Tuesday Afternoon Update

Hi, all. This is Bethany again. I have been asked by Shane and Carissa to update their blog, and while I love them so much and wouldn't have it any other way, this is one of the hardest things I have ever had to do...

It's with a broken heart and tear filled eyes that I let you know that the Keirsey family has decided to remove Avery from life support tonight and let her go peacefully to be with her Heavenly Father. They feel that Avery has been through enough and that anything else they do to save her would not be fair. She has been through so much and they just couldn't stand to see her keep going through surgery after surgery with no avail.

I, myself, am the mom of a CDH baby who passed away. I have kept up with countless CDH babies over the past two years and I will tell you in all honesty, I have never ever seen a baby put up a fight like Avery has.

While Shane, Carissa, Kaitlyn and their families are devastated, they are finding peace in knowing that Avery will soon be at peace. No more pain. No more wires. No more tubes. No more swelling. Just perfection.

The plan for tonight is to have pictures made, then bathe Avery and hold her while she is still alive. They don't have a timeline, but do know that it will happen sometime tonight.

I know you all, who love Avery (and her family), are devastated, as well. Tonight I ask you to pray for Shane, Carissa and Kaitlyn. For peace, above all else, that only God can give and for some beautiful moments with Avery.

She has been such a fighter...such a sweet, precious little fighter and I know that Heaven will be all the more beautiful with Avery in it.


  1. Oh I hear your brokenness and confusion! I hear your pain! I have been in your shoes with a very sick infant! I did some of the same things! Yelling, screaming, crying! It's OK to let that out! I am praying for a miracle for your little girl! You are in my thoughts daily.

  2. Praying for God to be with you, felt by you during this time...

  3. Praying. No other words.

  4. Olivia (CA)July 14, 2009

    Praying through the tears for God to bring extreme peace to you all today. Our hearts, prayers, and thoughts are with you all on this difficult day. May God's perfect will be done.

  5. Praying and crying..........I am so so sorry!
    Fly away, baby Avery!

  6. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    So sad to hear the news...praying for you all and your family as sweet baby Avery journeys to a better place...i pray for strength and peace for you all, through tears for all you are and have been going through...God Bless...

  7. Many prayers for all those who love and have come to know Avery. I know the other babies will be welcoming sweet little Avery to heaven and I know that it is simply unfair that Shane and Carissa and Kaitlyn have to let go far too soon. My heart goes out to you all.


  8. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I am so sorry to hear your sweet baby, she has been such a fighter. God chose wisely when he blessed you to be her parents. You have loved her for a lifetime. You have made awesome decisions on her behalf,even when it is the most difficult decision to be made. She will be at peace--no more pain, tubes and wires! God's loving hands will hold her. We pray for your family. Love Kathy Rae and family

  9. so so sorry to hear this. i am heartbroken reading about it, but know that i, along with countless others, are praying praying praying for you all. sweet avery will soon be free of pain and watching over you in heaven.

  10. I am praying for the family. I know that God is with them and that Avery will no longer hurt. She will be greeted by many other CDH angels.

  11. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    My heart goes out to you all.

  12. Mommy_Of_YaDa .... Maira DelaoJuly 14, 2009

    My heart hurts! I came to love Avery and her family. God bless you sweet thing because you have really blessed me and it has been such an honor to pray for you. God Bless the Keirsey!

  13. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I'm sure God has all of the sheets, binkies, and bottles ready. . . .what a peace Avery has waiting for her. God bless Avery. I pray that you find some peace (even for a minute). Know that God wants to hold you just as He is holding, loving, and comforting Avery. My heart is breaking for you. . .
    Friend in Pittsburgh

  14. My thought and prayers are with family! Godspeed sweet Avery!

  15. My thoughts are with you this evening....

  16. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I am praying for your family. May you find the peacefulness in this beautiful poem. God has a special place for her. I read this the other day and after finishing I asked God when the time came to allow me to share this to a special mom and family that so desperately need it.
    Amanda (ultrasound)

