Zane Thomas Anderson
When Zane was born June 30, 2006, the Andersons felt that life couldn't get any better. Cory and Amy Anderson now had two beautiful children––a boy and a girl.
"I just wanted to hold him and cuddle him," Amy says. "I loved the middle of the night feedings because he would just be so calm and content. I would just stare at him and wonder why I was so lucky to have him!"
While in the hospital, Amy decided to have a tubal ligation. She was turning 36 yeas old soon, they had their perfect family, and since she had to have a C-section with Zane, the process would be simple.
Amy started back to work six weeks after Zane was born. Her mother went to Dallas to keep him at home until he was closer to 12 weeks old.
"I know she loved having him all to herself during that time. She really got to know him," Amy says.
Just two weeks after joining the nursery at the school where Amy works, Zane died from SIDS. In an instant, the Andersons' picture-perfect life was shattered.
"I was in that trap of thinking that I had so much time ahead of me that I don't think I really savored all the moments I did have," Amy says. "Cory and I would plan all the things we would do together as a family, not knowing just what little time we actually would have."
After Zane died, Amy started journaling. When she looks back and reads what she wrote in the following months, she sees just how full of despair she was.
"I wish that my last memory of Zane was not one of such terror and disbelief," Amy says. "I wish Cory had been home and that Bryn had not been there."
But the Andersons found themselves surrounded by friends, family, church members and even total strangers who wrapped them in love and comfort. With a full community of support, Amy and Cory decided to have another child.
"I had to face the fact that I had a tubal ligation and the impact of that decision," Amy says. "I ultimately had a tubal reversal and, thanks to a wonderfully talented doctor, was successful in getting pregnant the first month."
Amy and Cory were so excited to have another child, another chance. But it wasn't the same, she says. They were filled with fear and suddenly aware that pregnancy doesn't mean everything will work out as planned.
"There was also guilt," Amy says. "Guilt over feeling so happy that we were having a new baby but that it wasn't Zane."
Amy and Cory grieved Zane's death together, and they found both their marriage and their faith strengthened as they moved through the loss holding on to one another and clinging to the Lord's promise of resurrection and eternal life.
Whit was born as a strong, healthy baby. After his birth, Amy continued journaling. But this time, she started a gratitude journal to focus on the many blessings she has instead of concentrating on what she lost.
"It helped me move forward," Amy says.
The Andersons still struggle with Zane's death, especially on his birthday and the day he died. Amy says she thinks about him every single day, but she takes comfort in knowing that she is no longer overwhelmed with emotion each time she thinks of him.
"It has taken a lot of time, therapy, patience, prayer and hope," Amy says.