Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Remembering Andrew

One year ago today I gave birth to our son Andrew, who had passed away after just 19 weeks in the womb. The past few days I have been reflecting over all that has happened this past year. I wanted to share Andrew’s story and how he has changed my life. We have wanted a second child for as long as I can remember. When Ryne was 15 months old we got pregnant and lost that baby a few weeks later. We kept trying to get pregnant again, and after a year (and 3 rounds of fertility treatments) we got pregnant with Andrew in the fall of 2010. We were thrilled to get pregnant again and so excited that Ryne would finally have a sibling. Everything looked great for the first 3-4 months. At 16 ½ weeks I went in for an ultrasound, and my whole world turned upside down. We found out that our baby had a condition that he would not survive, and we would lose him soon. Two weeks later he was gone. After 19 weeks of being pregnant, I had to give birth to my son that I wanted so badly to keep. The day was filled with tears, sorrow, and joy, but we felt the peace of God with us and knew that Andrew was in a better place. The prayers from our family, friends, and amazing church were felt in such a powerful way that day.

A few days later we had a small memorial service with our families and our pastor Mark and his wife Sarah. I wanted to share some words that Mark said that meant so much to us:

“Today we grieve over the loss of your child:
□ whose eyes you never saw □ whose ears only knew sound from your womb, Krista □ whose lips could not speak □ whose smile you could not see
But I want you to imagine this in your minds: When Andrew opened his eyes for the first time, he saw the glory of God. When his ears heard outside of the womb for the first time, he heard angels rejoicing. When his lips opened for the first time, they sang out in praise to God. And the first person to ever see that little face smile was Jesus. His bearded face broke into a smile, His eyes brightened, and He said, “I know that face! This is Andrew Elias Hilgendorf.”

How incredible is that! When I think of heaven now, I imagine walking around holding the hand of my little boy who has only known happiness and the joy of living with Jesus. No tears, no hurt, and no sorrow! Amen!

Yesterday I went through my “Andrew Box” because I wanted to remember him. I looked at the few pictures that we have, held his blanket, and read every note, card, and email that our dear friends and family sent us. I was again overwhelmed with gratitude for all of the people that we had loving us and praying for us. Their words meant so much then and now.

I am a different person now than I was a year ago, and I am so thankful. I am closer to God now than I have ever been. In my sadness I clung to Him, His word, and His promises. I have spent so much time in prayer, in the word, and surrounding myself with Christian music. These are the things I know: I know that God loves me. I know that God has a plan for my family. I know that Andrew is in heaven and is held in Jesus’ arms. I know that God is my strength, comfort, peace, shelter, joy, and rock. There are so many Bible verses and songs that have brought me through this year; more than I can share here. I would love to share them with anyone who is interested, along with some great books that I have read.

Through all of this I have wanted to use Andrew’s story to help others. We have already had the opportunity to share our situation with several couples that are in similar situations. Helping others gives some purpose to our pain. We are still waiting to see what God has planned for our family, but I am so content now with all that I have. No matter what life brings we will continue to lean on God and each other and we are excited for the journey ahead!


Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4)

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Ryne's 3rd Birthday

A few weeks ago we celebrated Ryne's 3rd birthday with a Disney Cars party. The kids made foam license plates for a craft. We had car races around our backyard with cardboard box race cars. The kids were able to do pit stops for gas and to fix their tires. Aunt Emily decorated Ryne's birthday cake (again) and it was awesome! After cake we had a Lightning McQueen pinata. After the guests left, Ryne got his big present from all of his grandparents...a Power Wheels jeep! Check out the videos and pictures below.

From Ryne's 3rd Birthday

From Ryne's 3rd Birthday
From Ryne's 3rd Birthday
Kyle and I got Ryne a new bike, but he is afraid to ride it.
From Ryne's 3rd Birthday
Happy Birthday my sweet Ryne!
From Ryne's 3rd Birthday

Monday, January 17, 2011

Future Drummer?

We were in the student room at our church yesterday and Ryne seemed really interested in the drum set. What do you think?

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Christmas 2010

Merry Christmas to all our wonderful friends and family! While Krista and I have received some really awful news in the past few days, we have thoroughly enjoyed spending quality time with Ryne and family. Below is a video montage of the last several days and some great pictures. Enjoy!

Santa @ the Children's Museum!

Ryne and Gma P made an awesome gingerbread train!

Ryne @ Gpa & Gma's church service, listening to the kid's message

Christmas Eve with dad!

Train table!

Buzz & Woody Christmas morning! Thanks Santa!

Tools from Gpa and Gma P! AWESOME!

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Ryne's preschool Christmas program

Ryne has been in a 2-year old preschool class at our church this year. He absolutely loves it and we have seen some amazing growth in him this year just by attending a few hours a week. Today the preschool put on their Christmas program. This meant that Ryne and his class got to sing a song in front of all the parents. Here is that performance. We were so proud of him today. The stellar camera work was done by Krista today in case anyone was wondering! ;)


Thursday, November 11, 2010

Picture catch-up

As promised, here are some pictures from this summer and fall to catch-up. If you haven't seen the post below, there is more text and videos. You can click on the slideshow if you want to see the pictures in larger quality.

We're back...at least for now

Has it really been since June since we last posted? Yikes. We've been a bit busy, but no excuse for ceasing to share with all of you. Since June, we were living with Kyle's parents while our new home was being finished. Ryne started PreSchool two days a week at our church. We closed on our house in early September and it is hard to believe that it's been 2 months in our new house. It feels like home although we still have a lot of boxes in corners and decorating we'd like to get to. We're pacing ourselves.

Kyle has been traveling quite a bit lately. Since our last post he has been to San Diego, San Francisco, Dallas, Palo Alto and will be in Orlando and San Jose shortly. His job is quite busy and challenging but he is very much enjoying it. Krista is still loving being a stay at home mom and every day with Ryne is fun and challenging.

Ryne has become our little man. He is so grown up. His vocabulary is fantastic and he is 100% boy. Running everywhere and trying to throw everything. Dad is so proud! Here are some videos from the last few months. We'll get a post with fun pictures soon.

Ryne loved jumping into the lake this summer

Ryne performing some clumsy rolling in Clara's hospital room.

Ryne running through a maze over and over at a pumpkin patch

Ryne in a bounce house at Oktoberfest

Ryne loves playgrounds and it quite coordinated at the slide dismount

Everyday is a new adventure for Ryne