    I thought of you and closed my eyes
    And prayed to God today.
    I asked what makes a Mother
    And I know I heard him say.
    A Mother has a baby
    This we know is true.
    But God can you be a Mother
    When your baby's not with you?
    Yes, you can He replied
    With confidence in His voice
    I give many women babies
    When they leave is not their choice.
    Some I send for a lifetime
    And others for a day.
    And some I send to feel your womb
    But there's no need to stay.
    I just don't understand this, God
    I want my baby here
    He took a breath and cleared His throat
    And then I saw a tear.
    I wish I could show you
    What your child is doing today.
    If you could see your child smile
    With other children and say
    "We go to earth and learn our lessons
    Of love and life and fear.
    My Mommy loved me oh so much
    I got to come straight here.
    I feel so lucky to have a Mom
    Who had so much love for me
    I learned my lesson very quickly
    My Mommy set me free.
    I miss my Mommy oh so much
    But I visit her each day.
    When she goes to sleep
    On her pillow's where I lay.
    I stroke her hair and kiss her cheek
    And whisper in her ear
    "Mommy don't be sad today
    I'm your baby and I'm here."
    So you see my dear sweet one
    Your children are OK
    Your babies are here in My home
    And this is where they'll stay.
    They'll wait for you with me
    Until your lesson is through
    And on the day that you come home
    They'll be at the gates for you.
    So now you see what makes a Mother
    It's the feeling in your heart.
    It's the love you had so much of
    Right from the very start.
    (Jennifer Wasik)

  17. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    Shane, Carissa, Kaitlyn and Avery,
    My thoughts and prayers go out to you tonight. How lucky I was to be able to meet Avery and see how beautiful she was. How lucky you are to be her parents. Know our hearts will be with you tonight. We are sending all our hugs, love, thoughts and prayers your way! May you feel Gods love and his hands on your shoulders tonight. We love you!
    Danny, Angela, Jake and Sarah

  18. My heart aches for them! Contact Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep. They will do pictures for FREE for them! Tell them it's an emergency and they will be there with a photographer! Oh how I pray they can feel the loving arms of God in this difficult time.

  19. Praying for you as you walk through the hardest night of your life. God grant you peace and comfort and serenity as you kiss Avery goodbye. May it be a beautiful time of remembering and respecting Avery's life here on earth.

    Hugs and prayers,

  20. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I have been following this blog since she was born..I think I got it from "Jenna's Journey". I am so so sorry. I will continue to pray for your family and beautiful Avery. May you find peace in knowing she will be in a better please..


  21. Praying for you from Kansas!
    The Schaber Family

  22. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    My heart breaks for you all, May God be by your side every step of the way. May God put his hand around sweet Avery. Love and Prayers,The Givens

  23. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    So many prayers being said for all of you during the toughest time in your lives - sweet angel Avery Mae - such an inspiration to us all - she has touched so many people.

    God Bless you all,
    Robin Gaspard Cosenza

  24. We will not forget sweet Avery...

  25. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    my heart is broken for you my dear friends, i will pray for Gods peace,

    Jamie Golab

  26. Praying for you all now...my heart is absolutely broken for you. May God grant you strength and peace.

  27. Praying for peace for all of the Keirsey family. Oh, how lucky Avery is to have you as parents and how proud you must be of your amazing fighting angel. God will carry you through what He leads you to. Trust in Him.

  28. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I type this with tears in my eyes. I am so heart broken for you all. Avery is such a brave girl. May God be with you and give you the courage and strength to get through this time. I am praying for you all and promise to do my part to help spread the word about CDH and the complications that come along with it. Avery will not be forgotten.

  29. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    You are an amazing family. Avery got her amazing strength from you, no doubt. No other words will do. You are in my thoughts.


  30. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    Even from so far away, I feel as though we have all come to know Avery. She has a special place in our hearts. May God continue to give strength and let there be peace in your hearts.

  31. Praying for you and your family! God bless lil Avery!

  32. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I have been following your blog since before Avery was here, I found it through Kaden's blog, and I know you don't know me but I am crying for you or with you and know that your sweet baby girl is resting peacefully in the Lord's arms. May you find some peace and comfort duringthsi unimaginable time.

  33. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    We have been praying for Avery and all of you through these many weeks. Our hearts hurt for you. We will continue praying for your family.

  34. Prayers and peace to you all....
    God Speed Avery Mae...the Best awaits you with open arms....

  35. only tears - Godspeed sweet Avery.

  36. My thoughts and prayers are with you all during this difficult time....

  37. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I know no words can bring comfort...but I'm sorry. Praying for you Mom and Dad, and Big Sister Caitlyn. And sweet Avery Mae....enjoy you time in Mommy and Daddy's arms before you are in Jesus'.

  38. Praying for God to wrap his arms around you and for you to feel HIM holding you tonight, as you hold your sweet Avery.

  39. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    My heart is heavy tonight with love and prayers for all of you. May God hold each of you in the palm of His hand tonight and each day forward.

    Blessings and love,
    Bren Pavan
    (Lindsey Dixon Thompson's mama)

  40. I pray God will bless your family with a peace of mind and heart!! Will continue praying for your Family and Sweet Little Avery as she makes her journey to Heaven!!

    The Lord is Good!!

    Nashville, TN

  41. I don't post many comments but I have been keeping up with your journey and have prayed daily for all of you. My heart tonight is breaking for you. Avery has touched so many of us and I, like you I'm sure, thought she'd win this battle against CDH. As a grieving CDH mom myself, I wish I could shelter you all. You remain in my thoughts and prayers. If you need anything or just want to talk or cry... I'm here. Call me anytime at all.

