of course, as most mothers do, I was enormously relieved every time I felt her kick or roll. It seemed that if I could feel her moving that meant I could be sure that she was okay. Each time I had an appointment Lucas and I would both go, excited to find out if I was measuring right, if she was positioned how we guessed she was, and if we could guess my weight right.

My 37 week appointment was actually a few days early, and it went really well. The baby’s heart rate was strong and so was mine. She was measuring a little small but she had done the same the week before. Everything was normal, and we left feeling confident and happy. Personally I thought I was a week further along in the pregnancy than the doctors did so I thought I was almost 38 weeks and ready to pop any day. We constantly entertained daydreams of the big “water breaking” moment and how we would rush off to meet the little girl we have been promised is totally healthy.

That night when Lucas and I got in bed I layed on my side with my belly against his back and she started moving like crazy. She was kicking and rolling, spinning and turning so much even Lucas turned from feeling his back getting kicked and said “What is she doing in there?!” We laughed about how much she was moving- it was the most I had ever felt.

The next day things were normal, we went through the day and I am not sure if I felt her moving much. It was so normal to feel her that I didn’t notice every single movement anymore. I dont remember exactly when the last time I felt her kick was. Lucas was studying for finals and we were concentrating on deciding when and if I would be going to work the next couple days or letting someone cover my shifts. We were really distracted and went to bed.

In the morning we went about our normal morning stuff, I drove Lucas to class to take his last finals. We cleaned up the apartment a little bit. While going about the morning I realized that I hadn’t felt the baby move in a while, and couldn’t remember if I felt her the night before. I was sure I probably had, but couldn’t be sure. I kept my mind on my belly trying to feel for any roll or kick just to be sure. I was thinking maybe she was extra tired and sleeping a lot from her crazy kicking night a couple nights ago. I mentioned to Lucas I was a little worried about it and he said to keep trying to feel her, lay on my back and drink cold water. I kept going about my day but became increasingly worried.

I was excited because I had been waiting all month for a lady from my home ward to come into town because she was bringing us our baby crib! I was so excited to set it up and make it look cute and ready for our little girl! Lucas and I spent his precious studying time being too excited to wait once the crib was dropped off and we set it up right away. It looked so cute, I kept imagining that in just a few weeks or even days I would be laying our baby down to sleep there. I was completely thrilled. I took Lucas to his last class and decided that when I got home I would take a bath or lay down and make sure I was paying closer attention so I could feel her moving.

I got home and layed on the floor next to the crib with my hand on my stomach. I pushed in the spots where she usually is and I could feel her but this time she felt really still and didn’t kick me back. They say that babies run out of room and don’t move much as they get bigger, and before birth they often don’t move very much at all as they drop. I was hoping that was the case but couldn’t help but feel a bit of panic rise.

I stayed on the floor for an hour.


She’s probably sleeping. She has to be asleep.

I got in the bath and felt around to feel any sign of movement.

Was that movement? Did I feel her?

I wasn’t sure If I was feeling little movements or if I was making it up.

Stay calm. Stress isn’t good for her

I got out of the bath more unsure. I layed on the bed for another hour.


I decided that as soon as Lucas got home, if I hadn’t felt anything, we would go to the doctor and see if he would listen for her heartbeat.

I tried waiting but after a few minutes I had no patience and decided to go myself. Unfortunately, I hadn’t realized that of course the doctor office would be closed at 7 pm. So I drove to Walgreens to see if they might sell a home doppler device so I could listen for her heartbeat myself. I went in and looked and couldn’t find one and went out to my car. I was right by the hospital.

I told myself I was probably freaking out for no reason, and if I went to the hospital I would end up racking up tons of bills for tests or just even for asking a doctor to listen for a heartbeat and we would end up broke because I simply freaked out when everything was fine.

I called my mom and as soon as she answered I started crying.

“Mom. I can’t feel her. I can’t feel her moving at all. It’s been since yesterday I think. I’m scared. I need to feel her move” I cried and cried. She tried to keep me calm and reassure me that babies don’t move around as much when you are so close to them being delivered. I tried to stay as sure. I decided not to go into the hospital until I talked to Lucas and waited about 10 minutes then went and picked him up from class. I was bawling, terrified that I hadn’t felt her.

