Monday, October 26, 2009

New Blog

Okay, so here is our new blog! Hopefully I will do a better job at updating this one! We have many upcoming changes at our house, so we needed a new blog to go along with all of our changes! This will be the EASIEST way for me to keep our family and friends updated over the next several months.

First, we will no longer be a family of boys....our upcoming arrival is a GIRL! We are thrilled to be adding sweet baby girl, Caroline Elizabeth, to our home, and are praising God for the road He has chosen for us. We do not understand everything about the journey God has planned for Caroline and us, but we are embracing His plan for each of us, and seeking to give Him the glory He deserves.

Now, I am sure I have confused a lot of you, so I will start from the beginning. When Rhett and I found out this past July, that we were expecting baby # 3, we were thrilled, SHOCKED, but thrilled. Davis was a mere 9 months old, and still breastfeeding, when we saw those two beautiful pink lines at 4 AM, but we were so excited, and just could not stop laughing! We were positive we wanted more children, so adding a new baby was fabulous news for us! The next four months would go by without any problems, a little nausea here and there, but nothing to really complain about. I absolutely LOVE being pregnant, and fortunately God has blessed me with "easy" pregnancies. When I went for my regular 16 week checkup, on October 15th, I had no idea how my very "normal/easy" pregnancy would soon change. Rhett was out of town (something that never happens), and my mom came to keep the boys for my appointment. I had plans to go and do some Christmas shopping after my appt., you know, have a little ME time! My appt. with my wonderful doctor was uneventful, and everything was great! I decided to go ahead and get the H1N1 vaccine. As I was waiting for the required 15 minute stay after the shot, the sonographer asked me if I wanted her to take a peek, and see if we could confirm pink or blue! Well, of course I said YES.....we could not wait to find out what our precious new baby was! During the ultrasound our sweet little one was very un-cooperative! She did some measurements, and noticed her head was a little small. She ran it by my doctor, who thought it best that I go and see a maternal/fetal medicine doc.......RIGHT AWAY! I was SCARED, and WORRIED, and ALONE! I thought about just being really brave, and doing it all by myself, but I was really scared for my sweet baby. I called my best friend, and asked her to start praying, and she immediately left her very busy job, and came to meet me. I am so grateful for my dear friend Carrie, and all of the love and support she has given me. I am so thankful for her and her sweet family! They were with us through our adoption journey with Wesley, our pregnancy with Davis, and now this journey with our sweet baby Caroline.

As I was leaving my OBGYN, I immediately called Rhett (in Oregon). I could not figure out how to tell him that our sweet baby could possibly have something terribly wrong. I knew he would feel completely helpless, since he was all the way across the country. I told him what I knew so far, and his words to me were, " No matter what, we will be okay". I am praying for you and our baby right now. Call me as soon as you can". I am so blessed to have such a wonderful Godly husband, and father for my children. I was scared to death, but also worried for him, because I knew he just wanted to be there with me. The ride to the maternal/fetal doctor was long and I was SCARED, have I told y'all I was SCARED, and SHOCKED!! Sweet Carrie was there with me, and did all she could to give me support, and courage while we waited for OVER an hour to see the doctor.............that was a really long hour! Rhett called several times during the wait, and it was wonderful to be able to talk to him.

The next few hours sort of run together. I had an ultrasound, and saw our precious baby girl, and her very normal body. When the sonographer got to her head, that is where the problems were. Basically in early gestation, like weeks 3-4, parts of her brain failed to separate and develop normally. So, while her body measures right on time, her head measures about 1 1/2 - 2 weeks smaller. This is not something that will change, or get better, and may possibly get worse. She does have some parts of her brain that are normal, but the majority of her brain is not correctly formed, thus leading to the words no parent ever wants to hear "incompatible with life". Hearing those very grim and hopeless words is the hardest thing I have ever had to endure, and then telling my sweet husband was even harder. Rhett handled it so well, and was such a huge support for me, even over the phone. He spent the next 12 hours changing his flights, rushing to make flights, and flying all night, so he could be home with me. I hated for him to have to cut his trip short, but I was so thankful he was on his way home. Once again, I am so very thankful for my best friend, Carrie. She was by my side the entire time, throughout the ultrasound, talking with the doctor, and she is still walking this journey with us. I don't know how I will ever thank her for rubbing my head, holding my hand, and experiencing this storm with me. She is awesome, and such a blessing from God.

While I liked the specialist I saw, he was not very encouraging. He really wanted me to go ahead with an amniocentesis, to check for chromosomal abnormalities, that very day, at like 6 at night. We are pretty sure his choice of treatment for us and our precious Caroline is: medical termination. I had just heard the most terrifying thing about our sweet baby girl, and now he is telling me that "killing" her would be the best thing for me, that we could get on with life faster. I was shocked, and could only say the first thing that came to mind (thank God), "I am a Christian, and that is not an option for me". He said he understood, and that they would support whatever decision we ultimately chose to make. I decided to wait and do the amnio once Rhett was home, and could go with me. I left that clinic that day terribly sad and scared, but with a peace that could only have come from my heavenly Father. This is the verse that popped into my head,

" For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future".--Jeremiah 29:11

