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photo: © Anne Kitzman -

photo: © Anne Kitzman –

word prompt: hold


She had been lying in the hospital on bedrest for a week

When the nurse came for the once a shift check to listen to the baby’s heartbeat.

The nurse listened. She listened again.

She readjusted her fetoscope more than once.

She left the room and got someone else to listen.

But no matter who listened

The only sound they heard was silence!


It was 1970.

There weren’t many monitors like we have today.

But as the patient, also a nurse, lay there, she knew…

She knew the heartbeat was gone.

The baby who had been so active had been less so the last few days.

She had mentioned it to the nurses and doctor before.

But the heartbeat was there so no one was concerned…


Except for her.

She knew this wasn’t going to end well…

Or was it her gloomy soul that never thought anything she really wanted

Could ever come to pass?

There had been the miscarriage, but she had gotten pregnant again without too much difficulty.

Surely this time all would be well.

The doctor came to listen too.


He was upset. She was one of the first patients in his practice.

He told her they would do one more test.

If there was a glimmer of hope that the baby was alive,

They would do a C-section.

Otherwise, they would wait until she went into labor naturally.

The test was an EEG done on her belly instead of her head.

She watched the leads.


At least one lead needed to be a different beat from the rest that registered her heartbeat.

She looked and saw the tracing on the paper.

They were all the same.

She closed her eyes. She did not want to start crying while the technician was there.

After the leads were taken off, she went to the bathroom and sat in disbelief!

Sobbing from a place she didn’t know could be so deep.

The child she longed to hold would not be born alive.


There would be no life-saving C-section.

Her husband soon arrived and the doctor broke the sad news.

They held each other and cried hot, ugly tears.

It was hard to believe the child they wanted so badly was gone.

At slightly over 8 months and almost 5 pounds, their first daughter was born a few days later.

It was their introduction to grief as a couple.

It was the beginning of ministry from a painful place…


But they had no idea then what GOD was doing as He started preparing them for the years ahead.

And it all started by beginning to break their hearts

And teach them how to hold onto Jesus.

They just didn’t know it at the time.


Whoops! I just started writing without timing myself. I’m sure I went over, but not by much.

As you may have guessed, this is my story. It is about our first daughter, born June 27, 1970. Our next daughter Dawn, was born almost a year later on June 24, 1971.
     Fellowship Friday#37