My Very Own Angel also heads off the 345 Teddy Bear Project, where every other year we donate 115 7” teddy bears wearing angel necklaces to various hospitals and prenatal diagnostic centers in sets of 3.
My Very Own Angel is also the original creator and designer of the official “I Have My Very Own Angel” T-Shirt and other soon to be announced keepsakes, to encourage women to be proud of their angels and make a statement to the world that often overlooks pregnancy and infant loss as something that “just happens”. The woman herself is a strong being to carry, birth, and take care of children, so what does that say about the unspoken and often forgotten women who suffer the loss of child against the natural order of death? It says that we have already climbed the hardest mountain, there is no sense in going back down, so climb up and keeping climbing doing good deeds, honoring your angel and practicing positive healing after such a tragic situation. Eventually you will reach the highest mountain, and you will hold your child in your arms again.
Thank you for taking the time to follow this blog and see the site, if you are a bereaved parent I can formally say I know how you feel, if you are a friend, family member, or an outsider looking in. Stay for a while check out some of the blogs we follow, view this situation from eyes of the families that have lost, I assure you, you will learn something and find a new sense of compassion.
Founder and Creator of My Very Own Angel
Thursday, December 31, 2009
Through loss I have been so blessed to so many families. When I put my story on the Internet I never expected the support I’ve received. The sole purpose was to keep my family up to date, but in the end I made a whole new family. If you have suffered this loss, walked in these shoes, you know how important you are to my recovery as I am to yours. Thank you all, for being so kind to welcome me into your loss experience. I hope that I have blessed you or will bless you in the future. I also hope that my mission has brought the understanding that if you’ve suffered pregnancy or infant loss you are STRONG. You have made it through something that most consider unimaginable, the next time you are asked how many children you have, remember to say “I Have My Very Own Angel(s)”
Walking into 2010, My Very Own Angel has a lot going on. The 345 Teddy Bear Project will be going to another hospital in Oklahoma City in January. May is a very special month for me, this May we will be celebrating Vayden’s 1st yr in Heaven and I am currently putting together, 23 Days of May Giveaways.
Have a Happy and Safe New Year, put God first and never forget your very own angel(s).
God bless you,
Saturday, December 26, 2009
This was my first Christmas after my loss and I had many reasons to listen to my heart above my head this year. Vayden had gifts under the tree, this Christmas he received a place to rest his ashes, notes from dear friends and family, and $$$ to go towards My Very Own Angel. Those donations will allow MVOA to continue to donate Teddy Bears, send out carrying to term comfort packs and host blog and facebook giveaways. -Thank you
My mother who has been a top supporter of My Very Own Angel also was so kind to donate an additional item to be used in the carrying to term comfort packs. Now along with dark chocolate the mommy will receive a small lotion and body wash pack for her comfort. (will post pics of the new CTT packs soon) Thank you Sharon aka mom
On December 23,2009 Vayden's 7th Heavenly month marker, I went to OU Physicians MFM Prenatal Diagnostic Center to accept a donation for My Very Own Angel. Instead of the office staff doing their regular holiday gift exchange, they pooled together donations for MVOA. I am so humbled and honored that they would think of me and Vayden during this holiday season, and that they believed enough in my ministry to support it. - Thank you so much to the staff
This is Dr. K, he was my MFM specialist and the 1st person to read me the bad news, most wonder why the sight of this man doesn't make me shiver, but the truth is I respect this man so much. I know in my heart that he did everything medically possible for Vayden, he was also an amazing supporter of carrying to term in fact he was the first person to tell me "you can do it".
- Thank you Dr. K
This is Camille, she assisted Dr. K through most of my prenatal intervention, she was great about returning phone calls or emails in a timely manner, she also helped Dr. K safely stick me with about 9 needles. - Thank you Camille
This is Cathy, she helped put this donation together but more than anything she was an angel on earth. She knew how to calm a person down by cracking a joke, singing a song, or just letting you know that it will be ok. She told me that Vayden would be a very special patient and she was right. - Thank you Cathy
Here is a group of some of the nurses at OU Physicians MFM Prenatal Diagnostic Center, they are amazing and supportive. My journey of carrying to term wouldn't have been the same without the support of this medical team. - Thank you
This Christmas was great for me and my family, Vayden has an amazing Christmas in Heaven and on earth. With the support that My Very Own Angel has the 345 Teddy Bear Project will continue to offer comfort to many more families suffering infant loss. No woman should leave L&D empty handed.
Monday, December 21, 2009
Christmas is coming and I've seen many who would skip Christmas and wait until next year. The holiday season is a time of joy and happiness, it's a time to reflect on a year and prepare for the new one coming. The holiday season is a time for FAMILY, so when people in the family aren't there that should be there, the holiday season can be very hard. It is easy to say forget Christmas, I'm going to skip it this year, or Bah Humbug. The reality is that Christmas is something that will be around every year and skipping it can be a lot harder than accepting and remembering what Christmas is truly about Christ.
Here are 4 ways to have a humbug Christmas, if you following these 4 steps you will surely have a horrible Christmas this year and every year to come.
1.) Let circumstances determine your attitude.
- You have to learn to go with the flow. Don't go to your in laws house of your Christmas party with the mind set that you will be happy or fine as long as......
For example: I will have a great time "If" no one asks me how many children I have. It's one of the most common small talk questions for people, and being asked that question should not determine your attitude. Look at it this way, if someone asks you how many children do you have? you have the perfect opportunity to honor your angel.
2.) Wallow in worry.
- Worrying will take away the quality of life. It will consume you and the blessings in life will pass you by, you will be too busy worrying about everything. Don't worry about "it" happening again. Don't worry about the babysitter who is taking care of your living children. A little worry is okay, but to wallow in it will cause you to lose the joy in your life.
