A Father’s Perspective

April 12th, 2018 we expected the birth of our second child; our baby girl Sydney Jane. On April 5th, exactly one week from our due date, I received a phone call I pray I never receive again. My mom called from the hospital and told me to rush to the hospital as soon as possible. I began praying immediately that nothing happened to My Girls; my wife or my daughter, but I ran to my car and quickly began the trip. It was 4:15pm and rush hour on the main interstate through Huntsville was starting to back up. By God’s Grace I made a trip that normally takes 30 to 45 minutes, in 10 minutes flat.

As I walked into the office the nurses immediately rushed me to the back hallway where they do ultrasounds and I met my crying wife sitting on the table. It took two words spoken by my wife to change everything in our world in a split second; No Heartbeat.

I don’t remember speaking, sitting, or even breathing for the next hour or so. I arrived at the hospital before 4:30pm, but we didn’t return to our car until almost 6:00pm. Now usually our car is a karaoke jam from point A to point B as we both love music and singing, but there was no noise and no sound in the car at this point. Music didn’t play for another 2 weeks, until I returned to work.

The next part I remember after leaving the doctor’s office is when our pastor called as we pulled out of the parking lot. I don’t remember what he said, but I remember that as he prayed with us the thought that this isn’t a dream; it’s going to be the rest of our lives from that moment on. The entire ride home it was just my wife and I in the car so we held hands and cried the whole way home.  Of course all of the tears came from our sudden loss, but honestly it was more from confusion and praying for a miracle or that the doctors were all wrong.

Arriving back home we went straight to the rooms and just sort of collapsed on the bed where we slowly packed clothes. At that point we lived with my parents, so we had planned to have Sydney and place her in our room with us for the first little while until we could find a house. We had already moved most of our clothes to another closet in the house and had placed everything from newborn through 3 months in our closet.

We also had the bed side baby bed ready and other baby items sitting in our room. So pushing past all the new baby items and trying to pack our items became even harder as you grab the newborn onesie and now realize it will never be worn, or spit up on, or used. With packed bags we were headed back to the hospital for a night and weekend that held no answers and no hope for our family or future.

My wife and I are both believe in God, but at this point in our lives everything seemed hopeless. Why did this happen to us? Why now? Why would He take away our daughter? What good could this ever bring to anyone? We simply couldn’t understand the purpose or reason as to why any of this happened. Keep following and find out how these questions are answered as our story continues next time on A Friend in Need.

Blog Collaboration Intro

I’m so excited to announce our next collaborator, Stephen. I know Stephen all because of a semicolon keychain and we just hit the ground running on ideas! I am very thankful for his story as it is a glimpse into a totally different side of mental hardship. Even more important I am excited to introduce a male perspective!

Depression comes in all shapes and sizes and is handled in a broad spectrum of ways. It was very apparent from the first time I chatted with Stephen that his faith is very strong and he leans on it. So help me welcome Stephen!

Hi there! My name is Stephen Keeling and I am 27 years old. My wife Jenn and I have been married for 5 years and we have three children; Julius, Sydney, and one on the way! Our firstborn Julius is my mini-me in every way. He is 4 years old and everything from looks and attitude is identical, but he does have a little bit of his mom 😉 Sydney Jane is our second child and by far our biggest miracle. She was stillborn 7 days before our due date and is the reason we have a story to share. Our third child at the time of writing this is still cooking, but we are getting very close! We are due around the end of April and have kept it a surprise for everyone, but God on what the gender is. While we do have some names picked out, no one in our family, the doctors, or even us know what we will be having.

I’d like to express my appreciation to Mattie for letting me be a part of this blog and to share our story. My wife may chime in a little from time to time and we may show both perspectives, but know that we both will always put our heart into every post 🙂 While neither of us have a direct link to self-harm or suicide; we do both have a story to share of HOPE! That is what we would like to share with every post, is the Hope we have found and the positivity we have experienced in every situation. I pray that this blog is a blessing to you and is something you will look forward to sharing with us! Know this, in every trial, hardship, or earth-shattering event; it is Never the end of your story. There may be a new chapter beginning where one has just come to a close or you may be in the middle of a hard chapter of life. In any event there is always Hope. There is always a positive side to focus on. So follow along and pay close attention, we have exciting things in store for you!!