The Delzell Family
Saturday, January 12, 2019
We are incredibly blessed to have identical twin daughters, McKinna and Mariah. We also nearly lost them to a disease called Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome (TTTS). Our doctor put us on an airplane to Houston, TX with only a few hours notice so we could get to a specialized facility for emergency surgery. Their odds were rather grim as our case of TTTS progressed rapidly and it’s very likely that had we waited another day we would have lost at least one of them. McKinna and Mariah are healthy 2 and a half year olds now and truly are our miracle girls. They pray for their baby brother Troy almost every day and express so much affection for him.
Naturally, when Alicia became pregnant with Troy our primary concern was if the TTTS from the prior pregnancy could have any impact on this one. We were told at our second ultrasound that everything looked great and that we would be as low risk as pregnancies go. That was a huge relief to us! I think it was the very next ultrasound that showed the first sign of potential problems. Our worst fears were realized on 11/19 (at 24 weeks) when we went in for an ultrasound to find that there wasn’t a heartbeat. I think the doctors were expecting Troy to make it much closer to his due date of March 12 before ultimately passing, so this came much sooner than we were prepared for.
Two high-risk pregnancies have taken their toll on our family, but we are incredibly blessed and thankful for all of the support we have received through both ordeals and are comforted by the fact that Troy woke up in the arms of Jesus and will never know the troubles that life on Earth brings.
Wednesday, January 16, 2019
*Note from Emilia’s Wings: Grace’s adventures continue! Prior to sending Grace off on her first ‘bon voyage’, we told Grace to enjoy Nebraska (our home state) and mentioned on Facebook for her to enjoy “a Runza (or two, or three) for us”. The Delzells took note and made it their personal mission to make sure Grace was able to experience this midwest gem of a restaurant. For those who have no clue what Runza is… Runza is a fast food chain that began in Lincoln, NE. Their signature sandwich, “The Runza”, is fresh-baked bread stuffed with ground beef, onions, a secret blend of spices, and cabbage. Jared messaged us: “I did find the Facebook page for Emilia’s Wings and saw your wish… Coincidentally, we happen to live about 2 minutes away from a Runza restaurant and I will personally ensure Grace gets her chance.” Here are photos of Grace visiting Runza for the very first time. I think she looks excited, what about you?
The Delzells tell us, “In addition to the pictures from Runza I also included a picture of Grace next to the urn that holds Troy’s remains. She’s been spending each night right next to him.” These are the kind of sleepovers Grace looks forward to!
To learn a bit more about The Delzells check out the following links for an inside story on their journey to parenthood with background info on the birth of their twin daughters:
April 4, 2019
Since our last update in January, we have both been taking baby steps in our healing as we process losing our son, Troy. Jared and I individually have been part of groups at our church through the ministry Fresh Start to give us some guidance as we thoroughly acknowledge and work through all our thoughts, emotions, and responses to our loss. It has been very painful and yet also freeing to open up with men and women we trust. For the first couple months after Troy’s death, I felt so overwhelmed; anytime I tried to face my grief/inner thoughts/read a devotional I received for loss… I felt so exhausted that I could barely make it through the rest of the day doing normal life. So it seemed I had the choice to either face my grief or parent our daughters; there was no middle ground. However, a close friend (who has been through extensive losses of her own) and I decided to book an Air BnB house in town to give ourselves a breather from mom life and to intentionally take time to do our journaling for the group I mentioned. I’m so thankful we did that so I could finally start to process and deal with what was going on inside me. Among MANY thoughts and emotions, I was feeling tremendous guilt and feeling like an unloving mother simply because my primary response to our loss has been RELIEF: relieved of my fear of not being able to handle a newborn in addition to twin toddlers, relieved of the physical/mental/emotional strain of pregnancy, and relieved of waiting/wondering how things would end up knowing the possibility of stillbirth or neurological/vascular issues for Troy. I felt like I couldn’t relate to most mothers of loss who seemed (understandably) utterly devastated by their losses. Don’t get me wrong, I have had my moments of devastation too. Holding our son immediately after delivering him was the rawest moment of my life, uncontrollably wailing in front of strangers. I wanted to share that so if there are other mothers of loss who have felt this way, they won’t feel so alone like I did before I was willing to open up about it with other moms (which led me to find out I’m not the only one who has experienced those feelings).
All that said, March 12 was Troy’s due date, and we wanted to do a little something to honor him that day. Jared took the day off of work and we went to a landscaping nursery to start the decision process of what tree to have planted by Jared’s incredibly generous co-workers. We shared a family lunch with Grace at Chipotle, and we put up some photos and mementos of Troy in our home. It was a bittersweet day.
Grace also got to be part of another special day in our family – Faithfulness Day, as we call it. On (or around) March 25th, we take the day with the 4 of our parents to remember and celebrate God’s faithfulness when He graciously spared our daughters’ lives through wonderful surgeons in Houston, TX. It brought questions to the forefront of my mind, like “Why did God choose to intervene with McKinna and Mariah, but not Troy?” We may not have the answers to questions like that, but our hearts and minds are still grounded in the unshakeable truth that God is love and He is in control.