3.) Stay away from church.
- Think about how you felt when you missed church for a while and finally went back. Such a peaceful feeling and the people there made you feel like you were never gone. Church gives you a weekly attitude boost, it's very rare for someone to go to church and leave angry. Going to church will remind you that God is still in control.
4.) Hold onto the belief that "Things" will make you happy.
- The best way to put this as pastor says " We buy things we don't need, with money with don't have, to empress people we don't like" Things will only keep you happy for a short time until the next best thing comes around, that you must have.
So follow those 4 steps and you will most definitely have a humbug Christmas. However I hope none of you do.
I want to wish you all a very merry Christmas and point out one thing. Christmas in Heaven must be the best thing, because it is Jesus birthday, our babies are lucky, and although they are greatly missed, they are also very well taken care of.
Monday, December 14, 2009
At church on Sunday, my pastor decided to go off his normal series sermon and speak on something that was on his heart. The Power of Living, ever since my loss I can literally turn any message, song or quote into how it pertains to me and my loss.
The message was that we need to slow down, if you’re in a hurry to do anything you will lose your joy and you will not be able to hear the voice of God, so “be still and know that I am God” Psalm 46:10. We were not created to constantly move and rush, yet in today’s world, relax, slow down, rest; even vacation is not in the vocabulary of many. Pastor Ron gave us 3 steps to achieve greater rest, I am going to share these steps with you and how I have personally used them in connection with grief and loss.
Step 1 – Avoid procrastination – If you say you want to do something, and then do it. In the days following my loss I set 3 simple goals for myself to assist in my healing, I needed to shower every day, drink water and eat, and give thanks to God. If I only did those 3 things at least I stuck to the goal; however those 3 simple things allowed me to do continue to do normal life duties. Had I not set those goals I may have entered into a dark place and it would have been difficult to navigate out.
Step 2 – Dump the Junk – After a loss your life, your family, and your way of thinking change. As you adjust to your new normal other things will need to change. Navigating through loss is only as good as the support that is around you, I had an amazing support network and I credit them to helping me to be where I am today. However I had to dump some junk, some friends that didn’t understand, some ways of living and ways of thinking, which were only hurting me and not helping me through my journey. Although I lost, I also gained and I have surrounded myself with positive people, a stronger faith, and a more optimistic way of thinking despite my loss.
Step 3 – Learn to accept Gods timing – We all have a time, everyone has a time to live and a time to die. I believe that life starts in the womb so even if your baby was born sleeping he/she was alive. It was Gods timing to allow me to have Vayden for 35 weeks in the womb and 3hr and 45 min in my arms, although that time is short in comparison to my life, it is what God chose for Vayden and I can accept that. Because in just 35 weeks and 3hrs and 45min I was able to learn so much about myself, Vayden, God, my faith, my family, my friends, bereaved parents, and life. The only reason I have grown from my loss is because I accepted Gods timing.
I hope you all remind yourselves often to slow down, listen to the voice of God and utilize these 3 steps to achieve greater rest.
Friday, December 4, 2009
I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season, although the holidays are rough, utilize the fact that you may be around family and joyful people.
MVOA t-shirts and teddy bears are perfect gifts to ask for or to give to another mother who is grieving the loss of her very own angel during Christmas time.
(One ornament per order)
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Never pass up the opportunity to tell someone you have your very own angel if the question comes up, you just never know who you could possibly help by sharing your story first.
- God Bless
Saturday, November 21, 2009
Teresa a NILMDTS photographer is who I selected to pick the winner, I chose her because she gave me the idea. In an earlier giveaway for an MVOA shirt she submitted herself but for an angel mom. I thought what an amazing kind thing to do, she could have said "I don't have an angel, this giveaway isn't for me" instead she thought of someone else.
Teresa selected Lisa A light at the end of the tunnel . Lisa nominated Tarah and this is what she wrote
I would like to nominate someone who I first "met" when we lost our baby James. Her name is Tarah and she has the biggest heart of anyone I have ever known. She contacted me about a care package she wanted to send after learning about our loss. After corresponding with her she learned that we were in a tight spot getting a headstone for our angel. Through her efforts she raised over $800 to help us purchase James' headstone. Tarah is truly an angel on earth. But she has her own story. She struggles with infertility and has lost 3 babies of her own. Due to a balanced translocation she has a hard time conceiving and staying pregnant. Tarah deserves so much more than I could ever give her but I would like to acknowledge her huge giving heart.
Congratulations Tarah would you please email me at email@example.com so that I can get your address and size for a multiple loss shirt.
Also Lisa would you also please email me with your size and address's, so that I can send you an MVOA shirt for being humbled to the point that you could nominate someone else for something you wanted.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I’m going to pay it forward by starting this chain I hope you follow along. I’m going to purchase one (1) t-shirt for a mother, whose story has touched my heart in a way words can’t express.
I’m also going to purchase 1 “I Have My Very Own Angel”, or “I Have My Very Own Angels” white or black (any size) for one of you ladies to pay it forward to a mother who you have met only by the connection of pregnancy and infant loss and someone………… (Select one)
- Who inspired you?
- Whose story has just touched your heart?
- Who you don’t know but think should have a shirt, to move towards progressive healing
Tell me briefly why you want to pay forward a shirt to them
*I know there are so many stories and so many women who have inspired or touched our hearts, but please only select one person for this giveaway. You are more than welcome to start your own pay it forward chain by visiting our angel store at http://myveryownangel.org/Angel-Store.php
Also while we’re talking about giving and paying things forward, with the holidays coming don’t forget to give a gift to your very own angel that keeps on giving. Make a donation to Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep, String Of Pearls, Sufficient Grace Ministries, Fetal Hope Foundation, March of Dimes, etc, or make small donations to foundations like MVOA’s 345 Teddy Bear Project. Honor your angels by keeping these non profits and not for profit organizations running for future families on this journey.
