Wednesday, July 29, 2009

2 Weeks

It is hard to believe it has been 2 weeks since Jillian was born. Wow---seems just like yesterday we were all cuddling with her, watching her cute little faces, watching her yawn, and giving her lots of hugs and kisses----and now we are missing her. Each day is different. Some days are ok, I get through the day without crying, and the next, I am very emotional and can't stop thinking about her. But it has only been 2 weeks, so I would assume that is to be expected. We went out to visit Jillian again tonight, always feels comforting to go to the cemetery...we are there almost every night! (We think we need a bench! HAHA!) It is just so peaceful when we go, on the hill with a little breeze and the sun setting---its nice.

Today we also received something in the mail I wasn't quite prepared for----her death certificate. It was a little odd opening up the letter to find out what it was....we haven't even gotten her birth certificate yet---don't really know what to do with it, I guess stick it in her memory box? Hmmmmm? Not sure? Something you don't really think about getting for one of your children...

Ellie has also started to get a little more emotional and had a couple break downs--which was kind of a relief to me. I didn't know how to read her, she really hadn't cried much or talked about Jillian, she been keeping it inside----but now for the past couple nights, she cries at bedtime. She told me she tries not to think about Jillian, because it makes her cry, and at bedtime is when she lays there and thinks about her, so she gets sad. We cry together and I tell her it is ok to cry and think about her, and we will get through this together. One thing she is having a really hard time with, is that she never got to see Jillian's eyes. We all wish she would have looked at us, but for Ellie, it really bothers her. We decided though, that since she had dark hair like me, that her eyes would have been dark too----Ellie just doesn't think she looked like a blue eye or green eyed girl---definitely a brown eyed girl. :) It breaks my heart to have Ellie hurting---I want to take the hurt away from her, but I can't. It is something we all have to endure and face head on. Grief is a crazy thing---even knowing for 6 months about Jillian's condition, you can still NEVER prepare for how much it hurts when they are gone.

Jillian---we all miss you more than words can say. We wish you were here with us right now, I wish I was having sleepless nights, waking up to feed and change you, and rock you back to sleep, I wish your sisters were getting to know you and getting used to your place in our little family, and Daddy was taking long naps with you laying in his chest. I know you are happy, healthy and healed in Heaven, but still can't help but wish you were here.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Heaven's Child

I wanted to share this poem that my friend, Becky, wrote for Jillian. I love reading it, and plan to put it in a frame with her picture. It means so much Becky, thank you!
(Click on the poem to make it bigger)

Tonight I was also going through and reading all of our cards(there is a lot, I even had to have Candi make me another card box to hold them all) but anyway, I came across one card that just really hit me, I love it so I thought I would share----
A butterfly lands near us,
and for a brief moment,
its beauty belongs to our world...
...but then it flies on again,
and though we wish
it could have stayed,
we feel so lucky
to have seen it.
For some reason, that just really stuck out to me.....and I think of Jillian every time I see a little butterfly, so this card was perfect! So were all the others, so many nice cards, and nice things people have great to have such wonderful friends and family.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

A Few Things

I have a couple random things I wanted to share with everyone:

Today I spent the morning getting some pictures printed of Jillian and put into frames. The house just seems complete now with a few pictures of her. I have a couple in the living room and dining room, and then put one in both Ellie and Malia's room, and also our bedroom. I was really excited to how well the frame turned out that I did for our room....

We bought this black frame at Target, I printed the pictures from home, and added the vinyl sayings, and also tied her little bracelet to a ribbon and secured it onto the middle of the frame---it couldn't have turned out any better!

I also did the same to the frames in Ellie and Malia's rooms---printed these adorable pictures of Jillian, and added her name in vinyl, and thought the little butterfly was a perfect touch!

