Exactly three months ago today, I shared this news about my very dear friends.
Yesterday and today, I got a phone call and these two emails. They should be self-explanatory.
Last night ...
I'm [name withheld], a good friend of Dennis and Kelly's who, like you, have been praying for them and for Baby Vaughn throughout this pregnancy. Tonight Dennis and Kelly have asked me to write an update to you and solicit your focused and very valued prayers for them.
We all received their most recent email on April 26th, detailing their 4 appointments tomorrow with specialists at Stanford. With Kelly now at her 24th week, the baby was just expected to be at the point of viability.
Yesterday Kelly did not feel any of the usual "flutters" (baby movements) and this morning still felt something was not quite right, so she called her OB-GYN and asked me to accompany her for a checkup today. This afternoon the doctor was unable to find the baby's heartbeat with the Doppler, and an ultrasound confirmed that the baby, although now the right size for this stage in his/her development, had died.
We were able to get a hold of Dennis at work and he joined Kelly immediately. This has obviously come as a heart-wrenching shock to them! They are grieving, in shock, and still hoping against hope that God may enliven this little one before any procedures are done in finality.
They felt unable to write tonight themselves, but desperately wanted you to know so you could be praying. Please join them/us in praying for a miracle: that Baby Vaughn has somehow eluded the instruments, and will pull through to join Dennis and Kelly's family. Pray that Dennis and Kelly know and experience God's tender love, His intimate presence and comfort this evening and in the days to come.
Either Dennis and Kelly or I will update you very soon to let you know how you might continue praying. They so value your prayers and support! At the same time they realize their need for privacy and have asked you not to call immediately -- knowing they're unable to talk to many of us due to the crushing weight of this pain.
Thank you so much for supporting Dennis and Kelly in this critical way. We will update you as soon as we know more.
Kelly called from Stanford Hospital about an hour ago with an update, and asked that I fill you in with where things stand today.
Dennis and Kelly kept the first of their scheduled appointments this morning with the perinatologist. He did confirm what the doctor yesterday found in her office: that unexpectedly and so sadly, their baby has died in utero. Their options from here were either to have a D&C or to induce labor and deliver their baby. Dennis and Kelly have chosen the second option, in their commitment to honor this child. They will be talking to one of their pastors later today, and would like to have a memorial service honoring this baby and the brief life God gave him.
They are working on scheduling the inducement, hopefully at Stanford sometime later this week. To induce labor, Kelly will be given 2 different medications: one to open her cervix and one to begin the labor. She will be given a private room and they will be allowed to have a few friends present to support them. They will be able to hold the baby and name him, then honor him with a service after leaving the hospital. Kelly will stay overnight after delivering their baby so she can physically recover. Genetic services there at Stanford will do some tests to determine if there is any identifiable cause of death.
I think you'll agree that choosing to deliver this child is the much more gut-wrenching option; yet Dennis and Kelly are determined to honor this baby and cherish the gift God gave them, however briefly. Please continue in prayer for them! Despite their pain, they are resolute to honor God in this! They will face tough decisions and tougher circumstances in the coming days; pray with me that they continue to experience God's presence, comfort, strength and peace.
Thank you so much for your support, love and prayers for Dennis and Kelly at this time.
With thanks for your love for them,