My Precious Memories of Hannah Marie
By Rebecca Kemper, Hannah’s Mommy 
My darling angel, I have precious memories of you.

In November, I had been having symptoms of being pregnant and your Daddy was with me when I used a home pregnancy test and it was positive!

In December, the doctor verified I was pregnant. My due date was to be July 15. At Christmas, we told family and friends about the good news and they were so happy and excited for us.

In January, the doctor used the Doppler and Daddy held my hand as we heard your heartbeat for the first time. I cried tears of joy and my love for you grew.

In February, the doctor prescribed medicine for me because I had a bad cold. We recovered very well.

In March, Daddy held my hand and I had tears in my eyes when the technician performed an ultrasound. I felt so close to you and my bond with you grew even stronger. The technician said you were developing well. We found out you were to be a baby girl and your due date was to be July 21. We bought you some baby clothes.

At an appointment in April, the doctor wondered why I hadn’t felt you move and that night at the movies. I realized I felt you kick for the first time. I loved the feeling of you moving and kicking and you were a very active baby. Later that month, Daddy and I flew to Hawaii and celebrated our tenth wedding anniversary. It was a dream vacation and we had a great time. I think you loved snorkeling as much as I did. I did have to go see a doctor because I got sick and I had to go on a clear liquid diet for a few days, but you and I were fine. I bought you a darling dress.

In May, you continued to actively kick and move and grow inside of me. Daddy and I started childbirth preparation classes. Everything was going well for both of us.

In June, Daddy and I finished the childbirth preparation classes. We also took a breastfeeding class. We were actively preparing for your birth.

Then, the unthinkable happened and I didn’t feel you move for two days. Daddy and I were both alarmed and both suspected you had died and yet, we had hope and denial that you had not. Hannah, you and I were doing so well. How could you have died?

On June 27, Daddy held my hand when the doctor couldn’t find your heartbeat with the Doppler. Our fears and suspicions were confirmed and tears flowed with the shocking news. At the hospital, a lady prayed for us and asked God for a miracle. I wanted a miracle and bargained and prayed for one.

An ultrasound was performed and the picture was still and you did not move. The doctor stated that you had been gone for at least 24 hours. More tears flowed as we realized you had died along with our hopes and dreams for you.

On July 1, 1997, you entered quietly into the world. You were 37 weeks and 6 days along, weighed 5 pounds, 11 ounces, and were 19-1/2 inches long. You were a beautiful baby and were perfectly formed. You had pretty lips, a tiny little nose, and all your fingers and toes. You had dark hair like Daddy and me. I wish we knew your eye color and yet, we couldn’t find out.

I’m sorry I couldn’t hold you long but Mommy was very weak from enduring various medical procedures for you to be born. I’m glad I got to hold you twice. I’m also sorry that we didn’t get pictures of me holding you although the nurse did take pictures of you.

I’m sorry we had you go through an autopsy but we would like to know why you died. Hannah Marie, you were our firstborn child and we don’t want this to happen again if we try to have other children.

I feel you are in good hands in Heaven and are now a little angel. Your Uncle Tim and other relatives are there with you.

It has been extremely painful that we lost you. We miss you terribly and are sad that you are gone. I do have precious memories of the 8-1/2 months we spent together as I carried you and they comfort me. My darling angel, you were loved and always will be.

Hannah Marie Kemper, daughter of Clark and Rebecca Kemper, was stillborn from unknown causes, on July 1, 1997. She is her parent’s firstborn child.