Hope Chest

03 June 2014

I try to avoid my hope chest, because that's where you're memories reside.  The pictures of your little body.  Your clothes.  Our condolence cards. Your memory boxes and anything that represents your growth within me or the loss we felt when you left, resides in that chest.  Both yours as well as your sisters.   It's a bit ironic...calling it a hope chest.  Hopes.  Dreams.  Both crushed.  And even still the other half is loaded with our wedding memories and your brothers accomplishments.  All there, among your memories.  

It's fitting that I would think to look there, in this hope chest, in the hopes to find a book for Asher's last day of DK.  It's strange that in my thought process and determination to find that book, I never even thought about your memories that lay beneath.  On the eve of your birthday even, I opened that chest...this hope chest, to only search for this book, but overwhelmingly the only thing I see after the lid raises, is your box.  

I try to stay away.  I don't like that box.  It's empty dreams.  It's shattered hopes.  The too tiny clothes that touched your skin.  Your skin that felt like velvet.  Cold velvet.  It still shocks me how every day is just a day.  A day filled with laughter and exhaustion.  Memories that have been made and laughter that has filled the house.  But then one action.   The action to find a book...to open that chest...changes everything.  

All day as I remembered you in the quiet of my mind.  Thoughts of you followed me all throughout the day. I planned your celebration that we'll have on Wednesday, I know, a day late.  I even talked to Asher about making a card to send up to you in Heaven.  There was not one heavy thought.  You are missed and I would do anything to have both you and your sister here with us, but for the most part, the heaviness has lifted.  But then the lid lifts only to reveal the shattered dreams kept silently in that hope chest, and I can't resist.  I have to visit your belongings.  I have to hold your hat and touch your gown.  I have to smooth your blanket with my hands.  I have to look at the photos I hide because most are just too hard for me to lay my eyes upon.  But I can't look away tonight.  I can't close the lid to your memory box.  I can't stop holding that tiny little hat.  

There's a part of me that wishes I never thought too look in this old chest of mine.  Yet there's another part that is so glad I did.  I hate this feeling.  I hate that you're not here and I hate that I feel pain right now.  But I'm glad I still have the searing pain of loss because it reminds me how much I love you, even with you not here.  It reminds me that you meant something, even though your time here was so brief.  And it reminds me that even though I've gone through the bowels of Hell, for the most part, I've escaped and am thriving with your amazing father by my side and your fabulous brothers running circles around me.  

Maybe there is hope in the madness of death.  Hope to breathe, when your world seems to be suffocating you.  Hope to take the next step when all you want to do is crumble.  Hope to love when all you want to do is say goodbye.  My heart aches for you baby girl.  For you and your sister.  Thank you for continuing to teach me.  You are always with us.  You are never forgotten.  Happy 7th birthday.  I can't wait to look into your eyes, breathe in your beauty, touch your warmth and wrap my arms around you in a tight embrace.  But just remember, I may never let you go again.  

Outraged by our society.

12 April 2013

I don't want a debate.  I don't mean to offend anyone with this post.  This is just my raw emotion post. 

My heart has been crushed today.  And it should have been crushed months ago.  We should have all known about the evils of Kermit Gosnell, an abortion doctor in Philly.  A trial began on March 18th, but most people didn't hear anything about it, until it started going viral on facebook.  And now news and posts about this ass is flooding walls, and reporters are posting about it.  Google his name if you want the gory details.  Here's a detailed article on the events.  But be warned, it's brutal.  

http://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2013/04/why-dr-kermit-gosnells-trial-should-be-a-front-page-story/274944/

This man seems to be, in all intended purposes, an anti-christ.  And there are so many wrongs to this story, or rather the stories of the many, many women....the many, many children.  The "worst offense" was obviously the late term abortions and the fact that babies were born alive and viable, until he severed their spinal cord with scissors.  But what about the board who granted this "doctor" his license?  What about the deplorable conditions that gave women diseases?  The deaths of women?  The fact that people actually worked for this guy, saw women in pain, would drug women to the brink, saw severed infant body parts that Gosnell was keeping as souvenirs?  What about the employees that killed infants?  I can't wrap my brain around these people.  There was one worker who had the sense to leave and called in a complaint to the local authorities, and even they didn't respond!   The whole mess is confusing.  Everything about it.  As if they were all brainwashed to believe that this is OK.  

I have to admit that I am pro-choice.  I believe that a women should have a right to do with her body what she thinks is best.  I could never have an abortion.  No matter the circumstances, it would never happen.  But I don't feel that we, as a people, should tell a women what to do with a child within her womb.  Now, in saying that, in my own ignorance, I always thought a legal abortion was under 20 weeks. Because I have distanced myself from the debate,  I'm just now finding out that in MI it's 24 weeks.  Which, before I had Selah, I may have still been OK with.  But Selah was 24 weeks when she passed.  She was fully and perfectly formed.  Arms, legs, hands, feet, delicate little eyes, ears, mouth and nose.  She was perfect.  I can't imagine that women abort that far along.  My mind is reeling and I'm not sure where to plant my feet anymore.  I don't agree on the timeframe.  Though I still agree that a women should be able to choose....but at what timeframe should it fit in?   

And even if there was a time frame, would we always have horriblly vile people such as Gosnell and all the people who worked for him?  If laws change or abortion becomes totally illegal, wouldn't there be even more "clinics" like this one?  

My heart just hurts.  It's heavy and I'm appalled that this hasn't made national news.  Why hasn't this come out?  Why has it been a month since the trail began and we still haven't heard about it.  We should have known about this months ago.  Why is this OK?  I read somewhere that if this was a mass killing of puppies, it would be all over the news.  And they're right!   These were babies!   Some as old as 30+ weeks old.  They had hair and were chubby.  Why was this OK?  Why did the workers think this was OK?  How could anyone do this?  I can understand one fucked up crazy, but what about his employees?  Sorry about the language....I'm just at a loss.  And though I don't want to bash the mothers here, I can't wrap my mind and heart around carrying a child within your womb for 30+ weeks, feeling them grow and kick and not wanting to wait 10 more weeks to bless a family with a child they would love and have been waiting for, but would rather watch them as they're born, hear them scream and then watch as a doctor stabs the back of their neck with a rusty pair of scissors to cut their spinal cord, ending in their death.  

I'm sickened.  I think we all should be.  This should never have happened.  There should have been something that stopped these murders, somewhere down the line.  And we, as a nation should have heard about it.  Our priorities are severely messed up if Annette Funicello and Jonathon Winters are at the top of our news stories rather than the killing of over 100 babies.  What is wrong with us as a society?  Who would do this?  I'm just so sad right now.  We talk about the cruelties that other counties lay out over their citizens...look around people.  Stop looking for hate and cruelty in other counties...look here.  It surrounds us.  

