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When I found this site today, I felt like a small part of me could heal. My story is a lot different than most on this site.

My fiance and I are high school sweethearts who have been together for 8 years. We bought our first house a year ago and were working on fixing it up when we found out I was expecting. We were so happy and immediately started preparing for our baby. My pregnancy was perfect. I was 23 and very healthy, no morning sickness, no high blood pressure, gained 35 pounds! We had our first ultrasound on November 11th. I knew that it was a girl the whole time. My fiance wanted a boy so bad. The ultrasound tech asked if we wanted to know the sex. I said, ” I already know its a girl.” She said, ” Honey youre right, its a girl!” The next 8 months were spent getting ready for our daughter. We watched as my belly grew. We named our daughter Ava Carmella after my fiance’s beloved Nana. Ava was always active, kicking me in my ribs until it ached! Andrew spent every waking minute getting her room ready for her. He wanted it to be perfect and it was. We had such big plans for Ava. Our family had a surprise baby shower for us on Sunday March 19th. It was so beautiful and made it feel so real. We brought home so much stuff that I didnt know what to do with it all! I spent the next two days setting up her room, putting away her clothes and putting everything together. I was so excited I hardly slept! Everything changed when I went in on Wednesday March 22nd for my 37 week appointment. They went through the normal procedures and everything was fine until my midwife checked her heartbeat. She couldn’t find it and suggested an ultrasound. I knew then that something was wrong. I felt frozen, like I couldnt react. I was immediately given an ultrasound and they told me that there was no heartbeat. I had lost our little girl. At first I couldnt cry. Then it hit me and I felt like my heart had been ripped out of my chest. I have never felt so much emotional pain in my life. I was brought to a room and induced that same afternoon. I ended up with severe preeclampsia and toxemia and was given medications that made me so drowsy that I remember very little about the next few days. The doctor told my fiance that I was very sick. My liver and kidneys were shutting down and my platelet counts were way too low. He was so afraid that he would lose both of his girls. All I know is that I didn’t want to deliver her. I wanted to keep her with me forever. I thought that if I just kept her in that everything would be ok. Knowing that I would go through all of this pain just to have my baby taken from me was the hardest thing Ive ever done. Ava was born on Thursday March 23rd at 7:44pm. She was 4 pounds 11 ounces and 17 ? inches long. She was perfect in every way. She had dark wavy hair, brown eyes, pouty little lips and her fathers very distinct chin. She even had my long skinny fingers! I kept waiting for her to cry, but she never did. My fiance gave her a bath and dressed her in a gown and hat. We had Ava baptized at 11:30 that night. When we finally let the nurse take her away I remember thinking that my life was over, that I would never be happy or feel love for anyone again. They sent us home with a box containing her gown, hat, hospital bracelet, blanket, pictures, and footprints. I look through her memory box and at her pictures everyday. Three weeks after Ava was born I was hospitilized with a large blood clot in my lung. Soon after I was diagnosed with Factor V Leiden, a genetic blood clotting disorder that was the cause of Ava’s death. It has been four months since Ava was born and I have hit every stage of grief. I talk about Ava on a daily basis and keep her picture near me all the time. This site has helped me realize that I am still a mother. I carried my daughter for nine months just like every other mother. I was in labor and gave birth to my daughter like every other mother. I also despise my stretched out belly and stretch marks like every other mother. I am still young and I know that I will have more children someday, but for now every time I look at my stomach I will remember how I kept her safe and helped her grow, and how much I enjoyed the time I had with her. Thank you for showing me that even the annoying after effects of motherhood can be good. I should feel proud and honored to have the mommy belly no matter where my baby is. Please visit my daughter Ava’s website and always let your children know how important they are to you!!

