Dear friends, today I’m sharing Mandy’s story with you. It’s a beautiful story and it will touch your heart.
I can’t begin to tell you how blessed I feel to be part of their journey. That God can use my jewelry as a connection point to encourage and forever intertwine two lives makes my heart want to burst with gratefulness.
Please take a few minutes to read Mandy’s story and to see how absolutely precious this little life is–and how her life continues to bless others.
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Last spring my daughter was born with half a heart. She was our miracle baby after ten years of infertility, many medical treatments, and much heartache. Unfortunately, her twin brother had passed into Heaven halfway through my pregnancy. When Abigail was born, I purchased four of your heart necklaces that were stamped with the words, “I hold your heart in mine.” I gave one to my mother, sister, sister-in-law, and kept one for myself. While Abigail was in the NICU, we put the necklace across her chest and took a series of newborn photos.
At four days old, she underwent a 10 hour open heart surgery and we were filled with hope and relief when she survived the difficult and risky procedure. We prayed for a miracle but we did not get one. Despite her brave and feisty spirit, Abigail died at one week of age. The heart necklaces have become a real link to Abigail for those of us that loved her most. I have not taken mine off for even a single day since then. Because she lived only a short time and never left the hospital, there are very few tangible things to link me to Abigail. I touch my necklace and I think: She wore this too. It brought me a real sense of comfort during the year that followed Abigail’s death, which was harder than words can say.
On Easter Sunday, we celebrated the one year anniversary of her passing. Our goal is to put more love into the world in her honor, so in the past six months we joined forces with another couple, Brad and Jeannette Gill, to start a nonprofit organization called “The Smallest Gift”. We send care packages to families who experience miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant loss. On her birthday we launched our brand new website www.thesmallestgift.org! We have already sent many packages filled with our love, tears, and prayers all across the United States and to Canada and Australia as well. Abigail’s little light shines on in the world in a big way, through us.
Happily, our story does not end there. Last month we were surprised by a miracle of another sort- one we weren’t even searching for at the time. We brought home a newborn baby boy through the miracle of adoption! We are deeply grateful to his first mother for this tremendous gift. I wanted something special to connect myself and his first mother forever, so I purchased two beautiful gold bracelets with a heart charm and our initials. They connect us, my son’s first mother and me, his forever mother. Thank you, Lisa, for being a part of our lives in such a beautiful and meaningful way!
Mandy, you’re story is full of hope and beauty. Thank you so much for sharing it here–we are grateful!