Our Birth : The Struggle // The Healing // Our Miracle

January 14, 2016

I finally have the courage to write this, solely because last night was the first night our little Luella slept in her crib through the night. And like that, I feel like I’ve somehow arrived. As a mother, and as a human being.

Okay, well maybe not yet…and hopefully not ever… but all the momma’s out there can do a happy dance with me, as this is a HUGE and first of many accomplishments as a new mommy! So, today, as I emerged from the depths of my spit-up stenched ruffled duvet cover, (that many days, I burry my head into) a new courage arose that told me today was the day to document how far we’ve come, and to celebrate the wins…

…To celebrate the wins…


2016 is my year to celebrate the wins.

I had always imagined the heart flutters I would feel the moment I saw the look in my husbands eyes when he saw our first child. What my heart would feel. How I would feel, seeing the man I so deeply loved and treasured, as daddy for the first time. What I didn’t imagine was the way our story unfolded, and the battle that we encountered (which as parents were the first of many…) to get to the place of the heart flutters I’d dreamed of.

Every woman especially in the last month, at one point or another thinks of her birth. Whether in fear, or anticipation, it is something that we think of, prepare for and as Christian women, pray and believe for.  That’s what we did. During my pregnancy, I came across the single greatest resource, “Supernatural Childbirth” by Jackie Mize. It revolutionized my way of anticipating my birth, and our story. I knew what we were believing for, and my husband and I stood on several of the truths in this book. I knew beyond a shadow of a doubt, that I was created for this, that my body was created to do this, and I was chosen to be a mother to the little peanut I was about to meet.

But our story isn’t just about the perfect little one we get to call ours everyday since then.

It started with a struggle, a fight, and an emotionally devastating battle that only now, I am beginning to let myself heal from.

Believing for something can be scary, and telling others can be a shot to the heart when things don’t go as you believed. We were believing for a natural, vaginal birth to welcome our little girl into the world. I am thankful for doctors, and wisdom, but all in all My God knows my body better than anyone, simply because He created it.

18 hours had come and gone of natural labor. I was a walking shell of myself, as my body was dialating to prepare for Lucy’s arrival. My husband, and our moms & papa bear waited in the room with me, not recognizing the girl who would soon bring their daughter and grand-baby into the world. I fought, I kept fighting, and burying my soul into God’s Promise to me. That He was there, holding us, and I knew Him as my Good Father.

I knew Him as MY Good Father.

So when did that change?

When did I let that change?

When did MY circumstances,  allow the door to open, and falsely change His goodness in my life?

The moment I took my eyes off Him.

After those 18 hours, and dialating to a 9.25 naturally, my body began to give out. Luella had a fighters heart like her momma (something I prayed for) but her heart began to weaken. Her heart rate dropped to below 50’s/60’s – and instantly 12 nursers and doctors rushed into my room. At this point, I was laboring in  a position where I could not see the panic that struck their faces. All I could see was my husbands face. I spiked a fever of over 102, followed by Lucy’s fever, and instantly they put me on a breathing machine.

A c-section was never in our plans. We hadn’t talked about it. It wasn’t what we were believing for, and then- my midwives and doctors said the word, and a little piece of inside my heart broke.

I felt it. Every part of it. Broke.

“We need to get you to the operating room immediately for a C-section.”

I had put it off twice. I cried. I let fear in, and demanded everyone leave the room, except my husband.

Tears filling my face, and my words slurred from the breathing machine that was hugging my swollen face, I looked at him- saw his heart breaking for me, and he said the most profound words that brought my heart so much peace and back to a place of reality.

“It’s not about the birth it’s about our baby.”

Instantly, my heart changed, and I knew it was our only option. My husband prayed over me, over Lucy. Then there, in the hospital room as our sweaty hands gripped tightly together – we took a stand against fear, and fixed our eyes back on The One who had and still has an extreme calling on our little girl’s life. We were in agreement, and “where two or three are gathered in agreement, there He is in the midst.” (Matthew 18:20)

He was there. And we felt peace.

Luella Mae was brought into the world October 23, 2015 at 10:31pm // 6lbs 13oz // 20 inches long.

Moments following my labor,  I had a defeat I could not shake. A defeat I had never heard anyone speak of. A defeat that felt so deep, I gave into the lie that I had failed. I chose to believe that. If God created my body to do this, and if I knew what I was believing for, why did it end up this way? The words my husband had spoken and prayed left me, and once again I let fear and doubt fill my soul, and dim the promise God had given me.

No one understood. I felt alone. A feeling I could only describe to others as like running a marathon, pushing through the hardest peak, then 100 yards before the finish line breaking your ankle and having to be carried across.

Carried across.

I felt I had failed.

I felt like I had been robbed of something my body was created to do.

What I felt in my heart, became lie I believed.

