Skip to main content

One month thoughts

I have so many thoughts, so many that I've put off writing them down for a long time.

We made it through the first month after losing our girls. If you had told me a month ago that I'd be able to live normal life without crying through it I would have thought you crazy. But, alas, life does go on and I'm thankful for our new normal. His mercies truly are new everyday.

I've thought so much about our girls these last few weeks. Those first days after their deaths were so much harder than I'll ever be able to convey with words. I had a lot of guilt. I still have moments each day when that guilt and fear start to overcome. I know intellectually that we did everything we could have for our girls. At the same time the emotional, and sometimes irrational, pain of grief causes me to believe differently.

In the early 1920s my maternal great grandmother gave birth to identical triplet boys - they weighed 1 1/2, 2, and 2 1/4 pounds. The doctor who delivered the babies wrapped them up, laid them in bed with my great grandmother thinking there was no chance of survival, and left. A midwife and friends of my great grandparents came and did everything they could think of to give those three babies life. Even without the advancements of modern medicine - no ventilators, no isolettes, no IVs, no lamps to treat jaundice, no TPN fluids, no broviacs, no PDA surgeries, no neural ultrasounds, no feeding tubes - all three boys survived and lived for 16, 70+, and 80+ years.

In moments when I doubt myself I find great comfort in knowing that God had plans for my girls' lives just as He did my great uncles. Simple logic would tell you that my uncles should have died shortly after birth and my three girls should have lived. Unfortunately, I've learned all too well that life doesn't always make logical sense. Its because of that that I have great faith in knowing that God is in control of everything. He knew that Catherine would never live outside of my womb, He knew that Madelyn would live for 32 hours and Mary Grace five days. Even with all the advancements of modern medicine you can't change God's plan or mess it up in any way. Though I may never understand this side of Heaven why their days were numbered as they were, I know He is sovereign over all and that their short lives hold great worth.

You hem me in, behind and before,
and lay your hand upon me.
(Psalm 139:5 ESV)


  1. Wonderful wisdom and truth you spoke here. When the guilt is to much to bear I say Psalms 139:16 out loud You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. Yes Jesus is in control of life and death and there is such peace in that. Saying a prayer for you and Olivia!

  2. you are amazingly wise and strong, Mare! What an incredible testimony.

  3. sending you lots of thoughts and prayers. My mom was born at 25 weeks gestation 64 years ago and lived without intervention. Isn't it amazing? She passed away in November. It is hard to believe and I definitely have my days, but I do believe that He has a plan even if we don't understand. Wishing you a very heartfelt Mother's Day!!!

  4. Mare, poignant, beautiful, and so wise. Our prayers continue, your soul is so full of faith, the Lord is surely holding you all tightly in his arms.

  5. Happy Mother's Day sweet one. I have been thinking of you since I woke up this morning. I honor both you and your mother today. You have walked in truth, grief upon grief, joy upon joy, you have trusted. I love you and honor you today and bless your mother's name as she poured these lovely truths into your life!

  6. Mare this is perfectly written. All 4 of your girls have a great treasure in their mommy, and in their King. Thank you for lifting His name up, even in the storm. You have been a great reminder for me to do the same. Love you, and praying for you always.

  7. Mare,
    You don't know me I came across your blog from a friend of a friend's prayer request for you and your family. As a new mother and a former NICU nurse the pain of your loss is palpable. As a believer your deep rooted faith is inspiring. Sweet Olivia is a fighter and that is exactly what is needed so she can be home in your arms very soon!!! I will continue to pray that you feel His arms around you and your sweet little girl!


Post a Comment

Past Posts

Mary Grace

At 2:00 am this morning, our sweet Mary Grace was welcomed to Heaven. We found out this afternoon that she had a large brain hemorrhage. Reid and I spent three precious hours holding our daughter tonight. The nurses wrapped a pink bow around her little head and we swaddled her in a soft pink elephant blanket. During those hours, we told Mary Grace how proud we were of her fight, how she fulfilled our dreams of one day having a daughter to call "Gracie," and we even took a little nap, snuggled together as a family. If we told her we loved her once, we told her a thousand times. We prayed over her and gave her back to the Lord. We miss her more than words can say. I feel like we were punched in the stomach today and left with the wind knocked out of our lungs. Its so hard to understand "why?" in all of this. Tonight when we left the hospital, Reid turned on this song by David Crowder Band and we listened to it on repeat the whole way home. Its the exact state of our

One day at a time

For the first time in my life I feel like I'm truly living one day at a time. Reid and I had a pretty good day yesterday. We were able to sleep in which was wonderful. Reid made us lunch and we sat outside in the backyard. It was a beautiful day and being outside did a lot of good for my mental health. :) There were still a lot of hard moments as memories from the night before would come rushing back to mind. We miss our sweet babies so much. Olivia had a good day yesterday. It was uneventful (which is a very good thing in the NICU) and they were able to turn down some of her medicine. We call every morning to check on our sweet girl and her nurse was quick to tell us how feisty our daughter is. We picked up on that in her first day of life, but it was funny to hear that someone else had observed the same. We are so in love with our feisty little Olivia. After we left the hospital, Reid and I went on a dinner date. It was so good for us to get out and feel like we

Madelyn Barrett

I really don't even know where to begin or how to write this post. I've put it off for several days hoping that maybe if I let things sink in a little more it would be easy. This will never be easy. As you know, we welcomed three beautiful little girls into the world on Friday afternoon. We had hoped to continue to "buy time" and hold off on delivery for several more weeks. God has always had a plan much bigger than either Reid or I could ever imagine. I have to chose to believe, everyday, that somehow this all fits perfectly into that plan. We knew from the time of her delivery that Madelyn was struggling the most. The circumstances surrounding her birth caused a lot of trauma to her tiny body. After a day of fighting for a positive outcome, the neonatologist came to visit with us and told us it was time to let her go. Late Saturday night we went to the NICU to hold our precious baby for the first and last time. She was absolutely perfect and looked just like h

Family of Four

If all continues to go well we will be headed home from the hospital tomorrow. I got a little stir crazy this afternoon and walking the halls just wasn't going to cut it so I went down to the gift shop to browse a bit. It feels so good to actually feel good after surgery. I also feel pretty rested and I'm very ready to settle into our new normal at home. My dad and Ann have been taking care of Olivia and have been such a tremendous help to us. Reid's parents were in town until this afternoon and Olivia got to spend some time with them yesterday. She's been very well taken care of by all her grandparents and I'm pretty sure she hasn't thought twice about us. Out of sight, out of mind. She has had a cough for a few days so Reid took her to the doctor this morning. Sure enough the cough is just allergy related but sweet girl has her first ear infection. The good news is that she hasn't run a fever and was able to get antibiotics to treat it. For all the change


God has blessed our family with quite a surprise! Olivia is getting a little brother or sister in early December. We are thrilled! As of today I am nine weeks along. We went to the doctor several weeks ago and were able to see the tiny bundle and hear the heartbeat. Everything looks great and we are so thankful! I'll share more details in the next few weeks. :)