  42. Our prayers are with your family.

  43. I am so sorry you had to make such a decision... Your precious girl has put up such a fight and you as parents have been through what no parnet should go through. My thougts abd prayers go out to your family. Your little girl is so blessed to have such a wonderful family. God be with you!


  44. I am so sorry that you were faced with this decision. Your family has been through so much, and my heart breaks for you all so much right now. I pray that she passes peacefully, and I am confident that God will hold her in His arms forever and always and she will become a guardian angel to many others, just like baby Maxton and Kaden. I also pray that you find peace and understanding throughout this difficult time. God is with you and He will never ever leave your side.

    Much love,

  45. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I don't know you, however I have followed your blog(through a link from another CDH Baby)and wish you all peace tonight. What a corageous decision you have made as parents. Please don't doubt yourself or wonder if you have done all you could....she will be at peace. That is the best gift you could have ever provided. God Bless your family.

  46. A million prayers are sent to Carrisa, Shane, Kaitlyn and precious baby Avery tonight.

    Just tears..... so sorry.

  47. my hearts aches for your family! prayers and peace to each of you!

  48. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I echo all the other commenters... my heart is absolutely breaking for you, Shane, Carissa & Kaitlin. I'm lifting you up as high as I can through prayers and am praying sweet Avery right into the Lord's waiting arms.
    You have truly been heroic -- all four of you. Never doubt that God led you in your decisions; it's obvious to all of us who've been tracking this blog.
    Daneen (friend of Lizz in KS)

  49. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I know you are anxious to hold your baby girl for the first time, and I am so sorry that it has to be like this. I read your blog every day, multiple times, and continuously say prayers. Avery's strength is amazing. Even though she has tremendous odds against her she always overcome them... I am sitting here crying my eyes out, holding my own children, kissing them more, and praying for you and Avery. God bless you and your family.

  50. My heart is breaking for you. Prayers for you during this difficult time. May your last precious moments on earth with Avery be surrounded by peace and love. Avery is blessed to have such a loving family. Hold onto every precious moment with your little girl.

    Much love to you, Tracy



  52. Praying for your family. God be with you.

  53. My wife and I came across your blog from Kamryns blog. We are expecting a CDH baby in a few weeks, and are absolutely devistated for you guys. We cannot even pretend to know what it is that you are going through. We have no idea who you are, but are sitting her with tears in our eyes as we try to even imagine what you are feeling.

    There is nothing that we CAN say, but just tell you that we are praying for you. We pray that God just shows you exactly what His plan is. We pray that He just wraps his arms around you all and just holds every tear you cry.

    May His peace, love, and grace be with you in this time.

    The Griffins

  54. I am so sorry to hear this but happy to hear that Avery will be out of pain. My prayers will be with the family throughout the night and the coming days. I pray for peace to be with you this night and for beautiful memories to be made.

  55. Praying for your family during this difficult time!

  56. My heart aches for all of you. There are no words to alleviate the pain. I will pray for Avery and make a special request of my dad (in heaven) to look out for her. He was my protector while on earth and I have no doubt he continues to the job from above.
    Chicago, IL

  57. Your family and little precious Avery are in my prayers tonight. I have been following your blog and hope you and your family can find peace. I personally don't know how I could deal with what you have been through. You want to do everything for your children but sometimes God has a different plan. I pray for you and your family in these difficult times, Avery will be in God's loving arms watching over you everyday!

    God Bless!

  58. My heart aches for you all. Praying for some comfort, strength and peace in these very trying times. God Bless you all. Avery you are a miracle and an inspiration. A true fighter. Be at peace little one!


  59. I've been following your updates and praying this day wouldn't come. I hope this evening is a special time you can cherish with your sweet Avery, and may God hold each of you in His hands as she gets her wings. She will be at peace and always be with you, watching over you each day forward.

    Thoughts, prayers, and tears,
    Collierville, TN

  60. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    Praying for you all as you go through this difficult time, praying you can have a night of sweet memories of being able to give sweet avery a bath and hold her and have beautiful pictures of your little angel. I am so sorry that your little angel is going to leave this earth but please be comforted in knowing that she will be with our lord and you will see her again one day, one glorious day. I am praying for you tonight and in the days to come. Your beautiful Avery has always been an angel and tonight she will truely be one :( Praying for you in IL........

  61. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    Carissa and Shane,

    I have followed your story since my family first told me about it in May. My heart breaks for you, and I will continue to pray for God to bring you peace.

