March 29, 2011

Margot June



I have written a thousand words in my mind over the past five days, but now, as I lay my fingers to the keyboard and ponder the immensity of this tragedy, none seem to suffice.

The simple heartbreaking reality is that our sweet Margot June never had the chance to enter into our lives. She was there alive, all seven pounds, eleven ounces of her, only days away from emerging, when a tiny misstep sent Kari's protruding belly into the sidewalk. Her placenta ruptured on impact, cutting the oxygen off to our little one and altering the story of our lives in a single, solitary moment.

For nine hours, her swaddled body was with us. She was there against my chest when I mourned over her in a private room while waiting for her momma to wake from her emergency cesarean. She was there in my hands as I held her out to Kari and told her the news. She was there, her body curled up in my forearm, as I begged Kari to keep fighting until the blood and platelets could be transfused into her system. She was there, taking care of me, as I listened intently to any words Kari uttered, wondering if they would be her last. She was there clinging to my body as the seven nurses and two doctors rushed Kari around the hospital to the coronary care unit for more blood and platelets and a morphine drip and IV's and fluids and oxygen. She was with us two hours later, lying in my lap, as I began seeing clots of blood emerge from Kari, the first sign that Kari might be stabilizing.

She was there in the arms of a few family and friends, who quietly wept at what was going to be. She was there lying between us, as we spoke to her softly, telling her that we were sorry and that we loved her and that we were sad she didn't get to meet her big sister, who would have loved her as much as we did. She was there when we unswaddled her and tried to memorize every inch of her body. Her wet black hair, jet blue eyes, Jackson nose and Bray cheeks, her enormous hands and big Stella-like belly. And she was there as we said goodbye to her for the first and last time.

Though only a few hours, her presence carried me through one of the most decisive moments of my life.

As the grief sets in, a new story begins.

Margot June
7lbs, 11oz
21 inches
Stillborn March 24, 2011



82 comments:

natalie said...

Your daughter was beautiful. I once heard it said that "nothing truly beautiful ever really dies." May the 9 months you carried her together be a sweet memory forever.

Wendi said...

Gorgeous. Breathtaking.

Kayla Rupp said...

I don't know how to comment on this post, my old friend, but I would be a coward not to.

So I'll say this.

My heart has been breaking over and over again since the moment I heard.

Margot June is beautiful, Josh. I am praying for comfort and peace to fill you. I am praying for Kari to recover quickly and fully. You are SOOOO dearly loved by people all over this world.

Love,
Kayla and Daniel and family

Amanda said...

Breathtaking on so many levels...we continue to ache and pray.

Beck said...

I echo Kayla's sentiments, weeping with you and yet not even touching the grief that has become your reality. Prayers, prayers, prayers, for I've nowhere else to go with this but to the feet of Jesus.

Heather said...

Oh Josh, what a beautiful tribute to your little daughter. We will always love her - for our whole lives we'll remember her and miss her. I'm so very sorry. She was so beautiful. Looked just like her sister. I love you.

Kim said...

Josh, I am so sorry for what has happened and for the loss of your beautiful Margot. I have not seen you guys since the Moose days..but since I heard I have not been able to stop thinking about your family and what you are going through. my thoughts and prayers are with Kari for her strength and healing...and with you for your own healing and strength to get through this. Stay strong, you are surrounded by love.

~Kim

Mandy said...

praying in colorado. begging God to be so close to you.

mandy (elsberry) houle

Ab said...

I am crying with you and wishing I could somehow take your families pain away. Margot was the most beautiful of babies and I am heartbroken for your loss. Give your wife a hug for me and know your loved.

Hosh said...

Josh, I can not imagine the sorrow you guys are going through right now. Know that my wife an I are paying for your family.

George Beals said...

Josh, Thanks for sharing these thoughts of hurt and pain. An unbelievable story. We weep with you and uphold your family in prayer.

Anonymous said...

Josh and Kari
Absolutely beautiful picture of Margot. Thank you for sharing.
Jill and I continue to pray for your entire family. - John & Jill Buth

Sheila said...

Grieving with you and for you. We are so sorry for your loss of Margot. A beautiful baby. Praying too that Kari's health returns. Tears and prayers occuring in equal measure.
Sheila & Scott Addison

Marcy said...

Josh, I am so sorry. We are praying so hard for you and Kari. Margot June is beautiful...may the memory of her presence with you continue to carry you through until you see her again. Love, Jerry and Marcy Rademaker

Megan said...