Here is the last picture taken of me pregnant at 37 weeks:


This is me now, four months later and 5 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight. Grief can do a number on you and I’m not very proud of how fast I lost the weight:


I wish that every mother could see this website. I have found that the best way to heal and appriciate life is by listening to others and learning new things. I will be forever grateful that I had a chance to hold my daughter and tell her I love her. I will never forget what she looked like, how she smelled, how perfectly she fit in my arms, or what she did to my body. I wish I knew I would feel like this four months ago. Thank you for showing mothers of all types that the joy our children bring to us and the emotional feelings far outway the physical changes.

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59 comments… add one
  • Anonymous Saturday, July 22, 2006, 8:20 am

    I am so sorry for your loss. Your story moved me to tears. I could never imagine what you are feeling, but Thank You for sharing your story. It makes me think of all the good things I do have.Christina

  • melissa Saturday, July 22, 2006, 8:41 am

    I could never have the words to make your heart hurt any less, but I am so sorry for your loss. Like you, I have a neice who lost her baby when he was three weeks old. It was her first as well. All I can say, is she was blessed again with another son, who has helped much with her healing. I hope the sun starts shining for you again soon.

  • Anonymous Saturday, July 22, 2006, 8:50 am

    I’m so sorry for your loss. I too was moved to tears reading your story. You are a mother in every sense of the word and I pray you will soon be at peace. Thank you for sharing your story.

  • elaine Saturday, July 22, 2006, 8:57 am

    I really admire your strength in being able to actually post this. After trying for 5 years, we finally were pregnant and lost the baby at 17 weeks. It was the absolute worst feeling in the world and even 5 years later, I still think about it. We have since had another baby, who is now 4. You are a strong and wonderful person for being able to be so positive about the worst experience of your life. We could all learn alot from you. When the time is right for you and your fiance, I hope you have another wonderful pregnancy, with a much better outcome. You certainly deserve it.

  • jade Saturday, July 22, 2006, 8:59 am

    I am so sorry for your loss..Thanks so much for sharing your story…I tried to look at your beautiful Ava’s site but it would not work….

  • The Shape of a Mother Saturday, July 22, 2006, 9:13 am

    That’s my fault, sorry. The link to Ava’s site should work now!

  • Bebu Saturday, July 22, 2006, 9:14 am

    I am so sorry for your loss. Your baby sure has a strong mom. I wish you luck and happiness.P.S: I tried to look at your baby’s site too but the link doesnt work.

  • The Shape of a Mother Saturday, July 22, 2006, 9:31 am

    The link works for me now, if it STILL doesn’t work for anyone, please let me know!

  • CeCe Saturday, July 22, 2006, 9:34 am

    Geez, I don’t know when I’ll stop crying! I’m four months pregnant right now, and thinking about what happened to you, it’s just so sad!

  • Anonymous Saturday, July 22, 2006, 9:54 am

    I am so moved by your story–you are such a strong woman. Just know that your baby girl is smiling down from heaven, waiting for the day that you can be together again. She will always be in your heart, and how blessed you were to bond with her over those beautiful 9 months.God Bless!

  • Manic Mom Saturday, July 22, 2006, 10:35 am

    Hi, your beautiful Ava is a lucky girl to have a mother who loves her as much as you do. I hope that because of the sacrifice of Ava that you will be blessed with many siblings to her!My very close friend lost her daughter, Samantha, at 38 weeks. Her husband was out of town so I was the one who got the call at 3 a.m. and took her to the hospital. I still remember watching the resident on call when he was doing the ultrasound. I saw his Adam’s apple move up and down as he swallowed, then he told her he had lost her baby. Bless you and Ava, and your fiance, and that is very brave of you to share this very moving story. Thank you.

  • Anna Saturday, July 22, 2006, 11:06 am

    Such a sad story! I am so sorry for your loss!

  • Dancing Rabbit Saturday, July 22, 2006, 11:16 am

    Thank you for sharing your story. I admire your strength, grieve for your loss, and wish you much joy in your memories.

