Tuesday, March 31, 2009


So this weekend was a kind of difficult weekend for me. We went to Kentucky for a friend's wedding shower and I was faced with seeing my Grandmother for the first time since Logan was born. Now, you have to understand that my Grandmother lost her first born son to similar circumstances and while I was in the hospital and then when Logan was in the hospital, she called practically everyday to see how we were doing. However, when Logan died she didn't call me and was unable to come to the funeral. So I had not seen or talked to her since then and honestly I wasn't sure how easy it was going to be to see her now. Also, I visited with my late Grandpa's identical twin brother, which is never easy, but was made more difficult because of his loss of a son. And to finish it off, I was seeing a friend of mine, who is around 20 weeks pregnant, for the first time since her wedding.

Things with my Grandmother went pretty smoothly. She gave me this beautiful angel...

and we talked about the emotions but it was a very peaceful visit. I don't think I cried once.

I was very anxious about visiting with my pregnant friend because I was afraid she was going to have a one-track mind and want to talk baby, baby, baby but she was very laid back and we just talked about other stuff and left the whole baby topic untouched.

But the visit with my Grandpa's twin is really what I want to talk about.

First of all, my Grandpa passed away in February 2007. He had cancer and when he died he didn't really look anything like himself. My Grandpa didn't want any of his grandchildren to see him in the days and weeks before he died, so the wake was very difficult because it was hard to believe that the body we were seeing in the casket was Grandpa. Then, here comes this man walking in who looks EXACTLY like our Grandpa. I can remember looking up and thinking, "What's Grandpa doing here?". I think just about everyone there had a moment similar to mine.

Now, my Grandpa (and his twin, obviously) was born on Dec. 26, which just happens to be my birthday as well. And, every year I would call my Grandpa or he would call me and we would wish each other a Happy Birthday. In fact, when I was young I would get confused and when people would say Happy Birthday to me I would return with "Happy Birthday to you too!". So at my Grandpa's funeral I asked his twin if I could call him on our birthday's and as we cried he gave me his phone number. Since my the funeral, we have visited with my great-uncle Bobby every time we go to Kentucky. His health is failing and my mom warned me many times that he may not make it to that first birthday, and then the second, but he's still here and this year I was told that he was waiting by the phone for my call.

It was that birthday call that kind of started this post, even though I didn't know it then. When I called my great-uncle he told me that he was praying for me and that he prayed to Logan everyday. He told me that I had a great-great-uncle named Logan and then he shocked me when he said that he and his wife had lost a baby as well.

This weekend my Mom had planned to visit him but didn't know if we would want to go so she didn't tell him we would be in Kentucky as well. So when we showed up at the door, he was very pleasantly surprised. And almost the first thing he asked me was "Are you pregnant again?". Now, you should know that we are trying to get pregnant again but have had some problems in that area so the question was kind of difficult for me. I told him that I wasn't, unless there was something that he knew, that I didn't :)

My great-uncle has a den that is covered with pictures and this is where we sat to talk. The pictures run the gamut, from pictures of him, his children and grandchildren to old signs, religious paintings and political posters. As we were sitting there talking I noticed a small picture of the opposite side of this huge room, right next to a picture of the Blessed Virgin Mary. As we sat there I stared and it. It looked like a picture of a tiny open casket but I couldn't be sure and I didn't want to stop the conversation to ask. So as we were getting up to leave, I slowly approached that picture to get a closer look. I was trying to make it look like I was just leaving the room, just in case I was wrong. But as I approached the picture took my breath away.

The picture was a tiny baby, laying in a tiny casket and the baby looked almost exactly like Logan looked after he died. My great-uncle came over and I asked him about the picture and he told me about Keith. Keith was born in 1962 and lived only one day. My great-uncle told me that there was nothing visible wrong with him and honestly, I'm not sure how early he was born, or even if he was early at all because at that moment I couldn't ask the questions. But as I stood there shaking and crying I showed my Mom the picture and she agreed that Logan looked like Keith. We then showed my great-uncle the pictures of Logan and we talked about the wonderful 17 days we had with him and all the great memories and tangible items we have from his life.

You see, all my great-uncle has of his son is a 4x6 picture of a tiny baby in a tiny casket, that he didn't even know his mother had taken. Bless that woman for knowing how much it would mean to them. My Grandmother has even less, just a picture in her head because her son was born and died in 1947 and they didn't have a camera.

Now, let's go back a little bit to the day Logan died. We were there, holding Logan as he passed into heaven and afterwards we were given a room to sit in with him and spend some more time saying our goodbyes. I know that my son was not in that body that we held so tightly that day but truly believe he was there in that room, watching us love on him in a way we had not been able to while he was alive. Because the hospital was 2 hours away from our home, and the place where Logan would be buried, we were given the opportunity to take his body to the funeral home ourselves. Many people would probably think that was crazy but we were given two hours with our son, we were able to let all four of his grandparents hold him for the first and last time. That day, we were instructed to go immediately to the funeral home and were told that when we got there we would have to hand over his body immediately. However, the funeral director told us to take as much time as we needed when we arrived.