I’m going to pay forward a shirt to Christy Pearson http://pearsons6.blogspot.com/ I just started following her blog so I don’t know her well, but I know that this shirt would provide her great comfort through this tough time.
THIS GIVEAWAY WILL END ON FRIDAY 11/20 AT 3:30pm (CST) – The winner will be selected by one of my dear supporters that doesn’t have her very own angel, but she holds them all the time.
*Anyone can enter*
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Tell me how you avoid cabin fever or how you plan to avoid it????
I got a little cabin fever over this last week, but I dread going out in the cold, so I stayed inside and....
Read my Bible - the book of Job always humbles my sad days
Play with Vashon since he's suffering too, it's too cold to go to the park
I started working out for 30-45 min a day, just pop in a little hip hop music and dance my extra weight away.
I wear my MVOA tshirt some nights to sleep in. I don't know why, it just makes me feel extra close to my angel.
I plan my dream vacation. :)
So what things do you do to avoid cabin fever depression when the sun doesn't shine for days???
Thursday, November 12, 2009
These special packages are small, but truly from my heart. They are offered for free, to women that make the brave choice to carry out a fatal pregnancy. Please see the Carrying To Term Comfort Packs page on my website, for more information. Please let any mothers you currently know that are carrying to term about this.
My Very Own Angel now has shirts for mommies who have 2 or more angels " I Have My Very Own Angels"
Because so many have asked we finally selling the MVOA angel bears. However these are personalized and wear a letter initial dog tag for your very own angel
* All proceeds from the support t-shirts go directly to The 345 Teddy Bear Project and The MVOA Carrying to Term Comfort Packs
God has blessed me with this mission, to help and give back. I am currently preparing for my next teddy bear donation drop off and I look forward to everything that will come in the future.
Monday, October 19, 2009
When our babies are taken from us too early, it sure can seem like the whole world is against us. We wonder why us?, why now? We say I did everything right, I wanted this baby, I prayed for their health. Yet the world still went against what we wanted.
What is Faith? Faith is trusting that everything will work out no matter what. Faith is knowing that we all will see our babies again. Faith is trusting that the world was in fact on our side when our babies were picked to be angels.
Losing our babies is by far the worst thing, it's not fair, it hurts like hell, and it's real. The reason why all this happened, we will never truly know, but you were not picked to be a mommy of an angel to turn your back on the world.
If you've lost faith since the loss of your child, it's time to find it again. If you never had it before and you need something to lean on, faith is an awesome crutch. Sufficient Grace is an awesome place to start, not only will you get amazing lessons in faith, but you will find amazing tools in healthy grieving the loss of your baby with Kelly. The added bonus Kelly has her very own angels and she's proud to say it.
I hope that this week by week digest of The Secret was as fun for you as it was for me. You can always go back to the lines in this poem and if you fall, get back up, dust yourself off and keeping climbing up that mountain. By the time you reach the top you will be reunited with your very own angel(s)
Friday, October 16, 2009
Dana said each of you deserved to win and she is graciously donating one (1) sculpture to everyone who entered in this giveaway on blogger. She is busy working on them so please allow time but you will all get one that you noted was your favorite or one that she felt suited you based upon the photos on your blogs.
I want you to know that Dana is indeed a walking angel, and I found her website for a reason. I need you mothers to support this artist and this wonderful giving woman. She gets the feelings that we only wish others would understand. She is hope for us, that those not effected personally by pregnancy and infant loss, can understand what we are going through.
I need you ladies to do 3 things for me before accepting this prize.
Thank Dana by posting a thank you comment here on my blog
Also please create a post on your blog letting everyone know how awesome she is
as a person and an artist. Here web link is www.themidnightorange.com
Please send me your names and addresses to firstname.lastname@example.org
I want every angel mommy to have at least one of her sculptures, not just because they are so beautiful, but because of who they came from, a person who read into our stories, she stepped into our pain, channeled that into a God given talent and she is humble enough to bless so many with empty arms and aching hearts. Please share her info with everyone you know.
* If you did not enter into this giveaway, please still take a moment and visit The Midnight Orange, amazing, breathtaking work.
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Tuesday, October 13, 2009
To think well of myself and to proclaim this fact to the world, not in loud words, but in great deeds.
Did you ever blame yourself for what happened to your angel? Did you ever second guess something you did while you were pregnant? maybe it's something very small like sleeping on the right side instead of the left side, but did you ever wonder was it you? I've made it very clear that I believe I did everything right in my pregnancy with Vayden, but being told his condition was a fluke in development was hard to accept at first. I wanted someone or something to blame for this. I recall second guessing myself at times, wondering if the spicy nachos I ate every single day for 8 weeks caused this.
When I would share his fetal condition to strangers, some would boldly ask if I was taking my prenatals or getting enough water, rest, or eating the right foods. When I would tell them it's a rare fluke in development they would give me this eye as if they were saying "well you must have done something wrong, my babies are healthy" Some were very sympathetic and understanding, I believe they've either walked this road of loss of they knew someone who did.
When Vayden died, I told myself that I will not allow myself to ever fall into thinking that I'm to blame, I know I researched hard enough, I prayed strong enough and I loved/love him with every piece of my heart. I did nothing wrong and no one can tell me otherwise, so I share his story with everyone and anyone, because I DID NOTHING WRONG!!!, therefore I have nothing to be ashamed of.
