How almost losing my newborn daughter helped kick fear out of my life.
Hello to all the beautiful people reading this post. I pray this finds you filled you with life and hope. I’ll quickly introduce myself since you’ll be hearing a lot more from me.
My name is Jordanna Hale. I’ve been married for over four years. Five months ago I gave birth to a beautiful baby girl named Egypt, the love of our lives, who actually gives us new purpose in life and and even deepens our marriage. Her presence has changed our lives.
I will share the unique experiences that my husband and I have gone through in order to help paint a clear picture of Father-God’s unfailing love. My goal is to point you to God and to attest to the fact that no matter what… Jesus is who He says He is!
After having what I believed to be a very God-ordained labor and delivery experience, surrounded by my mama, husband, sister and dear friend, I was able to give birth to a strong and healthy baby girl named Egypt.
I had planned an at-home-birth and hoped to follow through with one. By the grace of God I was able to do my entire labor process at home. A process for which I am forever grateful.
Just before I started to push, my water broke and my baby’s response to this was to poo. This can become dangerous If the baby isn’t delivered within a certain time period because the meconium can get into the baby’s lungs and cause harm! So I was rushed to the hospital.
Once in, I was required to push my baby out within a certain time frame to make sure that her lungs were safe. I had two nurses standing off in the background waiting to hear the baby’s cry to ensure healthy lungs. As soon as Egypt arrived on the scene, she gave a quick but powerful cry and the nurses left immediately knowing that her lungs were strong and uninhibited.
The Pain of Inexperience!
After I gave birth and all of the standard tests were given, the midwives discovered that I was losing a lot of blood. So taking safety precautions, the hospital kept us overnight to monitor both the baby and myself.
At this point I had never interacted with a baby as young as Egypt, so I didn’t know how to change a diaper or even swaddle her. With all of the Covid restrictions, everything had closed down before we could take classes and I naively trusted that I would be taught and supported by my midwife.
Unfortunately the midwife that assisted me in my birthing process was on her 24th hour of delivering babies and was rightfully exhausted. She advised me to use the washroom and then took off.
With no experience as to what a newborn baby should be like, in color and in sound, I ignorantly sat holding my baby for an hour while she slowly choked on mucus.
Apparently the midwife assumed that the nurse would take care of me and show me the ropes, as well as tell me simple things like, “If your baby foams at the mouth, make sure to pat her”. Unfortunately that was not the case and I was sorely overlooked. While the midwife had left, trusting me to the nurse, the nurse assumed that I was already taken care of by the midwife.
I was also left to use the washroom without any assistance, which was the first mistake. I was left to figure out how to navigate this seemingly simple task that now seemed impossible. Especially because of how tender my body was and how much I bled afterwards from hemorrhaging.
Simple pleasures like a “peri- bottle” and pads were not offered to me and so my experience in the washroom was one of trauma. It’s actually what I believed caused my motherly instincts to be dulled.
After using the washroom and being in a low, fixed position for so long, I passed out from loss of blood.
I used ALL of my strength to help myself get off of the floor. Everything around me was spinning at a rapid pace and at one point while basically eating the bathroom sink-bowl with my face my tongue felt heavy enough to swallow.
After what felt like hours (but was only about 10 minutes), I mustered enough strength to make it to my hospital bed where my husband had been sleeping with Egypt bundled up on his chest. What I didn’t realize was that Egypt had been breathing shallowly.
Time Stood Still!
I believe now, looking back, that the state that I was in and the exhaustion of my husband was what caused a lot of our judgement to be compromised.
I was holding my baby shortly after getting into the bed when I noticed that she looked grey. But again, with never having had firsthand experience with a newborn, I didn’t have any way to gauge her color.
It was an hour before a nurse came into the room to check on us and by the time she came over, Egypt was struggling to say the least.
I was startled to see the nurse abruptly flip my baby onto her stomach and aggressively perform the Heimlich maneuver. I’ll actually never forget that moment. The nurse said to me without skipping a beat, “I’m sorry I seem so aggressive but your baby has been slowly choking on phlegm for some time now. As you can probably see, her breathing is shallow and she’s turned grey”. Before I could respond, the nurse rushed out of the room with the baby to perform, what I found out later, was CPR.
The nurse was gone for twenty minutes. The LONGEST twenty minutes of my life.
Time really did seem to stand still for me. I’ll never forget that feeling. I was gut rocked. I began feeling a heavy sensation in my chest to the point where it felt like I was having a heart attack. I opened my mouth to cry and it was so dry that I couldn’t make a sound. Adrenaline kicked in and I felt like the entire room was spinning!
I was having a panic attack!
In that unforgettable moment I had to make a decision. I knew if I gave in to this fear I wouldn’t be able to come back from it in a sound mental way.
It was decision time! Was I going to submit to the fear of potentially losing one of the best things that had ever happened to me or was I going to engage with what I knew Father-God had spoken over my baby.
