The Blessings - Chapter 29

There are many things that happened after we buried Ashley.

Several weeks after we went back to Kalamazoo to pickup the first pictures of Ashley.  The nurse who first admitted us wanted to see how we were doing.  We talked for quite some time about what had happened in our lives since Ashley.  She explained to us that she knew that we were going to make it through this.  Because she was a nurse, she had seen and delivered other babies with birth defects.  It was evident from the parents actions whether they were going to have trouble dealing with the situation.  Expressing to us the admiration she had for us seemed to be an easy thing for her, yet it appeared that she knew that it was our dependance on God that had seen us through.  Pam and I expressed this on more than one occasion to her.  If we had not had the belief in God to see us through, I am not sure where we would have been.

Another blessing occurred some months after Ashley’s burial.  Pam and I both work at a wholesale bookstore.  We were working one day and a lady came in who appeared to be very familiar to me, yet I couldn’t place her.  She was a mystery to me.  Several days later, she came in again and she remembered Pam or something like that.  Somehow, I was asked by another employee if this was the lady who had prayed for us at the hospital in Kalamazoo.  Instantly, I realized who she was and went out to meet her.  We have become friends and each time that she comes for in to where I work we talk about how life is going.  She is particularly proud of her grandchildren as all grandmothers are. What a wonderful thing for God to have let us meet her again.  Isn’t God wonderful that he would care about such a little tiny thing as this?

Another of God’s blessings was the financial aspect of Ashley’s death.  We had checked with the doctor whether the health insurance would have a say in what they decided to pay for Ashley.  I felt guilty during the decision period in even thinking about this.  We knew what was right in both of our hearts and would do so no matter how much it cost.  Yet God already knew and had taken care of this concern without us even mentioning it.  It turned out that the anaesthesiologist that had given the epidural to Pam was not part of our insurance plan, even though the hospital was. (Nope, I can’t figure that out either.) So, we had to pay a much larger percentage of the bill.  There were also other expenses like the other hospital bills, the casket, the headstone and other things that can add up quickly.  But God came through again for us.  It turns out that in our medical insurance there is a small life insurance policy for any children that we might have.  As long as she breathed and was pronounced living she would receive this.  Also because she had been living for only for a day, she was considered by the IRS to be with us the whole year.  Thus, we could deduct her on our taxes and also receive the child tax credit.  When all is said and done, God provided for us so that we didn’t have to pay very much at all.  He was the one that provided for us.  We couldn’t have arranged it like this if we planned it.

Lessons Learned

  • If your baby is anencephalic, don’t let the financial reasons influence your decision to have an abortion or not.  God will provide as He did in our circumstances.  It is OK take a look at the financial picture.  Please don’t feel guilty for doing that, because you do need to take care of your obligations.  I am saying though, if you feel that you are supposed to carry this baby to term, the financial aspect will work out.
  • If you have close friends or relatives who will have a baby born without a brain, help them look at the different financial aspects.  However, please don’t use this as leverage to get them to do what you would do.  They have to come to that decision on their own.  They have to decide what the right decision is for them.  Just pray. Be sure to keep there financial aspects in mind.
    •           Child Tax Credit
    •           Funeral homes might donate their time and building for the funeral.
    •           Any life insurance as a rider to the parents policy
    •           Hospital Bills
    •           Medical Insurance - What they will and won’t pay
  • Bible Promise: And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. Phillipians 4:19 NLT