    I have never lost a child, but I lost my mother when I was 16. Knowing your loved one is at peace is soothing, but only to a degree. I know the next weeks, months and years will be difficult, but knowing Avery as long as you did will touch you forever.

    Thank you for letting us be involved in this very personal and precious time in your life. May God bring you comfort, just as he is now comforting Avery.

    Sarah Pavan
    Conway, AR

  62. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    Praying for you in Whitewater, Kansas.

  63. I am crying as I read this. I am praying so hard for you all so you can find the peace and strenght you need during this difficult time.

  64. My heart is breaking for you and your family. You are in my prayers.

  65. I am reminded of something I read on a blog after the passing of a friend's nephew:
    "We were gonna have a baby, but we had an angel instead."
    To the Keirsey family - what a sweet, beautiful angel you have! I pray that your time with her this evening will be filled with eternal peace and love, and then when it is her time to go may her strong little wings carry her to her Father in Heaven.
    My love and prayers go out to you this evening.

  66. Lisa AllanJuly 14, 2009

    I have kept up with you since Beth starting blogging about your story. She is one of my best friends and I feel like I know you all from this story of soon to be Angel Avery. I have been very touched by your story and the hope you all have had. Just know that you have a wonderful support system, there have been lots of prayers for your family and we will keep them coming. God Bless You!

  67. I've been following you guys for a few weeks now and have yet to leave a comment. It just wasn't the right time. But tonight...it is. I'm so sorry your family has to go through this. It isn't right and it isn't fair. So many people are thinking of you as you face this difficult time.

    Peace & love,

  68. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    You are in my prayers.

  69. May you be surrounded by the Father and His love, knowing that every life is precious and that every child a gift from Jesus. Nothing I can say will comfort you, all that I can do is pray for you. And I will and am right now. Lord Jesus, surround. Your love alone can do that.

  70. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    Sweet baby Avery came here perfect, not in body, but in spirit, and she will return to her Heavenly Father the same way. She is so perfect, it is not necessary for her to stay here to have to even taste sin in any degree. That knowledge brings comfort and peace, the peace the Lord gives that surpasses all understanding. Thank you for sharing your baby and your lives with us all and teaching us about love and about faith.

  71. My heart is heavy and my eyes are filled with tears but at least we know that precious little Avery will be at peace with our Heavenly Father once again. You and your family have become a part of my daily prayers, and I thank you for sharing with us such a beautiful baby girl.

    Los Angeles, CA

  72. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    Dear friends, I heard of your story through the Stoddard family and am so sorry you are enduring this sorrow. We lost our 7 month old son John 11 weeks ago and understand the heart ache. We also have a 5 year old son who misses his only sibling. Please know you are in our prayers tonight and we will ask the Lord for a peaceful departure for Avery from this broken place to the perfectly joy filled, illuminated heaven that our Father so amazingly inhabits. May you know the peace of Christ that surpasses all understanding. God bless baby Avery. The Peacocks (Austin TX)

  73. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    Oh, you sweet family!!! Parting is sad but you have eternity to look forward to. This earthlife is but a grain of sand compared to eternity where FAMILIES ARE FOREVER. A necessary part of our eternal existence is to gain a body. Together you gave Avery that necessary experience, and as her parents you will receive the honor and blessing of being her parents and associating with her forever. Your love for her will help sustain you. In your darkest hours hang onto that knowledge. My best to all of you always. Goldie McGarrah

  74. Shane and Carissa,
    You guys have been so strong throughout Avery's CDH journey. You are wonderful people who love your baby so much to set her free. I know that your last moments with Avery will be filled with joy and sadness. God bless you and your family during this difficult time.
    Love and prayers,

  75. I am so sorry. My thoughts and prayers are with you. Avery sure did put up a tremendus fight, (((HUGS)))

    from Kristy, mum to Angel SKYLA LCDH
    Sydney Australia

  76. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I have wanted to post for as long as I started following your blog which was a few weeks before you had Avery. Angel Maxton's mom and dad had you listed on their page. My husband and I pray for you all daily and the last couple of days it has been often. We will not stop. You were given a true blessing in Avery and we pray for your peace. We pray for Kaitlyn that she will always tell others of her little sister who was a true warrior. You have support from all over the world and we will continue to send love and prayers. Avery made a difference in this world!!!!
    The Waltons
    Indian Wells, Ca

  77. still here with you and will be clinging to each day with you as you journey this road God has asked you to walk..but with Him. He has not left your sides. And as you hold her and love her, you already know you are loving her straight to her father's arms. She will open her eyes and know as she is known.

    We ALL know there is purpose in her LIFE. All life is sacred and the beauty of Avery's life will continue to bless you as you are broken and blessed again and again. My heart is breaking again with yours. United in love and loss...even if we never meet.