Thank you so much for sharing your heart and this precious picture of your beautiful daughter. Your words are so heartbreaking, true and honest. Endless prayers, thoughts and love.

glo said...

So well spoken from the heart of a Dad and a young husband as well. I have held you up in prayer this whole time too. How very very hard a time you have had these past 5 days. I wait and check often for news on Kari. What a beautiful baby girl. Margot your life was cut short but you were not at all cut short on love. Rest in your Heavenly Fathers arms for now sweet baby girl.

Anonymous said...

I heard about your story and wanted to tell you that I am so sorry, and that I am praying for you and your beautiful family!

::athada:: said...

Mourning with you from Bolivia, brother.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your heart with us. I am so very sorry for your family's loss. Please know that there are many, many people here in the Quad-Cities that love you and are praying for you.

SHARLENE said...

Dearest Josh and Kari, I don't even know what to say except I am SO, SO sorry. Your tribute to Margot June was so eloquently written. Thank you for taking the time to put your beautiful, terrible thoughts right out there for all of us to see and feel. The tears stream, unstopping, down my face as I write this and try to imagine your horrid grief and agony.

God is with you, my precious friends. That is all I can think to say. May He hold you in His loving arms, and may you sense His everlasting presence.

Love from Cecil and Shar

Esther said...

So very sorry for the huge loss of your precious baby girl. May God hold you so tight in his arms of comfort and healing for your broken hearts, and healing of Kari's body.
Praying for you along with the many many others.
Esther Coffey

~L said...

my heart breaks for you and your wife and family. i fell no amount of worse will ever help. i am praying and have been for days... im beyond sorry for your loss...

~L said...

my heart is broken for such a loss. I don't even know of words to say that will comfort such a time. Your daughter is beautiful and I can't imiagine the pain you must feel.

praying for your family.

Anonymous said...

Sent to your blog by a friend. Please know that this stranger in SC is heartbroken for your loss and is praying God wraps His arms around you like only He can. I am so sorry.
Amber

Amanda Callen said...

Words can't express... but yet I can't read this without letting you know how very much my heart is aching for you all. Will continue to pray for Kari's recovery and continue remembering sweet Margot June. Allow yourselves to do what you need to do moment-to-moment as there is definitely no "script" or "instructions" for grieving. May it be what it needs to be for each of you. Love and prayers.

Corrie said...

I don't know you but found out about your loss from my cousin. I wanted you to know that your family is in my prayers. I have passed your blog on to some of my friends so that too can be praying. There are no words only sorrow for the grief you feel. Please know that as family in Christ your sorrow hurts even us as strangers. We are all tied together through Him and one day we will see your little Margot. May you feel His presence through this very challenging time.

Jason said...

I know we don't know you guys terribly well, but we are just heartbroken for your loss. This post was beautiful and haunting. Thank you for it. You are all in our thoughts and prayers.

Anonymous said...

I dont know you but wanted to let you know how sorry I am for your family. I pray for your family continually, I fell asleep praying, I woke up in the middle of the night only to pray some more. I dont know why God has woven this thread into your tapestry and so I pray that with grace and second by second leaning on Him you will survive. Chasity

Mary said...

Kari and Josh,
My heart breaks with you for the loss of your beautiful daughter Margot June. I have been crying with you and praying for you over the last several days. You have so many prayers flooding heaven on your behalf right now. May you feel God's arms stretching around you and giving you His strength, peace and comfort that only He can provide for you. I am also praying for Kari's kidneys to start working properly and for healing on so many levels. Know that you are loved by so many people and we will continue praying for you all.
Mary (Crider) Kauten

Anonymous said...

So very, very sorry for the loss of your beautiful little girl. As a classmate of Kari's, I am saddened, yet touched, by your story of strength, love, and courage. Know that there are so very many friends and strangers alike who are praying for your family. May you find peace and comfort.

Amanda said...

Just read this again...and cried again.

dianne said...

What beautiful words and the sweetest picture. Almost too raw to read. With every tear that is shed a prayer is said. Cling to each other and you may have to let Stella lead you out of the darkness of these times. Much love and prayers.

Charlotte said...

Josh and Kari.... we prayerfully carry your pain and grief with and for you. So painful. Margot was so serene and beautiful. May God sustain you both as you recover... May He heal Kari's being, both inside and out as she recovers and begins again.... Please Jesus...

Loving you both and praying for you,
(Charlotte)

Pauline said...

Josh & Kari,
Thank you so much for sharing such beautiful, personal thoughts with us all. I cried when I read it first, cried again when I read it to my husband and am overwhelmed by the enormity of what you must be feeling. Our prayers are with you both, for healing of your hearts and healing of Kari's body. God Bless & much love always.
Pauline Hills (Baker) from Gayndah, Australia.