I keep thinking about all the ridiculous Mickey Mouse pictures that littered facebook walls a few days ago.  The one where his head was bowed in mourning for the loss of Annette Funicello.  Who's crying for all the babies that were left to die or suffered at the hands of horrible people?  Who's going to post a memorial for the 100+ babies murdered in this clinic?  Where's Mickey now?  I'm outraged.  

memories

05 January 2013

I feel horrible.  I use this blog as a way to reach out to people, yes, but I also use it as a memory for me and my family.  And I have sucked at it lately!  Poor Grey.  He still has no birth story or baby book made.  He gets very little posts about him.  But at least I can say that what he lacks in books, posts and pictures...he overflows with love and laughter and memories fill my mind!  

So here's a catch-up...

Asher,  

What a crazy dude you are!   You're full of it and I remind you of that nearly every day!  You are wild.  Seriously wild.  We breathe to calm down at times.  It's like you are one of those toys where you pull the string and it goes crazy until the string reaches it's stopping point...though you never seem to reach your stopping point!  People often ask me if you have quiet moments and I say "yes, when he's sleeping!".  You go, and go, and go until you literally pass out and sleep.  Though I have to say, you will sit up in your room for quiet time reading and playing legos for nearly two hours.  

You are the biggest lover I know and the most important person to you is your little brother.  It has been awesome seeing you care for Greyson and love on him as you do.  Sure, he's your little brother and you get sick of him at times.  But for the most part you want to be around him.  You wanted to share a room with him.  You want to play with him and you protect him like no other.  Even if Mama or Papa have to discipline him, you either run right up to give him a hug or desperately try to talk us out of disciplining him.  

You love all thing lego, ninja, pirate, Peter Pan and super hero.  You love to play dress-up and play with your "guys".  You're not sure about school, but I think it has more to do with not wanting to miss out on something at home.  You love to draw maps and color drawings for family and friends.  You love camping and now, sledding.  You're hilarious, coming up with funny stories or sayings.  You crack us up on a daily if not hourly basis!

Greyson,

Oh child, you are the stink in stinker!   But what a joy and refreshing breath of air you are.  The first 14ish months of your life you reminded me of an old soul.  You were calm and happy.  Nothing would phase you.  Anyone could hold you.  You smiled constantly...and then something happened over night and the real you sparked to life.  WOWZA!   You are full of it.  The dickens, the life, the laughter, the drama.  Maybe you have a little of Jorai and Selah's personality in your soul because there are times I think your just overflowing with personality.  You have mastered the pout and can even turn on the tears at a drop of the hat.  You can then deep belly laugh about something two seconds later.  

You're a little boy of little, or rather, no words.  So you scream.  A LOT.  Happy screams.  Sad screams.  Wanting screams.  Not wanting screams.  You're sharp as a whip and understand everything we say.  Sometimes in a scary way!   You just refuse to speak.  Sometimes you even refuse to sign...we have staring contests, one stubborn Mama vs. one stubborn boy.  Of course I win.  or you don't get what you want...but they're pretty epic.  When you grow up, no one will be able to persuade you.  

You love all things music.  You dance at a drop of the hat, even when Mama starts making up a song or a commercial comes on.  You have an obsession with the Wiggles, though you only like them when they're singing so I have to sit next to you with a remote to fast forward each time they talk rather than sing.  You walk around the house playing your guitar or flute or drums.  You're just like your older brother in that way.  You refuse to play with any toy that's appropriate for you.  You'll only play with what Asher has.  

Speaking of Asher, the sun rises and sets with Ash.  You beam when he wakes up.  You follow him around.  You hug him and kiss him and have to be next to him at all times...minus when you're watching the Wiggles and think he may horn into your space...you'll do anything Asher says, unless of course, you don't want to.  Then it's "watch out Asher" time!

You're a bit of an aggressive boy.  Not that you're trying to be mean, but there's something in you that has to push or pull.  We're working on it.  But you just love a thick lock of hair to pull or warm body to push.  You love sitting on Asher's back or head and it cracks Mama up every time.  As if you're just teaching Asher a lesson for all the times he wasn't so gentle with you!  

Though you're not yet two, weigh over 30 pounds and are in 3T clothes, you're not much of an eater.  You refuse any and all fruit or vegetables and everything else is on a moment to moment basis.  The one thing you'll eat is sugar.  Whether it's anything carb related or actual sugar...you'll eat it.  You're obsessed with ice-cream, though we just realized you're allergic to milk.  So we'll see what happens about that!   You also LOVE eggs and will eat up to 6  day.  It's frightening.  Oh and that's 6 in one sitting, not over the course of a day.  You're plum crazy.

You love to snuggle.  You love to give kisses and hugs.  You're a good boy, when you're not being a stinker!.  You are dramatic.  So Very Dramatic.  

I just want to say, I love you boys to pieces.  You're both a work of art.  A messy, stinky, sticky work of art that I just can tear my eyes away from.  You bring my so much laughter and love and I can't wait to see and experience all that we have in store for us in the future.  You are both gems.  unique, beautiful gems.  You have hearts of gold, inextinguishable fires within you, smiles that would melt diamonds and spunk that keeps us all on our toes.  You both rock, my sons.  You rock my world.  My very LOUD world.  And I wouldn't change a thing.  

Memorial Tattoo

It's been awhile. I was going through some of my past entries when I came to my previous memorial tattoo post and remembered that I never posted my completed tattoos!  Sorry!

I originally got them in August, but then had them filled in a bit more in October.  They were done in white ink.  Disregard the translucent skin and blue veins!   What can I say, I'm as white as you get!  Anyway, I love them and am surprised by how much people actually see them.  I never wanted a super showy tattoo.   I love them on other people, but it's just not me.  I wanted something understated and there was always something about how the white ink fades and leaves more of a scarred appearance.  As if people can outwardly see the scar my girls left on my soul.  

Anyway, here they are.  Jorai's on my left because I remember holding her in my arms with her head resting on my left arm, and for some reason, I rested Selah's head on my right arm.  I still close my eyes and dream of holding them, looking down at my two arms...left for Jorai and right for Selah.  So it's fitting...



Parenting woes.

21 October 2012

This topic has been on my mind a ton lately so I figured I'd write out my feelings for others to relate to or maybe learn from...Let me start here...