The 345 Teddy Bear Project speaks entirely to this line, every teddy bear has Vayden's blog URL on it and every bear is to encourage woman to share their story just as I've shared mine. Because we did nothing wrong.
See you next week : To live in the faith that the whole world is on my side, so long as I am true to the best that is in me.
Friday, October 9, 2009
This piece is called " Never ever, let go" it's both beautiful and heartbreaking as a mother holds onto her baby that is already an angel. It hit a very soft spot on my heart the moment I saw it. Scroll down for giveaway rules:
and telling me which hand sculpted statue is your personal favorite.
What can you do in 2 minutes????
live, die, be born, eat, sleep, wake up, go to bed, smile, cry, run, hide, watch a commercial, type an answer, log in, log out, dial a number wait for the voice mail to pick up and leave a short message....etc. YOU CAN DO JUST ABOUT ANYTHING IN 2 MINUTES.
However in the state of TN, 2 minutes is not enough to be considered born alive, despite the health you were born into. Wyatt was born June 1, 2009 and lived for 2 minutes, but the state of TN, is not recognizing those amazing 2 minutes of life and they have considered him still born. Please help Danielle fight for Wyatt, this brave mother carried to term despite his fatal diagnosis she said
"Those 2 minutes will probably be the most precious 120 seconds of my life. If I had chosen to terminate the pregnancy, I would have robbed Wyatt of his life and I would have robbed the world of all the beauty my 4 pound 0.6 ounce little boy brought with him." http://myveryownangel.org/Why-I-Carried-To-Term.php
Suppot Danielle and by clicking on the button on this post and visit her blog Letting Go and Letting God
Monday, October 5, 2009
I often wish to be the type of person that lets little or nothing affect them. I worry about Vashon all the time, I can get angry or upset over the smallest things depending on my day. I'm a fearful driver because of my accidents in the past.
When I read this line last week it immediately reminded me of the armor of God. The belt of Truth, the breastplate of Righteousness, the shoes of Peace, the shield of Faith, the helmet of Salvation, and the sword of the Spirit. So I began to pray this armour over my body every morning, it actually works I'm not completely free of these negative characteristics but I do start everyday with the knowledge that whatever is thrown at me, my armor will block it.
See you next week: To think well of myself and to proclaim this fact to the world, not in loud words, but in great deeds.
Monday, September 28, 2009
This one is by far the hardest I have come across in this pathway to becoming a better person. It's also one of the most important to achieve. I have to convict myself often for criticizing someone for their choices or actions. The sad part is I do not criticize those who I don't know, I only do it to the people that I know, because I feel they can do better. This is something that I constantly and will continue to work on, because it's not right and as the old saying goes, "if you have nothing nice to say, say nothing at all"
Because this line is a little harder for me than the others I'm going to do a test on myself also. I'm going to think before I speak, I'm going to avoid confrontation as best as I can, and when I get that itch to say something mean, I'm going to take the high road and remind myself that if I'm criticizing a person, I'm doing something to them that I wouldn't want done to me.
No excuses this time, and it's true the hardest thing to do, is to do nothing at all.
See you next week: To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Think about being at Sam's Club, and you have two people giving out samples. One of the employee's has a cheerful smile on their face while the other looks like they just may have spit in your food. Just their demeanor can make that sample less appealing to you. The best phone conversation I've had was with a customer service rep at Sprint. We got our cell phone bill and it's was about $200.00 over normal price. My husband got on the phone and spit fire at the representative then hung up in his face. We were both upset about the bill but I called back because I wanted to get more info on the charges so I called the rep back. I began by apologizing for my husbands behavior but the rep was clearly already upset and I could tell by the tone of his voice. He was giving my attitude I should have given it right back to him, but I didn't I continued to talk to him with a calm voice as we went through each charge on the bill. By mid conversation his voice perked up and he began laughing and joking with me. At the end of our 15 min conversation I was able to find out that the charges on our bill were valid, but he was able to extend a huge credit that we were eligible for but never realized it. I try to remind myself of this story when I want to walk around in public with a "kill the world look on my face".
Morale of the story, being kind pays off. Next time you see a new baby or a pregnant woman in a store, give her smile. It's easier to do that, than continue your shopping being jealous of them.
See you next week: To give so much time to improving myself that I have no time to criticize others.
Monday, September 14, 2009
First I'd like to thank all who follow The Secret breakdown, whether you do it on your blog or not. I have enjoyed testing myself to become a better person.
This weeks line was hard for me, I rarely dwell in the mistakes of the past, if I make a mistake, I make it right and I move on from it. From all the mistakes I've made there is one that I often still think about. I suppose because the situation finally hit home for me.
Back when I was newly pregnant with Vayden, my dear friend Sheena suffered an ectopic pregnancy loss. She didn't even know she was pregnant until she found out she was going to lose her baby. She and her husband had been TTC for months. When I heard the news I sobbed on my couch, I was pregnant and wanted to be pregnant just as bad as she did. I was even a lil upset with God, if any of you know Sheena, she not only wanted another child, she truly deserved another child. Amazing mother!!!!
Because she knew that I was pregnant and we were supposed to be "belly buddies" I thought it would be too hard for her to be around me, I didn't even call her. I sent her a msg on myspace telling her how sorry I was for her loss. When I found out about Vayden's condition, Sheena was the 1st out of my friends that I called. I cried and screamed on the phone with her, she cried with me, she talked to me for about 2 hrs as I repeated myself over and over again. She was there for me every step of the way through my journey of carrying to term. She even spoke at Vayden's memorial services. Sheena thank you for treating me, better than I treated you.
