in the days following

Many people have asked the question...How are you doing?  I truthfully don't even know how to fully answer that question.  I feel like it would take too long to actually break it down for people how we're really doing.  I don't mind answering, but I never feel like I've said enough.  It sort of comes out as all or nothing.  So I decided to try and figure it out this way in hopes that you'll see how our family is handling all that's happened.
We are taking things day by day, which I'm pretty sure is how we've tried to do everything when it came to Molly.  There are days when we are great and can talk about the joy she brought to us, and even the hard times we dealt with.  Then, of course there are days when we (or I) have a more difficult time dealing with that empty feeling that loss can't help but carry with it.  I have broken down at the most random times, because of something someone said or a picture that came to mind.  It's nobody's fault, because I absolutely love talking about her and hearing others talk about her.  It's just one of those things that you never really understand, and it will come at a time when you're least expecting it.  I've had a hard time putting together the blog of the service just because it's so much.  I was reading all the notes the nurses wrote about her, and it breaks my heart because they truly do have the most accurate words to describe who Molly was.  I was trying to download some of the slideshows and that was also more than I could handle at one point.  I just miss her.  We all just miss her.  I have been amazed at how many people were affected by the life of Molly Ann Hovis, and it has made me so incredibly proud.  
Brad and I talk about her often, and about how widespread the story of her life goes.  It's such a bittersweet thing for us.  Nobody can ever prepare you for the pain that comes with the loss of a child.  We always knew it was a possibility, and from the beginning didn't know if we'd get any time at all with her.  I guess that's where the sweet part of it comes in...we got that time with her.  We were able to spend 85 days loving on her, and we feel so incredibly blessed to have had that.  Even though it hurts because she's not here, it's a wonderful thing that God has done to give us as much peace as we've had.  Through our entire journey with her, that's how it was.  I never doubted that God was doing what was right by our family or Molly.  I continue to think that.  He took her because it was right for Molly.  I don't think many people actually got to see the things she had to go through, but it was difficult as a mom to watch her baby have to suffer through.  She did it well though...another reason I was so proud of her.
So, we continue to grieve, but it has come with different faces.  There are days when it's a sad or painful memory, and there are days when it's a happy laugh out loud memory.  It all hurts, but in different ways.  Owen has truly been the most amazing thing God gave us to get us through this.  He makes me happy all over, and I truly can't love on him or kiss him enough.  He is going to have to get used to his mommy being in his face for a while, because he has been so good for my spirits.  Brad has always been strong.  From the day we found out about Molly's disease, he held on to the trust in God he's always had.  It's one of the reasons I was able to make it through this okay.  
I will just say one more thing...if you don't know about the the kind of peace I talk about, then I pray for you even as I write this that you know it one day.  It can ONLY come from God, because he truly is the One who has brought us through all of this.  I would be more than happy to talk to you about where you can get it, because it's a supernatural God thing and I continue to get up every day with joy in my life because of it.  All that said, just to tell you that we're okay.  We're making it, and we're so so grateful for your prayers throughout.  God has heard your cries for our family, and has responded in a way that has made it okay for us to live our lives with the sweet memory of our precious Molly.  I promise to get the service blog up as soon as I can.  Keep checking back.  Love you all.      


still going

I will be posting stuff from Molly's service for those who couldn't be there. It's been one of those things that I haven't had a chance to do, but would really like to. Thanks for keeping up with us and know that we love and appreciate your continued prayers. Talk soon...


