I won't be able to write much or very eloquently, but I did want to give an update for those following our story.
Finley Fayth White was born on Sunday, October 30th at 3:09 AM at almost 33 weeks gestation. She weighed 4 lbs 12 oz and was 16 inches long. She had Daniel's nose, my lips, and Eli's sweet toes. She had the longest fingers and the daintiest hands. She was perfect in every way.
We found out on Friday morning (at our appointment with the specialist) that Finley's heart was no longer beating. This was very unexpected and everything from that point on was a blur. We were scheduled for an induction on Saturday morning.
It is hard for me to write exactly what happened, so here is my dear friend Jenny's update she posted on facebook while I was in labor:
"Updating on Kelli... It's been a long a emotional day. She got here at 7 am and was started on pitocin at 8am. When she arrived she was dilated to about one. She ended up with very strong contractions that lasted about a minute to a minute and a half and they were about 30 seconds apart. She rocked and rolled on the ball and did such a wonderful job, so amazing and strong through it all. By 5pm she had not progressed at all and decided that an epidural would be her best option. She got her epi at about 5:30-6:00 and then got a well deserved nap. At 9:30 her doctor checked her and she was a 7, Praise God!! We have prayed so hard for this! We are now waiting for her doctor to get here and she will be checked again and then only time will tell. Kelli has done an AMAZING job! As we all know she has such a beautiful soul and spirit. Daniel has been amazing through all of this as well. What a beautiful example of what a husband and father should be. We are so very proud of them. I will update when we have more news."
At 1:30 am I reached 10 cm and we began the process of pushing. I was scared and I didn't want her to be taken from me. I wanted to keep her with me forever.
I don't remember much of the actual birth, but I was told that it was very traumatic physically.
I do remember: Daniel was by my side, holding my hand, stroking my hair, and counting the whole time. My mom was on the other side telling me that I could do it. My dad was next to my mom, I'm sure in constant prayer. My dear friends Jenny and Kerri were at my feet encouraging me the whole time. I am very blessed by the people God has placed in my life.
As soon as she was born Daniel cut her cord and she was placed on my chest. I remember screaming in agony. My little girl was in my arms, but it was only her body. I was holding out for a cry, I still had hope. I remember thinking that there was never anyone so beautiful and didn't want to accept that I wouldn't be able to keep her. It was one of the hardest moments of my life. I didn't want to believe that it was actually happening.
We spent all day Sunday with her. We dressed her in the clothes that we picked out and wrapped her in her blanket, we took turns studying her and memorizing her perfect features. We hardly slept, knowing we didn't have much time with her.
One of the best moments was introducing Eli to his sweet sister. He smiled at her and pointed at her and even said "Baby Sister". He looked at her as if she were "normal" and didn't see a thing wrong with her. We let him touch her hands and toes; he smiled.
On Sunday night we said our goodbyes. We kissed her forehead and let the nurse take her from us. We cried together in the hospital bed knowing that we'd have to wait our lifetimes to see her again. I still can't believe I had to let someone take my daughter away.
On Monday afternoon, Daniel decided it was time to leave. I couldn't bring myself to tell anyone that I wanted to be discharged. I didn't want to be. I didn't want to leave her. I didn't want life to go on or move forward without her... but I couldn't stay forever. My husband has been my rock throughout all of this; taking the initiative when I have been too weak. I don't think I have ever loved him more than I do now.
Leaving the hospital was THE hardest part. Driving away and knowing that I'd never get her back. Knowing that I'd never hold her again. Knowing that I'd never kiss her again. Knowing that life was moving on and that she wasn't with me.
Finley will always be my daughter. She will always be a part of my family. She will always be loved. The one thing I ask is that people don't refer to her as just a baby or just a pregnancy or just anything... She has a name. She is a person. She IS my daughter. She is very much a part of me and my life. She always will be. She will never be forgotten.
People ask how I am, the only thing I can respond with is that I am alive. I am breathing. I am living minute to minute. I am getting by. It's so hard. So hard.
The only thing that makes it better are Daniel and Eli. I am so thankful and blessed by their sweet spirits; there are no words to describe what they mean to me.
I know God is watching over my family at this time, but it is so hard for me to see past the pain at this point. I don't know what to pray or what to ask or what to say to Him. I know there is a plan, but I feel lost in it. I know He is at work... but right now, I just want my daughter.
“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart..." [Jeremiah 1:5]