Mom to VernaAnn Gabrielle Johnson
Born November 10th, 2009 at 4:09 p.m.
Lived for 44 minutes
Mayville, North Dakota

My husband and I struggle with having babies, so when we found out we were pregnant, we were shocked and elated!

When I was 13 weeks pregnant, we were so excited to find out if this baby was a boy or a girl.  We have two girls at home.  That’s what we thought we would be walking away with on the day our world came crashing down.

Instead, we found out that our baby had anencephaly, a neural tube disorder, and she would not survive once she was born.
I remember the time between the doctor told us there was a problem, to finding out it was fatal, seemed like an eternity, but was probably only a minute or so.  The doctors and nurses were excellent.  They told us all of
our options.  We were blindsided.  We had never had to think about these things before.  The doctors told us to go home and talk about it and cry and that they would call us tomorrow to see how we were doing and if we needed anything.
We decided that it wasn’t our choice when our baby would leave this world.  It is God’s choice.  So, we decided to carry her to term or as long as my body would let us.
We were able to love and cherish every moment of the 34 weeks I carried her.  I had polyhydramnios (too much amniotic fluid).  It was the most fluid the doctors had ever seen.  They drained quite a few liters out and
then contractions started, so they quit.  A couple weeks later, the fluid came back.  It was so painful from all the pressure and dangerous for me, so now they said we needed to induce.
When she was born, she lived 44 minutes!  Many anencephalic babies are stillborn.  We had been praying for any time at all.  God had blessed us.
I miss her so much.  I was able to feel her movements and playfulness for eight months.  I loved her from the start.  I am adamant that her memory stay alive forever.  I never want my angel baby to be forgotten.
There are two songs that are amazing.  You can really tell that the writers of the songs have been through this.  They are: “I Will Carry You” by Selah and “In God’s Hands” by The Rochesters.  When you have a few minutes and a box of tissues, take time to listen to them.  God bless you.
You can contact Allison at
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