Eisley’s story

This is the story about our sweet baby girl Eisley Antalya who went to be with Jesus on September 14, 2010. This is the story of her journey and her legacy she’s left behind.

We found out we were 7/8 weeks pregnant with our “surprise baby” on April 26, 2010. We were so very thrilled.

(We documented early on and called her ‘Little Baby D’ until we knew her gender)

At 13 weeks, I began bleeding a lot. They found a blood clot that took up 2/3 of the placenta and the bleeding stopped 5 weeks later.

We felt so much hope as the clot showed signs of “healing”. What we didn’t know then (17 weeks) was that instead of healing, my placenta actually began to fail. We found out two weeks later that Eisley was barely growing due to the placenta failing or a chromosome problem of some kind and I was moved from light bed rest to full bed rest.

 We spent the next months fighting for her life. Each week we saw our OB Doctor or our Fetal Medicine Specialist and each week they told us she was growing less and less and would probably not survice much longer.

But our Eisley-girl kept hanging on.

On August 8th we found out our ‘little baby D’ was our precious Eisley Antalya and began calling her by name!

(At our ‘Pink or Blue’ gender surprise party. I will never, ever forget this day.)

Her name fit her so very perfectly.

“Strong”, “Beautiful” and “Break of day”

You can read more about the meaning behind her name here.

One day after finding out she was a girl, we were told she was even further behind in her growth. We were devestated. The moment we knew she was our daughter, just the day before, we had begun dreaming for her. For what our lives would be like with a little girl, our Eisley. And then we were told even more horrible news…

But that didn’t hold us back; We kept dreaming and she kept hanging on.

On August 23, I was hospitalized for Eisley and so began the hardest part of our journey.

At first they monitored her heart twice daily. As the days past I began to noticed the slight changes in the variability of her heart  and I noticed the nurses growing more and more uncomfortable as they sat with me during monitoring.  After the first week they decided to let me decide when to have her heart monitored because even though they wanted to see what her heart was doing, it wasn’t making her any better (or worse) and the toll it took on me mentally and emotionally wasn’t healthy.

Blogs posted while I was in the hospital;

Hospitalized for Eisley

Thoughts on life, by Ted

A poem

Please pray this over our baby girl

A little bit of hope goes a long, long way

More hopeful news

Frequently asked question

Tomorrow’s {big} appointment

Some good news, mixed news and bad news

He’ll take up the broken cadence

My helpless isn’t hopeless


Still they grow

We heard over and over that our baby girl would probably die and that we were in a race against my failing placenta. We were terrified but we held onto hope and trust.

As much as I held on to the hope that she would be in my arms someday, healthy, I knew that this might also be the only time I got with my daughter. So I made the most of my time with her.

I would spend my days talking with my time with my sweet baby girl and cherishing her every move. First thing every morning, at the “break of day” (even at home) I would lie in bed, hold my belly and wait to feel her move. I would sing ‘you are my sunshine’ to her throughout the day and I wrote her letter after letter telling her of how much we loved her and how proud were of her. I wrote her letters telling her of dreams we had for her being apart of our little family outside the womb; being a daddy’s girl, big brother giving her sloppy kisses, dressing like momma…. When my mind was struggling, I would put in Gilmore Girls and sing her the theme song and watch it “with” her. Every evening we would take a jacuzzi bath and I would sing this over her;

On September 13 we heard news that was music to our ears. Instead of just waiting to see what each day would bring, we were one week away from being able to take actions to help her. Up until 28 weeks and at her size, we were unable to do much but wait. She needed to hang on at least one week more and things would begin to look up little by little. We thought about the possibility that we might even be meeting our Eisley in a week or two and though it was terrifying, we were hopeful that she would survive.

I often think “we were so close”.

On the morning of September 14th, Eisley passed away (I was 7 months pregnant with her). I remember this day so vividly. That morning I woke and could feel her small movements within. I ate breakfast and a few hours later, while chatting with a friend online when I realized she wasn’t moving. She wasn’t a big mover so normally it didn’t bother me so much. But this time, I felt something was wrong. I called my nurse and she brought in the monitor to check on Eisley. (You can read more about that morning here it’s actually hard for me to write it again) My worst fears were confirmed; she was gone.