My most regretted mistake was that I wasn't there for her during her loss like she was for me. I will never again assume that a woman doesn't want or need support after her loss. I will lend my ear and offer my shoulder, and I will now be able to say " I understand"
See you next week: To wear a cheerful expression at all times and give a smile to every living creature I meet
Friday, September 11, 2009
If you are having trouble with the link you can also go to www.news9.com find the Making a Difference, my segment is titles Very Own Angel Bears
Also if you type Very Own Angel Bears into google search engine it will be #1.
Monday, September 7, 2009
I doubt any of us wake up every morning praying for our success and failure for everyone around us. This is not what this line is trying to say. I know that we mothers of angels would never wish this pain, this loss, or this heartache on any woman. However I think we all at one point may have been guilty of seeing another pregnant woman or a brand new baby and not wishing our pain on them, but wondering what makes them so different? why does she get to buy diapers and wipes for the baby she is carrying and why am I buying a casket or an urn? Although we don't wish sickness or anything bad on them, are we really enthusiastic about their success? Did we stop to think there may be a story behind that woman with the newborn or the woman shopping for her new baby? Is it possible that she could have walked the same painful journey before getting to the place she is now?
What about when others success hits close to home? When our friends, or family calls you with the exciting news of being pregnant? That's a hard thing to take it, here you just loss your baby and your sister in law is having a healthy set of twins, you love her, but you wonder "how on earth am I going to help plan her baby shower?"
This line isn't about you not being happy for these women and these healthy babies. I think we all agree that no woman should feel this pain, this line is about truly being just as enthusiastic when it comes to others as YOU would want them to be when you share your positive news. It is to remind you that everyone has great moments in their lives as well as bad moments. It's to give us a humbling line of hope that says, "Life's whether is bad right now, but I will see the summer months again, winters can be long, but they are never forever"
How did this line effect me? I recall finding out that a very close friend of mine was pregnant with her 3rd child, it was surprising news because for a moment I thought out of all the girls in our group she and I were content where we were with kids and we would be the only two not TTC. I was not supposed to find out the way I did or how I did, it was a total shock. As much as I was happy for her, I remember going into the bathroom to break down and cry. I don't know if I was upset that she didn't tell me, I don't know if I was upset that she was pregnant, I don't know if it was just because my hormones were still out of wack. All I know is that I was not as enthusiastic about her pregnancy as I should have been. I will always feel bad about that.
See you next week To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the great achievements of the future
Monday, August 31, 2009
To think only the best – the loss of a child in my opinion is the worst thing that any woman should have to go through; it is the rock of all rock bottoms. What is under bottom?? Nothing! You can’t go down when you’re already down, so think only the best, that you will see your angel again, and start climbing that mountain. One day you will be there, at the top holding your angel again, and yes the climb is hard but come on, isn’t it worth the blood, sweat and tears?
To work only for the best – I know that many of us grow stronger in our faith after we suffer a loss. Yet there are some women who may not be quite sure what it is they are truly working for. I’ve spoken to some people who don’t know why, they just say “I figure everybody said lean on God so that’s what I’m trying to do” I’ve spoken to some women who say “I’m only doing this so God wont punish me again”, and I have also spoken to some women who cursed God and want nothing to do with him. When I come across those very few I ask them “what are you working or reaching for?” most have no reply.
What am I working for? I want to see my son again, I know where he is and I know what I need to do to get there. I’m jealous of the place where he is right now; it’s so much better than the world I live in. If my faith was shaky before it’s surely steady now, because although 3 hrs and 45 min were great, eternity would be amazing.
To expect only the best – Many of us get that thought about TTC again, and as we think more and more about it, we are plagued with those negative evil thoughts “ what if it happens again?” We need to stop allowing those wicked distractions get to us, we need to TTC as if we never knew loss happened, we need to expect that our next pregnancy will be the BEST pregnancy and will result in a healthy happy baby, that has a glimmer in his or her eyes that reminds you of your very own angel.
See you next week: To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as I am about my own.
Monday, August 24, 2009
It sure can be hard to look at the sunny side of everything when you’ve just lost your baby, right? It’s hard to find the good in that, growing up although I wasn’t really exposed to death, I had it in my mind that your cards were dealt for you before you were even born and when and how you die is supposed to be in some kind of a way. I was content to believe that except in cases of babies and children, I thought it’s just not right there is no reason why two rival gangs should accidentally kill a 4 yr old playing in his own yard.
Sunday my pastor spoke about faith and the armor of God. He said that if you won’t put on the full armor of God at least take your shield of faith, which is from head to toe. At least take your shield of faith he said, why? Because with faith you can do all things
I question this line now, was I right are the cards already dealt for everyone, even babies and children? Consider this, the mother who brought the Amber Alert to our attention lost her daughter in one of those, it’s not fair, not right and how can there be a sunny side to her loss, but….she did create something that has saved the lives of many children. The mothers who stood together and created MADD suffered the same unfair loss, yet they created something that saves many lives. I think that they had faith and were able to look at the sunny side of their loss and make their optimism come true, and make a change; they will never save every life but just to save one, is one less tragic loss. So did they lose their children in the horrible way, so that change could be made???
I have seen the sunny side of Vayden’s passing, I still would rather trade my leg to have him back, but in his short life 3 hrs and 45 min he has done more than some 80 yr old people have done.