  • Amanda Saturday, July 22, 2006, 11:44 am

    Ava was beautiful and like you said, “perfect in every way”.I don’t pretend to understand why these things happen or how you feel but please know that my life has been touched by reading your story and seeing your perfect Ava.You are a mother and she will always be your baby.

  • Wicked Stepmom Saturday, July 22, 2006, 11:46 am

    Thank you for sharing your story.There are no words adequate enough to post. But still, I had to comment just to let you know that I was here.

  • Amber Saturday, July 22, 2006, 12:03 pm

    I’m so sorry for your loss.This is the most powerful post I’ve read here and wanted to thank you for sharing your story. And you are correct–you ARE a Mom in every sense of the word.P & PT for you and your family.

  • Jennifer Sprague, High Top Baby Des Saturday, July 22, 2006, 12:06 pm

    WOW, what a powerful, loving amazing story! You are so strong! I am so sorry for your loss, and am so thankful you felt you could share your story here!Your family are in my prayers and thoughts!

  • Amber Saturday, July 22, 2006, 12:14 pm

    Not only are you a mother, you are a WONDERFUL mother. Best to you and your family.

  • Am Saturday, July 22, 2006, 12:17 pm

    I am so sorry for the loss of Ava.

  • Anonymous Saturday, July 22, 2006, 12:31 pm

    Your story about your daugher Ava is so heartbreaking. You ARE a mother and you can always hold that dear to your heart next to your daughters memory.

  • Chris (mombie) Saturday, July 22, 2006, 1:06 pm

    I’m sorry for your loss. I wish you peace and strength.

  • Kate Saturday, July 22, 2006, 1:11 pm

    I am actually crying for you, but you have a real peace about you and I am praying to Jesus right now that you find more comfort, and that He touches your life in personal ways through this painful time. God does love you…I can promise you that. Maybe reading some of the Bible will help bring you more joy and peace in this time, it has done so much in my life. Psalms are very real, crying out, kinda like blogs actually. Also words of peace and comfort all over but especially in the New Testament. Hugs to you. You are a beautiful, wonderful mama. Blessings to you this night.

  • Jill Saturday, July 22, 2006, 2:36 pm

    So sorry for your loss. You absolutely are a mother.

  • Katharine Saturday, July 22, 2006, 3:08 pm

    I’m so sorry that Ava died. You are an incredible mother.

  • Alisyn Saturday, July 22, 2006, 3:12 pm

    i am so sorry for your loss.you are a strong and beautiful reminder of what a blessing being a mother is.

  • Victoria Saturday, July 22, 2006, 3:59 pm


  • Sara Saturday, July 22, 2006, 4:21 pm

    Thank you so much for sharing your story. Many blessings to you, and your family.

  • Sarah Saturday, July 22, 2006, 5:25 pm

    Your story is very very touching. I’m very sorry that you lost Ava. It really is a blessing to have the stretch marks left over from your pregnancy because it’s something permanent that you will always remember her by.

  • Anonymous Saturday, July 22, 2006, 6:19 pm

    I am so very very sorry. I truly am. I can feel your love for your daughter in my heart.

  • Heather Saturday, July 22, 2006, 7:59 pm

    I stopped and prayed for your family halfway through your post. Words cannot express the sorrow I feel and I don’t even know you. May God bless you and keep you in his loving arms. May you be reuinited in Christ with your angel Ava.

  • Tasha Saturday, July 22, 2006, 8:23 pm

    awww *hugs* i’m so sorry :(I’d love to go to that site, but the link still doesn’t work for me :(

  • Laura Saturday, July 22, 2006, 9:34 pm

    Thank you for sharing your story. tears are running down my cheeks. your story was so deep and powerful. the raw human emotions of love. life and death. I am praying for you and your family.Ava is blessed to have had a mother like you here on earth. You are blessed to be her mother.<3

  • Manic Mom Saturday, July 22, 2006, 9:37 pm

    I think it’s so wonderful that there are all these women out there who are wishing you peace and happiness. This site has been by far, one of the most powerful ones I’ve ever been on, and I truly hope it brings mothers together, and helps us appreciate more the bodies we have gained by becoming mothers.