She now rests between His shoulders.

I was induced and 3 days later, on September 17, 2010 we delivered our beautiful baby girl. The “birth story” is still incredibly hard for me to share or even fathom right now and maybe someday I will be able to share this with you.

But what I can share is that when we held her in our arms for the first time (about 45 minutes after she was born), a peace washed over Ted and I.  She was perfect and actually bigger than they had anticipated! She had a Chase-like nose and beautifully shaped lips. I held her close to me, with her tiny little hand between my fingers.

 Our time with her was too short but Ted and I agreed that any amount of time with her would feel too short, but we are so thankful we were able to hold our precious daughter. It is something we will cherish forevermore.

I shared her journey with you all and was in awe as I kept receiveing comments and messages and texts and calls about how many of you were standing with us and hoping and praying for our Eisley. I was in awe at how many of you have felt like you knew her as we shared about everything here on the blog and how many of you mourned the loss of Eisley as though you knew her personally. Her little life touched many others in her short stay here on earth. She caused people to turn to Him to hope in such a time.

Her legacy will live on in us and we hope to be her voice in the world.

(quote by Angie Smith in ‘I Will Carry You’)

One of the most precious things we have of our Eisley is her tiny little foot imprints they did in the hospital.

Her tiny little imprints have made such a {huge} impact on my heart forevermore.

Because we shared our journey with Eisley with you along the way, I also now share how we are doing currently so I write on here often. Writing is very theraputic for me and Ted and I both  have found your comments with words and prayers encouraging in this time. Thank {You}.

Blogs I’ve posted with how we’re doing now;

(Photo of the balloon release at our service for Eisley)

      You can read all of the

posts I blogged

       while walking through this journey with our sweet Eisley


     or find them under our category ‘Eisley Antalya’. Everything from my first belly picture all the way up to her memorial service and how we are doing currently.

37 thoughts on “Eisley’s story

  1. Chey says:

    The courage you have to write this is incredible. Thank you for sharing this with us. I read it and know it in my heart already, it’s reading a story of my life as this process was one that my heart endured along with you. In a totally different capacity, of course. I believe that we have only begun to see the faithfulness of God through this. The book…the necklace…and I do believe that it’s only the tip of the iceberg :) Bring it, God. I want to see it for Jami and Ted and Chase.


  2. jenny says:

    You are a huge inspiration to me. Your faith in Jesus and relationship with Ted and Chase is beautiful! Keep up the amazing things you are doing. Praying for you! <3


  3. ana smith says:

    you write beautifully, even in pain. you might want to think about publishing this in e-book form. your journey, i’m sure, would help others.


  4. Genie Harris says:

    What an amazing testimony you have…life is so precious and you reminded me of that…thank you…may you find comfort in knowing she will be waiting with open arms for you in a HEAVENLY place one day…rest and don’t grow weary , continue to SHINE for HIM!!


  5. Teresa Whitehead says:

    This is beautifully heartbreaking! I just don’t have words……Isn’t that the best place for us to be though, because when we don’t have words, Christ intercedes for us! God bless you! You have incredible faith from what I can see, which is a challenge to my own! May the Lord be with you and strengthen you each and every single day! My prayers will be with you as you continue on a new path.


  6. Teresa Whitehead says:

    I hope you don’t mind, I shared your story and what it meant to me on my blog….please read it, and if you would like I will remove it. But I want you to know that your daughter and her story has touched me in a way that I will be ever grateful for! It really makes you stop to consider what’s really important in life, and to let go of the petty nonsense!
    The post is here….


  7. Amanda says:

    A beautiful account of your precious daughters journey. You are so brave to be able to put into words everything your family has been through. I can only hope I have the strengh to do the same, my ‘home work’ from my therapist is do an account of my little boys journey, you truely are inspiring.


  8. Mary says:

    Your baby was SO special that God wasn’t ready to let her go. She will be born again and be even better after he has blessed her with more knowledge and joy. Keep praying that one day she will cross your path…and you will recognize her immediately! May God bless you and your husband with other kinds of happiness from that day forward, you deserve this.


