Friday, November 29, 2013

Black Friday

  In late November of 2008 I was pregnant with Connor. I was about 16 weeks along and the week before I had my quad screen. This is the blood test that shows if you have increased levels that could mean birth defects. I vividly remember the day the blood was drawn. I think I always knew that Connor was sick, but that was the beginning of the end of the false hope for his health. I waited for days for the results to come in. I called every morning and every afternoon, praying that I was wrong. On the night of Thanksgiving I remember staring at my mom's fridge. Right next to each other there was my 7 week ultrasound and my sister's 9 week ultrasound. I looked over and over and I began to cry. I said aloud that my baby's head was smaller than hers. They all looked at me and said I was worrying too much and that my baby would be fine. I ran to the bathroom and sat there and cried for awhile. I pulled myself together and tried to believe them and enjoy the night.
 Black Friday of 2008 was a day ingrained in my memory. T.J. decided to go golfing (even in the cold) and headed out to the course. The phone rang and I didn't recognize the number. I vaguely remember the conversation that followed: Sarah, This is Dr. Schwartz. I received your results and the baby has tested positive for Trisomy 18 and neural tube defects....this is where I stopped hearing anything. I told him I had to go. I called T.J. who had just stepped onto the 1st hole of the course. I screamed to him on the phone. They baby is going to die...this baby is going to die too. what is wrong with me....why is this happening to us. He said he would be home. Not knowing what else to do I called my mom with the same conversation. I called my good friend and neighbor and asked her to come over. I met her and my mom in the front yard and dropped to my knees and sobbed in their arms. My friend took Anna to her house for a little while, so she did not have to see me this way. T.J. and my Dad were there soon after mom and we sat and cried together. 
Of all of the days and all of the memories - good and bad- this is one that stays with me. The little memories you can playback like a movie. Black Friday has a whole different meaning here. As time goes on it gets a little less clear, but creeps back in. Thankful for the memories I have written on this blog because it helps me piece it all back together. Thankful for the memories because, happy or sad, they are what we have left of Connor. These are parts of his story, so they are a part of him. 

Saturday, November 23, 2013


Adoption is about hope
hope in the future

hope in each other

hope for Forever

Adoption is about patience
patience in the process
patience in the system
patience in the child
patience in the parents

Adoption is about learning

learning to let go
learning to let God
learning to have faith in others

learning to have trust

learning that you are not in control
Adoption is about trust
trusting one another
trusting in God
trusting in His plan 
trusting in yourself
Adoption is about change
changes in your family
changes in your life
changes in your children
changes in your relationships
changes in yourself
Adoption is about Love
love of a child
love of God
love of Family
Adoption is about Faith
faith in people
faith in this world
Faith in God
Faith that it will all work out
Faith that if it doesn't, you will find answers
Adoption is a gift

Adoption creates families

Adoption creates siblings
Adoption is life changing

 Adoption is


Adoption from Foster Care brings new life to those already living
both families and children.  
On National Adoption Day we stop and say Thank You as Adoption continues to help create our family.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Happy Birthday Mikey...

Today my brother, Mikey, would be 37 years old.  I have spent endless hours over the past 30 years thinking about who he would be.  About the relationship we would have.  About whether or not I would be here at all.  I have pondered over his life and his death.  After 35 years it still doesn't make sense.  After 35 years we know it isn't worth trying to make sense of. 

I have written what I know of Mikey's story before.  The story of his death.  But, today is not about death.  Today is about his life.  Mikey was born on November 19, 1976.  He was a healthy baby boy.  With a sister who liked to make trouble.  To be honest I don't know a whole lot about the little person that he was in the almost 2 years he spent on this Earth.  I have to admit this is mostly because I have made up so many memories that the real ones I have been told have faded.  

 I know that he was happy, that his sister (not me!) once took him and his stroller and ran off in a store.  I know he liked to push his little car and play a game called pass the nuts.  I know he didn't speak much, except to say "quack".  This is one of the reasons I fed Anna's rubber ducky love as a baby and why there is a duck on Emma's headstone. 

 I know that he only celebrated one birthday on Earth and that by his second he had gone to be with the Lord.  I know that he was loved and that he is loved.  That he is missed everyday.  I know that he taught my parents more in his short life about unconditional love and that he has continued to teach me. 

 He has given me the gift of a mother that understood my pain.  Of a father who is a part of my life every day- of grandparents that never miss a moment to spend with their grandkids.  He has given us the gift of being cautious when it comes to illness and in turn saved his nephew. He has given us the gift of treasuring every single moment. Tantrums, Smiles and all. 

Today on his birthday I wish I could bring my Mom and Dad a little peace.  I wish I could take the pain away.  But I know now that with the pain, goes the memories.  One of the double edged swords of grief.  To take away the pain can take away the good as well. So I will pray for peace.  I will offer hugs. I will spend time with them and I will write in his memory.  If I have learned anything from loss over the past 5 years it is that just remembering - simply acknowledging is so important.

Today and everyday I remember Mikey.   

Happy Birthday in Heaven. We love you.

A  little more of Mikey's story can be found here -

My "memories" of Mikey can be found here-