Two decades...remembering today...
Shortly after I woke up, we received the call that my sister was in labor. I could hardly wait to get to the hospital to welcome my newest niece or nephew. I was finally able to be excited about going to the maternity ward knowing that I would be there soon having my own child.
That beautiful morning quickly turned to a horrible nightmare as the elevators doors opened and I saw my mom standing there crying. What came out of her mouth, still to this day, crushes my heart.
"They couldn't detect the baby's heartbeat. The ultrasound shows that the baby has died."
That phrase entered us into a heart wrenching day of grief and loss. Spending the day in the waiting room of the maternity ward is supposed to be exciting awaiting newborn cries and passing out candy cigars. This waiting room was turned into a room full of mourners questioning how this could happen.
How could the cord that is supposed to provide life in the womb to this precious baby be the very thing that takes this baby's life?
It couldn't be real. It had to be a terrible nightmare.
But it was real and we were thrust right into the middle of the nightmare.
Walking into my sister's hospital room seeing the devastation on her face still breaks my heart. The pain and agony she endured through hours of labor only to hold her baby daughter in her arms, lifeless, seems more than anyone should bear. Instead of preparing pink bows and frilly clothes at the end of the day, we were preparing for a funeral. Instead of loading a baby seat in the car, we were putting it away and grieving the emptiness. Instead of celebrating new life, we were mourning death.
Hannah Sharon DeHass left this world on the day of her birth, April 18, 1996, and entered the arms of Jesus.
So here we are, 20 years later and I remember it like it was yesterday. The pain is still there but so is the tremendous hope that I will see my niece again. I think of my sister today and her amazing strength and courage. She didn't give up. She put her hope in the Lord. She is my hero and I love her so much!
Today, I pause in honor of my sweet niece, Hannah, and picture her twirling around in a beautiful dress on the streets of glory. I see her happy and whole as she runs straight into the arms of her Jesus...her Abba...her Daddy!
Happy Birthday, sweet girl! Aunt Alli loves you!
Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”