  9. pamela says:

    I saw yo on Ucreate and had to pop over and she your site. I started reading your posts and it lead me to this one. My heart goes out to you. I appreciate your testimony of life and where your little girl is now. What a precious gift. Thank you for your words.


  10. Mama2Nicolas says:

    Thank you for sharing your story. I lost my Nicolas, my first child, suddenly and unexpectedly during early labor at 41 weeks due to medical error. I will be celebrating his 5th birthday in a couple weeks. There has not been a day since his birth that I have not thought about him, missed him, or grieved the life he should have had. I wouldn’t say “time heals” the wound, but the grief does get easier to manage. Take care, mama, and be gentle with yourself as you learn to live without your beautiful daughter.


  11. Heather Bell says:

    This is beautiful. What a sweet daughter and so lucky to have a sweet mother give her a body and keep her warm and safe while she was here on earth. My friend recently had a stillborn baby and that has been the hardest time in her life. I am going to send this on to her and maybe she will be able to find some peace through your insights. Thank you for sharing and know that God loves your family and your sweet daughter.


  12. Laura Woolsey says:

    Just wanted to share a couple of things. One your blog is awesome, found it through ucreate, and you should be very proud of it! Secondly we lost our daughter at 29.5 weeks due to an Hib infection inutero. She lived 6 days before being taken off of life support and allowed to go and live in Heaven. Her date of death was 11 years ago yesterday…..a lot has happened in the past 11 years….we have gone on to have another daughter who is a happy healthy and spunky 9 year old to end on a happy note for our family that includes our 18 and 14 year old boys. I wanted to send you a hug of understanding and encouragement. This first year is full of difficult milestones and “what-ifs” that will be hard to face as they each come and go. Knowing that you have God walking beside you, lets me know that you are going to be just fine. Without the awareness that your baby girl is safe and sound and with our Heavenly Father this ordeal would be unbearable. Always hard and painful and wondering why us…..but the tapistry will be shown in time and you will be comforted to know that your experience and enduring faith will help countless others in their grieving.

    Where I am now at 11 years out, is a wistful longing for our daughter…..it isn’t sad anymore….it is just waiting till my time comes that I will join her and we get to reuinite for eternity!

    Hugs and love for you and your sweet family.



  13. Courtney says:

    I came over here from pinterest and read your story. I am so sorry about your beautiful Eisley. I have a 1 year old named Eisley but before she was born I had a baby named Ashlyn who was stillborn at 37 weeks. It was a journey I wish on nobody and I am sorry you went on that journey also. I miss my sweet Ashlyn everyday but I know she is here watching over me and she has truly changed the person I am today.


    • colourherhope says:

      WHOA. I can’t even believe it! I’ve only heard of one other baby besides my Eisley named Eisley! Whoa! And you’ve walked this path before me… i just can’t even believe it. Thank you for stopping in and writing me. Thank you so much.


  14. mamasdance says:

    just looked through these pictures…can’t help but cry. my heart aches for you guys. i just can’t imagine. words are so inadequate- but i know you two hold so much love for your babies and for eachother. love the photo of you two at eisley’s shower. praying God continues to put his arms around you as you walk this difficult journey. I know he has heard your hearts cry to point others to Him as you share your journey.


  15. asli gelis says:

    ı read your story in tears and ı wish patience for you from God and also health for your family.. I believe now Eisley is an angel in heaven and watching you from the sky..


  16. rjweckbacher says:

    Thank you so much for sharing this. I don’t know you, but your testimony has made the exact impact that I desperately needed today.
    In life, we go through so many struggles and pains, but the assurance that Jesus is always there to hold us in those trials is something I never tire of hearing. I mourn the loss of your beautiful baby girl, but praise God for the obvious strength He gave you to share. Your testimony, and Eisley’s, is doing so much good.
    Thank you.


  17. Cherszy says:

    Life wouldn’t be life without pain, suffering, and eventually loss. It is in knowing how to let go of that pain and letting love and hope fill in its place that we can truly give a lost one its peace. We remember their existence and their memories, but we must not dwell on sadness and pain. I’m sure that is not what they have wanted us to feel when they departed. I am glad to know that instead of wallowing on tears, you have resorted to sharing such a heartwarming story to everyone out here. It is an inspiring one! I admire the courage you and Ted have had for Eisley during such a hard time. I’m sure wherever she is right now, she is very proud of you two.