Ellie's Picture

Malia's Picture
Tonight before bed, Malia was talking to Jillian's picture, and giving her kisses, and even sang her Twinkle Twinkle Little Star----we want to make sure she knows who her sister is and doesn't forget, since she is so little.
I also wanted to share this beautiful bracelet I had gotten last week. I LOVE IT----and wear it everyday---it is cute that both the girls will looks at it and tell me who each letter stands for----a huge thank you to Kari for making this for me----you can check out her website at
It is hard to believe it will 2 weeks ago on Tuesday that Jillian was born------seems like it was yesterday. We have been doing pretty well, we obviously miss her dearly, and wish things were different, but this is the way our story goes. We go to visit her almost every night, and never say "goodbye" to her, it is always "see you later"---as we know we will see her again someday. When we pull up Malia will yell, "We're Baaaack!!!" It is cute----and blows kisses when we leave.
Ellie has been taking everything extremely well, I don't know if she is too young to really understand, or if she is just so smart that she gets it----a couple times when I was upset, she would bring me a tissue, and tell me we don't have to be sad, Jillian is in Heaven---so I think she really does understand that she is in a good place, but is amazing, she is only 7! So as hard as it is some days, I can't help but get through the day knowing how lucky we really are---to have 2 happy, healthy little girls, and one that we were blessed to have 22 wonderful hours with who is watching over us each day. Still wish I could change things, and she was here with us right now, but I guess we are just trying to move forward and cherish the memories and pictures we have of her...and know we will see her again someday.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

One of my favorites

I wanted to share this picture of little Miss Jillian. I am so glad we took this picture to remember how much hair she had---and how dark it was! So cute.....both Ellie and Malia were bald when they were born and took years to grow(Malia is still working on it at 2 1/2) so I was sooo excited Jillian had hair! We did also cut a little off to keep in her memory box.

The little things that mean sooooo much...

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Jillian's Tree

I know there is no way I can keep up and post all the gifts we have received, but I had to take a picture and post this today. We got this from Adam's aunts, they put on a FABULOUS luncheon for everyone after Jillian's service, and this was a gift we received. It is a pot with Jillian's name painted on it with a little bear, and this beautiful tree! We also added the little butterflies from her flowers from the service and the ribbon-----I think of Jillian every time I look at it.

I will try to post more gifts over the next couple weeks----I hate to leave any out, as all of them are wonderful! From flowers, to a bracelet, picture frames, stones with sayings on them, more Willow Tree figurines, stuffed much kindness from everyone!

Well, Adam took the girls to the pool this afternoon, so I am trying to get a few things done in a peaceful house----just thought I would post this for the day.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

My Mom is a Survivor

Here is a poem my sister sent me the day of Jillian's Service.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Maternity Pictures

For anyone wanting to view our maternity pictures....please go to:
Click on Clients
Our password is lansink

They turned out great, and I think of Jillian everytime I think of them. We also got back all of our pictures from the hospital, and we are amazed at what a great job she did---but we would like to keep them private, I did post a few favorites yesterday though.....

Missing my little girl tonight...

Jillian's Story

Jillian Grace Lansink was born on July 14, 2009 at 9:40am. I heard the nurses say "she's out" and the next sound was one of the best sounds I have ever heard-----she cried! Not a lot, but she let out a few good cries, I knew she was still with us. The nurses got her cleaned up and handed her to Adam, then he showed me our beautiful daughter. It was love at first sight. She looked so cute, and tiny. We had Father and our parents waiting in the hallway to have her baptized right away. We also had Dr. Veltri get the girls for us right away, as we weren't sure how much time we had---but at this point, we knew she was still with us, and wanted to make sure Ellie and Malia got to meet their new little sister. They held her and gave her lots of kisses---she fit perfectly into our little family.

