September 21 somewhat felt like deja vu.
Contractions had begun a few weeks prior, but gradually grew closer and closer as the days passed. 11 minutes, 9 minutes, 13 minutes… before I knew it, 8 minutes, 6 minutes, 7 minutes… Were these Braxton Hix contractions? Or were these legit “I’m in labor” contractions? The question of all questions of a prego, and how in the world do you know the difference?
I never had either with Evie or Nnaj. However, this feeling felt familiar because I experienced this with Micah, my firstborn, 12 years earlier.
For those of you who are unaware, when I was 17 years old, I became a statistic of teen pregnancy. Pastors daughter, trapped in an unhealthy relationship that I couldn’t seem to escape. After 3 years, I found myself pregnant out of wedlock, only to carry my baby boy, Micah, for 32 weeks. I went into early labor on Christmas Eve of 2005. Pressure, contractions, were signs that led me to believe something was happening. After sitting in Applebee’s, while visiting a friend that came into town, the pressure seemed to interrupt our conversation. I took a break to visit the bathroom, only to realize, I was about to deliver my baby. My sister, my heart, Meshali, was with me that day. She rushed me to the local hospital and physically led me into the ER. Her body was my support, as I limped my way through those sliding doors, barely able to stand to walk. A few minutes passed, and the next thing I knew, I was checked into a room, told I was dilated at a 10, and ready to push. They pumped me with meds to stop the labor, but it was too late. Doctors, nurses, rushed in the room. Chaos is an understatement. I felt my body naturally begin to push. They told me not to, however, it was as if my body was rebelling… Everything inside of me pushed. In a moment, my water broke. It was like a bomb. The impact was so great, Micah flipped and turned breech, and this is when mine and his little heart beat dropped. They pushed me down the hallway, where they were about to perform an emergency C-Section. They actually put me to sleep, and I eventually woke up to my personal “valley of the shadow of death..’ Micah had lost oxygen. The umbilical cord wrapped around his little body, and life offered me my stillborn baby boy.
I mentioned this story, to lead you to my next point.
Because of this specific incident in my life, my doctor never wanted me to actually go into labor again. I was and currently am considered “high risk”. Every pregnancy, the delivery date was scheduled a week prior from my due date. This helped me to avoid going into labor. Also, I made the decision to take progesterone shots, to keep my levels high, to prevent early labor. This technique actually worked with Evie and Nnaj, but I guess Remi knew she would be our last, and wanted to go out with a bang.
the contractions increased.
I didn’t want to be an alarmist, so although everyone was telling me “go to the doctor,” my response was “I don’t want to go in, only for them to send me home,” therefore, I stayed home.
Robert was scheduled to preach at Bethel Conference in Cali. He flew out that morning. I gave him a kiss, told him not to worry about us. The kids and I would be just fine, and would be here when he got home. Something deep inside told me that I could possibly go into labor, so I asked my mother in love to come stay with the kids and I, JUST IN CASE. Honey Gram came to the rescue, as always. When she walked in from work, she insisted on me going to the ER. We continued to time the contractions, closer and closer they drew.
My sister, Meshali, was traveling in from Tennessee. Missing the babies so much, she decided to stop by and see us.
She came in the house, and after updating her with everything, she insisted on us going. I was hungry and wanted Chilis. Her and Honey Gram called me crazy. I called me hangry, not eating was NOT AN OPTION. We picked up the food, I ate, packed an overnight bag, kissed my babies, and headed to the ER. I assumed I would be right back.
Shali and I walked into the ER, got checked in, and was wheeled to the women’s center.
As the nurse came to examine me, she said, “well, you’re dilated at a 2-3.”
To me, that was a shocker.
They would keep me another hour to see if I would continue to dilate, and if I did, they would admit me, and surgery would begin.
I immediately called Robert and told him the situation.
I couldn’t imagine them sending me home at this point, so we began the discussion of trying to get him a red eye home to make the delivery the next morning.
Because of my history, I have always preferred everything regarding birth to go as planned.
This night, nothing was going as planned.
Tears began to roll down my face as I thought about the possibility of not having Robert by my side to deliver our last little one.
In the meantime, the nurse informed me that my doctor, who had delivered Evie and Nnaj, was not on call, so another doctor would be delivering Remi, if I were to have the c section that night.
As I mentioned earlier, I am considered high risk, therefore I most definitely wanted my specific doctor because she knew my body, my previous incision, and every detail regarding my history. She would do anything and everything to provide me with a healthy baby and a healthy recovery.
An hour passed, the nurse came in for another examination, only to tell me, I had dilated to a full 3, almost 4, and they were going to take me into delivery.
The only red eye flight available wasn’t going to make it back in time.
I was quite emotional, but in the midst of it all, I had a supernatural peace.
God was in every detail, writing my story.
The nurse came back and told me that as she checked my charts, there was a sticky note placed on the folder that morning. It was a note from my doctor saying “if this patient goes into labor, whether I am on call or not, I want to deliver this baby.”