goodbye baby

I have no words that can fully explain the depth of my sorrow. I will do my best, but I truly have no desire to write about the death of my little girl. She went into surgery last night and never made it out. I can honestly say that I was not expecting this outcome. Call me naive, call me whatever you want but I thought this was her shot at having a full and healthy life. From the beginning God had different plans for my precious Molly, and I know that He did not take her away in order to hurt me. He is faithful and he has been so gracious to us. We were able to have almost 3 months with her, when there were people who told us we would get no time at all. Although her days were numbered and few, I have to realize that so are mine. This is not home for us, and I am continually reminding myself that Molly is home. She is with a daddy who has given her a brand new body. There are no more tubes and no more surgeries in heaven, just the healing hands of our loving Savior.
We had a perfect day with her yesterday before she left us, and I have no one to thank but God for that time. We thought she would be rushed into surgery as soon as we got there, and he granted us 5-6 hours alone with her. I will never forget those moments I had snuggling with her, kissing her precious face, talking with her, and watching her watch me. She had just recently started making noises and smiling, and I am so blessed to have heard that sweet sweet sound and to see those tiny lips curl up at her mommy. I weep as I write this because my heart has been broken. I have lost a piece of myself with the loss of my baby. I have never felt pain like I feel right now, and I know that the peace of God is the only thing that can ever make it go away. Little Miss Molly was a gift straight from the hands of our Maker, and while she was here she turned my life upside down. I would have done anything it took to get her home and to see her get well. I was ready, but instead God took her pain away and made it so that she didn't have to just survive. She gets to LIVE and to DANCE and BE FREE of the cords that entangled her here. I always thought she looked like my PaPa, and today I imagine him holding her in his arms and stealing all her smiles and sounds. I miss her and don't exactly know what to do without her. I am praising God for the blessing she was not only to me and our family, but to people who didn't even know her. That's amazing to me. We will move forward but not without the wonderful memories of our baby Molly. I cry because this sweet girl is no longer with me, and at the same time rejoice because who better for her to be with than Jesus! Brad has been such a great husband and rock to lean on. He is helping me to see just how much grace we were given. Owen is refreshing and has been able to make me smile in the midst of all my tears. My parents and Brad's parents have been such a support and have truly been an example of what sacrificial love is. We also have some pretty incredible family and friends who have done nothing but serve as an encouragement to us throughout the entire span of Molly's life and now through her death. We are extremely blessed. My little girl was a miracle.

Thank you so much for your prayers. We love and appreciate you all. We will be celebrating her life on Friday at 4:00pm. It will be held at the Tivoli downtown in the room - Turnhalle. Anybody is welcome to come. I would love to hear how she touched your life. We've also had many people as how they can help and the Colorado Baptist General Convention has set up a fund for Molly to help offset medical bills and funeral expenses. If that's something that you feel led to do, then you can donate through mail or online. The address for the CBGC is 7393 South Alton Way Centennial, CO 80112-2302 Phone: 303-771-2480 or go to http://www.saturatecolorado.com/ and the e-give button is at the bottom right hand side of the page. If this isn't something you feel led to do, then please know that we are so incredibly grateful for your prayer support.


time for transplant

So, in the middle of the night we got the call from Omaha. There was a possibility that there would be organs available, so we needed to get to the hospital ASAP. As ready as I thought I would be for that call, I never imagined that it would come a week and a half after she was listed. So I got started packing, and I can't even explain all the different emotions I felt. I know that she needs this to save her life, but it could also be the very thing that takes her life. I kept telling Brad that I wasn't ready and didn't think I'd be able to do this. We prayed and he was finally able to uncurl me and convince me that we had no other choice. Once we got to the hospital they had to make sure she was free of any infection, and they gave us the go ahead. It didn't take long at all to get from the hospital in Denver to the hospital in Omaha. When we got here, we had some good time to spend holding her while we waited for the organs to get here.
Molly is in surgery right now, it will take about 8 hours for the entire transplant (pancreas, liver, and small bowel). One of the hardest things I've ever had to do was hand my daughter to a nurse I didn't know who was going to take her to a place that nobody can promise she'll make it out of. It feels so selfish to want to hold on to her and never let anybody take her away from me, even if I know it's for her own good. That's my baby and I hate that I can't protect her from all the scary things she's going to experience. She's too little to know what's going on, but I'm not. I know the risks involved, and it's not an easy thing making the decision to place your child in a position like this. The only comfort we have right now, is knowing that God is in control. There are things that have taken place so far that have completely amazed me. I stand in awe at how
Sovereign our Lord is, and will always give Him glory for the things we've been able to walk through. I don't know how this is all going to turn out, but I will continue to praise Him for the life that was taken so that my little girl could have an opportunity at really living. I will be forever grateful to the family who gave us something as precious as this. What a miracle that they can even do something like this.
I will do my best to keep everyone updated. I will be here for about 6 months with Molly for rehab after all this is over, and I'll continue to let you know how she's doing. Please pray that she makes it out of surgery okay, stays infection free, and that her body doesn't reject the organs. We love and appreciate you all. Thank you for standing by us in this, and for being a constant support and encouragement.