Anonymous said...

I am someone you do not know, but I am sending you love and comforting angels and light. I am so sorry for your loss. I will hold you and your beautiful family in my prayers.


www.kellibean.com/blog1/

Anonymous said...

I wish you the best of luck in the days to come. You are both incredibly strong people with indomitable wills to not only survive, but to do so in the pursuit of happiness. I know you will both get through this, and you both are in our prayers.

Rita said...

so very very very sorry for your loss

The Momma said...

As a long time reader who really enjoys your blog ... I am so, so sorry. I am burdened with grief for you and like others who commented earlier, the tears are flowing while reading your heart. Thank you for sharing the journey here in this space; your story is being repeated in my prayers for you & your beautiful family today.
Lisa

Kinda Like a Chef said...

I'm so so sorry for your loss and what you and Kari are going through. I've done playdates with Kari and Stella and it broke my heart to get the email from Laura.

I hope to be able to get something off to you guys this weekend.

Sending loads of love and healing thoughts your family's way.

Anonymous said...

You have written a beautiful and moving tribute to your precious daughter. Please know that so many have, and will continue to pray for you and Kari and Stella.

Kerry Gomez
Heritage Church member

Taleah said...

We are sending all our prayers and love to you - We have been lifting you up at Ecclecia in Muskegon.

Tara said...

I belong to the meet up group that Kari organizes, though I've never attended a meeting or met her. What you wrote was so beautiful and must have been incredibly difficult do. I am so, so sorry, and my heart aches for you. Words are meager, but I want to let you know that I, and my friends and family who have heard of your unspeakable loss and Kari's illness are thinking of you praying for you. I hope it gives you a small measure of comfort to know that the circle of love and light being directed to your beautiful family extends further than you know, like a pebble dropped in a pond.

Gene and Annie said...

Such a beautiful tribute to such a beautiful girl! I'm so sorry and my heart is broken for you. Many prayers amidst my tears have been spoken on your behalf.

In love,
Annie (Schmidt) Luidhardt
(A fellow IWU grad)

Insert name here said...

We've never met, but my heart has been broken for you and your precious wife and little Stella Rose over your loss of Margot June. I've been following updates from your dad. We are praying for you in this unimaginable time of grief.

Love from Croatia!

Anonymous said...

Words cannot express the pain that I feel for your precious family. We have been praying for you since the moment we heard the news. I am unable to wrap my mind around what you have been dealing with, and am here weeping with you all. She was absolutely beautiful. My heart aches and my prayers will continue to be lifted up to God for your family. Be blessed.
-Amy B

Anonymous said...

Our heart is in sorrow and prayer for your family. To share such a personal tribute to your little Margot and open yourself up to your grief and transparency brought me to remember that healing begins here. Praying for Kari's physical healing to come quickly and so you,she and Stella can begin to heal together.

Beth said...

She's beautiful!!! I'm so sorry for your lose. I recently lost my one year old niece. I came across a song called "Borrowed Angels" by Kristen Chenoweth, you guys should listen to it. It's very touching after the lose of someone so special.

Anonymous said...

I cannot express adequately how sorry we are for your loss since we heard about it Saturday preparing for worship here in the Quad Cities. I cried for you then, and I cry for you all now after reading your tribute to your beautiful daughter. We continue to pray daily for Kari to fully recover and for each of you to somehow make it through the pain of grief that can be all-consuming. I hope you find some comfort in the fact that so many people from Heritage Church in the Quad Cities are praying for your family.
Bruce and Jen Mace

Anonymous said...

We attend Heritage church & heard about your loss. My heart was shattered for your loss & for Kari's continued struggles. Amazingly, pastor John found solace in the joy Stella showed with her grandmother. I was inspired by his faith. We will continue to pray for healing, not only of Kari's body, but all of your hearts.

Michelle said...

My heart is absolutely breaking for you and your family. Margot is such a beautiful little girl. I wish I had words to comfort you in some way. Losing a child has to be the worst pain a parent can feel. We lost our daughter, Emma Grace, to a cord accident at 20 weeks and delivered her stillborn. I know that cannot compare to the loss you are feeling now.

The hospital gave us "We Were Going to Have a Baby But We Had an Angel Instead" to help explain it to our son. I poured over Empty Cradle, Broken Heart and A Silent Sorrow.