    Eisley’s story reminded me of someone who I loved very dearly and who passed away when I was only 6 years old. It was a moment in my life where I was shattered, but few years later, I realized that I had to let go of the negative feelings while preserving her memory in my heart. I know she is up there, watching me as she sits beside God. :)


  18. Schweiger Szilvia says:

    I also lost a child but It was like out of the blue because I didn’t have any problem during my pregnancy…I was told I had a toxemia and its signs were simply not recognized by the doctor…it was a major failure…I was devastated and I am sure after the tragedy I went through some breakdown but because I was in the university I couldn’t let out my pain…
    luckily I have two healthy daughters since…but when July 28 is coming I always pray for my beautiful Daniela…


  19. S-A says:

    HI dear friend, don’t know why i was brought to your blog. I just want to say that I admire your strength, courage and faith. i love you.


  20. catherine333 says:

    I saw your mustache and bows post on Freshly pressed. I like it a lot. Congratulations on making freshly pressed :). I was really interested in your blog. I am now 24 weeks pregnant. It was a surprise pregnancy and I am so grateful for the miracle. I am in a risky age group as I am older. But up to now am getting excellent medical care and things are going well.

    I just read “Eisley’s Story” and several of the links attached. I must admit I am still crying. I find you incredibly strong. I am in awe of your courage and faith and hope.

    I wanted to thank you for sharing this with the rest of us. I am deeply touched by this and I strongly intend to continue visiting your blog.

    Blessing on you and your family and on your beautiful Eisley.


  21. Kathryn says:

    I found you blog though Ohdeedoh. What amazing strength and courage you have. I, too, lost a child, our baby son, last year. We recently welcomed his little brother. I wish you the best of luck and the warmest of wishes for your new little one, I am sure Eisley will be watching over.

    I have read several of your posts and I love your style and outlook on life. I will be subscribing. :)


  22. grizelbello says:

    This story put me to tears, god bless you and your family. You are a very strong woman, and I can only imagine how difficult all of this was for you.


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  24. Vanessa says:

    My love and prayers are with u 3! My hubby and I have lost 3 babies and have found how rare it is to find someone so honest and willing to share their story as u are. So, thank you! so much healing comes from.sharing and also hearing others share. Blessing upon blessings to u!


  25. Holli says:

    Oh my goodness. I just read your baby Eisley’s Story, and I’m still crying. Thank you for sharing your story and inspiring others to find hope in life’s scariest moments. I cannot wait for the day when you finally get to be with Eisley again in heaven, and rejoice in God together forever!

    I know you have probably heard of it, but one book I found absolutely amazing was “Heaven is for Real”. If you haven’t read it, you might really enjoy the chapter where the child that went to heaven tells his parents all about his big sister – the child that his parents lost during pregnancy. The descriptions are amazing.

    Thank you so much again for sharing your life with us. You reminded me that every single moment is precious and that the most important thing is to help spread the Word of God!! Bless you and your family, you wonderful brave sweet soul. <3


  26. Tiffany says:

    This made me cry. I saw repins from you on my Pinterest and found you!! **tears** you are so strong!! Thank you for sharing this beautiful part of you with me. Sorry for your heart and bless you and your family! xoxo


  27. angie says:

    i have never read anything more beautiful…The courage and strength you have…Your daughter would be soo proud to know the love and thoughts you have for her…She is resting in paradise, and one day you will get to be with her again… =)


  28. Anita Nicole says:

    Thank you for sharing this story, as a mum to be currently going through the devastating diagnosis of IUGR I can identify with many of your thoughts and feelings, we keep hoping and praying and loving our dear little ones always. They are always with us.


    • colourherhope says:

      I am so sorry you are walking through such a difficult pregnancy. I truly hope and pray for the BEST for you and your sweet baby! I know right now you probably feel so overwhelmed and helpless, I am praying for you.


  29. suzanneprak2013 says:

    Thank you so much for sharing. My son, Andrew (17 yrs old) died on September 14, 2008. As we approach the 5th anniversary of his death I decided to start a blogging our story and have been so blessed by the stories I have found. Blessings to your and your family. Suzanne


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