DeLanee's Story

10 years ago, Becky and Tommy, were blessed to be pregnant with their second child. Shortly thereafter they learned that they were going to be parents to a little girl, but the probability of their daughter living for very long was extremely low. Their daughter was diagnosed with a condition called Dandy-Walker Cyst. The doctors believed that their baby girl would deteriorate and pass away during pregnancy, but much to their surprise DeLanee developed until 28 weeks gestation when she was delivered and lived for three hours. As you can imagine, these 3 hours was precious time that they spent as a family with their daughter taking pictures, bathing, dressing and holding her until she passed away in their arms. Upon DeLanee's passing, the nurses brought the family a box to put their daughter’s belongings in to take home with them. Because DeLanee was born in January the nurses were able to find a leftover Christmas box. That Christmas box became extremely special to them and they clung to it and the contents inside that held their daughter’s precious belongings as they left the hospital without their baby. It was because of this box that the inspiration for Lanee’s Legacy began. . .

Thursday, January 28, 2010

A Special Day to Remember

Today is a special day for Lanee's Legacy and especially for me. Today, 6 years ago I was blessed with a sweet little girl who would change my life forever. Each morning on the 28th of January as soon as I open my eyes and my mind settles into reality, it starts to replay the events of 6 years ago. This year was no different. The first thing my eyes saw on the morning after I had DeLanee was her. I was laying on my side facing her tiny baby bed and when I opened my eyes, I saw her little profile. She had a very cute little nose that looked like her brother's and I remember thinking how similar their noses were. This morning when I woke up, I wished so badly I could see that little nose again. I had her at 12:58 a.m. on the morning of the 28th and so waking up to the night's events were so blurry and almost like a dream. It was a terrible reality to wake up to. Everything that we had been privileged to do with her the night before was now over and now we had to move on to the stuff that nobody wants to face. We had to take care of the "details" and I wished we could just rewind time.

I'd like to share some of the moments we were able to capture with DeLanee in the short time that we had her. Thank heavens for pictures and that we can, in a way, "rewind" time to replay moments that are precious to us. I realize I have never shared pictures of DeLanee on this blog. Many mom's who have lost babies prematurely sometimes are hesitatant to share their babies because they don't always look the same as full term healthy babies. They are smaller, not developed fully, and their skin is so fragile. If they have medical abnormalities that are visibile this can be uncomfortable for some people and the last thing a mom wants to see is the look on someone's face or hear a comment that is hurtful when they are looking at their precious baby. DeLanee's condition caused her entire body to become hydropic. The cyst she had developed in utero filled her entire body and major organs with fluid which is what caused her demise. Her skin was also very dark from this as well. She weighed 4.6 ounces at birth of which 2 lbs of that was fluid. To me though, she was perfect. My entire pregnancy I cherished her every move and prayed that I would be able to hold her for even a moment while she was alive. I wanted her to feel of the love I had for her. I knew I couldn't take away the challenges she had been given but I needed to be able to love her through it. So, when I was able to finally hold her and love on her, it felt so good. We were so blessed to have an amazing night with a special little girl. We gave her a name, a blessing, bathed her, dressed her and loved on her until it was time for her to go. Almost my entire family was in that room and their was a lot of love going on! I will always long for more. . .but I am thankful for what I was given.

This is my sweet little DeLanee. It looks like I have gigantic hands in this picture, but my hands are really quite small. When I look at her hand clutching the tip of my finger, it reminds me of just how tiny she was.

This is DeLanee's older borther, Garrett. I know these two have a special bond. He called her "TeLanee" and I think he too was eager to give her the love he had as well. Do you see the two noses? Garrett is 9 years old now and loves her just as much.

In this picture, he was helping zip up her little outfit after we had bathed her.

The following pictures are just some of the family that was in that room:

The quote that goes on the top of Lanee's Legacy's boxes read:

Some people come into our lives
and quickly go…
Some stay for awhile and leave footprints in our hearts.
And we are never ever the same.

These are DeLanee's footprints:

Today was a wonderful day. New memories were made and her footprints continue to be in not just my heart, but others. I know her little footprints and have made it into many lives and I'm so thankful for that.

We had an AMAZING response to our challenge. THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!! We are still tallying up the numbers and are anxious to share them with you. It is such a humbling position to be in to witness the generous hearts of so many wonderful people that show their love to those they don't even know. Because of your donations, these families will also be able to capture and preserve vital memories that they too will be able to "rewind" when they feel like it.


IandS said...

I never knew DeLanee but she sure has left footprints on MY heart. Just knowing your sweet family has been a blessing to me. You are such a wonderful person and you have blessed so many through all your hard work, love and dedication to the sweet memory of your angel baby.
Thank you!

Danielle said...

Thank you for sharing pictures of DeLanee. She's the most beautiful baby I've ever seen, so tiny and precious and beautiful. Thank you for opening your heart and sharing your experience with us all.