I have two healthy, amazing, fun young children.  When Asher was a baby, he exceeded  nearly all of his "milestones" until he started missing his speech milestones.  He was my first that I got to watch grow.  I was a stay at home mom and I'm a bit neurotic about teaching.  So I worked with him a ton.  We read everyday...all day.  He loved to read.  We used flash cards at an early age and he learned how to sign.  Of course he spoke, but not a ton.  At the time, a woman was in my life that I had considered a friend, though she truly wasn't and looking back I realized that her tearing me down was a way for her to feel better about herself.  But she would, nearly weekly, tell me how delayed my son was.  She would talk about her speech therapist friend, how she talked to her about my child, how she agreed that he was severely delayed even though she never met him.  She told me how brilliant her son was, and how severely lacking mine was.  

Though I stood my ground and knew deep down that my child was fine, her words stung and I continually questioned my parenting.  But I watched my child.  I saw how he was running and jumping at an early age.  He rode a 2 wheeler without training wheels before he was three.  He potty trained himself at two and a half.  This person, who was so hurtful, broke me a bit.  But then I started watching her son as she was watching mine.  He didn't jump when Asher jumped...he didn't didn't run when Asher ran...he still wasn't potty trained the last time we spoke which was nearly three.  None of which was bad or delayed in my eyes, but honestly, it felt so good to see her child not do things my child was doing. 

I hated feeling that way.  I felt like I was stooping to her level.  I would bring things up to her in a way to defend Asher.  And it troubled me.  I was judging her son, just as she was judging mine.  I justified it at the time by telling myself that I was just letting her see that all children grow in different stages...but in actuality, I was trying to hurt her as she had hurt me over and over again.  

We split ways a while ago and I have since realized that she was a person in need of help.  She was trying to make herself feel better.  She was trying to, and probably still, putting people down to build herself up and I'll probably meet another person like her in my lifetime.  A bully really.  Which I've never dealt with before, so it's taken me awhile to put it all into perspective.  And in the meantime, I've had Greyson who also, is a late talker.  And for awhile, I let her words creep back into my mind.  I keep worrying there's something wrong.  I feel like I have failed...again...even though I have tried so hard to bring him up and teach him.  But all of a sudden, just in the past few days, I've realized, that her hurtful words were just that.  Hurtful words.  Spoken by a bully who needs help.  And though I've always felt that children grow and learn on different time frames, and thankfully, most if not all of my friends feel the same, those words that were spoken over 3 years ago, still crept in and took root.  

So this is what I'd like to say...You can't put a child's development in a box.  They are literally all different.  And another thing is that it takes a village to raise a child.  It takes the help of our family and friends, their encouragement and love and support.  Not judgement. 

I believe that growth milestones are horrible things for the most part.  My childrens height and weight have been nearly always in the 90-100 percentile.  Luckily their doctor rocks and even in their more girthy stages, she never labeled them overweight.  I have friends with children who are barely registering on the milestones and some of their doctors have labeled them as too little...but they eat like horses and are super healthy.  Yes, there are those who are actually too heavy or too thin...but if your child is eating and healthy...they are probably fine!  and vice-versa.  Some kids are just tiny....some are giants...hence my children.  

I also believe that developmental milestones are nearly the same thing.  I think they are awesome in a way...I like to see what my child will start doing within each particular month...but what if they don't start doing it?  What if they don't start for months and months.  What if people you know start labeling them as delayed?   How would that make you feel?  I think these milestones are a good gauge and you should pay attention to your own child.  Watch what they're doing and if you're concerned, talk to your doctor...but follow your instincts too.  

We have just recently had Greyson checked with Early On for his speech.  He's still not speaking, but does use signs.  He passed all milestones but speech.  So he's getting therapy.  And I love it.  We are learning new techniques to help him speak.  But the more I research his milestones the more my concerns melt away.  He is doing physical things that far exceed his expected milestones.  Things like jumping and pedaling and running.  He's super active and super physical.  And all of a sudden I've realized that those hurtful things said by that hurtful person so long ago had crept back in and made me feel inept and scared for my child.  When in reality, my child...my children are awesome.  They are fine.  

So here's the thing.  Love on your family and friends.  Encourage them, so they can be empowered to listen to their own instincts.  Don't judge other's children, instead use that time to love on and listen to and observe your own children.  Raise your child in love and show that love to your family and friends.  Let's focus on our own families as well as supporting our friends rather than breaking them down.  Words hurt.  And they last, no matter how much you justify your responses.  

Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day

15 October 2012

Wow!   It's been awhile!   Sorry I've been so out of touch.  I need to get back into writing.  I think I've just been so spent with the boys, I end up just chilling when the silence finally comes.  Sorry!

I wanted to talk a little bit about Infant Loss and Remembrance Day.   What does it mean, to me, that is. 

I posted today on Facebook about it.  I think I posted 3 posts.  All about loss and remembrance.  I think a day like this is awesome.  I think its important.  But does it make me sad?  Usually not so much.  

It's been nearly 3 years since I've lost Selah.  Nearly 6, since I've lost Jorai.  I still miss them dearly.  I still struggle at times with guilt and anger and loss.  I still have nights where all I can think about are the nights I birthed them and held them and ultimately had to hand their bodies over to someone who would forever take them away.  I still struggle.  But I also still laugh, a lot.  I still live, a ton.  I still love, always.  

You see, a lot of people have a hard time hearing this.  A lot of people in "my community" of loss parents, have a hard time with the expression of "feeling or being blessed" but that's how I truly feel.  If I'm being honest, if I was never given my crazy daisy boys, Im not sure I would have ever recovered.  I'm not Job.  I know this to be a fact and in a way it makes me feel horrible, but that's life.  I know, deep down, if Asher and Greyson never came into our lives, my outlook would be different.  But today it's not.

I feel blessed.  I truly do.  I birthed two amazingly awesome girls that for some reason God needed.  And though at times it pisses me off that He needed them more than he thought I needed them, I know they're with Him.  And what better place could there be?  In the presence of God.  Isn't that what we all want?  Of course I would love to have a daughter.  I would love to experience pink and all the nuances of girlhood.  I would have loved to see the person(s) Asher (and Greyson) would become with older and younger sisters...but to be honest, we wouldn't have Asher or Greyson without the loss of Jorai and Selah.  And I LOVE my boys!   They are crazy and full of energy that deplete me at times.  But they're my boys.  They are my boys, the children that God wanted me to have.  I can't ask why He needed my girls.  It doesn't matter right now.  What matters are my boys.  Raising them and teaching them and loving them.  Laughing with them and playing with them and reminding them that they have two awesome sisters up in Heaven waiting for them.  

Sorry...I'm rambling.  It was a long day with the boys and to be honest, I think the rum and coke my awesome husband made me is making me chit chatty!  I guess this is where I'm going...