After I was ready, they placed Jillian in my arms and wheeled us to our room, where all of our family was patiently waiting to meet little Jillian as well. She was greeted by all of her great-grandparents, aunts and uncles--what a lucky little girl to be surrounded by so much love. I was also getting quite anxious to know her weight, so the nurses gave her a quick bath, and weighed her, she weighed in at 4 pounds 15 ounces! I was happy---we were expecting 5 pounds, so you really can't get much closer of an estimate! It was hard for me at this point, as I couldn't sit up, so I really couldn't help with her bath or get her dressed, but knew she was in good hands. They put on her little pink and green Jillian layette with her matching hat with the pretty bow---she looked beautiful---and so stylish of course. :)

Jillian spent the next hours in the arms of everyone that loved her----she wasn't put down the entire time she was with us. We never got to see her eyes, I kept hoping she would take a peek at us just once, and she tried, but never got a chance to see them. She also had a FULL head of black hair. It is so funny, as I always say how I give birth to my kids, but they never look like me, and I think little Jillian did look like me. Long black hair---it was so cute. Knowing she had Anencephaly, there are a lot of unknowns, and the extent of her defect was one we would not know until she was born, and we were so happy to learn that her head was completely covered with skin and dark hair, there was only a small opening in the back of her head that was open, so not as severe as it could have been I guess. She also made some "cooing" sounds and was a little yawner! She was constantly having big yawns! A few hours after she was born, we also decided to try feeding her with a syringe. She struggled with it at first, but after a couple times, she was taking some and swallowing it. We were pretty excited about that. I didn't want my baby to be hungry!

As night approached, a lot of our family had left, I was exhausted from being sick all day, and not getting any sleep, and so was Adam. My dad said he would stay for awhile so Adam and I could try to get a little sleep. Adam was able to get a little nap in, but as much as I tried, I just couldn't fall asleep. I was too scared if I did, I would wake up and she would be gone. So I told dad I would take her, so Jillian and I got to spend all night together. When Adam woke up about 3 or so, he fed her one last time, she was struggling a lot more this time. We had the nurse come and check her heart rate and lungs again, and her heart was still strong at 120(which is what it had been all day) and her lungs were clear. Adam and spent the next couple hours sitting together holding her, watching her make her little funny faces, and watching her big yawns! She also had started to throw up a couple times in the night, so we thought we better stop the feeding for a bit to see if it continued.

Sometime around maybe 6 am---she started to make some really cute sounds, some we hadn't heard before, she was blowing little bubbles, and then she let out a couple big cries...something we had not heard since the minute she was born. And I happened to get all of this on video---as we thought it was so cute to hear her and watch her blowing her bubbles.

At about 7:15 am, Adam was holding Jillian in the chair right next to my bed, and the nurse came in to check me and to take my catheter out, and Adam said Jillian wasn't moving anymore. The nurse immediately took Jillian over to the couch and checked her heart...she said it was barely there and we only had a few minutes left with her. We were so upset, knowing this was coming, but we weren't ready to let her go. She handed her to me and I held her close giving lots and hugs and kisses. Adam called our parents right away and told them to get to the hospital as soon as possible....we especially wanted Ellie and Malia there before Jillian was gone. The nurse came back and check again, Jillian was still with us, but her heart was very faint. My mom got the girls to the hospital, they got to hug and kiss her one last time and the nurse said she was gone. We knew this moment was coming----but NOTHING can prepare you for how much it hurts to hear it. So at 7:35am----22 hours after she entered this world, she was in Heaven.

We would never have expected that we would get that much time with her, so we are so blessed that we got almost an entire day with our precious little girl. All she knew was love, wrapped in every one's arms all day...and that is exactly what we wanted.