Before, the doctors and nurses said they didn’t want to bother my doctor. Well after seeing the note on my charts, they called her, although she wasn’t “on call”, and she came rushing in to greet and reminded me that everything was going to be okay.
Side note : to say I love my doctor, is an understatement. She has been a gift to our family from day one, and I am forever grateful for her.
She has been practicing for 30 + years, and this year will be her last.
From there, I called Robert again, and he had found a flight home. He wouldn’t make it back in time, but his voice, his words brought comfort to my soul.
He told me to stay calm, know that everything would be okay, and he would be there shortly.
I love my husband. Its situations like this particular one, revealing just how much he is my rock and security… he is my love, and I am forever grateful for his heart for our family, his desire to provide for us, his ability to be everything we need…
I realize women deliver babies every day without their husbands. However, in my situation, because of my history, I would be lying to say that every delivery, I don’t have to fight the cloud of fear that attempts to come and hover over my mind, constantly reminding me of what once happened. Therefore, having someone, my husband, who has walked the journey of healing with me, always brings that extra comfort.
At the end of the day, sometimes plans change, things happen, but I will say, God is in every detail, and in that I find comfort.
If I could choose any other human being to be in the room with me while I deliver my babies, I would 100% pick my sister, Meshali. To give you insight, she usually goes to Tennessee for at least 10 days, but on this particular trip, decided to come back early. The day she arrived back home, was the day my body led me into labor.
I look over, and she is sitting by my side. Sending out texts to the family, letting every one know the latest update, while also, bringing comforting words, and reminding me God, Emmanuel is with me.
As I lied in the hospital bed, my mind racing 90 to nothing, it hit me.
12 years earlier, it was her and I, same situation.
I was in labor. She was the one by my side.
All felt so familiar, but how would this chapter end?
Robert recently did a sermon, focusing in on the number 12.
12 is the number of Gods power and authority.
This year will make 12 years since Micah’s death.
Due to Remi being my 4th c-section, my doctor told me, this will have to be my last pregnancy, because every time they have cut into my uterus, it has weakened it. Therefore, if I carried another baby, there is a possibility my uterus would be too weak to hold the child, resulting in death for baby and myself.
So going into the hospital this time, I knew it would most likely be my last delivery.
Where am I going with this?
They took me back to surgery, and the process of delivering Remi girl began.
Within that time, Shali leaned over to me, and said “this is so special to me…its like God is bringing every thing full circle… to restore…bringing healing to us…”
As I thought about it, for so long, I carried the weight of Micah’s death… my own pain, not intentionally, almost made me forget that my family had to watch me suffer, and walked through it all as well. Their hearts were broken…they also needed healing.
Of course, tears in our eyes… we both felt the weight of what God was doing.
I cant necessarily prove it with my words, but trust me, HIS presence was there, so evident.
He is Alpha and Omega… the beginning and the end… he gives and he takes away.. He makes known the end from the beginning…
God was at work… proving Himself faithful… showing himself strong, and reminding us both that HE is in every detail.
He writes our stories… in such a way that you cannot deny it is HIM, alone, orchestrating our steps.
Remington Elaine Madu, born at 12:22 am, September 22,2017, 7lbs 14 oz. healthy and whole…
-my perfect angel-
We heard her cry, which is always the sweetest sound in the world. Its as if Heaven kisses Earth, a kiss from God Himself, as a reminder that HE entrusts me to be the mother to another one of HIS children.
Isn’t it a crazy thought? Our children belong to God before they belong to us. So many days I try to keep my hands on every situation, and God reminds me… “Taylor, they belong to me first… I love them more than you do… give them back to me today.”
Therefore, I live in a state of prayer, “ God, today, I give Evie, Nnaj, and Remi back to you.”
They handed Remi to Shali. I saw the joy… I could see the healing… I could feel the peace of God.
He wrapped us in his grace… just as Shali was holding Remi, God was holding her, holding me, the true love of a Father, the love of a Savior.
He works ALL things together for our good, doesn’t he?
God was pouring out himself in ways that we both needed.
Fast forward, Shali received a text from her mentor.
The text read,
‘As I was praying for Remi, I had a strong sense that she would be a prophet to this generation. She carries a strong message of reconciliation and restoration (full circle) things, even from her birth. There is a special touch on her life. There is something special on all 3 , Evie, Nnaj, and Remi, but I felt this specifically over Remi.”
God continuing to unfold the story…
12 years later, my final baby, the year of Gods power and authority, bringing everything full circle.
Robert rushed back, flew through the night and arrived early at 5:00am to greet me and Remi.
Daddy was missed, but he did everything he could, and we are so grateful.
When he walked in the door, all felt right in the world.
Ultimately, my heart behind this post is to remind us all, surrender isn’t a bad thing. Sometimes we find it so hard to simply lay down the things that we feel God is saying to lay down. But ultimately it is for our good.
I chose to lay it all down 12 years ago… and when I did, he not only brought life and healing, but has restored every aspect, and exceeded what I thought I deserved.
He, my friends, is a good good Father.