Thank you for all your prayers and thoughts today.  They mean a ton.  But I have to say, I'm OK.  I don't need prayers, other than for my sanity with living with two crazy boys! What I do need is prayer for all your pregnant friends.  I need prayer for babies.  For miscarriages and SIDS and congenital defects.  I need prayers for the rare, possibly, genetic connections to gestational loss.  I need prayer for babies growing within as well as growing on this earth.  I want people to know about stillbirth especially.  I don't want people to become scared, but at the same time, I want people to be aware.  I want people to know that stillbirth has a much higher rate than SIDS, even though it's only SIDS and miscarriage that we hear of at the doctors.  Stillbirth has a rate of 1 in 115 births, which is roughly 26, 000 a year.  26,000!   What was the SIDS rate in 2008?  2,353.  

When I was pregnant with Jorai, I worried about 2 things.  Miscarriage and SIDS.  When I reached the 12 week mark, I thought I was in the clear.  Little did I know...Little did I know.  Remember, what's the SIDS rate?  2,353...and the stillbirth rate?  roughly 26,000!   

So to be honest, Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day means outreach to me.  Yes, of course it's a way for me to remember my children...but I do this every day.  There's not one.single.day that I don't think about my daughters.  Not one day.  I don't need a special day to remember them.  But it gives me the box I need to stand on to reach out to others.  

So, thank you for your prayers and thoughts about me and my daughters.  But please, please, pray for your pregnant friends.  Pray for their babies both inside of them and the ones whom have graced our lives outside of the womb.  Babies.  They need our love, but they need our prayers too.  

For my girls, I love you and on this day, please know I miss you dearly.  As I do each and every day.  You will forever be missed but we all will be patiently waiting to meet you in Heaven.  We're proud of you and long to get a chance to laugh with you and hug you tight.  I miss your beautiful faces.  Your perfect bodies.  Your impact on our lives and the lives of our family and friends will forever be imbedded.  You are both completely and utterly amazing.  Give a shout out to the Big Man for us and let Him know that though we may not fully understand His plans...we're more at peace with them than ever.  But between you and me...they still suck in my opinion!

For all of you who are still reading...pray like mad for all the babies out there.  I'm so sick of hearing that another family has to travel down this road.  Pray!  Just pray.  

To all my babyloss friends out there...my heart aches for you as always.  We traveled down the road that is indescribable.  I love you all.  You are awesome and amazing and each one of your children will be forever engraved in my heart.  

Crazy Town...just another babyloss confession...

16 August 2012

After living with and raising two healthy boys for the past four years, I still freak out all the time that they will die in their sleep.  Today Greyson was still sleeping at 4:45.  He didn't make one sound from the time I put him down around 1 and I was starting to worry.  He normally naps for 2-3 hours, but he had been sleeping nearly 4 hours.  I was going to post on facebook if I should wake a sleeping baby or not...but then my first thought was..."what if he's dead and then I have to let everyone know we've lost another babe.".  

I know.  I'm crazy.  So...

I went upstairs, praying the whole time, and crept into his room and touched his arm.  Cold.  His skin was cold.  Too cold.  My heart sank.  I couldn't see him breathe.  I couldn't hear him breather.  I touched his tummy and still, he didn't move.  He was still.  I panicked. I tried to feel his breath...and still nothing.  

Freak out!

And then it happened.  He moved.  He rolled over and then he woke.  He was fine.  The kid was just sleeping.  He probably needed it.  I probably should have let him sleep longer, but no.  I freaked out.  

I know.  I'm crazy.  I often wonder if I would be this way if I hadn't held two of my children's lifeless bodies in my arms.  I always thought I'd be a super relaxed kind of mom...I'm realizing I'm pretty far from that.  

Mothers of loss, does this sound familiar, or am I just in my own little crazy world over here? 


Memorial Ink

10 August 2012

In two days I am finally getting memorial tattoo's for my beautiful baby girls.  I've thought a ton about this.  I've never gotten a tattoo before.  It's something I've wanted for so long.  I have a ton of friends that are inked and I find them beautiful.  But I've never found anything that I've wanted to place on my body forever...but then Jorai passed...and then Selah.  I thought about getting tattoo's of their names, and of their foot prints or their hand prints...but then I found it.  Something that represented them perfectly and something I knew that I could look at for the rest of my life and love.  A sweet little swirly, girly heart.  Two actually.  A similarly different one on each wrist with Jorai's name under the one on my left wrist, Selah on my right.  

I've gotten two questions when I've told people about my memorial tattoo's.  One is simply, why am I getting them.  The other is if I'll get tattoo's for my sons as well. SO first off, I'm getting them because living with loss is hard.  It's a challenge every day.  It's hard to describe to someone who hasn't gone through it, or some other dramatic loss.  But nearly every day I'm asked or reminded about my girls.  And describing a life of having four children but only being able to enjoy/see/live with two of them, is so hard.  

Having Asher and Greyson is such a blessing.  I laugh every day and I enjoy my life...but there's always a huge part of me missing.  There is always a hole...kind of like this gaping black hole that hides in the corner of the room, waiting to suck me in...but I'm always to stay just out of it's reach and keep myself breathing.  hmmm....I can see my boys, and hug them, and laugh with them...tickle them, read to them, kiss them and play with them.  They're here.  Living and breathing and occupying my space.   

Because I don't have that with my girls, I guess, I just want a piece of them on me at all times.  I want them with me, physically.  My memory of them in my arms is all I have and even those are fleeting.  I have a  few photos and blankets that touched them.  But I want a piece of them with me.  I want to look down at any time and see their names blazing on my wrists.  I want them a part of me physically and I want a part of them, as much as can be, physically here.  They get forgotten, not talked about, and pushed aside by too many, but not by me.  This little outwardly expression of the impact their short lives have made upon me, will forever be etched into me.  In a way, this little expression can never be taken from me.  Maybe it's just my way of holding on to them.   

Anyway...on to question two, will I get tattoo's for my sons as well...probably not, but the verdict is still out.  Why not?  Well, for me, like I said above, they're here on this earth with me.  I see them and hear them and smell them and can touch them.  They are here, reminding me they're here every second of the day.  I can share them with people in a physical way.  In a way I will  never be able to share my daughters.  

I don't know.  I'm super nervous.  I'm super excited.  And I simply can't wait.  Six years ago I had both the physical and emotional pain of birthing my first daughter, silently.  Three and a half years later, I had the same pain birthing my second daughter.  On Sunday, though the pain scares me, it also excites me.  To feel anything other than sorrow for my daughters will be wonderful.  To feel pain, plus have a little piece of them place upon my body forever, is a little indescribable.  

The in-between

02 June 2012

I have to admit that some times, I truly fantasize about death.  Not because I'm morbid or suicidal.  Not because I truly want to be, but because I'm only half...or maybe three quarters here on earth.  