It was the toughest decision I ever had to make. I knew I was at a crossroads and that I had to make it. I had to make it based on not knowing what the end result would be. I had to engage in a level of Trust-In-The-Lord that I had never needed to engage in before. My faith was being put to the test in a way that could have left me heartbroken…
In that moment, I chose to submit my fear to God and then submit my daughter to Him as well.
I don’t understand life and death and the complexities of it but it felt right for me in that moment to let go of all of my confusion about it…to allow my spirit to stand still and be attentive in order to find an inner calm that could help me navigate this situation. I knew in that moment that I had to be all in or all out.
The situation was extreme enough to demand an extreme and immediate response from me. I was in my default-survival-mode and because I had exercised my faith-muscles before, in this moment of uncertainty it felt familiar to engage them again. It was more natural to lean on Father-God than not to.
Then, God began to remind me of the promises that He had for my children;
Psalm 139 vs 10-16
“Even there Your hand shall lead me,
And Your right hand shall hold me.
If I say, “Surely the darkness shall fall on me,”
Even the night shall be light about me;
Indeed, the darkness shall not hide from You,
But the night shines as the day;
The darkness and the light are both alike to You.
For You formed my inward parts;
You covered me in my mother’s womb.
I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
Marvelous are Your works,
And that my soul knows very well.
My frame was not hidden from You,
When I was made in secret,
And skillfully wrought in the lowest parts of the earth.
Your eyes saw my substance, being yet unformed.
And in Your book they all were written,
The days fashioned for me,
When as yet there were none of them.”
Then a Miracle Happened.
This passage meant that Father-God was still my baby’s creator whether or not she was alive on this earth. It meant that I could hold onto a promise that was established long before either I or my baby was ever created. It meant that there was a vast plan at work and I didn’t have to be afraid. It meant that I could let go of a crippling fear of loss and hold on to the understanding that I was a mother, no matter what happened in that hospital, and that fear and death could not take away my God-given-destiny to be a mother.
My husband and I held each other and cried. I had to wrestle with the idea that IF my baby was going to die she would go right back to Jesus and that I would have to keep living….I had to settle it in my heart that I had no control.
Then a miracle happened and my baby was brought back to me and placed into my arms.
Again, time stood still for me. Except this time It was just me and my baby and in my mind, in that moment, I saw us sitting on a beach facing the water. It seemed like I could actually hear the ocean waves crashing and the wind blowing. My heart stopped beating fast and I could hear myself breathing deeply and slowly.
I looked into Egypt’s eyes and connected with her on a level that left me feeling so insignificant. Her understanding of life in that engagement seemed so profound that in that moment there was no denying the greatness of God, let alone the fact that she just came from being with Him. There was so much depth to her gaze that I knew Egypt wanted to live and was going to. She was communicating with me heart-to-heart.
It was in that locked-in-moment that I began to realize, the significance and magnitude of Father-God’s Love.
My love for my daughter actually made my heart skip for joy and yet at the same time feel weighed down by this huge sense of responsibility. I am not worthy of such an undertaking and yet God has gifted me a piece of Heaven!
I began to sense the GREATNESS of God and I felt very small, especially in comparison to the CREATOR of LIFE and the WORLD. This Perspective switch was like a chiropractic adjustment. I felt like my life had these disconnected pieces, some faith filled and others fear based and it was like the two were morphing into one, creating a balance. I felt as though my life was ebbing and flowing back into a Faith-filled frequency that re-aligned me back into living in my original God design. It was tectonic!
I believe the awareness of how small I was was a pathway into understanding Father-God’s righteousness. In that, how can there be any FEAR?!
The oceanic love that I had for my little human definitely paralleled the vastness of Father-God’s. I felt Papa place his arms around me, with my arms around Egypt, and caught a glimpse of a love so profound that it was too deep for words and yet too loud to be ignored!
This love-revelation was clear enough for my heart to understand and invisible enough for it to be transmitted seamlessly from-me-to-my daughter: My heart manifested into the bundle of Love and Joy in my arms!
Love Truly Does Conquer ALL.
I was now sure about one thing—-No matter what, baby Egypt would always be in good company. So I tucked my fears away, connected back to that hospital trauma, blessed the moment, invited Papa in, thanked Him and blessed my daughter’s Spirit to know that she will never be alone or have to fear death or separation.
Once back home, the first morning, exhausted from 2-3 days of no sleep, my husband and I awakened and frantically looked for Egypt. In our tired state we thought she was wrapped in the blankets, suffocated on our bed. We woke up crying and frantically looking for her. In our exhausted state we forgot that my mama took her to the spare bedroom to look after her at night so we could sleep. So Egypt was safe and well cared for.
I’m learning that Fear may be a thorn but it doesn’t have to prick if I don’t let it. It’s a spirit that we have to continually rebuke. As the Bible says “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, love and a sound mind.” 2 Timothy 1:7
As we continue to navigate this life with our precious gift, we are learning that the more we trust in our Abba Father to keep our baby alive and well, the more we are free to let go of the worldly burden of sole responsibility for her existence. God is LIFE.
I think human existence and longevity alone is miraculous and it actually proves that Father-God loves and cares for us. Our existence on this earth is quite profound.
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