Thursday, March 17, 2011

Gwenyth Graham Carpenter

This week brings back a lot of memories. Last year at this time, I was pregnant with Zoe, knowing we'd be relocating to Philadelphia in one month's time. A few of my fellow heart moms (and now, Sisters) were in Philadelphia as well awaiting the birth of their new heart babies.

One of those babies, Gwenyth Graham Carpenter.

Today is Gwenyth's birthday.

Happy Birthday, sweet Gwenyth.

A year ago today, your mommy and daddy amazed me. Your birth story is incredible. Your mom gave me so much inspiration. She hypnobirthed you into this world at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Your daddy made sure that everyone was informed of your progress. I was glued to the computer on March 17, 2010, just waiting for your arrival. I'm pretty sure I checked your blog, a hundred times over, on your birth day. I refreshed and refreshed and refreshed your blog, anxiously awaiting a newly titled entry...

They began:

Now on Pitocin

Update from the Delivery Room

Update from the Delivery Room: Now with Harder Contractions

4cm; 90%; -1

Laura reports need to push; folks are being paged

8cm! We're going in!

She's not resting; she's hypnobirthing!
(one of my personal favorites)

Our Cast: The Doctors and Friends

And then, you arrived...

We Have A Baby!

Your dad posted at 7:19 p.m., just 4 minutes after your birth, that you were here. I remember seeing your sweet face for the first time and crying.

I remember seeing your mom's glowing smile and the love in her eyes during your visits together.

I was so elated that your surgery went well and prayed for you during your rollercoaster recovery. I couldn't believe that you were being discharged eight days before we arrived in Philly. I was so happy for you and your mom, but sad that I did not get to meet you in person.

As our journey began on April 13, 2010 in Philadelphia, you were nearing one month old and settling in at home.

I continued to follow your blog and admire your photographs. Your fellow CHD warrior, my daughter, Zoe, arrived on May 11, 2010. In the whirlwind of activity and Zoe's first open heart surgery at 15 hours old, I admittedly lost sight of your journey. I will NEVER forget the day, the moment in time, I learned of your passing. I stood in a Cardiac Intensive Care room, in shock, surrounded by ailing babies, including my own. The pit in my stomach returns as I write this entry. I am still in shock.

Today is your birthday. Your first birthday.

Happy Birthday, Gwenyth - you were the first CHD baby I fell in love with.

Please join our family in sending love and light to the Carpenters today as they remember their daughter. To Gwen's mom, Laura; her dad, Myers and big sister, Lil.

We love you and will hold your precious angel in our hearts, always.


  1. We love you Gwenyth. I was lucky enough to meet you and you will always have a very special place in my heart. Love you forever baby girl. Happy Birthday1

  2. Stacey, this is so beautifully written. I'm in love with sweet Gwen too, now - great writing. :-)

  3. Thank you Stacey. Oh my goodness thank you!!! And let's just say for the record - Myers still gets a lot of flack for "we're going in" - I had no idea what he was writing that day of course - and I read that later and thought - huh? Who's going and and where??? My friend even thought that meant surgery - she got concerned :) My sweet, dear, husband :).

    And I remember hearing my doula say that - my Dola Nicole - I was indeed not asleep and I heard the docs ask "oh, is she resting" and her reply rocked.

    I still can't believe there is such a thing as Hypno-birthing (the term still sounds so hokey) - but it was amazing to be able to take Piticon and still have the birth I wanted for her... Good day! I remember you commenting and "being there" and Kathy too - that meant so much. Thank you for holding her in your heart with me - all of you here.

  4. I've always wondered who Gwenyth was... I've seen your references to her before but had no idea. A day late as we've just returned from vacation and I was purposefully off line - love and light to their family and yours, Stace. <3