I fantasize about who I'll see first.  Jesus?  My grandparents?  Friends?  Or will I see my daughters.  Will I care?  Because if I'm being honest here, I feel like I'd push all the above to the side to get a clear look at my girls.   I know, as a Christian, that's horrible.  I know there should be no one more important than Christ.  But to just get a look at my daughters.  To feel them and talk to them and look into their eyes.   Wow.  I can't wait.  I have a lot of living to do.  For Christ, for myself and for my living children.  But I seriously can't wait.  


I have to say that one of the things that crushes me about non-believers, is that they believe when their loved ones die, their gone.  forever.  Period.  Never, ever will they see them again.  I can't imagine a loss like that.  I believe I will see Jorai and Selah again.  I believe I'll see my Grandparents and Jeff and Susan and everyone else again.  I have lost them for a little while, or really what seems like an eternity...but I do know that I WILL see them again.  I seriously think, if I didn't believe that, I would never have made it out of the darkness alive.   I would have drowned.


Five years ago today, nearly at this moment, I was trying desperately to rouse my dead little girl within me. I already knew she was gone.  In my mind and soul, I knew.  But my heart.  My heart wouldn't believe.  So I drank juice and soda.  I took a hot shower and laid on my side.  Poking and prodding my stomach.  But there was only stillness.  


I feel like these days have turned into a movie I can't shut off.  Life happens.  You remember some, forget some and in the end, you just live.  But a loss like this, it happens like a slow motion movie.  And it embeds in your mind like writing in wet concrete.  Every moment.  Every decision.  Every second is there.  Every excruciating second. And you can't shut it off.  It's just there, playing in the background, waiting for you to realize it's there.  Haunting you in a sense. 


Some people don't understand why we celebrate the births of our daughters.  Really, is it something we should be celebrating?  It was a horror movie played out in our lives...why are we celebrating it?  Why not sweep it  under the rug and pretend it never happened?  


June 3rd and December 21st are times in our lives that are painful, yet beautiful.  Our loss is profound.  The emptiness that was left behind after the loss of our daughters will forever be reverberating and deafening.   Yet, their lives were untouched by this world.  They were needed for a higher calling.  They are still with us, waiting for us.  They're still our daughters. Still the boys sisters. They are still loved and missed and wanted.  I still carried them and held them and kissed them.  We still mourn and love them from a far. 


Five years ago on June 3rd, I lived through one of the darkest times of my life, yet held one of the most brightest gifts I've ever received.  Though I never wanted to let her go, she was never mine to keep.  And I know that one day, we will be together again.  For that, I celebrate her brief life on earth and the promise that one day, the emptiness that was created when two little girls were torn from my arms, will be filled with such joy and love that I'll finally be speechless.  


Jorai,


You were so wanted.  So loved.  You were beautiful and long.  Wow, you would have been tall.  Your fingers were so delicate, yet long as well.  I know you would have played piano!  Your lips were dainty and bright.  Your cheeks were kissable.  I look at your pictures now and see that you were a perfect mix of both of your brothers.  I see them both in your beautiful face.  


You have touched us in a way no other has before.  You have changed us and for that, I thank you.  I thank God for the brief time we had with you.  I thank Him for being able to held you and kiss you.  I miss you.  I just miss you so much.  We're happy down here.  The boys keep us busy and our lives are filled with laughter.  Something I didn't think was possible five years ago.  Our house vibrates with laughter and love.  Yet, your missed.  Your presence and laughter are missed.  I can't wait to give you all the hugs I've missed giving you these past five years.  You are always in my thoughts and always in my heart.  I love you sweet girl.


~Mama

Cloth diaper quandary

16 April 2012

I purchased a ton of Bum Genius diapers for my first son, and though we loved them, we found them to be a little snug for the monstrosity I call Asher. I was able to get through almost 2 years with Asher and then we had to put him in disposables, because he was just too big and we could no longer get a good fit in the BG. We also had/have fuzzi bunz, which are a little larger and a few Thirsties, which were lovely.


Then we had Greyson, who at first we thought was going to be our little guy...but not so much. Weighing in at nearly 30 pounds at 14 months and in 2T shirts, he not only has some girth but also a long torso, making the BG nearly impossible to wear. We can get them on, but the velcro tabs are barely on the sticky tab and they sit right at his upper thighs. If we're not careful, they cut up his legs. Which happens nearly every time my lovely husband helps out and changes a diaper. We can still get a decent fit using fuzzi bunz and and awesome fit in the Thirsties Duo.

So here's my quandary. Do I give up , sell my lot and just use disposables or do I try and sell my well worn BG and use the money to buy more Thirsties for the next year or so that we need them. I know I could go the cheaper way and get pre-folds, but I've never been a fan of them. I hate the thought of putting more money into diapers, but I also know I'll be saving in the long run, and since he won't be in the Thirsties for too long, I may be able to get a bit more out of them, compared to my well worn BG. But I just can't figure out what I want to do!

Any advice out there?

2 years old

10 April 2012

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My sweet Selah Mae should have been born on this day, two years ago. To think I could have a 2 year old daughter running around, crushes me. To be honest the day started just as any other day, and like any other day, the crushing feeling of loss sneaks up out of nowhere. Coupled with my current sleep deprivation, the day has been a rough one. It's strange really. Some "big" days come and go with little to no sorrow and then wham-o, it hits you like a ton of bricks.


And then the guilt hits. I think the guilt is the killer part. The thoughts of, why didn't I look at her more or take more photo's. I don't remember what her face looks like. And I don't have photo's to go back to. I only have her tiny feet and tiny hands. The fingers that were nearly too tiny to wrap around my own. Their coldness. I can still feel that. The cold, dry touch of death. The weightlessness of your child who was suppose to come into the world warm and pink, screaming and chunky. But that feeling of holding a child all too small, all too still, all too cold, haunts me. It's strange too, thinking I have held two all too tiny baby girls, yet my sons are huge and robust. They came out screaming louder than all get out, in comparison to the silence of the girls.

Losing both girls brought my sons into the world, into my life. And so it's so hard to miss them, because in missing them and wishing they were here, I feel like I'm saying that I wish the boys weren't..and I don't. My sons have saved me...kill me some days!...but save me. But I got pregnant with Asher, 3 months after losing Jorai and 6 months after losing Selah we were pregnant with Greyson. Without my daughters loss, the boys would have never ceased to exist. It's a reminder that in all things, God works. In all loss, God brings life. In all darkness, God sheds light.

In saying that, I miss my girls. And on this day, I can't stop thinking about pink and ponies and baby dolls and strawberry shortcake. I can't stop thinking that there was once a chance I could raise a daughter and watch her grow. Do girl things and help her plan her wedding and watch her become a mother. It's on days like this, I mourn not only my daughter but the dream of raising, and loving a living daughter. I know one day I'll get to meet my girls and I cannot wait. But it' hard not having them here.