The funeral director also told us that there was a chance we would have to have a closed casket because of how tiny Logan was. He encouraged me to spend as much time as I wanted with my son's body even as I handed Logan to him. I told him then what will always be true, there is never enough time. However, I did not truly understand that I would not see my son again. As we were leaving and he continued to remind us that it may have to be a closed casket it went through my head to ask to see my son one last time, for just a moment before we left. But at the time it seemed like a silly request because I was sure I would get to see him, laying peacefully among little white blankets, with a tiny pillow, in that casket. I didn't get that chance and have regretted not asking ever since. During the funeral I couldn't keep my mind off of seeing my baby boy and I kept thinking about just opening the casket myself so that I could see him. I know that that would have been a BAD idea. I know that I didn't need to see my son like that, but I wanted one last look.

It is AMAZING how God works. For months now I have talked to Him about my missed opportunity and I always thought that if I got the chance to see Logan it would be in my dreams. But this weekend God gave me that chance in a way that I will never forget. I can't say how much Keith and Logan looked alike in life but I do know that in death, in that little picture, they were as close to identical as two distant cousins can possibly be. I now have a picture, at least in my head, of what my son would have looked like laying peacefully in his casket and honestly, I think God did it this way on purpose. I think he made it easier on me, not having to watch that lid close on my son but getting to see him in a picture that may not have been from 1962.


Monday, March 23, 2009


Well, I've been thinking about doing a blog lately and I'm finally going to take the leap. For those of you who don't know me, my name is Anna and my husband's name is Doug and on June 27, 2008 our first son, Logan, was born at 24 weeks 6 days due to premature labor and chorioamnionitis. Logan was sent to the NICU where he seemed to be doing really well but on July 14, 2008 Logan chose wings over feet. Logan changed our lives forever and he is the reason for this blog. Since losing Logan, I have been lifted up and supported by many wonderful ladies all part of a kind of club. Not a single one of us chose this club, dreamed of this club, or even realized the club existed but all of us now belong together as Mommies of Angels.

As soon as I was admitted to the hospital I knew that I would forever be a supporter of the March of Dimes and when Logan passed I knew I wanted to do something to help other Mommies and now I'm starting on that journey. On Apr. 25 I will participate in my first (of many) March for Babies walk. I'm making t-shirts that say Logan with each letter made up of the names of the many Angels I have met through their Mommies.

However, this blog will mostly center around a different project I have started, Logan's Bears. This past weekend Doug bought me my first sewing machine and I'm now venturing into the wonderful (and slightly scary) world of teddy bears. With help from my mom I have created my very first bear and am now working on the second. Now, you might be wondering how this relates, so here goes.

Only hours after Logan passed I was given several pamphlets from the hospital as well as a memory box and plenty of keepsakes from Logan's short life: his thermometer and hats, diapers, a measuring tape, a blindfold type thing that was used to cover his eyes during his light therapy, a cut of his hair, little pillows they used to prop him up and blankets. All of these things gave me comfort but the pamphlets left a little to be desired. On the front, each one said something to the effect of "How to Cope When You Lose a Baby". Now these pamphlets were helpful because in the days to come I needed to hear that it was okay to feel crazy. But, what I really wanted was someone who had been in my shoes, to reach out to me, tell me I was doing fine. Don't get me wrong, I had tons of support in my family and friends but there is nothing like someone who has been there, done that. Soon, I found online grief support groups specifically for Mommies of Angels and, as I said before, these ladies have been an amazing support to me. In talking to them I have found a way that I can help future Mommies of Angels. I know they are out there and I know they have no idea that our club exists. But I also know that when they need us, I want to be there, available and easy to find. I want them to have support locally because, let's face it, living in the same town/state or delivering at the same hospital makes you feel more connected.

So, to let them know that we are here, I'm going to be donating items to the hospital to give to other Mommies of Angels. It will start with the bear, which will be handmade and will hopefully give each Mommy something to hug, cry on, and just hold, because when you lose a baby, you're arms feel SO EMPTY there is a physical pain to it. I truly hope these bears can give each Mommy a slight relief. Also, the bears will come with a card with a picture of this painting: http://www.pearlsofgracefineart.com/ministry.htm which is called Escort to God. On the back of the card will be a short message letting them know about this website and ways to contact us and get involved in other grief support groups. It is my wish that these cards and bears will give each Mommy a little, tiny bit of peace in a very hard time in their lives.