Next week To think only of the best, to work only for the best and to expect only the best
The 345 Teddy Bear Project
Now someone may argue,"some people have faith; others have good deeds" But I say "How can you show me your faith if you don't have good deeds?" "I will show you my faith by my good deeds" James 2:18
Today I dropped of the 1st donation of The 345 Teddy Bear Project to OU Children’s Hospital, in OKC, OK. It was a wonderful experience to bless them with such a generous donation, I was able to go and visit with some of the staff that took such great care of me and Vayden. They kept telling me they were so happy to see that I was doing so well, and that I was able to see the sunny side of our situation and give back. I was invited to share my story at their nurses training class when they have their lesson on bereavement, to teach the new nurses how to work with the patients to ensure they have the best stay despite such a tragic loss. They have about 9 to 10 deaths a month, which broke my heart because I wish that number were less. Those teddy bears should last them about a yr. They wrote an article on My Very Own Angel for their news letter and took pics so I will share those when I get them.
7.5” teddy bears standard color light brown and medium brown
Each bear wears a hand placed angel charm necklace that offers a delicate reminder of your very own angel
Each bear wears a hand placed teddy bear tag with a short message that reads “We are sorry for your loss, please accept this teddy bear as a delicate reminder of your very own angel, Vayden’s Mommy & Daddy”
Friday, August 21, 2009
Sunday August 23, 2009 marks Vayden being gone for 3 heavenly months. In those 3 months he has inspired me to do so much and give back in so many ways.
On Monday Aug 24th I will be at OU Children’s Hospital to donate the 1st set of teddy bears for The 345 Teddy Bear Project. I am excited beyond words.
October 15th is National Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day and since it’s coming so soon, I want to have a SALE so that you mommies of angels can get your “I Have My Very Own Angel” t-shirt at a cheaper price.
As an added promotion every order placed between 8/21 and 9/3 with this Promo Code will also receive a MVOA PAIL awareness pin. – PROMO CODE – MVOA82093
(remember to put this code in the comment box while placing order)
DID YOU KNOW????? We donate 20% from total quarterly sales divided between 3 of my favorite NPO's - NILMDTS, String of Pearls, and Sufficient Grace Women’s Ministries.
Even more of a reason to support MVOA, you will also be supporting 3 wonderful NPO’s that share the same goal, in providing comfort to families who walk this journey.
Old design shirt clearance – I placed a new order for shirts and made some minor changes to the design, The NEW design the text is a lot easier to read as I was finding there were issues with the “M” running into the logo. I still have a few of the old design shirts and I’m selling them on clearance for $13.50 on the store page you will see one shirt (white) with the old design Clearance Items will be typed above the photo, I will keep track of inventory daily as they sell. In the size bar you will find the various colors and sizes that are available. Note those are the only sizes and colors I have in the old design.
*I’m trying out XS size shirts, I’ve had a few request that some of your lil girls wanted one also. I only order a small amount in each size, so please email me if you’re thinking about ordering an xs shirt and I will let you know what I have availible and how to purchase.
Visit our Angel Store
Walking With You was created by Kelly of Sufficient Grace Ministries to help support those who have lost a child. Together we share our stories, helpful information, scriptures, encouraging words, prayer requests, and more. To join in on Walking with You please visit Kelly's blog.
I felt it would be good to put this post on both of my blogs.
This week, Kelly is sharing some commonly asked questions and answers about grieving the loss of a child. The rest of us may blog about a similar topic or share what is on our hearts this week.
This week my heart has been dealing with the way people consider loss. As many of you know I am not at all shy to tell someone I Have My Very Own Angel, I find that many peoples initial thought is “oh she had a miscarriage that is so sad” as I talk more about Vayden they are lead to ask more questions about his passing. When they find out I carried to term, met held my live child and then said goodbye, their eyes begin to tear up, they no longer have anything to say because I’m sorry in their hearts is just not enough. It upsets me that people can think of loss so shallow, like you only deserve credit if it was a late term loss. Like the story is only heartbreaking if your child was once alive in your arms, does it matter?? When a woman suffers a loss of a child at any age she grieves, she hurts the same and some women that suffer miscarriage or still birth feel cheated which is a harder more haunting feeling. Why don’t they deserve the tears and the hugs that I get? Why don’t people recognize that loss as a true heartbreaking loss? Why do they have to pay for a funeral but get no birth certificate?
I think every angel counts and every loss has a story behind it. Don’t discredit a woman’s grief because she lost her pregnancy at 8 weeks, she could have been trying for 4 yrs and those 8 weeks were something she was blessed to have.
Every Angel Counts
Monday, August 17, 2009
I am for the most part a good friend, as many of you I have been stabbed in the back and betrayed by some of my closest friends. This line makes me think of how it was when I was in high school, having that intense need to have more friends than I can count. As I got older it became clearer that happiness was not in the amount of friends I kept, but in the quality of those friendships. Within this year I have gained and let go of many friends, but I can honestly say that as of today I am satisfied with the company I keep. Last week when I went over this line, I thought this was going to be an easy one, I wouldn't have to completely watch myself to complete this then it dawned on me that I did have some work to do.
When I lost friends, most walked away from me but I also pushed some of them away. Mommies of angels can all agree that we speak a different language, when someone speaks your language you tend to talk with them more. I'm at a fragile time in my grief where I want to talk about Vayden every single day. When I'm sad, the 1st ladies to be called are my friends that have angels, when I'm having trouble potty training my 2 yr old I still contact my friends that have angels, I use them for everything including my grief. I was always quick to leave them encouraging comments or notes on face book or ask them how they were doing, but forgot to check on those friends that try desperately to understand my grief.
I forgot to share my sad and happy stories with the people who I ran to for help in the past, those who speak my second language (the normal life) I was not making them feel like there was something worthwhile in them. Last week when I noticed it I starting checking up on those friends by just leaving quick notes to say ' Thinking of You" I will continue to keep the healthy balance between the friends that speak my new language (the new normal after loss) and those who I pray will never understand what we're talking about, but be gracious enough to care.
See you next Monday for line 4 which is:
To look at the sunny side of everything and make my optimism come true.