I miss you my sweet child. You were wanted and loved and you will never be forgotten. My heart fills with joy, knowing you are spending your time in Heaven with your sister, though my heart aches for you to be here with us. We need a little pink in our lives! I love you and miss you so much my love.

yeah, I suck...it's been awhile, but here's an update!

05 March 2012

Wow, I keep thinking, "I need to post...I need to post, something!". But then I don't and another week passes. I look back at my pre-kiddo days and notice that I posted a ton. A ton. Obviously after the girls I posted for therapy, but I also used to post a ton on Asher so I would have his memories written down. Poor Greyson. I have posted no pictures...very few posts. Well, let me say, I LOVE MY SONS! And all the lack of posts do not represent my loss of words or memories of them...just lack of time! Which I guess is a good thing, but I do want to share. So here's a quick update...


Asher (aka the Abominable Snowman)
  • What a joy you are! Such a challenging, exhausting, loud, lovable, comedic, stinky, cuddly, joy filled little man you are! You make me laugh and usually cry every day.
  • You love your brother so much it hurts!
  • You are one of the most caring souls I have ever met, yet most of the time it's hidden under your giant blast of energy.
  • The other day as you were leaving with papa and Greyson was sitting and crying, you turned to him and said "Greyson, don't be sad, would you like me to stay home with you?" You make mama so proud of you!
  • You would rather be with your brother than away from him. You are already teaching him...which can be a scary thing when it involves climbing up the stairs of jumping off the couch! But in your nearly 4 year old heart and mind, you are loving your brother and that makes me proud of you.
  • You are totally into everything firefighter and spiderman and right now, legos consume your day! You build things and
    give them to us as presents every day.
  • Every day I drop you off at preschool, you run and quickly color me a picture before I leave. Every.single.time!
  • The other day you told me that you didn't want a toy of yours anymore so you were going to save it for my Christmas present next year!
  • You remind me when to stop at stop signs!
  • Whenever Greyson does something you think is funny, you yell out, "Greyson, you're silly!"
  • You LOVE to hide and jump out at people and you love to play hide and seek...though you usually hide in the same spot over and over again, giggling as we "try" to find you! It's hilarious!
  • When we hide and jump out at you, you squeal like a little girl and then laugh and ask to do it again!
  • You love to help mama cook...but not so much with cleaning.
  • When you see anyone outside, you knock on the window or call out their name to say hi.
  • You love your friends and I can already tell you will have many true, lifelong friends.
  • You are joy to me Asher. You can be a challenge at times, but you have a huge heart, a brilliant smile and are filled with so much love you ooze! I love you so much my dear, sweet child. Keep making me laugh!
Greyson:
  • You are my little chill child. Anyone can hold you and in fact you reach out to people to be held. You rarely cry, unless papa is in the room and I have you!
  • You love your papa! If he's in the room, you want nothing to do with anyone else.
  • You love baths and as soon as you're naked, you make a mad dash to the bathroom and bang on the tub.
  • You are a stinker with a capital S! You do things and when we say no, you slyly smile and do it again. And you're so stinking cute, we can't help but to laugh.
  • You can say Asher and cracker...who needs to say mama or papa, right?!?
  • When I ask you if you want to nurse, you light up and slap your legs squealing "yea, yea, yea". Though I don't think that's what you're saying, it sounds like it and cracks us up!
  • You love to be chased and squeal in excitement.
  • You bring things to us over and over again saying "da!". When mama reads to Asher, you will run back and forth from your room to his, bringing us more and more books.
  • When you walk you lead with your arm extended and then walk a circle, almost in full twirl mode. It's hilarious! You're like our own little Vanna White. In a little manly boy kind of way!!! :-)
  • You're already pushing cars around and making car noises like your big brother.
  • When I put my forehead against yours, you bend down and press yours against mine, smiling.
  • You love to play peek-a-boo and will do it all day, even when nursing.
  • You are such a sweet, loving soul.
  • You make my life rich with love and I absolutely love to watch you grow and learn.

You both make me so proud and happy. You bring smiles to my face each and every day. Even through my sleep deprived fog! You both rock my world! You're the best boys ever!!!


Broken Things ~ Julie (and Buddy) Miller

28 February 2012

Totally random. But today I've been a bit weepy...not sure why...hormones or the loss of the house we really wanted or exhaustion...I don't know and it doesn't matter. But as I was sitting here tring to complete my BSF study for the week, this song popped up. It's always held such a special place in my heart so I wanted to share. It's Broken Things by Julie Miller. Such a beautiful song.




You can have my heart
Though it isn't new
It's been used and broken
And only comes in blue
It's been down a long road
And it got dirty on the way
If I give it to you will you make it clean
And wash the shame away

You can have my heart
If you don't mind broken things
You can have my life if you don't mind these tears
Well I heard that you make old things new
So I give these pieces all to you
If you want it you can have my heart

So beyond repair
Nothing I could do
I tried to fix it myself
But it was only worse when I got through
Then you walked into my darkness
And you speak words so sweet
And you hold me like a child
Till my frozen tears fall at your feet

You can have my heart
If you don't mind broken things
You can have my life if you don't mind these tears
Well I heard that you make old things new
So I give these pieces all to you
If you want it you can have my heart

roller coaster of life

05 February 2012

A friend came up to me last night to tell me that I've been on her heart and in her thoughts and prayers, or more so, my losses have been. And I was touched. It's been a while since someone has told me that they have been thinking of our losses. And so we started talking about loss and trauma and such and I was telling her that I've gotten to a place where I feel OK about things. I mean, don't get me wrong, it still sucks and I miss them like crazy, but on a day to day basis...I'm OK.

Since losing Jorai, I've wanted to get a memorial tattoo. But I'm not really a tattoo kind of person. So I could never make up my mind. Then when we lost Selah, again, I got this itch to do something. I think it's part the pain of the actual tattoo, plus the permanence...almost saying "OK, try to take this away!" As I shake my fist...But really, it's just something I can always look down upon and think "yeah, my baby girls are right here.". OK, it sounds cheesy...but to have something, anything tangible to hold onto, I crave that. People whom have lost babies who are a day or week or month or year old, they have things. They have memories and blankets and clothes and photographs. I only have the photographs. And they're not happy ones. So to have something on me, always. I don't know...there's just something about it. But again, not much of a tattoo person.

Well, last night, I couldn't shake the tattoo feeling off. And then this morning it hit me. What I think I really, really want to do. It's perfect, I think. And I just can't shake it. Using white ink, a small heart on each inside wrist with Jorai's name above the heart on my right wrist...Selah's name on my left.

