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I Knew She Would Die

Monday, April 11, 2011

As soon as I saw her I knew she would die. She had just been cut from my daughter's belly and was barely 2 pounds. In an effort to save the baby and my daughter the decision had been made to take the tiny girl child from what she had known as a safe place and bring her into the world of tubes, ventilators and doctors.

My daughter, Karli, had been having contractions since she was 12 weeks pregnant. She was on a first name basis with the Emergency Department and had the best specialists in the Northwest caring for her. The pregnancy was terrible and marred with bleeding, hospital visits, shots, specialists and fear.

She was only 26 weeks pregnant when Anna-Grace was taken. I remember watching the doctors and nurses try to put the ventilator into the tiny angel. She was so still, so purple, so lifeless. The tears that stained my face were tears of losing another grandchild, tears of grief, tears of a sadness I'd hoped no one else would ever feel.

The doctor that delivered her had prepared us for her imminent death and there was no joy on his face as he quickly cut the baby from my baby.

That was three years ago tomorrow, April 12. Anna-Grace surprised everyone. She was a fighter, she was a Diva, she was going to make it.

Karli seeing her baby for the first time

Holding Nana's hand

Wearing her preemie hat

Uncle Michael holding her on her first day home

Getting bigger

Then when she was 8 months old she was diagnosed with heart failure and was scheduled for an immediate surgery to repair her failing heart. Once again we prepared to lose her.

Preparing for surgery

Right after surgery

Baby Diva toes

She survived. She thrived. She kicked ass.

Today she's on the growth chart. She's only about 40%, but she's ON the chart. Before surgery she was no where close to being on the chart, we thought she was dying. She had other plans.

Today we have a hellacious, spirited, baby Diva. She throws fits, she screeches, she whines and she demands fingernail polish. But we have her.

Here are a few more pictures celebrating the spirit and fight of my granddaughter.

Big brother Jakob

First pedicure with Nana

With cousin Madeleine
Just last week. Look at the smile. The smile of a survivor.

Happy third birthday Anna-Grace Elizabeth. Your Nana loves you.


Candace April 11, 2011 at 11:40 PM  

Anna Grace is definitely a fighter, like her mom and grandmother. You and Karli are stronger then I could ever believe possible. I know loss and the fear of loss happen to people at all age, but...damn. my love and prayers and thankfulness for all of Karli's and Anna grace's fight and spirit.

Snowbrush April 12, 2011 at 12:02 AM  

Wow, what a story, and what an ending too!

The Bipolar Diva April 12, 2011 at 12:22 AM  

Candace and Snowbrush;

Thank you so much. I can't believe this child has survived so much and is today a typical three year old!

Crisc April 12, 2011 at 2:54 AM  

OMG you had tears about to come down my eyes! So glad she is here to celebrate..Happy birthday to your lil Diva she is precious =)

Ed Wawrzaszek April 12, 2011 at 3:22 AM  

I am a true believer in miracles.

Jennifer Kay April 12, 2011 at 4:51 AM  

What an awesome tribute, the whole time I thought you were going to tell me that she died!

Cutie pie for sure. You are one lucky Nana!

carrie April 12, 2011 at 5:25 AM  

Oh what a dollbaby!!!! Great story, she's definitely a diva! Happy 3rd Birthday Anna-Grace!

Jones Family April 12, 2011 at 5:53 AM  

Hip Hip hooray! Congrats for a true blessing!

My son was born preemie and had lots of complications. This post brings back so many memories.

I am so pleased to say that almost 14 years later I can SHARE in your post and say AMEN!


jen April 12, 2011 at 6:33 AM  

So many similar experiences, you and I. My 1 pound 12 ounce daughter is about to have HER first baby--four weeks. They are miracles, these fighting women. And worth all the worry.

Unknown April 12, 2011 at 6:36 AM  

She's a dolly, and a fighter. Definitely part of the family! :)

Karen Mortensen April 12, 2011 at 6:52 AM  

What an amazing miracle! She is adorable.

Dazee Dreamer April 12, 2011 at 7:13 AM  

oh my god. What a wonderful story. And what a freaking cutie. I love that she is a mini diva.

I was telling my daughter-in-law today that one of my favorite things in the world is how a little 3 year olds hands feel so awesome when you are holding them.

Happy birthday to your little survivor

Furry Bottoms April 12, 2011 at 7:58 AM  

The Diva Toes!!! *sob* that was so cute!!

What a warrior she is. I'm glad you HAVE her!