A side note----While in the hospital, my mom ran into someone (that I know too) that asked her what she was doing at the hospital---she went on to tell this woman that we had Jillian, and that she had passed on....the response from this person was "Well, I always wanted to know why they continued with the pregnancy knowing the outcome" Obviously, my mom was shocked this woman would say this, and say it to the face of a grieving grandma-----and when I was told she said this I was at first very angry---that some people are that heartless? But to answer her question---why did we continue with the pregnancy? How could we not?????? She is our little girl in every way, and just because she had a defect that was not going to allow her to be with us for long, why on Earth would we have chosen anything different? Yes, the last 6 months have been tough, knowing the outcome, but I am so blessed we did know.....we had time to plan everything, I got to enjoy the last 6 months of feeling her kicks, and hiccups---and loved every minute of it!!!! I would not have changed anything. We got 22 wonderful hours with our little girl, I know it isn't long, but to us, it is something we will never forget, we got to meet her, love her, kiss her, hug her, see her cute little face, toes, fingers---and we got to share her with our family----so I guess I am just still shocked someone asked that, but I guess we made the right choice for us, and do not care what anyone else thinks-----we are blessed, and even thought our hearts are breaking right now, and I wish I was sitting her holding her instead of typing this, it is our story, and wouldn't change anything.

.....More of the story to continue later, that is enough for one day.....

Friday, July 17, 2009

Pictures of Jillian

Just wanted to post a few pictures of our beautiful Little Miss Jillian Grace. We already got our pictures back from our photographer, and they are AMAZING!!!! Over 200 pictures, so I will be putting a slide show together in the near future.

We are getting ready for the service tomorrow morning, I know it is going to be so tough to say our final goodbyes...but we know she is in a better place.

We miss her more than words can say........

All of these are Images from Knop Photography (

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

12 Hour Update!!!

As of 9:40 this evening, Jillian is 12 hours old. She is eating from a dropper and seems to be very content. She has a lot of black hair and reminds us alot of Malia and Jodi both. Mom is doing fine as well. She has had her ups and downs with vomiting today, but we were told that could be expected with the c-section procedure. In fact the nurse just came by to see if she wanted to get out of bed for a while. We know we still have a long road a head of us, but it is going just as we had hoped. Thanks again for all the prayers and well wishes sent our way!!!


5 hours

This was taken on grandpa craig's phone...


Miss Jillian

I just got a call from Aunt Jamie with all of the details...

Miss Jillian Grace was born at 9:40am. She weighed 4lb 15oz. {They were in such a hurry to get her dressed they forgot to get her height} She has dark black hair, like mama :)

They got her baptized and now she is in the room with her family for LOTS of pictures. She is doing well, and they will keep me posted. Jamie took some pictures on her camera and will e-mail them to me later for the blogs.

Jodi is also doing good after her surgery and enjoying her little girl.

Thanks for checking in, and please keep the Lansinks in your prayers.


No news

I just wanted to post a little something, since phone calls and e-mails are starting to come in... there has been NO NEWS from the hospital. I will post something the second I hear from someone.


Monday, July 13, 2009

In a few hours...

...we get to meet our little girl. It is hard to believe the time as come, it has gone by so fast. So many mixed emotions right now...excitement to meet her, yet very anxious and nervous about the surgery and the unknowns....

My mom got into town today from Denver, so it was a really nice distraction today hanging out with her and my sister...taking my mind of of things. We have everything packed and ready to go in the morning. Our C-Section is scheduled for 9:30 tomorrow morning, and wanted to let everyone know my friend Candi will be updating my blogs when updates are available. I know several of you keep up with my blog and will be praying for us tomorrow, so I want to keep you all informed as much as we can.

We have received so many cards, phone calls, e-mails, gifts, and FOOD in the past few a huge thank you to everyone who has shown us support----it really helps a lot!

For now, I need to get some sleep, hoping I will be able to get a good nights sleep tonight, and hoping and praying for everything to go smoothly tomorrow.

Good night.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Special Gifts

I wanted to share with you a couple gifts we have received---and I know I say this all the time, but I seriously am so beyond thankful for all the thoughtful things people have done for this----saying thank you isn't enough---I hope people do understand how much we appreciate everything---I am starting to sound like a broken record, but I can't say thanks enough....