Then tonight, I finally listened to a song a friend had sent me about loss. Sometimes it takes me awhile, a long while, to read or listen to something about loss. The pain is still there, just under the surface and I know the slightest sadness can unrest my peace. But for some reason, I listened to it. The song is beautiful. Hauntingm but beautiful. It's about a 3 month old little boy who died of Pertussis. It's called Salt Lake City Rain by Ryan Tanner. Here are the lyrics:
Love of my heart, why must we part?
I said a prayer on a heavenly start
Give me this day shoulders of strength
To carry the burden of time taken away

I woke last night to a voice in the hall
I heard you calling my name
I rushed to meet you, found nothing at all
All I could hear was the Salt Lake City rain

Love of my heart, where do I start
To patch up the pieces of the old-fashioned heart?
When will it turn, what lessons could we learn?
I'll be counting the days 'til the sun will return

I woke last night to a voice in the hall
Thought I heard you calling my name
I rushed to meet you, found nothing at all
All I could hear was the Salt Lake City rain
Ugh. Can't stop listening to it. Can't stop reading the moms posts and watching the slideshow, seeing the tiny casket. Makes me miss my girls. Really, really bad. And I know it's been a rough go emotionally lately with all the exhaustion, but MAN, I'm still shocked by the waves of grief that still come crashing down.

What a difference 24 hours can bring. One moment I can be standing so strong...and then, not so much.

And what amazes me more? The fact that God placed me on a friends heart, even when I didn't think I needed her. I did need you. Thank you for listening and keeping me in your prayers.

I remember Noel painting this picture of Christ's love. I remember him telling a story about his son who was angry and sad all rolled up into one and Noel just sat there holding him as he kicked and screamed and tried to get loose. And he just sat there, waiting for him to calm down. And he said that's what Christ does for us. As we kick and scream and shake our fists at Him, He's sitting there, holding onto us, waiting for us to calm down.

Through my faith struggle these past few years, I've always remember that. And I've always known, though there are times where I shake my fist at God and scream at Him, He's there, arms open wide, wanting to grieve along with me.

I think this is a perfect example of that. Even though I still am a bit stand offish and raise my fist in anger and sadness...He's still there. Loving me. Grieving with me. And placing people in my life who continue to support and love me. If that's not love, I don't know what is.

parenting lessons learned

30 December 2011

I've wanted to post this for awhile now but never knew how to say it in a loving way...here's my attempt.

In my opinion, it takes a village to raise a child. I'll never forget when we started potty training Asher and I had posted on facebook that he was in big boy undies and doing a great job going potty. That weekend a dear friend walked right past me and up to Asher at Church, knelt down to his level and excitedly praised and encouraged his efforts and successes on the potty. As I witnessed this, tears came to my eyes. For the first time, I witnessed how proud a child can be when they are praised by someone other than their parents. It will be a memory I will always cherish. On the same token, I have witnessed the look in my son's eyes when someone is looking at him in loathing or disappointment when he is doing something they think is inappropriate. And unfortunately, most of the time it's his valiant attempt to get someones attention when they're ignoring him.

Parenting has been the hardest job I have ever embarked on. It is of course the most rewarding as well and I love my children fully and all encompassing, but it's hard. Some days, it's really, really hard. And in those hard times, this is what I've learned. There are people who unconditionally love and support me and for that, I'm am whole heartily thankful. And there are others who aren't so supportive. They are the "I can't believe your child is doing this or that.", "You must be blind to not see your child is delayed.", "I only had to tell my child one time not to do something and he/she never did it again." I just don't understand. these people. Parenting is not an avenue to make someone feel like a failure, but rather a platform to bring people together. It's not a competition or a race or a way to see who's child is better. Every child develops and acts in their own time frame and ways. Each child is individual. And most parents are only making the best decisions they can for their family. They are not telling you that your way is wrong, at least most aren't!, they are not bad parents if they don't do everything you did or think they should do nor are they blind at how their child is developing. To these people, I can only say one thing. I'm sorry. I'm sorry you feel you have to put others down to build yourself up. We should be in community and not at odds.

So, why am I sorry? Because I know what true friends are. I know how true friends treat one another, and I know how you can be 100% honest with them and they'll come back with only loving, constructive opinions and unconditional support. They don't put you down. They don't send anonymous letters bashing you and your family. They are loving and supportive. They listen and not judge and are patient. True friends are community. They're family.

This is what I know about me. I love my children with all that I have. They bring me joy and a love I've never known. They teach me and amaze me every day. In saying that, I fail them nearly every day. I either lose my patience or temper, I yell way to often, I fail in choosing nice words at times, I let them watch too much tv...you name it...at times I fail. But I try my best. I try to explain and be compassionate without being a doormat, I try to encourage them and support them, I teach them kindness and I can honestly say that there has only been 2 nights that Asher went to bed knowing I was mad. And I still feel guilty about it. I teach them discipline and respect and most important I teach them about unconditional love and how to treat and love people.

Why am I saying all of this? Why am I being so open and honest? Because as moms and dads, I we need to be. We need to be supporting one anther. We need to have support groups that we can trust to be open with, to be honest with. We need to help one another and encourage one another and make each other KNOW that we're not alone. We have to stop judging and slandering and making people believe that they're failing....because as parents, we're already pretty good at thinking we're failures.

To my friends, thank you. Thank you for loving me. Thank you for supporting me. Thank you for letting me, be me and fostering a relationship in which I can be 100% open and honest. At any time, I know I can bare my soul and know that I will not be judged, but only loved. Some of you supported me in a way last night that I can't express my thanks enough. It has been a few hard weeks over here and last night I had a bit of a breakdown. Thank you for being honest with me. Thank you for loving me. And thank you for supporting me.

Something I've been wrestling with

06 December 2011

Preface...this is me verbally vomiting a faith struggle of mine. I'm a work in progress, especially in my faith walk. I'm just trying to wrap my mind and heart around...

Prayer. Prayer has always been a common sense thing to me...a way to praise God, a way to talk to him, a way to ask for forgiveness, help...you name it, it's an open conversation. An ever willing open ear...and one that doesn't even talk back!

When you're going through a hard time, Christians tell you to pray...if you need answers, you find them in prayer...want a good outcome? pray. Good health? pray. A miracle? Pray. And I think this is wonderful. Pray, pray, pray. Prayer isn't my issue. This is my issue...

When there's a positive outcome, it's positive because you prayed for it to be. God "answered your prayer". But what happens when you pray for a good outcome and you don't get it. And not even that...what do you say to people who say "Look at this amazing blessing God has given you!" when you have a good outcome, but when bad things happen the same person will say "God didn't do this, God didn't allow this to happen." How can He be praised for all the good stuff that happens but then if bad things befall us, He has had nothing to do with it?