Monday, August 10, 2009
Winner!!!!! - Mary - http://missinglukas.blogspot.com/
I’ve gained 25 followers only after two weeks of launching, not too bad, thank you. As promised I will be hosting blog giveaways and now that I’ve hit 25 I will start with my 1st. It’s going to be a small one, hoping we can bring in more wonderful mommies of angels; this is my 1st time so please bear with me, lol.
This giveaway is going to last 24 hrs and the prize is…… a candy pink My Very Own Angel t-shirt and a My Very Own Angel, PAIL awareness pin. Shirt available in sizes (M, L, or XL) I’m not singling out moms of boys angels, so don’t think because it’s pink you can’t rock it. I personally have one shirt of each color including a candy pink one. This giveaway based on total entries.
1 entry point - for being a current blog follower that means all followers that have followed since yesterday get an entry for being a current follower – just leave a comment
2 entry points – for blogging about this giveaway on your blog – be sure to leave a comment so I can visit your blog and follow if I’m not yet following.
3 entry points – for recruiting other mommies of angels to follow the MVOA blog (for every recruit you will receive 3 points), you must direct them to follow the blog, and leave a comment stating what blog they came over from. (2 points for the new follower)
The winner will be selected based upon total entries and a random generator to break the ties.
Good Luck and remember to always be proud to say “I Have My Very Own Angel”
*Entries for this giveaway close on August 14th , 2009 @ 845 am pacific standard time
Last week was terribly hard for me. I am currently in a war with the devil and only at a perfect time for me to need to speak health, happiness, and prosperity to everyone. As it is I was able and still can speak all of these things to friends and strangers. I recall on Wednesday while at the dentist getting a tooth filled, the dentist came into my room gleaming with happiness, I asked him why he was so cheery and he told me that he just found out that he is about to be a grandfather to a baby boy and told me his soon to be name while putting his u/s photo on the screen. I was ironically wearing my MVOA t-shirt and at a moment where I could have been bitter or speak negativity I congratulated him and said your daughter is going to love having a boy, I have two boys myself. That was a moment in which I honored my son, and paid caution to the situation by not going into deep detail considering he never asked me how many children I have or if I had any at all. I cannot think of any other situation, in which I practiced this attitude, I’m sure I didn’t tell anyone to die, or wish them to be covered with mountains of failure. As I work this week on line three I will also try to incorporate more of line one and two into my daily attitude.
Next Monday line 3 which is:
To make all my friends feel that there is something worthwhile in them.
Monday, August 3, 2009
What is peace of mind? To have solid peace of mind one must not use outside influences to cope with the stresses in their life. Drugs, alcohol, sleeping pills, and other things we use to soften the blow that can have adverse outcomes to our health and all over peace of mind. This line basically says that we should commit to being so strong, that those things that we become so dependent on are no longer needed to have peace of mind. This starts with you and ends with you, the best people to go on a diet are the people that are not going on a diet. It is the people that are making a change in their eating and exercise habits that succeed; therefore unlike just going on a diet, they are able to have good health, a suitable figure and peace of mind.
What are you using at the moment to cope with the many stresses in your life? Understand that the scale is huge and you may not notice that you were doing anything wrong because it’s not drugs, sex, or alcohol. If you hold any guilt or worry to something then your peace of mind is disturbed.
How did I apply this?
I noticed about two weeks ago, that my peace of mind was in fact being disturbed by something I felt literally addicted to. I often tried to make excuses for my actions and force myself to believe that what I was doing wasn’t wrong, when the reality is what I was doing wasn’t wrong, how I was doing it was. My negative influence was My Very Own Angel, don’t get me wrong what I am doing is a wonderful thing, it will help many many families, however I worked myself to the bare bone and beyond. My hormones were still a bit out of place and I believed my body wanted to be as tired as it would have been had I had a newborn and a toddler. So I stayed up late into the night, on the computer working on the website and other My Very Own Angel products. For almost 2 months I would go to bed about 2 hrs before my husband would wake up to go to work. I would speak to no one unless it was business related and, I rarely went anywhere with my friends when invited. Although I looked at Vayden’s photos everyday and I faced the fact that he had passed, I used depriving myself of sleep and a social life as a way of being even. My baby became My Very Own Angel and when I went away for a weekend I was depressed and sad that I wasn’t sitting at my computer. I tried many times to justify my doings, but the few people who knew what was going on knew something was wrong, I did not have peace of mind.
When I noticed it, I wrote a schedule for myself. I committed to not working on Sundays and I give only a certain amount of hours on weekdays to work on or promote MVOA. But I must complete a few things before I can find peace of mind while sitting at the computer every day. I must wake up and read a page in my bible, I must work out for 30-45 min, I must do my daily household chores, I must devote 2-3 hrs with my son during the day, doing activities, I must attend to him when he needs me, I must have dinner ready or almost ready when my husband gets home. I must sit down with my husband and watch at least one of his crazy shows with him. I must continue movie night with my family. I must visit with friends at least 2 times a week, and/or communicate with them via phone, face book, etc.
When I do all of those things I sit down at my computer which is usually at night, I work and I am so strong that I let nothing disturb my peace of mind, because I have no guilt.
Now you see how although My Very Own Angel is very positive I was using it to cope and although healthy in a way, un healthy in many other ways. So I ask you again, what are you using to cope with the many stresses in life?
See you next Monday when we go through line 2 which is:
To talk health, happiness, and prosperity to every person I meet.
Friday, July 31, 2009
To be so strong that nothing can disturb my peace of mind.
To talk health, happiness, and prosperity to every person I meet.
To make all my friends feel that there is something worthwhile in them.
To look at the sunny side of everything and make my optimism come true.