With that wonderful and encouraging verse running through my head, I left the clinic, and headed home. I thought about God's words as I drove home, and prayed to God for peace and comfort. I had no idea how I would handle the days and months to come, but I knew the only way was to cling to God, and rest in his grace and peace. I know that God does everything for our good, and that he has a plan for us that is so much better than anything we could ever imagine. I want God to be glorified through our sweet baby girl and her life. I decided that while this was the saddest thing I have ever endured, I had a choice. I could either be depressed, mad, angry, question God's reasoning, isolate myself from family/friends/reality, and just give up---or I could rejoice in the fact that God chose this path for us, our family, our baby girl, give Him all of the honor and glory he deserves, and be so thankful that I will look back and see how He carried me through this. I chose the later. No matter how terrible this storm is, and how sad and scared I am, I am still a wife, mommy to the two most wonderful little boys, daughter, sister, friend, and mostly child of God. I know there will be some really tough days (there have been many), and there will be some days that are easier. I am reminded constantly that God understands what we are going through, he lost his baby boy-----to save the world from their sins!!!

It is our hope and prayer that no one feels sorry for us. We do not feel sorry for ourselves, we are extremely sad that our little girl will have such a short life, but we know that God will bring much good out of this. We are putting our hope and faith in our God, and we have the ultimate peace that He will provide for us, and carry us every step of the way. We are focusing on our pregnancy, and enjoying every moment we are given with precious Caroline. I talk to her, read to her, and treat her just like I would any baby in my belly. Rhett and I are joyfully looking forward to meeting her. We are striving to create as much normalcy for our sweet boys as we can, and also include them in the joy of their baby sister. Please join us in prayer for our family, our precious angel Caroline and the road that awaits us.

"But my God shall supply all your needs, according to His riches in Glory, by Christ Jesus!!!"
Philippians 4:19


  1. I will be praying with and for y'all as you walk this journey. I praise Him for your wonderful attitude, and I pray that He would continutally lift your spirit. And I thank God for sweet Caroline...she will be a testimony to so many!!

  2. Amanda, your words are beautiful. We are praying for your family as you walk through this time with so many unknowns in the future. Your strength, confidence, and faith in God is amazing. And, we rejoice with your family in the gift of Caroline. As Emily said above, your testimony will be such a blessing to others. I can't imagine the road ahead of your family, but I'm so glad that HE will be walking it with you.

  3. Hey Amanda! I am praying for you and sweet Caroline in the months to come! I know that God will be with you and your family during this time because your faith is so strong! Shannon Williams

  4. Amanda, you are such a blessing to so many...including those of us who have not actually met you. I will pray for you as you walk this path with Him. You are an inspiration, and your precious Caroline is blessed to have you as her mother. Thank you for updating us so that we may pray for your specific needs. Love, Megan

  5. What a wonderful post. You and Rhett will inspire and encourage all who read your blog and all who will be blessed to know you in real life. My heart aches for you, but I am personally encouraged by your godly attitude. I pray for all of you every day. God does indeed have wonderful plans for Caroline. Even if we don't understand them.
    Thank you for your thoughts, and I am looking forward to keeping up with yall throughout this difficult journey by reading this blog. Please call me anytime!
    Love to you, Rhett, and Wesley and Davis too!

  6. Hi Amanda,
    My family and I will keep you and your family in our prayers. Your strength is amazing and encouraging and your peace is calming.

    Leigh (friend of Roan)

  7. Hey Amanda,
    I don't know what to say, but we will be keeping y'all in our prayers.

    Emily Keeton

  8. What a beautiful way to document this journey! Amanda, what an incredible example of strength you are! I am so sorry for the sadness and pain ya'll are going through, but God is and will continue to carry you. You,Caroline, Rhett and your entire family are in my prayers. What a blessing you are to so many, for sharing your faith so openly!
    Lynn (friend of Roan)

  9. Hello Amanda,
    Thank you for sharing your BLOG! What an amazing wife and mother! After receiving shocking news, you immediately prayed to God for peace and comfort. You are an inspiration to us all. Little Caroline is truly blessed to have two wonderful parents. She has already brought you joy. I know you treasure those special quite moments reading and talking to her.
    Daily I will pray for you and your family. With God by your side, as Rhett said, “No matter what, you will be Ok”!

    Love, Terri (friend of Roan)

  10. Amanda and Rhett,

    Oh how we love ya'll and will be praying for you. Already, we are in awe at the wonderful things the Lord has done with your lives and your sweet babies. You are such a blessing to so many...thank you for sharing your journey. Sweet Caroline couldn't have a better family!

  11. Amanda,

    Have you joined the Holoprosencephaly group on yahoo. They are a wonderful source of information and have encouraged me and given me more hope for my baby girl. May God bless you and give you peace. Please feel free to email me at


  12. Amanda,

    Our doctors have given us days, maybe, but they don't know everything. Many people I have met online and through the HPE group have children living with Alobar HPE that are months, years, and many years old. There is hope! I just wanted to let you know.

  13. Hey, sweet girl. I love you so much and am praying constantly for you, Rhett, sweet Caroline, and the boys, that your time together with your sweet girl will be blessed beyond measure, and that God will continue to glorify Himself through you all, as He is your Comforter and Strength & His Spirit rests on you, providing overwhelming peace.

    Also, I don't know if you've heard about this website, but it's really good:

    I love you and will be glad to keep the boys or cook supper or anything else to help you- please call me if there's anything at all I can do.