No words from loved ones could change the feeling I couldn’t shake. Tired, emotional, and broken, I looked at the little girl that moments before was forcefully removed from my abdomen,  my internal organs were laying on a tray beside my body, and then she came, and was ours. I felt broken. I was scared. and I felt like I had failed.

How could that be?

It all stemmed from a lie I believed.

The words to a worship song sang from the depths of my soul as the words cried to my weary heart,

“You’re a good good father, it’s who you are… and I am loved by you.”

I let my circumstance for what I was believing for dictate His Goodness, almost as if He had let me down.

But He hadn’t. His promise was there holding me as I cried out in honesty to Him.

His Promise was there as we were re-admitted into the hospital, and feelings of failure were tempting to rise in my spirit again.

His Promise was there, as the grace needed to extend to our marriage was covered in the depth of love we have for each-other ONLY from knowing HIS infinite love for us. His Promise extended to us when we needed that grace for each other.

His promise was there, at our 4am feedings, as I felt guilty as I looked down at our little angel, feeling like I was nursing a stranger.

His Promise was in the gentle words of a close friend who told me how amazing I was, that I basically went through two labors, with fully dialating naturally, then having a c-section. Who, then also told me I needed to give myself grace. His Promise was in her words.

His promise has restored the part of my soul that felt robbed. As I look down at the greatest gift He has given us, aside from His Son, and fall more and more in love everyday. I celebrate the WINS as I know, through our circumstances that look dark, or as lies we believe cloud our perspective, He is MY Good Father, and I’m infinitely loved by MY creator. His plan for me is good. He can be Trusted with the deepest part of my soul, and He is the restorer of all things the enemy tries to steal.

So, please. If you are reading this, spouses, loved ones, mothers, mother-in-laws, friends, family..  If you are out there- if you have or know someone who as carried a baby, had a c-section, a vaginal birth, a natural birth, any form of birth…

Do not tell her she is another number for doctors to tally as they get payed more for c-sections, it won’t help her heal.

Don’t tell her that C-sections are easier and that she’s lucky she “didn’t have to push”, it won’t help her heal.

When the new mom in your life comes home with the miracle she’s been carrying, help her heal.

Don’t dismiss her cries of help, or take personally the temporary abandonment to the relationship you once had with her, as a sign of her weakness. Help her heal.

She’s relentlessly fighting to “bounce back” to the woman, wife, friend, and daughter she once was, and she’s not sure yet how it will look different…so for now, help her heal..

For my Husband:

Thank you. Thank you for being my voice, when mine was shaken and afraid.  Thank you for believing in me, from the moment we said “I do” and from the moment “mommy” became my new name. I see you. I love you. I appreciate you and your dedication to our family.  Thank you for knowing the depth of my beauty,  as I don’t recognize the woman that looks back at me in the mirror, yet. But because of you, I am able to love me again, and I am beginning to see a glimpse of the me you’ve seen since we started dating 10 years ago. That, that “me” deserves to be loved and nurtured by others, but more importantly, by herself.  Thank you for showing me that.

For our Parents:

There are no words, other that you are amazing for how you’ve supported us, loved us, and showed us how to do the same for our first little girl. Having you a part of this journey with us is something we will never regret.

For My Creator:

You made me, formed me, and laid out each journey of my book before I was born. From my Mother’s womb, you have chosen me, and your love has called my name. The sacrifice of your only son, has never been more real to me, than from the moment I had a child of my own. Suddenly, I’ve felt the depth of your love for me in an infinite way, as you are restoring what was stolen from me as part of our birth story. I trust you. I am Yours, and your love for me goes beyond what I can see in my natural circumstance. Thank you for allowing me to be a vessel to encourage, and for allowing me to feel a beauty that goes beyond a mirror,  and for the first time in my life, feeling as beautiful as you made me.

For My Lue: 

My saving grace, has been you. The way your eyes connect with mine is like a string to the deepest part of my soul, and I have a feeling that will never leave. Your floppy ears saved me at our quiet 4am feedings, as we tried not to wake daddy. Thank you for showing me, that I am enough for you, that mommy and daddy are enough, and that together in this moment, our family of 3 is made complete with you.

blessings, dayna mae + a weee little one staring at me wide eyed wanting me to snuggle her, so today, I will do that.

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Special thanks to our dear friend Mishelle Lamarand for capturing these images, along with my husband for having a camera, but not living behind it during delivery. I love you both, and will be forever grateful for these images.


  • Marty Mager
    January 14, 2016

    Thank you for sharing these pictures.
    I see why I was agonizing through this although I could not
    physically be in the room to share (good and not so good)
    with you. With the exception of prayer, I felt so helpless.
    You are a special one-of-a-kind person, but we all know that
    because our God makes each of us unique.
    I love you and I am blessed to have you as my daughter (in-law),
    Marty (Papa Bear)

  • Pauline Lesser
    January 14, 2016

    You are wonderful and strong. You have not failed, you have survived. I’m finally figuring out that motherhood *is* all about surviving.