Know that you aren't alone. I know we don't know each other, but there is a vast grief community online. I hope with all my heart that your wife recovers well. I'm so very sorry for your loss.

kristi said...

prayers and tears that God is holding your family right now. pleading with Him for physical healing for Kari. in the midst of your pain and grief, may you feel comfort from those that love you and an unexplained peace that fills your soul.

Rebekah :) said...

I am so very sorry. I know there really are no words that can help, but please know that you have the prayers of many.

With His love,

Rebekah

Anonymous said...

From an anonymous reader..how tragic and sad. Prayers and thoughts for you, your family, and your sweet sweet baby girl. My heart aches for you. Thanks for sharing her with us.

Anonymous said...

Josh, there are no words. My heart and mind ache for both of you. I have never prayed for anyone ever as much as I have for you and Kari. As I read about your time holding Margot, tears just streaming down my face as I grieved for you both, I couldn't help but think about Margot getting to be held by her other Daddy. I continue to be in constant prayer, begging God for Kari's recovery and the grieving process over your sweet little Margot. Love you guys.

Love,
Virginia

Anonymous said...

I've never met you... your blog was linked on a site I visit regularly. And still without knowing you my heart just aches at the pain you and your wife must be feeling. I cannot even begin to imagine. I will keep you and your families in my prayers. I pray that your wife heals more each day that and that you are both surrounded by the love of God, family and friends during what will most definitely be a very, very trying time. I am so deeply sorry.

Alison Stephens said...

Margot is beautiful. I am so glad you got to hold her in your arms and tell her how much you love her. You two are beautiful parents and people. You are in our thoughts and prayers continually. Much love, Libby and Alison

Anonymous said...

My prayers are with your family. My heart is breaking in two for your sweet family. May God be in the moments of grief, pain, sadness and loss. I think and pray of Kari often.

Anonymous said...

balling my eyes out over here in culver city, sending you love from someone you don't know. just no words.....thank you for opening up and reaching out....

big hugs from the other side of the city.....

Anonymous said...

Josh--we don't know each other, but I wanted to express my heart felt sympathy for your loss. Margot June is a beautiful and precious soul who will be missed forever. My daughter Grace was stillborn at 40 weeks, 3 days in 2008. I know how deep the heartache goes. It is blisteringly awful. Take good care of yourself and your wife and your daughter. Wishing you comfort and peace.

Terresa Lauer said...

You touched my heart with your words and I am saying prayers for you, your wife, and your precious daughters. I know it probably doesn't help but I keep thinking that there is no more peaceful place to die then tucked into the warmth of the womb, surrounded by the love of your parents. I'm so so sorry for your loss, it's outrageously unfair and heartbreaking. Sharing your story is so courageous and I hope it reaches far and wide to touch the hearts of all of us who have passed through the unimaginable pain and insanity that is grief. May you also find peace and healing through the telling of your story. Many blessings and prayers for health and healing.

Amanda said...

I met Kari a couple of times thru the Crunchy Moms group. Although I didn't know her well, I was excited for her and her next adventure as a mom of two. I am heartbroken for your family. Margot is beautiful - I cried when I looked at that gorgeous face. Please know you are all in my thoughts and I hope for Kari's full recovery.

Amanda Pruett

The Brown Family said...

What a beautiful tribute to a beautiful little girl. My heart aches for your family, so many many people are praying for you. Kari is a member of my Crunchy Parents group and I adore her. Will continue to pray and check back for updates.

kerry kind said...

Your loss of Margo is beyond words. I have been praying for you since Friday morning, with tears. Kari needs to turn a corner and we are praying for her physical wholeness as well as for you all as you grieve.
Love and hope,

Anonymous said...

Josh, we've only met a couple of times at Heritage Church in the QC; but my heart breaks for you & your family. Margot was a beautiful little angel from God, sorry for your loss.

Thank you so much for sharing your story & hers. You are a wonderful dad, & Kari is an amazing mother.

Praying for physical & emotional healing for Kari & the rest of your family.

In His grip,

The Helstrom Family

Sue said...

Josh, we are so sorry to hear of the loss of your precious Margot. Our family will continue to pray for you, Kari, little Stella, and extended family members.
Dave and Sue Vander Heide

Griz said...

Still keeping you guys in prayer. I cried so much the day I heard and still cry today. I'm so sorry for your loss.

Libby and David said...

Love and support, we are sending your way.

Kar, many many hugs to you. I love you so much and can't imagine what you must be feeling.

You have been such a wonderful friend. Thank you for that. I love you dearly and am so sorry for your loss.

Libby

bec rycenga said...

