Thursday, January 27, 2011

Sophia's life

Sophia Rose Dinkel was born at 2:40 am on 1-26-11, weighing 5lbs 2.8oz, 15" long, after 24 hours of labor and 3 hours of pushing by her momma. She tolerated labor well, with a good heart rate as long as her mommy wore oxygen most of the time. She came out not breathing or crying, all though she did have a heart rate. The Neonatologist took her and deep suctioned her but still couldn't get her to start breathing. She did look like her diagnosis of Achondrogenesis Type II, and due to that they encouraged us not to pursue any further therapies at this time, as she didn't appear to have enough lung tissue to support life. She did open one eye partly and let out a few little gasps, and tried to make a cry at one point, but overall she came out very peaceful and never seemed to be fighting to stay in this world. God took her as soon as she was born. She passed away sometime while being held and at 3:35 am when we checked for a heartbeat there was none to be found.

We were able to spend some very special time with her.... she was wrapped up in her blanket and we put a cute little knit hat on her. Her daddy held her while her mommy was being fixed up and he let our entire family hold her as well. There were many tears shed over how absolutely beautiful she was and how cute her little arms and legs were. She is the most beautiful baby I have ever met in my life. She had a full head of hair that was short, reddish-brown and curly and so very very soft. She had long fingers and turned in but perfectly shaped little feet. Her daddy and nana gave her a bath to clean her all up. Then her mommy and grandma lotioned her up and put on one of her many outfits she wore. She smelled and looked like a little princess. Everyone took turns holding her, talking to her, kissing her and loving on her. Our pastor- Duane came and baptized Sophia and provided us with some support and love. We also took some time to capture Sophia's footprints and hand prints on some memento's and in our bibles.

We do find peace and comfort in the promise that God has her and we will see her again someday. But our hearts are aching in a way not known was possible right now. It all felt too quick and I don't think you could ever feel like any amount of time is enough to spend with your child. It all seemed to pass too quickly and next thing we knew we had to hand over our baby to not see her again on earth. This is by far the hardest thing either of us have ever had to do in our lives. I could never have enough time to kiss every part of her or coo over how adorable and perfect she looked. She will always have a special part in our hearts and will have touched more lives than we thought possible. We have peace that God was in control of this and has a plan for this, and he will heal our hearts in time.

Just one last thought- please do not be afraid to bring up Sophia to us. So many families experience that after the loss of a child- where people are afraid to bring it up and simply do not talk of the child that passed. We do not want to pretend she didn't exist or ignore the fact she was born. We rejoice that we were able to have her and meet her and love her and she will always be our little girl. We may not want to dwell in the pain of the loss, but we are not afraid to talk about her or show you pictures.

Luckily this whole time we were blessed to have had The String of Pearls Organization ( helping support us in every possible way (with momento's and emotional support) and helping us arrange to have Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Organization ( provide us with a free photographer to capture a lot of our time with her. Our Deepest thanks goes to both organizations for helping. If you want to donate in any way- I would encourage you to do it to these organizations.

We will not be having a funeral service for Sophia. We are having her cremated and will do our own special ceremony for her sometime in the mountains when we are ready.

Thank you to everyone for your prayers/thoughts/gifts/food during this entire process. Not only has it blessed us and helped us in such big ways, but it has really taught us the meaning of community. We have grown so much through this. We can't say thank you enough.

all our love- tristen, aaron and our daughter in heaven- sophia


  1. So grateful that you have opened your hearts and shared your time with Sophia with us. My thoughts are with you and your family. With love, Sara

  2. She's oh so gorgeous. Just beautiful. Thinking of you and your family.

  3. She is absolutely beautiful. All of my love - Avita

  4. Tristen and A.J.
    She is so beautiful. All my love - Debbie

  5. It is a blessing to see her sweet, little face at last and how I smiled when I read of her curly, red hair. God heard you, Tristen. A tiny miracle in the midst of this storm.