First here is the little blanket/bear Brianne got for Jillian a couple weeks ago that I have been meaning to post---I had a volunteer to hold it for me to take the picture---she will tell me, "this is baby Jillian's" and then gives it a hug!

I also received this BEAUTIFUL bracelet today from my friend Julie. It has a silver cross and a little charm at the end that says faith. It really is beautiful and I will wear it all the time! As the card reads....May Faith Carry us Through...
A huge thank you to Julie---there are just some people are just too kind for words...
On another note----just 6 short days before Jillian's arrival. I would say we are all set, just trying to mentally prepare for all of this. I would say this week has been very stressful, I find myself overwhelmed with thoughts, I have been extremely tired, and just so many things running through my head. We have nothing planned for the weekend, so we are going to take it easy at home, and also make a trip to Sioux City just to get a few things for the hospital, and also one last thing I wanted to get was 3 matching stuffed animals for all 3 of our girls! One for Jillian to keep with her, and Ellie and Malia will always have the same one. I wanted to get ones with Jillian's name on them, and maybe something with angel wings, but guess I waited too long, so now just looking for something soft and small, like a bear, or lamb or duck....that I can get 3 of the same. I also want the girls to help pick them out--so hope we have some good luck!
We have also made our plans for the hospital and I have been in contact with our family letting them know our plans, but thought I would put on here that for the first day we are not accepting visitors except for our immediate family. With the "not knowing" it is so hard to plan anything, and who wants to tell people they can or can't see their baby right away, but this is the situation we have been put in, so we are trying to do what we think is best. I am sure day 2 we will love to see some visitors, and we PRAY that Jillian will still be with us too----only time will tell.
I have a cute video of Malia and I having a visit about Jillian----I don't have the time and energy to upload it tonight, but will get that done in the next couple days. It is cute---something I thought I wanted to remember, so thought it was worth making a video of.
We also got a print out of our maternity pictures today---and they are AMAZING! Some really good ones! Unfortunately their website is down right now, so I don't have access to let everyone see them yet, but AS SOON as they are up on the website, I will let everyone know!
Good Night!

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Card/Memory Box

I just HAD to post this----one of my best friends Candi is an AWESOME scrapper and soooo crafty---I call her "Crafty Candi" But anyway, I knew I wanted a box to hold all of our cards or anything else small to keep inside our large I knew I had to ask Candi to make one for me! I could never come up with something as cute as this! She called tonight and told me to check her blog, that she had posted pictures of the completed box---and I LOVE IT!!!! I wanted one with pink and green Incorporated(as those are the colors Jillian's nursery was going to be before we found about her condition) and I don't think it could have turned out any cuter! I love the little butterflies and also the little angel wings she added-----makes it very personal! Thank you so much Candi---it is perfect! :)

(Do we have the best friends and family or what?!?!?)

Last Omaha Trip

Today was our last visit with Dr. Levine----I am going to miss seeing him! Seriously one of the nicest doctors ever! They did the normal stuff they do every time, my blood pressure was great, weight the same, and then did the ultrasound. Unfortunately he didn't do a 3D one today, and I didn't ask him too, Adam reassured me it was ok, we get to see her "for real" in 2 weeks! So no biggie. They got an estimated weight on her, and said right now she is 4 pounds 7 ounces, but without getting a head measurement it is a pretty rough estimate, but he thought the estimate was probably low, and expected her to gain about another 1/2 pound in the next 2 weeks----so we are hopeful she will be at least 5 pounds---but hard to say for sure. He was very optimistic today, as he always is, but today was even more optimistic than before. My last visit 6 weeks ago, my fluid levels were at 25, and today they were at 19.8!!! He also said Jillian looks PERFECT, her heart, her kidneys, and is still swallowing. He also said the measurement for her tummy and legs was exactly when they would be for a baby with no problems. He said with all of those factors, and no complications so far, he is very optimistic she might do pretty well when she is born. Now I know-----I am not getting my hopes up too high, as I know reality is we might only get a few minutes with her, but he said today that is isn't uncommon she will make it long enough to come home, and he said we should also decide what we want to do about feedings if she is able to eat from a syringe, we can pump or do formula, but I guess was something I hadn't really thought about before. I have been always "hoping for the best and planning for the worst" and that is still the case. I REALLY HOPE AND PRAY that she gets to come home with us, but know that reality is, she very well may not. I think that is the hardest part of all of this---is the not knowing! I do have a bassinet and car seat from Malia, and a whole tub of Malia's old infant clothes, so in the event she gets to come home, we are set.

