On August 9, 2014 we got married.
On September 30, 2014 we got the biggest surprise ever – we’re pregnant!!
On January 20, 2015 we were told that our sweet baby had some serious, life threatening birth defects, and that our baby would not live.
On April 13, 2015 our daughter, Eva Grace Imhof, went to be with Jesus.
I was 21 when I found out I was pregnant, had been married for a whopping 4 weeks, and I'd be lying if I said I was thrilled with the idea of being pregnant. A baby wasn't in our "plan" but we were quickly reminded that our lives are not our own and eventually became excited about this baby of ours! It felt like as soon as we accepted the fact that we were going to be parents we were told "your baby has a serious, life threatening condition, and will not live."
I grew our girl for 31 weeks, but I think I did more growing in those 31 weeks than she did. We were taught what it looks like to praise God when the harvest is plentiful and when it is barren.
At 31 weeks we learned that Eva Grace's heart had stopped beating and I was induced two days later. After 36 hours of labor, our daughter was born, though she had already gone to be with Jesus. We held her for 17 hours. Studied her. Kissed her. And introduced her to all our friends and family.
I’ve thought about Eva Grace every day since we lost her. Sometimes it’s sadness, sometimes it’s just thinking about how cute her nose was or the tiniest bit of hair she had. My favorite memory of her is a moment we had – probably a minute or maybe two, but time seemed to stand still. It was just me and her. Eric had run out to the waiting room to grab some friends so they could come back and see her. But for a moment it was just the two of us. I held her and stroked her chubby cheeks with my index finger. They were still so warm from her having left my body only minutes ago. I looked at her and kept falling deeper and deeper in love. Every second that passed, I loved her more. Eva Grace had a genetic disorder called Triploidy and because of this, she looked different. By the world’s standards she was not beautiful. She had multiple “birth defects” and was too small or too this or not enough that. But to me, she was perfect. I looked at her and saw nothing but beauty.
As I looked at her i thought, isn’t this the way the Lord looks at us? We are flawed, sinful people but He looks at us, his children, and says you are enough. You are beautiful because you are mine.
and there are no grapes on the vines;
even though the olive crop fails,
and the fields lie empty and barren;
even though the flocks die in the fields,
and the cattle barns are empty,
yet I will rejoice in the Lord!
I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!”