I told him I thought we might need to go to the hospital, but we assumed I would feel it and went home to pray that we would feel it, or she would kick just once to let us know she is okay. We prayed together that we would feel her, then I layed on the floor and we kept our hands on my belly covering the whole thing for a while, and just waiting but there was no kick. There was no denying it now, I could find her little bottom, or her back, and I pushed on it and she didn’t feel THERE. This wasn’t the baby I had played with for the last few months. Lucas felt the difference too and I saw the worry in his eyes.
We decided after talking to and calling the hospital that we needed to go to the hospital. We went right away. I was still in my junk errand running clothes but I didn’t care.

We drove to the hospital and went straight up to the labor and delivery area. Lucas started signing a bunch of papers and I went back into a room with a nurse.

She had me lay on the bed and she lifted my shirt and put the gel on my stomach and after a second we heard a steady

SWISH SWISH SWISH SWISH. It was the most beautiful sound I had ever heard. I was so relieved I let myself not feel guilty for freaking out and freaking Lucas out enough to come to the hospital. I layed there for a second and listened to her heartbeat. Then the baby moved and the nurse couldn’t find it again. She wiggled my stomach and finally found the heartbeat but it had dropped from normal level down to 60 bpm. The nurse said “We need to get this baby out”

What did she just say? I thought she was fine. We heard her heart, she’s fine. Is she just bored and wants to deliver a baby? Keep her in there if she’s fine!

As if Lucas could hear my thoughts he said “I don’t think she needs a C-section. We need an ultrasound”

The nurse called for the other nurses to call our doctor and tell him to come immediately and that this baby needed to come out now. We were in shock, and didn’t want to believe this nurse knew what she was talking about. We kept insisting on getting an ultrasound.

The doctor was there in just a few seconds and the nurse told him the baby has almost lost her heartbeat and needs to come out. She thought maybe the cord was around her neck. The Doctor grabbed the machine and gave me a quick ultrasound and after looking at the screen for a second he turned to us and said

“That heartbeat is very very slow. It’s barely there. We have to get the baby out now, but I can’t promise it will be soon enough. I’m sorry, I just can’t promise the baby will make it.”

Suddenly I realized how serious they were. I instantly started shaking, and the rest seems a blur. In a matter of seconds the nurse had all my clothes off and was putting in a catheter. There was an IV in my arm and I was suddenly being rolled down the hall. I asked “Can Lucas come in? I need Lucas” They told me “He just needs to change his clothes” I was too scared to cry. I was too alone to feel anything. I just stared at the door and hoped that Lucas would walk in. But he didn’t and I said again “Where is Lucas? I need him!” They said “He’s outside. He’s waiting outside” I wanted to scream, but knew my baby was in trouble and tried to lay still so they could prepare for the C-section. I was shaking so bad I felt like I would fall off the table.

I hear “Where is the anesthesiologist?” and the horrible response of “He’s not here yet. We need to get this baby out. We have to start” and a nurse says “Has she had an epidural?” “No, we have to start, we’ll try and numb her”

I am terrified hearing this, but I am more terrified that my baby isn’t breathing. I concentrate on being strong for her as I feel the cold get rubbed on my belly. Then I feel a needle as they tried to numb my skin if they couldn’t numb me deep. I feel a sharp pain and they say they made the incision. There is a huge amount of pain as I feel a ton of pressure and what feels like twisting. I said “Ow, ow I feel that! That hurts. It hurts.” I tried to lay still for the baby.

save her

Suddenly a man appears above my head and says “We’re going to put you to sleep now” and I nodded happy that the pain would end soon. There was a taste, as though I had liquid pennies in my mouth, and I was gone.

Lucas waited outside and called my parents and his to let them know there was an emergency, and we didn’t know much but they were mid surgery now. He was scared. He told me that sitting outside that room not knowing if his wife or his baby were okay was “Hell. It was just hell.”

I woke up and slowly came to realize that I was no longer being operated on just as I was being wheeled to the recovery room. The nurses moved me to a bed and cleaned me up and turned me and I guess I turned to Lucas in my drugged up state and said “Did you just see my bum?” he said “Yes” and I said “Lucky guy.” Making jokes of course until I remembered what had happened.