Adam and I are also just about done with our birth plan....sure is taking a long time, but there is a lot to think about! I also know I have had a lot of friends and family ask about when we would like for visitors while in the hospital---and Adam and I are discussing that as well. It's hard--we want everyone there, but at the same time, we do not want to feel overwhelmed by so many people right away, especially if we only get a very short time with her----so it is tough, but we are working on all that and will let people know very soon what our plans are for visitors.

I also wanted to tell everyone about a book the hospital let me borrow to read----I got it read in about 3 hours---it was so good! It is called "Waiting with Gabriel" I would recommend it to anyone dealing with infant loss---I couldn't put it down.
I think that is all for now---not much going on with us for the weekend, we wanted to go somewhere, but thought being so close to our due date, we better stick close to home. Hope everyone has a great 4th of July Weekend!!!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Enjoy this moment...

Yesterday we had our maternity photo shoot and I am SO EXCITED to get to see them---I saw a preview on the camera, and they looked amazing, should be able to view them in the next couple days.....but while I was there, I was in the changing room, and on the vanity was a plate with a vinyl quote I had made a year ago when they were doing some decorating, and the plate reads,

Enjoy this moment, for this moment is your life...

I read that and realized that is a prefect saying for our life right now. I didn't need to be sad during our session, because at the moment we were taking pictures, Jillian was doing fine, and kicking like crazy, so I guess I was just enjoying that, instead of being sad about what is about to come. That as sad as all of this is, and how mad I could be, I guess until Jillian is actually here and we are forced to deal with the reality of it all, we have chosen to live in the NOW and enjoy each ironic I was the one that made the plate, and seeing it again, it really said a lot about us right now.

I think this whole situation has taught me a lot about myself, a lot about other people, a lot about how I view things. I say it all the time...but I just think it would have been a big waste of our time, to lay around and cry the last few months, and yes, some days I did, or some days I wanted to, but thought, how would that be celebrating the time we have now? I can be selfish and say I SO BADLY want Jillian to live and grow with our family, but with that said, I can't help but feel so blessed at the same time. I watch a lot of news shows, and court tv shows, and hear so many heart wrenching stories of little children that are abused, murdered, or missing...and I think those are the moms that have to be desperately hurting so badly, that when they go to bed at night, might now know where their child is, or have to visualize a tragic death....and I won't have to do that. I will get to know she didn't suffer, she won't be hurt...that in her short life, all she will know is love by all her family around her, and that she is resting in a wonderful place. I guess that is how I have chosen to look at all this right now.... in a couple weeks I might have a completely different view, and I know I will be terribly sad and probably mad and wonder why---but in the back of my mind, I am positive we will find peace in all of this.

Here is a picture of the plate----taken a year ago, who knew it would have so much meaning to me now?

On another note----we have our last visit with Dr. Levine tomorrow in Omaha. I am really hoping to get some more 3D pictures of litte Jillian, and also hoping for an estimated weight on her. I will post more after our visit. I also had a routine visit this week with Dr. Veltri, and everything is the same, I have still not gained any weight, and in fact of lost 5 pounds since the day I found out I was pregnant----and I am 36 weeks but was measuring 34 weeks, which is fine, but that is why I am wanting to know a weight on Jillian...makes me think she might be really small? Guess we will find out tomorrow.

More after our visit tomorrow---and as always, keep us in your prayers.