Oct 6, 2014

Hartley: Madison Dumas

This second story is written by Maddie Dumas. She is a light that shines bright for the Lord. She is one of those people that I knew in college and then keep up with on Facebook because the pictures of her little boys are just too cute not to follow. She and her husband have a great, great love for the Lord. Her story is beautiful and it's one I did not even know if before. I pray it is a blessing to you today, I pray that you see her heart, and that you see a part of the story that is so often untold.

Thank you so much for allowing me the opportunity to share. My emotional and physical pain is still fresh, but your story helped me so much over the past few weeks, so I can only hope I can pay it forward.

We found out we were expecting Baby Dumas #3 on June 2. We were a little surprised, to say the least. We had always planned on having more babies, but we had decided to wait until our oldest was in kindergarten- day care is expensive! But we were so excited, nonetheless. God's plans are not our own, after all.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways, declares the Lord. 
Isaiah 55:8 
The heart of man plans his way,
but the Lord establishes his steps. 
Proverbs 16:9
All summer we talked about the baby with our three year old, Hudson, and he was convinced we were going to have a sister. He told people about his sister, he asked about where her car seat would go, he made sure I was eating enough for the baby in my belly. Everything was as it should be. My belly was growing, I was experiencing all of the symptoms of pregnancy. I was more sick with this baby, but every pregnancy is different, and maybe after two boys, we would have that sister Hudson wanted so badly.

At 8 weeks we saw our little jellybean on the sonogram. At 12 weeks the doppler picked up a strong heart beat. By my 16 week appointment on September 2, I figured we were rolling right along. Until the doctor couldn't find a heartbeat. And the sonogram confirmed there was no heart beat. I had experienced a miscarriage between my two sons, but I had only made it a few days past my positive pregnancy test before I miscarried. I was devastated by the loss, even though we knew nothing about this child. This time I felt like at 16 weeks I was in the "safe zone". This time I had seen my baby, I had heard a heart beat, and I still felt pregnant. I was so confused.

My doctor explained that I had a partial molar pregnancy. My baby had many complications that did not allow it to live. While most molar pregnancies end around 8 weeks, mine had gone 16 weeks, but my baby had died around 14. The problem was that my placenta continued to grow to an alarming size. The usual procedure to remove a baby after a miscarriage was too dangerous to perform due to a high risk of bleeding. My other option was a hysterectomy. At 27, that was a tough pill to swallow, but I immediately felt God's peace about the decision. I could not put myself at such a great risk when I had two beautiful, healthy boys to take care of. I had surgery two days later.

My husband and I asked our doctor if we could find out the gender of our baby. We also asked if we could have hand and footprints, if possible. Our doctor was able to tell us that our baby was a boy, and she provided pictures of his sweet little feet that I will cherish forever. We had chosen the name Hartley Nathan several weeks before. Hartley was a name we liked, it fit in with our H pattern (Hudson, Harrison, and Hartley), and Nathan is my grandfather's middle name. I had not had a chance to look up the meaning of Nathan, it was simply a family name of a man I greatly respect. I decided to look up the meaning while in the hospital. Nathan means "God gives". In a time that we were so devastated by loss, it was such a refreshing reminder that God does truly give.

A verse that was sent to me multiple times that week was Psalm 46:10- "Be still, and know that I am God." I didn't have to worry because this had already been written into my story by my Creator. I am so sad that I won't get to know Hartley, but he is in Heaven experiencing a joy I can't wait to feel one day. I would never have gotten through this experience had it not been for God's overwhelming comfort and peace. He is my rock, and I'm forever grateful that He called me to be a mommy of two boys on earth, and two babies in heaven.


Maddie Dumas

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