Our Love and Loss – Audrina’s Story

UnknownOn November 24th, 2017 I found out my ultimate dream was coming true. In April, Aaron and I would welcome a daughter into our family. I can’t describe in words the joy I felt in that moment the ultrasound tech told me it was a girl. A thousand dreams flooded my mind…. little girl dresses, tea time and tiaras, tutu’s, pig tails, ponies, ballet slippers, mother daughter excursions like baking or going to the craft fair the list just goes on. The next day which happened to be Thanksgiving, I woke up feeling extra blessed. We were so excited to share the amazing news with our family on such a fitting day. The next week or so we spent living on cloud nine while imagining how our lives would soon change as we welcomed our daughter, Audrina Marie Rakow into the world.

Monday, December 4th it all came crashing down on us. My level two ultrasound revealed a few markers for skeletal dysplasia. The ultrasound tech said, “it looks like a lethal type of dwarfism”. I jumped out of my skin and into shock. This can’t be real, I’m in a nightmare and I just need to wake up. I can’t even process the information. Doctors refer us to specialists at Abbott Northwest to get a second opinion. We stayed hopeful for two days and then our hearts dropped after meeting with specialists in the cities. Doctors seemed to confirm what St. Cloud had found and suggested we do an amniocentesis. We moved forward quickly hoping to get some answers.

The next month was an emotional roller-coaster from hell. We remained hopeful that Audrina would prove the Doctors wrong. We prayed, oh god did we ever pray. I tried to keep the faith and imagine her with us despite what the experts were saying. Our faith train fizzled out after receving the most heartbreaking news with the genetic councilor at Abbott Northwest. The results from our amniocentesis came back positive identifying the FGFR3 genetic mutation code consistent with the diagnosis for Thanophoric Dysplasia. Our worst night mare.

The condition would mean our baby girl would likely die of respiratory failure at birth. Even now after months of processing and grieving, I still cry at the thought of meeting her and feeling so helpless knowing I have to let her go. I know the next few months are going to be tough, and even harder after we have to say goodbye. Right now, all I can do is enjoy her kicking inside me, and love her while she is here with me. Inside there, she is safe, loved and free of all harm. She is a blessing regardless of the situation I face. Even though it would be so easy to be angry with God, I can only thank him for giving me a daughter. Audrina Marie Rakow, my angel baby. My dream really did come true, just in a different way. We will still love her for a lifetime. Even though her time here on earth will be short, our love for her will be eternal.


11 thoughts on “Our Love and Loss – Audrina’s Story”

  1. I am so inspired by your love and grace. My daughters is also named Audrina. I pray for you and for family that you many enjoy the kicks and LOVE . God bless your family!!


  2. Oh sweet baby girl. We were all so very excited to meet you. You have such a huge family on all sides. You may not get to be here long but your Mama is right. You will be loved for a lifetime. You have some cousins, great Aunts and Uncles, and some Great Grandparents up in Heaven that will get to be with before most of us will. So again when I say you have so many people that love you from all sides I mean it. You are a blessing and we as a family will all come together to celebrate you. Love Auntie Starla


  3. Thank you for sharing your story . I’m so glad God entrusted you with this precious baby girl, where He knew she would be safe and feel loved, for her short time on this earth. Your little Audrina will forever be your baby. I admire your strength and your faith. Your hearts are broken and your dreams are shattered, but God alone knows the plan he has for your baby girl. He chose you. He will give you the strength you will need for each day. God bless.


  4. Dearest Trista, Aron, Elaine, & Family,
    I am in tears and my heart just broke reading your story about your sweet baby girl. And I am so deeply sorry all of this is happening in your lives. My love and prayers are with you all always. God has already given you strength as I feel it in your story. I will continue to pray for sweet baby Audrina and for you Trista, Aron, Elaine, and family. She will always be your baby girl. I understand your pain as we lost our first baby 34 years ago. I will always love our other baby. Life went on and then Jesse came into our lives and he is our other shining star. Our greatest blessing. Please trust that God is with you all and he will take great care of your sweet angel. God Bless You All.. All My Love, Heather & Family.


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