    I am asking God to cover you with all these prayers and intentions and that you may feel some peace. I pray God lets all of us carry this for you. Praying for all of your hearts still.

  78. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    We are praying for God to grant you peace and understanding as you go through this difficult time. You are courageous parents of an incredibly precious and inspiring little baby girl. As a grandmother of a CDH baby, I have followed several babies through their CDH battles. Avery is so very special to me and I am praying so hard for her and for you.
    God bless you all.

  79. Saying prayers here...

  80. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    We are praying for peace from God for Avery and your family.

    Kyla (friend of Holli)

  81. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I am saddened to read your update today. I have been following your blog since we were discharged from ACH about five weeks ago. Shane was one of the first parents I met when my son was admitted. He was so kind and helpful and he and Carissa exuberated strengh and hope throughout my son's stay in the CVICU. I can't imagine how hard this decision was to make for you, but as all of the other posts have reiterated, life is precious and it is in God's hands. We don't have the final say and it isn't up to us. I pray for peace and strength for your family. Bryce's Mom Cynthia

  82. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    I have followed Avery's story from the very start and I pray for all of you each day and think of you oh so often. It is so bittersweet to see Avery be with her father in heaven now, but God has an amazing plan for both her and your entire family. I hope that you are able to find comfort knowing that she is no longer in pain and is safe. You are all an incredibly strong family and there really are no comforting words in such a hard time other than may God be with you all. Avery is loved by many! Be free from pain baby Avery... We all love you.

    Rachel Hall
    Old Ft. Collins Friend

  83. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    "For I know that nothing can keep us from the love of God. Neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things now or in the future, nor heighth nor depth, nor anything else in all creation is able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord." Romans 8: 38-39

    This scripture has brought me comfort during some mind-boggling, extremely difficult times. I hope that it can comfort you.

    Peace I pray for you.

    Beth in southeastern Ohio

  84. AnonymousJuly 14, 2009

    My heart breaks for you. No words can ease the pain you are feeling, but please know how couragous you are to let baby Avery find some peace tonight. I pray the same for you. Much love from Fayetteville.

  85. God Bless you and your family!! We will never know nor understand God's plan . . . but one thing I do know is that he has gained such a sweet angel in heaven!!! Your Angel, Avery!

  86. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I have followed your story for so long.....as a mother I understand what you are going through. Bless your family and your precious angel.

  87. You don't know me and I technically don't know you either, althugh I have followed your story for many months. I found your blog through a button on my friends blog. I was instantly captivated by your story. It has become a habit for me to "check on my baby" everyday. I just wanted you to know that Avery and your family have touched so many lives in this short time...even strangers! I have been so touched by your strength, your devotion to Avery and what is best for her, your faith in God even when His answer is No. I just wanted you to know that my little family in Utah is thinking of you and your difficult circumstances these last few months but especially this night. There have already been many tears shed on your behalf and I am sure more of our tears will come your way. Please know that with those tears also comes prayers for you and heartfelt wishes of peace, love and understanding. I cannot imagine what you must be feeling right now and in the time to come. Just know that Avery has touched so many in her short journey here on earth and she will not be forgotten. She has made me reach for my children and love them all the more and to hug them tighter each time. I cannot adequately find the words to express what I feel. Just know that tonight a stranger in Utah cries with you and has been forever touched by your sweet Angel Avery.

    Ronda Mills

  88. May you find peace in loving Avery to Heaven and knowing you will be together again someday.

  89. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    Carissa, Shane, and Kailyn

    You all are in our prayers! No word can explain what you all are going through! Stay strong and know that God is with ya'll through it all. He does have a plan! We love you guys and we are thinking about ya'll.

    Love, The Pool family
    (Don, Dj, Kaci, and Trey)

  90. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I just realized I put Kailyn and not "Kaitlyn"..we love you all, stay strong!

    *The Pool family

  91. My heart is heavy with this news. I am so sorry that you had to make such a heartrending decision and I pray you will be granted the peace that surpasses understanding as God holds you in His arms during this painful time.

    I'm so sorry Avery's story did not end differently. I wanted so badly for her to beat the odds.

    Many hugs & prayers for your entire family.

  92. This absolutely breaks my heart. I pray for strength and peace for you all.

  93. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    My heart is breaking right now for you guys to be going through such heartache, and it brings so much emotion that it is hard to find the right words to say. You both have been so strong in such a difficult time in your lives and displayed such faith. And I am sitting here thinking that just after Avery sees God's face she will see Cooper and all of the other children that didn't get to stay here on earth with their parents. They will be playing and surrounded by such love until we all get to be with them again.
    As I sit here not really knowing exactly what you are feeling I can say I understand the pain you are feeling but also the peace in knowing are children are together with God and not suffering.