Dear Josh, Kari, and Stella, Words seem so useless in times of deepest grief but know our hearts are broken for you. The beautiful picture of precious Margot will remain in our minds for years to come. May your pain and sorrow lead you to the only One who truly knows how it feels to lose a child. In love and prayers for you, Chuck and Becky Rycenga

Anonymous said...

We dont know each other but my heart is breaking for your family. Margot is beautiful and will forever live in your hearts. I am sending you white light and praying for comfort and peace to fill you now and in the days that lie ahead. Know that you are loved and supported by many.

Katie K said...

I am a dear friend of your cousin Rachel in Michigan, You have never met me... never knew I existed. My heart now knows you and your family and your grief. I am without words of comfort as I have not been through anything like this. I am however stunned by your family's story, I keep coming back to it and weeping, praying and looking at Margot June's beautiful face. You and your wife and Stella are in my every thought today and tomorrow and the day after that...

Anonymous said...

Dear God,
Please wrap your love around Kari, Josh, Stella, and all their families in this time of pain. I know you are holding sweet Margot in your arms as I write this, tell how much she was loved. When they look back at this time, let them see only one set of prints in the sand.

Mel said...

My heart breaks for you and the loss you've experienced. I'm so very sorry for your loss and have been praying for your family since this tragedy happened.

Mel

Kissed by the Creator said...

WOW, sent over here by Trailing after God Friend to pray. Now I know why. There are no words on this side of eternity that can ease your grief. So I pray to the eternal one where she remains. Lord, please lovingly tend to the hearts that remain earthbound. Lord give them mercy and peace as they transition their dreams and hopes into their new reality. Thank you for even their brief time with their daughter. To hold her and lose her is better than to never have known her at all. We pray for health for mom and healing for all. Guide them daily and give them glimpses of hope. In Jesus Name, I pray. AMEN.

Kim C. said...

I am so sorry for your loss. you will find peace in your heart soon knowing that she will always be by your side in spirit. She is a beautiful baby and she's a gorgeous angel now. God bless you and your family through this hard time.

Anonymous said...

"When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight."

Khalil Gibran

Dawn Smith said...

This morning I allowed myself to enter your journey, to feel your pain, to remember mine, and to weep. The tears keep coming. Your words are so beautifully written. They are a treasure, and though you had to surrender Little Margot into the arms of Jesus, your time with her...so precious, so sacred.
It was 26 years ago that I held my beautiful (full term) newborn Daniel. I only held him once. He lived 3 days.
I have so much to say to you. My husband and I will be in touch. May God bless and comfort you and your beautiful family.

Dawn in Fremont, MI

IvyT said...

My heart aches for Kari, you and Stella. Margot is, was and always will be truly beautiful. I can't imagine your pain or offer any words to help you come to peace with such an outcome, but I am grateful to hear of Kari's improvements. Your words here are such a gift to your daughter's memory. Your family is in my prayers.

Kelly said...

I don't know you. But I am so moved by your bravery and your courage. I had a miscarriage with my first pregnancy and I have never been the same. Thank you for posting your story and sharing your pain. It DOES touch, and move, and heal people who read it. Thank you for being brave enough to take a picture of your beautiful Margot and share it with us. Gorgeous.
I am at a loss for words to express my heart break at your loss. What a freak accident. how unfair. There is nothing any stranger or best friend can say to comfort you, really. But I am here, a stranger, praying for you and sending many healing and beautiful thoughts toward you. It seems so far off, but someday you will be able to order a cheese burger without sobbing. Someday you will even be able to say her name with a strong clear voice. Know that she is around you and your adorable Stella. She is there with you.
May you find peace, in moments and snippets, and small deep breaths in quiet rooms and on noisy freeways and in random laughter that seems inappropriate.
Love and Blessings,
Kelly

B. Wilson said...

Aching to read this.

We had that same falling leaf, though I never saw it on our door... my husband did. It makes me ill seeing the photo of it, but I've been wondering for some time.

I'm so sorry about your sweet Margot. No words obviously can express as nothing brings our babies back. Our Andrew was still at 7lb6oz on December 5. It's completely heartbreaking.

So much pain and life lost in an instant. Thanks for writing.

lissasue3 said...

I'm so sorry for your loss.

Curls O Fred said...

Reading this brought many tears. I'm sorry for the loss if your sweet girl. I will say Margot's name to the wind today, and it will travel the world over. Thinking if you and your family.

Matushka Anna said...

I'm just reading this now.

I'm so sorry.

Those are such insufficient words. My heart aches for you.

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