Dee April 12, 2011 at 8:44 AM  

Happy birthday Anna Grace! Reading the first part of this entry reminded me of when my son was born! I had him at 24 weeks and you've reminded me just how lucky I am to have a happy, healthy 21 year old kid! Such a beautiful little girl!!

Classic NYer April 12, 2011 at 8:57 AM  

So, basically, she's already a G at 3 years old? That's hot. Happy birthday, baby G!

(oh, and the toenail polish is just too precious...)

Unknown April 12, 2011 at 10:19 AM  

She is an absolute dollbaby, I bet she gets her looks from her memaw right.. I love when babies prove doctors wrong..

Maasiyat April 12, 2011 at 10:29 AM  

That apple didn't fall far from the tree. Happy birthday and to so many more!

Anonymous,  April 12, 2011 at 10:47 AM  

I got chills! Happy Birthday Anna-Grace.

(I think she takes after Nana, for sure!)

Unknown April 12, 2011 at 1:24 PM  

Kid has guts and spirit, I love survival stories. Happy Birthday Diva!

Unknown April 12, 2011 at 2:32 PM  

What a girl!!! Happy Birthday Anna-Grace.

Mimi April 12, 2011 at 2:59 PM  

What a great post! Beautiful!

Hugs & love,

MarkD60 April 12, 2011 at 3:04 PM  

Dang! This post sure started out crappy but it ended up really really good!

Rob-bear April 12, 2011 at 3:42 PM  

Well, she does take after her mum and her Nana. And she'll have great stories to tell her kids, when the times comes.

MichaelHarley April 12, 2011 at 3:56 PM  

"The smile of a survivor" belongs also on the photo directly above, where the birthday girl is sitting with her grandmother.

Jessica Warrick April 12, 2011 at 5:01 PM  

wow what a story im so glad that you did nto have to lose another grandchild. one day youll have to tell me the story about the one that went to be with god... happy birthday to anna grace...

Allyson & Jere April 12, 2011 at 6:32 PM  

LOVE this post! She is amazing, and beautiful. Even as that teeny, tiny preemie she was beautiful. Thanks for sharing this. Happy for you and your family for happy endings.

Unknown April 12, 2011 at 7:18 PM  

Happy birthday to a beautiful baby diva! And many more!

Osbasso April 12, 2011 at 7:42 PM  

What an absolutely wonderful story! HAPPY BIRTHDAY LITTLE DIVA!!

Monkey Man April 12, 2011 at 8:12 PM  

What a little cutie. Proud Diva, too.

SB April 12, 2011 at 8:22 PM  

Wow! Such a beautiful miracle you have!!

Tracie Nall April 12, 2011 at 11:26 PM  

I'm crying so many happy tears reading this.

Happy Birthday Anna-Grace Elizabeth!!

Anonymous,  April 13, 2011 at 12:13 PM  

That's just an awesome story- thanks for sharing this very important part of your life!


Cheeseboy April 13, 2011 at 1:41 PM  

What a great story! And hey, 40% is bigger than my boys, were were not premature at all. What a miracle girl.

The Random Blogette April 13, 2011 at 6:00 PM  

That is such a beautiful story! She sounds like such a little firecracker.

Kelly April 13, 2011 at 6:09 PM  

What a beautiful story. Happy Birthday little diva!! =)

Nolie April 13, 2011 at 7:44 PM  

Happy Birthday Darling! I love the pretty little Diva toes.

e April 14, 2011 at 11:40 AM  

Wow Diva, what a great story...Happy Birthday to the little muffin. She is beautiful :) Aw, made me cry this one did. So happy she is okay :)

Susie - Walking Butterfly April 14, 2011 at 8:48 PM  

Ok, thanx for the new batch of tears tonight Diva! What an amazing and truly beautiful journey this little fighter has conquered.
I love you and the mighty spirit you have instilled in your wonderful family.

Holly April 15, 2011 at 8:43 PM  

*SNIFF* Beautiful tribute to a beautiful child and the strong family she was born into. I am so grateful she pulled through. I can't imagine how difficult this time was for your family, especially Karli. What a miracle and blessing! (((HUGS)))

Mindi April 17, 2011 at 10:25 PM  

She is just GORGEOUS!!! Keep rockin' those painted toes little Diva! :)

Anonymous,  April 19, 2011 at 11:01 PM  

she is beautiful. I am tickled for her and y'all. Good shit.

Claudya Martinez April 23, 2011 at 8:57 PM  

OMG!!! I love her. Thank you so much for sharing part of her story with us. I'm in tears over here. I love her.

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