    Lifting you up in our prayers, Wendy, Vince, Ben and Grant.

  94. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    My thoughts and Prayers are with your family, May God give you peace.Just knowshes resting in the arms of our Lord.

  95. Trevor McGarrahJuly 15, 2009

    Our thoughts are with you at this time. I worked on this poem that I dedicate to Avery. It is the best way I know to show that we care. God bless you and Avery.

    Trevor and Mary Ann McGarrah

    The Bravery of Avery
    by Trevor McGarrah
    Dedicated in memory to Avery Keirsey

    A child of God was waiting
    For her chance to come to Earth.
    She was excited and a little nervous
    About this thing some called 'birth'.

    You should have seen her smile
    The day she received the call,
    "Come quickly to get your placement.
    Hurry to the gathering hall."

    When she arrived at the location
    The line was already quite long.
    To pass the time while waiting
    The children sang a cute song.

    "I am a child of God.
    Today is my special day.
    I'm leaving my heavenly home
    To be born in the month of May."

    It seemed like she waited for ages
    Until she was next in line.
    She took a deep breath and thought,
    "Now it's my turn to shine."

    She learned about her family.
    Then she learned the "how to" of birth.
    She was especially excited
    To learn of her mission on Earth.

    Her mission would not be simple.
    It would be full of suffering and pain.
    She was offered a chance to reject it,
    But she bravely chose to remain.

    She wanted the love of these parents.
    She wanted the love of this "Kait".
    She wanted to be a Keirsey
    Even though she knew the fate.

    "I don't understand CDH,
    Nor do I know what is DORV.
    But being part of this loving family
    Is all that matters to me.

    Jesus willing gave His life
    To prevent man's eternal death.
    Then surely I too can do my part
    Until I breathe my last breath."

    The next thing that she knew
    She was naked, cold, and small.
    She saw all these strange people
    So scary and very tall.

    Then she noticed two other people
    Who she instantly knew.
    "You must be my parents.
    I love you too."

    From that moment on
    Everything was a struggle.
    She needed her parents.
    She longed for a snuggle.

    There were times she thought
    That the pain was too much.
    But then she remembered
    She still had lives to touch.

    Her mission was clear
    Though no one else on Earth knew.
    She couldn't just quit,
    She still had things left to do.

    "I need to hang on.
    I need to still fight.
    Lord, send me some angels
    To last through the night."

    Night after night
    This was her prayer.
    She never once complained though
    That her life wasn't fair.

    The day finally came
    That she knew she was done.
    She'd fought a good fight,
    Her battle was won.

    She got her chance to be snuggled.
    She felt love in the air.
    She longed to say something
    But she could barely stare.

    "Mommy and Daddy,
    Thank you so much.
    Don't worry 'bout me
    I now have Jesus' touch.

    He gave me a big mission
    That I completed today.
    I just want you to know
    That we'll all be okay.

    If I could speak right now
    There are two things I'd say,
    The first is that 'I love you',
    The second is, 'Hooray'.

    I taught you the things
    Jesus wanted taught,
    Though not in the way
    We wanted or sought.

    You learned to love much deeper.
    Your faith in God also grew.
    Our family became much stronger.
    These were my gifts to you."

    As these thoughts left her mind
    She opened her eyes once more.
    Then her eyes gently closed again.
    No more pain, no longer sore.


    God had a plan for a special girl
    A tiny babe named Avery.
    Her mission was brief and tough,
    But she was filled with extra bravery.

    Avery accepted God's plan for her.
    She taught love and faith sincere.
    Keep these gifts she gave you.
    And keep her memories near.

    She's now in Heaven resting
    Still full of love and bravery.
    This was all part of God's plan,
    He just used the bravery of Avery.

  96. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I've been checking back on your blog numerous times earlier today but this time I was nervous and scared to look directly to the subject line. As soon as I saw Beth's name, I knew. My heart is racing and aching and my eyes are swelling up...
    Please please God, I am praying for peace to the Keirsey's family and painless transitioning for baby Avery.

    Carissa and Shane, I only know you two through this blog but I can tell that you two are strong, devoted, committed, and loving people. And, I think Avery got that from both of you, a fighter.
    I'll be thinking of you all and sweet baby Avery tonight.


  97. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    My heart is breaking for you. I can't imagine the pain, I'm so sorry. It has been a tough fight. We pray for God's will and that God will take care of our loved ones, but we forget that sometimes he has to take them home with him to take care of them. Avery has touched my heart and will forever be in my memory. Our short time at ACH I fell in love with your family. They are so precious. God never closes a door without opening a window. My prayer is for God to give you Peace.
    Lilly's Nannie

  98. My heart aches for you. Praying for peace and comfort....

  99. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    There are no words. I remain in awe over the strength you have displayed. Thank you all for sharing your story so openly and honestly with all of us. We love you so very much.