Lucas wrote this: “I came in a minute later and they said I was there and you told me you loved me. I explained to you that Molly wasn’t doing so well but it took you a while before you started to understand things. I went back and took pictures and showed them to you and we named her. I hated sitting out there waiting, not knowing how you were and not hearing our baby cry. I called my mom, I called your mom, and I kept them updated between tears.”

I remember waking up and asking if the baby was safe, if she made it, if she was okay. I was worried about Lucas, I was worried our parents didn’t know their granddaughter was here. Lucas explained to me what he knew.

The baby was taken out in just a few minutes, She was born at 9:59 pm and when they got her out she wasn’t breathing. The umbilical cord was too skinny and it was wrapped around one of her ankles. She wasn’t getting enough oxygen, and she had to be given CPR immediately after she was born. They were able to revive her and get her heart to start but she was on oxygen and had not moved on her own. She also had not cried. We didn’t know how she was doing, but she was going to have to be transported to Idaho Falls to the NICU there where they would test her. We were told she would likely have brain damage from not having oxygen, and it seemed she was struggling in other ways as well.

We both cried and were in shock. Our little girl! Lucas was able to go to the NICU and take pictures of her, and when he brought the phone to me I looked and saw the most beautiful little girl I had ever seen in my life. That’s my daughter. My baby! We decided to name her Molly Susan. We tried to be happy but we were so scared we just held hands and sat together and listened to what updates came.

They said they needed to take her to Idaho Falls soon and that Lucas would probably go down with her. I agreed that her Dad should be with her. I knew there was a chance she wouldn’t make it and I suddenly feared that she would not survive and I would have never seen her. I asked if I could please see her before they leave, and they understood and brought her to my room a few minutes later.

They had to lift my bed up when they wheeled in this big box covered in wires and tubes of oxygen. I saw a tiny little leg and immediately started crying. They got her next to my bed so I could see her face.

I have never felt anything more powerful in my life. I love her. She is perfect and beautiful. I reached in and touched her little foot. It was so soft, she looked so absolutely perfect that it was hard to believe she was struggling to survive. She looked peaceful. I touched her hair and cried. I whispered to her. “Fight hard Molly, be strong for mommy. I love you” Then I feared I was taking away her time to get the help she needed and I blew kisses to her and said “take her now, save my baby!” I looked at Lucas, he had tears falling down his face. He sat next to me and held my hands and we both cried.

We kept getting updates the nurses were trying to be hopeful and would tell us that she was doing fine. Then the emergency team leader came in and explained the truth.

She didn’t have enough oxygen for a long time, her lungs are fine but she is on oxygen. Her organs are all failing except her heart and lungs it seems. She likely has severe brain damage. They have no idea until the tests how severe it is.

Lucas left a few minutes later to follow her to Idaho Falls. I sat in the hospital room and cried and cried. The nurses told me to sleep but I just sat and stared.

My whole body was shaking, and the nurses kept coming in and putting blankets on me, and pushing on my stomach and cleaning my bleeding.

I waited in complete shock to hear news from Lucas. After about 45 minutes I got a call from him that he was there.

He was crying. I could tell he wasn’t okay. “Is she okay, Lucas. Is Molly okay?”
He said he spoke with the Dr. and it’s really bad. Through his tears he explained to me that Molly was functioning with the help of the machines, but that she had no brain activity. She is pretty much dead already, and we only have a few really hard options. She could live to be about 1 using the help of feeding tubes and breathing machines, but her mind is gone. The lack of oxygen left her completely brain dead. Or we could try and get me to the hospital and we could say goodbye to her, and they would take her off the machines. We cried and cried and both knew that we would not selfishly keep her body alive when she was mentally already gone. We knew what we had to do. The doctor said that whatever happened to the cord happened for reasons we didn’t know. It may have been that it was too skinny, but it also may have gotten twisted or kinked. All we know is that it happened a few days ago. There was no way the doctors could have known this would happen, and no way we could have known in time. Lucas said he would talk to the doctors about how to get me to Molly so I could hold her before we say goodbye. He promised to call me back and said he loved me.

I felt as though someone filled me with cement. My baby is already gone. My Molly! How could this happen?!

There are no words to explain how it felt to know that she was gone. That the baby who was okay two days ago was gone now. That I was going to ge one moment with her, and it would be the moment I say goodbye to her. I cried harder than I thought possible.

