“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13


At my last doctor’s appointment, I was told to look for labor signs because our daughter would be here any day. Three days later, the same doctor who just saw me said, “I’m sorry, there is no heartbeat.” The worst day in my entire life. My greatest fear was coming true, delivering a stillborn. The shock, the heartbreak, the fear and confusion were too much to handle. Every appointment was good until now. She was healthy and nothing was wrong. How could this be?


It was the longest 36 hours of my life until our daughter entered the world, Lydia Jade. She was born on August 25th weighing 6lbs 10oz.  I will never forget the eerie feeling of our daughter being born and how the room was silent. No talking, no screaming and no crying. But the Lord gave me strength to deliver her. He was with me the entire time in my brokenness, fear and worry. He never left my side.


In the midst of our pain and heartache, I’m thankful that God chose me to carry our daughter and I had the privilege of bringing her straight to the Lord, even though her life was far too short. Our daughter is alive in heaven and never has to know what suffering or pain is. I’m comforted knowing that in this world there is suffering yet there is redemption because of Jesus dying on the cross and defeating death. God did not plan for this to happen to me or anyone else going through a loss. We live in a broken and fallen world. We are all in need of a savior who takes our brokenness and turns it into beauty.


Jesus knows what it’s like to suffer and meets us in our pain. He will carry us and walk with us. There is a beautiful richness that we can find in Jesus when we suffer. No matter how hard the situation is, Jesus heals the brokenhearted and binds up our wounds. He keeps track of our sorrows and collects our tears in a bottle. (Psalm 147:3, Psalm 56:8)


Walking out of the hospital was so hard for my husband and myself. I wore my hat and looked down the entire time trying to avoid seeing other mothers holding their newborn. Coming home to an empty nursery with no baby was such an awful feeling as well. We were so excited to become first time parents and our dreams had been crushed.


There are still many triggers that bring me back to my hurt and pain every day. But I have hope knowing that our life here is temporary and I’ll see her again someday. God can handle our anger, questions and confusion. Grief is a messy and scary journey but God hurts with us and wants to comfort us.


By the grace of God, I've been able to have joy in my sorrow, grow deeper in my faith, and be able to have a deeper compassion and understanding for those who grieve or experience loss. Because of my loss I've been able to gain more of an awareness of heaven and trust God in the midst of my pain.


Thank you to all who have walked this journey of deep sorrow and grief with us. So many of you have entered into our pain and sat with us, cried with us, and encouraged us. Thank you to those who brought meals, sent cards and gifts. We are overwhelmed  by all your love and appreciate your thoughtfulness in this difficult time. Dan and I feel so loved and cared for by many.


We are so grateful for the organization No Foot Too Small. You have brought us so much healing and we love your vision to Celebrate Angels. Unite Families. Build Birthing and Bereavement Suites.

~Ashley Locker