  100. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    Love and Prayers from Fort Worth, TX.

  101. Wishing you peace amidst the unimaginable sadness. Praying for you all.

  102. My heart is heavy with sadness as I read the latest entry. Im not sure what to say but, Im sorry. God bless you and Avery. ((hugs))

  103. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    my thoughts and prayers are with you all today.I have been following Avery's story for a while now. I also have a cdh angel. I am thinking of you all
    Much love

  104. Lifting your precious family up in prayers as your sweet baby girl travels from your arms straight to Jesus' arms. My heart is throbbing as we have been down a similar path..we too had to say goodbye way too soon. We lost our 5 month old daughter Liberty after a 4 month hospital stay and hearing the dr's say "there is nothing more that can be done". It's so hard and scary to "Let go and Let God". Im so sorry and saddened by this pain you are enduring..praying God gives you peace that surpasses all understanding...

    Kelly and family

  105. Praying for your family! I'm so very sorry.

  106. Praying for all of you...I am so very sorry. "Hope is what happens as long as we breathe..." Just keep breathing...

    Prayers from Indiana

  107. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    Shane and Carissa,
    It is with such sorrow that I read Shawn and Stephanie's blog this morning about Avery. I am Shawn's aunt, and have been so touched by your family as I have been to your blog several times. The babies suffering from CDH and their families are so very special and endure so much, I can't even imagine. Please know that my heart and my prayers are with your family and with precious Avery.
    May God be with you,
    Judy Hamlet

  108. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I know there is nothing I can say. I am a 41 year old grandmother who had to walk this journey with her 18 year old son just 18 days ago. Our baby Maddison who we thought had CDH initially(how I got to reading CDH blogs) was diagnosed with a huge AVM of her liver(rarest of rare defects in an infant). We did not know the extent of her problems(all internal) until she was born. We took her off of life support after 3 days. I cry for you this morning though I do not know you. I know how bad it hurts and there is nothing I can say that can ease the pain but know someone in Missouri is suffering with you and praying for your strength. May God give you some type of peace in the days and weeks to come.

  109. Even though I don't know your family personally, I have been praying for you and reading your blog since Avery was born. My heart is ripped in two by the latest news, and I am crying out to God for peace and healing in your family.

  110. I'm so very deeply sorry that it has come to this. I prayed so much for little Avery. I know though as you do that she will be in a better place, in our Father's hands and he will take very good care of her. I continue to pray for you to find peace in all of this and for you to know in your heart that you both did everything possible to give Avery a chance. My heart is overcome with sadness.

  111. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    We at Pulaski Heights Baptist continue to lift your family up in our prayers. Please know that we are here to do anything we can to help you. Much love to all of you. PHBC - LR,AR

  112. Paul HenryJuly 15, 2009

    I hear she passed away last night. I am so sorry for your loss. Debbie has been keeping us posted since before she was born and we continued to pray all would be OK. Avery has peace now.

  113. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I know that words can sound so empty in these moments. My heart is broken for you all. I pray that you will find some solace in knowing she is with her Heavenly Father and no longer in pain. We love you and are all praying.
    The Calvary Preschool family

  114. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    My heart aches for you today. Avery's life had purpose and the short time that you spent with her needs to celebrated. Look at what she has done in such a short period of time. She has brought out caring and compassion in people in ways that we cannot even describe. Look at the blog. People have come together from all over the United States in Prayer for your child. She has forged friendships that will last a lifetime. She has touched the lives of strangers and made us all better people. She had purpose. God was so impressed with what he had created and the job that she had done here that he gave her wings. She will be waiting one day for you both to join her in Heaven. She will be without tubes and wires and will be perfect in every way. God be with you all in the next weeks and months as you try to deal with the loss but remember that Avery was such a special little girl to have worked such miracles while she was with you here. Much love. Let me know if you need anything.

    Love DeLynn

  115. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I have been following up on Averys blog everyday now! I am so heartbroken for your family.I pray that you will find peace and strength in the Lord. Avery was such a fighter has went threw so much. May she be in peace now. YOur family is amazing, i thought that from day one. You will be in my prayers!

  116. My heart is breaking for you. God clearly just has bigger plans for Avery in Heaven. I pray that he wraps his arms around you during all of this and that you are comforted in the knowledge that Avery won't be suffering anymore. We love you guys and hope that in the loss of your angel you feel the love and support of everyone that cares about you.

  117. I am so, so sorry for your loss. Sweet Avery went through so much in her short life. My prayers are with you and your family.