    Seeing her in your loving arms and knowing you were surrounded by your family makes my heart glad. Though God did not answer our prayer for a miracle of healing for Sophia, I had prayed that if He chose to take her that you would have some time with Sophia first and for that I am grateful. Knowing that you were able to speak to her, cuddle her, feel her tiny heartbeat, caress her tender skin comforts me.

    You have given us a privilege in allowing us to walk through this journey with you. The many, many people who were praying for Sophia and for you have been an encouragement to my spirit. I believe that those who read your blog will forever have their hearts changed.

    And, personally, walking down this path with you has somehow, unbelievably enough because I didn't think it was possible, allowed me to grieve at an even deeper level for our own Brandon. I have prayed with you, laughed with you, rejoiced you, sorrowed with you, feared with you, cried with you, and am grieving with you. I know what is ahead of you in the days ahead and will still be on the path with you.

    Thank you for the privilege of being a part of Sophia's life.

    And, Sophia, have fun with Brandon and tell him his mommy loves him and is looking forward to seeing you both. Tristen and I will be anticipating scooping you both up in our arms and smothering you with kisses so get prepared. It's a mom thing.


  6. Go ahead and mention my child,
    The one that died, you know.
    Don't worry about hurting me further.
    The depth of my pain doesn't show.
    Don't worry about making me cry.
    I'm already crying inside.
    Help me to heal by releasing
    The tears that I try to hide.
    I'm hurt when you just keep silent,
    Pretending she didn't exist.
    I'd rather you mention my child,
    Knowing that she has been missed.
    You asked me how I was doing.
    I say "pretty good" or "fine".
    But healing is something ongoing
    I feel it will take a lifetime.
    ~ Elizabeth Dent ~

  7. Tristen, you write of your daughter so beautifully. Take care of each other as you heal. You guys are always in my thoughts. Love - Janet

  8. Tristen:
    Many hearts are hurting with you. Your strength and trust in God is a testimony to all of us. Your story serves as a great reminder of the blessings God has given us and reminds us to be thankful to Him every day. Hugs and prayers to you and your family.
    Melinda (Beeler) Russell

  9. She is beautiful. My heart aches for your family.

    Much love,

  10. So sorry for your loss but I'm glad to see you're hanging on to your faith. God is with you and His love for you has not changed.

  11. Tristen & AJ what incredible people you are. Somebody did a wonderful job in teaching you to rely on God. I have enjoyed reading your posts and cried out to God on your behalf. I have never met you but feel like I know you. Sophia is beautiful and I love the family picture. Tristen I think she has your nose.

    I will miss your blogs and may God continue to strengthen you on this journey through life.


  12. I'm praying for your family. I have so much more that I'd love to say but can't find the words to say it. I pray that God will give you strength and comfort through this time, and that He will show you in many special ways just how many lives Sophia has touched and changed in her short time here. xox

  13. Tristen & A J I am honoured to see your photos of your beautiful daughter. May you take comfort in the words of God and know that he is caring for your precious girl in heaven.
    Be good to each other and take time to heal x

  14. Tristen and AJ,

    Thank you so much for sharing your precious Sophia with us. Being a member of the LP family and seeing many people go through this loss breaks my heart. May God comfort you.
    But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 19:14

  15. Honoring the life of a perfect child, who is so lucky to have you for her earthly parents. "I prayed for this child, and the Lord has granted me what I asked of him." (1 Samuel 1:27) Thank you for sharing Sophia with all of us... Please don't stop.

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  17. Bruce, Kim, Jake, Emma WojackJanuary 29, 2011 at 2:54 PM

    Thank you for sharing your most inner thoughts about Sophia. Emma and I had tears in our eyes for you and your family, but know that God is with you and she is in a much better place now. A place that we all look forward to going to. Please know that our prayers are with you.
    Bruce, Kim, Emma and Jake Wojack

    P.S. Bruce is in bible study with Jeff, your grandfather.
    P.P.S. I hope you are doing well.=)