photo (1) copy

Today marks two weeks until we will meet our sweet Branch in person. As our time with him in my belly draws to a close, it is time to finally start some of the preparations for his arrival into our arms, and then ultimately into God’s arms. At first I kind of wanted to avoid some of these tasks as they seemed too sad, even for me as Branch’s mom. Glenn then reminded me of something we had read in A Gift of Time {the best book, in my opinion, about carrying a baby whose life is expected to be brief} — these hard things are our opportunity to parent Branch. We won’t have much time to parent him here on earth, but we can serve and parent him while he is still with us by preparing for his time here. Who better to do this than us, his parents?

And so, with a new attitude, we embarked on several difficult but important tasks to prepare for Branch’s arrival.

We met with a few people at the hospital where we will be giving birth to Branch. They were so kind, and on our way out we noticed a large piece of art on the wall of the hospital — a tree with gold branches called The Tree of Life {pictured above}.

We met with Elizabeth Hospice, who have specific experience with perinatal hospice care.

We started our birth plan which will hopefully outline our priorities for our time with Branch.

We picked out a couple of little outfits for Branch to wear. Mara was a great help to me in this, as she told me what she had done for her little girl Julia — two outfits to wear during our time together and for photographs, one going-away outfit. I had a minor crisis at Nordstrom as I found a sweet little footed onesie I thought would be good for his going-away outfit, and wondered if $25 was too much to spend on something that would ultimately be buried. I decided that no, indeed, Branch deserved to be buried in a $25 onesie. And as my son, it is only fitting the last thing he wears be from Nordstrom.

We met with our pastor, who has been part of our lives since high school, and came up with the beginnings of a plan for a dedication on Branch’s birthday, a graveside service, and a memorial/celebration of life service. We are so grateful to have a pastor who knows us, loves us, and has walked with us through so many life stages.

I bought a dress to wear to the burial/graveside service. It’s black and covered in lace and pretty.

We met with our doctor, as it seems we now do ALL THE TIME {luckily we love her!!} and selected a delivery method and date. If all goes according to plan, Branch Lionheart Murdock will be born via scheduled c-section on Tuesday, December 3rd. We are  praying that all goes perfectly with the surgery, and that Branch is born alive.

Though I wish I didn’t have to take these steps or make these plans, I would choose to do them again in a heartbeat if it meant I could have spent the last 8 1/2 months with Branch.

God is good. In the pain, in the joy, in the plans. He goes before me. May my heart always follow Him.

Jeremiah 29:11-13

“For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD. Plans to prosper you and not to harm you. Plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”

Much love,


Baby Murdock Fund

My Mom’s Blog