  118. Oh my heart just aches for you and your family, Avery will be healed. Praying for the road ahead.


  119. Keirsey Family, I am so sorry for all of the heartbreak you have been through in the last months. I always pray that NOBODY should have to go through what we did and yet another joins our heavenly father. Wow, as I come to post here, I had to scroll through 120 messages from people that love you all. Some that you do not know, some you are very close to, and family all giving you words of encouragement during one of the most trying times in your life! You have been an inspiration to all us with your courage, hope, and faith through all of this and that is why Avery was able to fight for so long. We are here for you always and you are in our thoughts and prayers.

    Love, The Smith Family, Jaime, David, Reggan, and ^Ryann^

  120. Allison in TXJuly 15, 2009

    I have been waiting to post, trying to think of words to say. I am so upset about this-not how I was praying so hard for things to go. Still, I will say, Lord, blessed by your name.

  121. Dear Keirsey family,
    While I don't know you personally, I've read your blog through my friends the Studdards. There are no words for you durning this difficult time. Please know that I'm praying for you all and especially baby Avery. Peace and love be with you.

  122. Sleep was restless last night, I only hope now you may rest your tired eyes in the thought of Avery being out of pain and in total peace. I wanted so badly with every fiber of my being for things to have a fairy tale ending. My heart is saddend knowing all the pain and emotions you must be feeling. I only wish that there was something that I could say or do to comfort you right now. I love you guys and you will continue to be in my prayers.

  123. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I have been follwoing your blog everyday and I am devasted for you guys. I wanted so badly for her to beat CDH and all its on going effects after surgery. You guys are what I can see amazing and very strong parents and believe me I think Avery knows that. My heart breaks for you I hope someday you will have peace and will be able to remember the precious memories of your baby girl.

  124. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I am so very sorry for your loss. Sweet Avery's story has touched so many of our hearts. May she find peace and a well deserved rest in the loving arms of Jesus. Your family is in my thoughts and prayers.

  125. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    Prayers for you and your family during this very personal and private time. I cannot begin to imagine what you are going through. Just know that you are making the best decisions you can for Avery and you know her best. She will forever shine down on you and hopefully God will reveal to you why this was a part of his plan for Avery.

  126. I have watched Avery's progress daily because I am Kamryn Hope's Gammy, and it seems that each CDH baby finds a special place in the hearts of other family's facing the same battle. I read Shawn's words on the blog, and my heart just broke. Avery tried so hard to stay, and because I see Kamryn's fight, I know what effort it takes for these little ones to keep on keeping on. I wish I could hold you and hug you because I am sure this is the most difficult decision you will ever make. It takes so much love and courage to let Avery find her angel wings. Her little life has touched so many hearts, and you have been brave to share this journey with so many others. May you find peace in knowing that she is free of pain and suffering. It is so hard to watch these little ones connected to tubes and wires, and although the pain is enormous right now, you did your best for her. May God bless all of you and help you through the days ahead. I will never forget Avery's story.

  127. I'm so sorry. God be with you in the days ahead.

  128. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I am heartbroken for your entire family. Sweet Baby Avery was such a fighter. I only know you all through this blog, but Avery made an impact on my life. She will forever be missed, and will forever be remembered.
    Good bye Sweet Avery, may you be wrapped in Jesus' arms and may he comfort all that are mourning your passing.

  129. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    May the lord bless you and keep you, may his beauty shine upon you...

  130. Shane and Carissa,

    You both are in my thoughts and prayers. Sweet Avery put up such a brilliant fight. She'll find peace with God now and breathe easy. May God comfort your family and hold you close.


  131. You are in my thoughts and prayers. May you find peace that Avery is in Heaven. May the Lord also comfort you.

  132. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    I know I am a complete stranger, but I just sat and read your entire blog with a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes. (I am a friend of a relative of CDH angel Ryann Hope Smith. I receive updates on their CaringBridge site and got your blog address here.) My heart is hurting so deeply for you and your family. What a beautiful, sweet, strong, innocent Avery. I will be thinking about and praying for you and your family. I know your pain will always be there, but I pray that the Lord will grant you peace and comfort in the long days to come.

    Your Avery Angel has made such an impact on this world in her short time here. Although I only know you from this blog, you and your family (and certainly Angel Avery Mae) will always have a very special place in my heart.

    Andi Horner
    Avon, Indiana

  133. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    Even though I've never met any of you, I have read about little Avery each day. What a brave angel! My prayers and thoughts are with you.

  134. AnonymousJuly 15, 2009

    God Bless all of you. I continue to pray for you and that you find peace and comfort in the days ahead. It has been a privledge to share your journey...I hope you continue your blog, maybe it will help with your healing...? What a beautiful baby Avery is....now peaceful in heaven.

  135. Praying that God will bless your family in this difficult time. What a joyous reunion there will be in Heaven!