    ( ♡ Leanne Martin’s sister)

  • Crystal
    January 14, 2016

    Amen Dayna, Amen

  • Natasha
    January 14, 2016

    Love you, Lue and Matt ❤️. Hearing the story and reading the story is so different. Beautifully written.

  • Kristy
    January 18, 2016

    That is so beautiful and so true! My first birth was similar and I was so confused that these feelings crept up on me… Even 6 years later it’s brings tears to my eyes for you, for me and anyone else who goes through it.. “It” being a vastly different delivery than they imagined. I’m a L&D nurse as well so This is always at the forefront of my mind when my vagjnal deliveries turn into csections. My csection patients get extra TLC from me for sure!
    I remember nursing my son for the first time talking on the phone to my friends trying to sound tough and strong. It is bizarre to watch the video now knowing how numb I was… How in shock I was.
    So all that to say- your words helped me heal even 6 years later! Thank you for sharing and I will be praying for you and your precious daughter and husband! I know you are a fantastic mom already!

  • Shawn Estrada
    February 11, 2016

    Such beautiful , emotive images! The details are so endearing, the family must be so happy with these images.

  • Neysha Moore
    April 2, 2016

    Beautiful! Thank you for sharing! God has blessed us with 4 beautiful children and I had to have a c-section with my second (I also have Jackies book ) and I Felt and experienced ALL of the same thoughts and feelings you mentioned above. It is amazing to read because I’ve never felt like anyone actually got what I was going through (besides my husband) and you nailed it! Thank you for sharing this testimony – God is good! And congrats on your precious baby girl!

  • Beth
    April 7, 2016

    Incredible story, beautifully written and so very triumphant!!

    Congratulations to your family, your daughter is beautiful!

    PS. Wondering what book/quote that is in between the last set of pictures??

    • Dayna
      April 7, 2016

      Hi Beth! It’s an amazing book called “Hands free mamma” I highly recommend it! 🙂 Thank you for the kind words!

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  • Linda R.
    April 12, 2016

    Thanks for sharing your story. I also needed an emergency C-section after 32 hours of labor. For months I would feel guilt because I wasn’t able to give birth naturally. But your husband was right. It’s about the baby, not the birth. As I’m gearing up (2 more months!) to give birth to my second, I’ll be at peace for whatever comes our way. We’re hoping for a VBAC but won’t be heartbroken if I have another C-section.

    Congrats on your beautiful daughter. She’s lucky to have such loving parents.

  • Amy in Montana
    April 12, 2016

    I came to your FaceBook page in a strange way, (a blurb about the picture of you in the crib with Luella Mae on Fox News Insider), but I now totally KNOW it is a God-Given GIFT that I’m sitting here writing this, when I should be down the street at our church, finishing up paying the mid-month bills!
    This blog post about your beautiful birth experience, (surprising as it was!), really, really touched my heart. Deeply. No, I didnt have to have a c-section with either of my boys’ births, but I DID have four miscarriages between them.
    The phrase, “It’s ok Amy, you can always have another baby” is not healing. There are countless other things people said that were not healing. Only one dear friend, ONE, came over with a meal, a bouquet of flowers, a warm hug, and the words, “I’m so sorry this happened to you and to your family.” Then she sat and cried with me for a bit and she let me talk. We prayed together, then she went home. And THAT was healing!
    Thank you for sharing your heart here, Dayna. Your focus is on exactly the right Person(s), and THAT brings Hope to many!
    In His Perfect Love,

  • Dee
    April 13, 2016

    I too, have struggled with feeling like a failure, but for a different reason–I have never given birth. After my last miscarriage almost four years ago, I struggled with the question, “what role is there for me as a Christian woman if I cannot be a mother?” My husband & I went through grief counseling and are still healing from these losses, but we have faith that one day we will know the answers as to why our Father hasn’t allowed us to be parents. I wish you and your family the very best, and I pray healing for you over your birth experience–it is never helpful to hear others’ thoughtless comments, especially when you are dealing with a crisis of faith, so I hope that you will be able to leave those behind and enjoy your new life together. Blessings to you and yours, Dee

  • susanna whitford
    April 14, 2016

    Beautiful story. We went through the same thing with the birth of our first daughter. 22 months later I gave birth to her sister, a successful VBAC after 38 hours of labor. Your pictures are beautiful and made me relive my c-section. <3 Here is my story: http://thewhitfordlife.com/the_differences_between_a_first_and_second_pregnancy/

  • Cheryll Bennett
    April 17, 2016

    Such a beautiful story, such beautiful photos of your love…
    Thank you for sharing our God’s goodness in your lives with us.

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