Lucas wrote this:
After I talked with Dr. Gates, I was able to go sit by her and touch her hands and feet and head. It’s those times when you cry so hard you feel like your head will explode. I felt like that was the time I said my goodbye, but I could not stop thinking of Amber and getting back to her.”

He called me and let me know that they were going to drive Molly back to me since it was dangerous to make me travel right after surgery. He said he was on his way back, and Molly would be there soon after.

I called my mom and told her the news. I cried harder and harder. I wasn’t angry, I was just completely sad. I cried to my mom until Lucas called to say he was here.

Lucas came in the room and we waited together and cried and held each other about 45 minutes and waited for Molly. We tried to be strong knowing that this was our time with her, and nobody knew how long it would be.

I didn’t want to meet my daughter looking as bad as I did but didn’t have much choice so I asked a nurse to brush my hair. She brushed it and then went and got Molly. The team wheeled her in and we thanked them for bringing her. They gave me a blanket and Lucas stood next to me while they reached in to the box and unhooked Molly from her machines.

I held my breath as they put her in my arms. I tried to keep from crying too hard so that I would be able to see her. They pulled the breathing tube out of her mouth and then it was just us and her. We just had to hold her and give her all the love possible, all the love we had for her whole life to squeeze into whatever minutes we would get with her. We watched her breathing by herself and cried and cried. I held her close to me and kept kissing her face. Lucas held her too and stared at his daughter. He cried and kissed her and told her he loved her. Then he sat on the bed and we held her between us.

She was so perfect. The most beautiful little baby girl I’ve ever seen. It’s hard to explain how much we loved her. How precious that time with her was. Lucas was able to give her a blessing, and to give me one. They were beautiful. We sat there and talked about how lucky we are to have her. That she is our baby girl.

We knew the truth of the gospel, and we know that we will see our daughter again. We knew that this was not really goodbye, but more of a “see you later” We have been promised that we will be able to raise our baby one day, and that gave us so much hope as we held her there. We could feel her fighting, and knew that it was not our time with her. That we would raise her in a time when the world was better. We felt a huge amount of love for Christ, and a peace at knowing this wasn’t the end. It was as though we were being hugged, we knew that Molly was OUR daughter and she would be ours forever. We WOULD get to raise her one day, we would hold her again and we would see her smile, and laugh, and cry. We would feel all the joy in the world. We felt so lucky to have her.

We were so proud of her as we held her. She kept fighting and fighting. We would think she was gone, and then she would take another breath and her color would come back. She opened and closed her hands, and struggled for breath. We kept kissing her and telling her we loved her. We told her to send her cousin down safely. We told her that we would live so that we can be with her again, that we would work on our talents so we could share them with her one day.

The nurses were coming in and out of the room taking pictures for us, and listening to her heart. They were all crying with us. When Molly finally slipped away we both knew it. We could feel the difference. She left our arms and was with the Heavenly Father. We kissed her again and cried and cried and told her we would see her soon. The nurses took her away and we cried quietly as it was just us in the room.

Lucas went to the window and opened the blinds. The sun was coming up. It was a beautiful sunrise. This was a new day. This is not how I wanted this day to go, this is not what I thought would happen. But the sunrise was stunning, and so was our daughter, and so was our brief time with her. And even if we weren’t ready, new days would come and go. The world would keep turning, and we would have to live the best we could to know we would get to be with her again.

This was a tragedy I could never have imagined, but also makes me feel unbelievably blessed. Molly is my daughter. Lucas is my husband. We have been trusted to be the parents of a spirit so precious all she needed was that perfect little body. We wouldn’t wish for this, but we feel lucky to have the promise of a daughter with a spirit as pure as Molly’s. We love her and we always will.

Molly passed away at 5:55 am. She is not here physically but we know she will always be with us. She is our little angel, and for two beautiful hours she fought hard to be with us, and gave us the best gift we could imagine. We got to say goodbye to her, and see her looking healthy and strong. We love you, Molly. We’ll miss you everyday until we see you again!

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  1. Oh how terribly sorry I am for the loss of your baby girl. I know that pain all to well. Prayers are with you during this very difficult time.

  2. Oh my, I just checked your blog and your daughter took my breath away. She was so very beautiful. What a precious baby. I am so so sorry for your loss.

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