Children are a heritage from the Lord, a reward from him. Like arrows in the hands of a warrior are sons born in one’s youth. Blessed is a man whose quiver is full of them. Psalms 127: 3-5
Austin Michael entered the world at 7:55am, Christopher Brayden at 8:02am, and Alexis Faith at 8:05am. Austin didn’t make a peep, I didn’t expect that a 24 week baby was able to cry, but Brayden and Lexi surprised us and cried when delivered. Each baby was shown quickly to me after the doctor delivered them, and I was amazed at how small but perfect they seemed.
Before I formed you in the womb I knew you. Jeremiah 1:5
Lexi was whisked across the hall to another room as there wasn’t enough room in my delivery room for everyone including her NICU team. The delivery room was full, I was actually in one of the rooms used for c-sections and other OB related surgeries in case of any unforeseen circumstance. The OB that delivered the babies quickly found out why they delivered when she saw that my uterus had ruptured in the lower back segment. She quickly worked to repair it as I received 3 units of blood. I had lost a lot of blood during the pregnancy, over time, and especially while in the hospital on bed rest in labor for over 2 weeks.
“For I will restore health to you and heal you of your wounds," says the Lord. Jeremiah 30:17
I was wheeled to recovery where I enjoyed several cans of regular Coke and cookies. I’d had gestational diabetes during the pregnancy and was on insulin during my hospital stay, so these little snacks tasted like Heaven to me. I’ve never, nor do I think I will ever, have a Coke taste so delicious. Anyone that saw me or spoke to me in those hours after the delivery, before I was taken to the NICU to see the babies, can verify that I was extremely calm. I had this endless peace in my heart. God was there holding our family who was unaware of what the next year would bring.
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27
In the coming days and weeks our world was turned upside down. The life that we’d imagined with our 4 children didn’t exist. We buried our 2 youngest children by the time Austin was 2 weeks old. While lost and in this complete darkness God was there. We felt Him talking to us as we never have. We told him, after burying Lexi, that we couldn’t take anymore when Brayden took a turn for the worse. However, we heard Him saying that we could and we were going to do it. And, we did it. We got up each day and dealt with life as best as we could while having a 2 year old at home and a sick baby in the NICU. God provided wonderful doctors, nurses, and respiratory therapists to care for Austin to the best of their ability. We met some wonderful healthcare professionals in the NICU that will forever hold a special place in our hearts. God provided people to care for our family, to cook meals for us, to care for Bradley, and to pray and give support to us. I still meet people that tell me that they’ve followed our story and still pray for us! How amazing. Oh how I wish I could thank everyone as much as I’d like in a proper way, but that task will take the rest of my life. In the meantime, I can promise I’ll never forget how each one of them showed us God’s love with their endless love for us.
We love because He first loved us. 1 John 4:19
Our family, friends, and complete strangers cried and rejoiced with us as Austin met important milestones in his journey to come home. We eventually came out of the fog that had rested on us for several months and realized that we had made it through something very large in our life. It changed us, and we’re so grateful, for the rest of our life. We never imagined that we’d continue to breathe or exist in anyway after suffering such grief.
Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you. Isaiah 46: 3-4
After Austin spent 108 days in the NICU he came home and began to grow so quickly. He entered the world at 1lb 7 oz, came home at 5lbs 10oz, and is now 18lbs at one year. He was off the oxygen and apnea monitor after 4 months of being home and started to thrive in all aspects. Austin has developed as you’d expect a completely normal child according to his adjusted age or due date, which was March 13th. He had a follow-up appointment at the NICU follow-up clinic this past week and they, like all healthcare providers, were amazed with his progress. He has normal vision and hearing. His chronic lung disease is still present, but he stays well and has had no complications from it in 5 months or so. A twenty-four week triplet, as he will always be known in the medical world, doesn’t do this well. In fact, we’re told it’s unheard of and a complete miracle. We know it’s a God given miracle. God knew Austin’s story when he made him and placed him in my womb. He knew that on Austin’s first birthday that he would be strong and thriving.
"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11
So today, as we celebrate Austin being with us a year, we are amazed by the journey and trials God has taken us on this past year. It is well with our soul, it is well, just like the old church hymn. After coming out of our "fog", when Austin was 6 weeks old or so, we weren’t sure he would make it a year. However, he did and we’re so grateful that God has given us this year with our sweet angel on earth. It has been amazing to watch him grow and become a part of our family. Austin and Bradley have an incredible bond, and Austin has turned into quite a snuggle bug with us. He laughs and smiles most of the time, and I’m continually amazed by the new things he is doing. God is so good, no matter what his plan for us on earth is, and loves us so much. I can’t imagine, knowing that He loves me more than I love my children, how enormous His love is for us. Happy Birthday to our precious Austin, Brayden, and Lexi! One day we’ll celebrate in heaven, with our gracious God, and Brayden and Lexi where the missed birthdays won’t matter anymore. While here, I'm so grateful for the endless blessings and miracles that God has given us in Austin. We can’t wait to see God’s plan unfold for Austin’s life as it has been amazing so far. Happy 1st Birthday Austin! We look forward to seeing you grow in your relationship with the Lord and pray that you will use your strong testimony to bring others closer to Jesus.
I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Every day I will praise you and extol your name for ever and ever. Great is the LORD and most worthy of praise; his greatness no one can fathom. One generation will commend your works to another; they will tell of your mighty acts. They will speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty, and I will meditate on your wonderful works. They will tell of the power of your awesome works, and I will proclaim your great deeds. They will celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness. The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made. All you have made will praise you, O LORD; your saints will extol you. They will tell of the glory of your kingdom and speak of your might, so that all men may know of your mighty acts and the glorious splendor of your kingdom. Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and your dominion endures through all generations. The LORD is faithful to all his promises and loving toward all he has made. Psalm 145: 1-13
Austin's 1st Year
1 month old
2 months old
3 months old
3 1/2 months old
Going Home after 108 days in the NICU
4 months old
5 months old
6 months old
7 months old
8 months old
9 months old
10 months old
11 months old
I'll post pictures of Austin from 12 months later after I take some new ones today! May you all be blessed with the scripture that God led me to share!