  • The Shape of a Mother Saturday, July 22, 2006, 11:08 pm

    I’ve fixed the link in the post now, it worked for me earlier. I think any further problems are from the website itself.

  • megan Saturday, July 22, 2006, 11:10 pm

    your story is beautiful, and it brought me to tears. thank you for sharing with us.

  • Anonymous Saturday, July 22, 2006, 11:17 pm

    I’m so sorry you lost Ava. I cannot imagine your pain and hope someday you hold Ava’s little brother/sister in your arms.

  • Jenny Sunday, July 23, 2006, 3:26 pm

    Always remember that you are Ava’s mother and that you were her home for 9 months while she grew into a little baby girl. Thanks for sharing your story.

  • Anonymous Sunday, July 23, 2006, 5:46 pm

    I am so very sorry for your loss, and touched by your story. Thank you for reminding us how lucky we are, your little one was beautiful.

  • Mary Sunday, July 23, 2006, 8:09 pm

    May God keep you in his ever loving hands. Thank you for reminding me that even on the toughest days to just love on my boys. God Bless You.

  • Anonymous Sunday, July 23, 2006, 8:29 pm

    Bless you. I hope the healing leaves you stronger. Good luck.Remember that Ava loves you and is watching over you

  • Anonymous Monday, July 24, 2006, 4:53 am

    I’m so sorry you lost your beautiful little girl. Thank you so much for having the strength to share your story.

  • R Monday, July 24, 2006, 5:34 am

    I am incredibly sorry for your tragic loss. Thank You for having the strength to share your story.

  • blessedmom Monday, July 24, 2006, 7:15 am

    I also lost my baby girl after a “perfect” pregnancy 2 years ago. I deliver her full-term via c-section and she lived in the NICU for 5 days. We are now blessed with a beautiful baby boy. If you need someone to talk to, email me at kdphi_uh@yahoo.com.

  • sunShine Monday, July 24, 2006, 12:20 pm

    BLess your heart. That is just awful. Thank you for sharing yhour story.

  • Anonymous Monday, July 24, 2006, 12:43 pm

    Your story brings tears to my eyes. God bless you and little Ava Carmella.

  • Anonymous Monday, July 24, 2006, 3:02 pm

    A poem I wrote for a little angel taken from my arms too early. It brings me hope, as I hope it does to you.AngelA soul with enough sunshine For the whole world to seeA heart with enough loveTo lift even meWith eyes so brightTo melt the coldest dayAnd a love so powerfulTo whisk all my worries awayThe smallest angelA destiny so divineSent from heavens armsSo I could hold you in mine~CAK

  • Anonymous Monday, July 24, 2006, 4:22 pm

    You should have a little sun tattoed on the other side of your perfect Ava-carrying belly for her. I think a smiling sun would be a good match.

  • Anonymous Monday, July 24, 2006, 4:45 pm

    I am so extremely sorry for your devastating loss. Thank you for sharing your story – I looked at your site and Ava was absolutely beautiful. As I read your last journal entry, your words reminded me of a song by Sanctus Real – the chorus says “I’m not alright … I’m broken inside, broken inside.” I won’t pretend to understand what you’ve gone through, and I know that the pain of losing her will certainly never go away, but I pray that God will begin to heal it so that it is not so “sharp” of a pain anymore. God bless you, Andrew and your beautiful daughter.

  • melsybelsy Monday, July 24, 2006, 7:59 pm

    It took a lot of strength to share your story with us. Thank you for that.You are one courageous mother. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  • amandalicious Monday, July 24, 2006, 10:09 pm

    wow, words can’t express how sorry i am for your loss. as a single 24 year old woman with no children, i am the furthest from understanding your grief. but something in you struck a chord in me… your story was beautiful, and i hope you know that your writing completely touched me. thank you for writing this. you and Ava are in my thoughts…

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