To think only of the best, to work only for the best and to expect only the best.
To be just as enthusiastic about the success of others as I am about my own.
To forget the mistakes of the past and press on to the greater achievements of the future.
To wear a cheerful expression at all times and give a smile to every living creature I meet.
To give so much time to improving myself that I have no time to criticize others.
To be too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble.
To think well of myself and to proclaim this fact to the world, not in loud words, but in great deeds.
To live in the faith that the whole world is on my side, so long as I am true to the best that is in me.
The first time I saw this was in my parent’s bathroom. It hangs so perfectly behind the door so that when you’re doing your business and have nothing else to look at you read this.
It applies to the entire mankind; every living person on earth should make strong efforts to live under these standards. What I like most about it is that regardless of what your religious beliefs are The Secret can be used. So there are no more excuses to why you're so un happy. I’ve spoken to many women who have suffered a loss and they say “I wish I had your faith in God, then maybe this wouldn’t hurt so bad.” The truth is Vayden’s loss hurts very bad; my faith in God allows me to find the blessings in his passing.
The Secret, by Christian D. Larson, is something that I try to read every day when I wake up in the morning. I try to take it line by line and every day, apply one line in my daily living. I admit I often fail, in the path to become a better person, at times I let evil get the best of me. I admit this to you because that is the 1st step to change, and with all that has been going on lately, don’t we all agree it is time?
When a child dies we can lose faith and joy, we lose hope for anything to ever be good again, we also can very easily slip into a rage of anger, jealousy and envy for those who don’t suffer the ultimate pain of losing a child. Our outlook changes and we can fall into a very dark place. Grief is filled with dark rooms; everyone who suffers a loss very close to them takes a tour of that room. When the loss is of a child the room is much darker, navigating out of that room is about the hardest thing you can go through, but staying in that dark room is very damaging to your well being.
For the next twelve weeks I will take The Secret, line by line and summary each line in my walk to become a better person, I will go over what the line means to me and how I applied it in my week. I hope that you will follow along with me and every week post on your blog a line from The Secret and how you’ve applied that line in your life that week. By the end of the 12 weeks’ I hope to notice the better person I’ve become along with bringing better people into my life. Come along on the journey with me, and let’s put The Secret to the test
See you on Monday for the 1st post.
Also My Very Own Angel would love to start hosting blog giveaways for mommies and families of angels, but we need more followers, so tell your friends that have their very own angels to follow us on blogger.
Sunday, July 26, 2009
For those of you that do not know me, I am Vayden's mother and you can read his blog Through My Mothers Eye's at http://vaydenjamesstewart.blogspot.com/. It is a story of my journey through carrying to term and after the loss of my 2nd son. I never dreamed or imagined to write a blog, never dreamed that it's topic would be on pregnancy and infant loss. I still remember the morning of January 21, 2009 when my world came crashing down on me. When my true test of strength and faith actually started. I called myself a Christian before then, I loved the Lord and gave thanks when I remembered to, but I was not a real Christian before that day, because my relationship with God was not strong, in fact before that day my relationships with everyone in my life was not strong. I remember after finding out about Vayden I asked a friend with me to phone my husband then directly after phone my brother Terron and tell him to pray and let the family know to start praying. I phoned him 1st because I knew out of anyone in my family his relationship with God was the best. Then I cried and I cried wondering how bad of a person could I have been to deserve this? Something we must all have done once or twice.
By the time I got home I was determined to not let the devil win in this battle and began to pray for a healing, but I only prayed for what I wanted and I never thanked God for what he has given. I search daily for signs that he was hard at work HEALING my baby, not realizing that God had been hard at work my entire life.
One day in prayer I started off giving thanks, thanking him for my life, for my family, for everything including Vayden healthy or sick. One week later I was told that Vayden's kidneys had failed. I was crushed, I was angry with God, but I had not lost my faithfulness to him and that anger only lasted a few days until I finally realized that God heard our prayers all along. We prayed for a total and complete healing, but never specified how, meaning on earth or in heaven.
I told only two people the God let me know that Vayden was going to die but in fact be born alive. There were so many people that wanted me to keep praying, I didn't want them to think I gave up hope. I didn't give up hope or lose my faith, I just trusted in what God told me.
Vayden was born alive and we were blessed with a wonderful 3 hrs and 45 min, we rejoiced God and praised him for that miracle. Vayden went to heaven and received a total and complete healing dealing with no LUTO/PUV and we gave thanks to God for that. We never question or spoke anger about Vayden's passing. We knew that God as promised was still hard at work.
Only two weeks after Vayden's passing, I kept having these ideas come in and out of my head, strong ideas that would make me think about them all day. I was given a new idea everyday sometimes two or three a day. I began to write them down so I wouldn't forget, and the number 345 kept coming up and I kept thinking how Vayden was as cuddly as a teddy bear and BAM!!! The 345 Teddy Bear Project was created. Then the name was My Very Own Angel was created in a conversation where I was asked how many children I have? I shared this information with my mother and we began working hard at creating MVOA the ideas continued through out the creation and they continue even now. Where do I think these ideas are coming from??? Only from two people God and my baby boy Vayden.
So, Why am I doing this?? To honor God, my son and to help many many other families, because the bible says "All things work together for good, to those that love God" Romans 8:28 and it's very, very true. I continued to praise God in times of good and in time of bad and he showed me the truth and reason behind the life and death of my son.
How did I do this so fast?? My mother and I worked hard daily on this project, my body still felt that I was supposed to have a newborn and a 2 yr old, so I stayed up late at night like I had a new born with colic, but MVOA is far from complete, there are so many more ideas so stick with us while we bless others from our blessing..........Vayden James Stewart.