The House is Quiet

The stress and busyness that comes with the holidays has left my mind fairly distracted this month. It has been a delicate balance of keeping my mind distracted yet still honoring the memory of my daughter in small ways. The balance was nudged ever so slightly yesterday afternoon, and that caused the whole scale to be knocked over.

The afternoon started with a doctor’s appointment. More blood work. More questions. After arriving home, my mind consumed with the endless list of items to accomplish before our next two weeks of craziness begin, I checked the mail. The mailbox was filled with Christmas cards and a letter from the second hospital that Isabelle was at this past July. My heart began to race as I opened it and was flooded with horrible memories of my daughter fighting for her life. It was another bill. Since all of her expenses should have been covered by our wonderful insurance, I was incredibly frustrated at receiving it, and that it caused me to again relive that day.

To make a long story short, the bill had been submitted to our insurance, months ago, as “Baby Girl” and not “Isabelle.” As a result, the insurance hung on to it for several months and then stated that they would not cover it because “Baby Girl” wasn’t in their system.   Straightening out the name issue required me to spell Isabelle’s name to the woman I was speaking with on the phone. Each letter was like a dagger in my heart. After receiving instructions to have my husband take care of some paperwork on base, I hung up the phone.

As I stood in the doorway to our bedroom, the phone at my side, I was suddenly very aware of the silence in our house. In the back of my mind, I heard the cry of a baby girl echoing through the still walls. My mind took me to the Christmas that never was – the Christmas that I wanted so badly that my heart physically hurt. This is not how it was supposed to be this year.

Try as I might to distract my mind this holiday season, the triggers are everywhere. There is a small part of me that is thankful for the pain caused by the triggers such as that bill. It is a reminder that Isabelle was in our lives. It is a reminder that the doctors worked hard to give us one day with her. It is a reminder that she was so incredibly and absolutely loved by many during her short time here on earth.



  1. Mona says:

    This first Christmas without your baby Isabelle will be heartbreaking all over again. I am so sorry for your loss and, reading your blog, I am in awe of your faith. Blessings on you both this Christmas.

    • Sarah says:

      Thanks, Mona. My faith has been my strength the last five months. I spent some time being very angry at God and have been much happier once I realized that he alone can be my source of peace. I now take much comfort knowing that Isabelle is not only in heaven, but praying for us. Lord knows I need it.

    • Sarah says:

      Thanks, JoAnne. I find writing about what I am feeling to be really therapeutic. I think that it forces me to face the strong emotions head on and deal with them.

  2. Emilie says:

    I just want you to know that I admire you and your beautiful outlook on life. Your blog entries bring tears to my eyes. Prayers for you, your husband, and your little Saint Isabelle as the Christmas season draws near. I know that God will give you the strength that you need to get through this difficult time. xox

  3. meghanoc says:

    Oh gosh, the insurance bill! What a punch in the gut! The holidays are just so specific, making how time has passed and yet our how different our lives are compared to what they were supposed to be. wishing you peace during this sadly quiet holiday.

  4. Sue O'Sullivan says:

    Sarah, I will pray for yo and your husband this Christmas. I had seven quiet Christmas Days. That was always my hardest of the year dealing with infertility and waiting for adoption. But that eighth Christmas God Gave me Kelly on Christmas Eve. We had so many Christmas Days trying to make it better with lots of gifts to try to cover the pain. But the eight Christmas Kelly arrived on Christmas Eve and we no longer had quiet Christmas Day. And amazingly Kaitlin was born the day after Christmas. So every year now we have Adoption Day on Christmas Eve, then Christmas Day and the next day Kaitlin’s Birthday. God has blessed us on my most painful day of the year. Have a blessed Christmas with the memory of Isabelle in your heart. You have an angel this Christmas watching over you.
    Love Mrs. O

    • Sarah says:

      Thank you for the prayers. They are always appreciated. I keep hoping that this quiet Christmas will be replaced with many more happy memories in the Christmases to come.

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