After losing two children, this is still a hard concept for me to wrap my mind around. Do I pray? All the time. Do I pray for the protection and health of my children? All the time. But in all honesty, I have a hard time knowing my prayers matter. I mean, I know they matter in the sense that I believe God wants to have conversations with us and that He loves us...but I don't know if my prayers really, truly make a difference in the outcome of my children's life. I want to believe that they do, but I can't stop thinking about how much I prayed for Jorai and Selah...and yet they were still taken from me.

I know this may sound silly...but I was watching that new show on Lifetime called One Born Every Minute the other night. There was a girl who wasn't progressing "fast enough" and the docs were threatening a c-section. The girls mom or baby daddy's mom started praying and talking in tongues and voila, she starts progressing...so they raise up their hands and praise God. But was it God who answered that prayer? Or was it her body progressing in the time frame it needed to progress? And what would they have said if she didn't progress and needed a c-section? Would they still have praised God? Even when they got an outcome different than what they wanted?

Again, I think prayer is wonderful. I think God listens to our prayers and answers them...but I have issue with what happens when we don't get a good outcome. I have some friends that have issue with God because they've had crappy things happen to them over and over again. In their perspective, what kind of loving God would take not one, not two, but three + babies away from the same woman? What loving God would allow abuse or rape or disasters? In my faith wrapped heart, I know it's not God that allows bad things to happen. They are a by-product of our fallen world...but again, my thoughts go back to...if we praise God for answered prayers? He must, in-fact, answer them. In saying that, doesn't that mean that he doesn't answer prayers too? How else do you wrap your mind around praying so fervently about something, only to have it taken away?

I know in all things, God uses us for His glory. His good. I know that we are given struggles to mold us into the person God wants and needs us to be. And that He uses all the good and the bad in our lives. I feel we went through our losses for a reason. I feel that He now uses us to reach out to others. To help others. And I embrace that. I wear it like a badge of honor. I miss my girls. Though I feel raped of the opportunity to know them and to have watched them grow. But I'm also joyful for the opportunity to be able to help others in a way most people cannot. I'm "OK" with my lot. I'm just confused. How do you pray? How do you have a prayerful heart without expectations and how can you be OK with the answer or rather lack of answer you receive? Would you be OK praying for your child for months only to get an answer of death? And if that happens, do you then praise Him for it?

I keep thinking of the song Blessed Be Your Name where they say "He gives and takes away.". And though I don't believe it's technically biblical. It totally rings true for me. No matter how fervently I pray. NO matter how much. I may not get the the answer I seek. And if I do get it, it may then be ripped from my hot little hands in no time at all. So again, I have to ask myself...other than an open conversation with Jesus...which is awesome...why pray about the things you seek, the health of your family and friends? In the end does it really matter? And if it does, what did we do wrong in our prayers for our girls?

Just some thoughts and questions rattling around in my soul.

my little, big boy

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The rocking chair in Greyson's room is pushed into the South-West corner of his room. Every time I nurse/rock him to sleep, I stand up, cradling him in my arms as his head nestles into the crook of my neck. I always love that feeling. His warm breath against my skin.


On the wall, in-between the rocking chair and his crib, hangs a large mirror. Each time I walk towards the crib with my little sleeping child nuzzled in close, I look at us in the mirror. After losing Jorai...and then again after losing Selah, I would dream about this. The feeling of the warm breath of a sleeping child against my skin. Feeling their weight in my arms, their warm body pressed into mine. I think it's one of the best feelings in the world. A sleeping child, perfectly secure and loved and comforted in your arms.

Today, as I was relishing in the joy of snuggling my baby, I looked up into that mirror and almost fell over. Where did my little baby go? No longer is there a sweet bundle of baby. He has been replaced by a gigantic toddler. His arms and torso nearly completely cover my chest, his head barely fits in the crook of my neck and his legs fall down past my waist, hitting the middle of my thighs! WOW. My 10 month old outweighs his 2 year old friends and is in 18-24 month shirts. My dear sweet baby boy is a giant. But I don't care...he'll always be my sweet baby boy. And I'll continue to cradle him and nuzzle him for as long as he lets me.

Here's to you my sweet little boy. You are a joy and a blessing to my family.

Lost For Words Cards

16 October 2011

A friend of mine just let me know of a cool site where you can order personalized cards for loss. It’s called Lost For Words Cards. I’m not sure how I missed this, but I’m glad I’ve found it! It’s another amazing venture from Carly Marie Dudley and Franchesca Cox. Lost For Words specializes in cards for pregnancy loss, infant loss and infertility. Go check it out and share with your friends.

Below are their categories of cards.

Anniversaries and Birthdays
Baby’s Due Date
Birthday Cards To Children In Heaven
Celebration Of Life
Certificates of Life
Christmas
Fathers Day
Friendship Between Babylost Parents
General Pregnancy and Infant Loss
Gravely Ill Babies and Children
Hospital Memory Boxes
Infertility
Miscarried Babies
Mothers Day
Newborn Babies (After a Loss)
NICU and Premature Babies
NICU Nurse Day (Septemer 15th)
October 15th Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness NEW!
Offering Hope
Pregnancy After Loss
Siblings
Termination of Pregnancy
The Loss of a Daughter
The Loss of a Grandchild
The Loss of Multiple Children
The Loss of a Nephew
The Loss of a Niece
The Loss of a Son
The Loss of One Twin

selfishness

24 September 2011

This is a bit convoluted, so sorry in advance...I just wanted to get it out before life gets loud and I forget my thoughts.

There's a huge part of me that still screams out "give me back my daughter(s)!" As a parent, I think that's normal and expected. It's natural to never want to see your child suffer or be taken before you. We've all heard that "A parent should never have to bury their child". In our hearts and in our minds, the order is backwards. I miss my girls. I desperately want to be in their presence. Look into their eyes, feel their skin, hear their laughter. But tonight at Riv, I was also reminded how selfish I am when I'm angry at God for the suffering I've had to endure.

And I say this with a caveat. I think it's normal and OK (totally OK) to be mad at God after a loss. Christian or not, being mad at God is OK. It's all a process. I also totally believe that even in your anger, He's standing there, holding you through your pain. But tonight, I was reminded that in all things, God is great. And that He uses all people, all circumstances, for His greater good. I never meant to be selfish in my loss. I never really though of it that way. And I know that in my circumstance, maybe it's OK to be a little selfish. My child died. I can be selfish...but at the same time, being selfish will only push me further away for Christ. And really, what good it that?

I've always wanted to think that we lost our girls for a reason. That their brief life wasn't all in vain. Wasn't all by chance. Wasn't all just a turn of the cards. I have a hard time wrapping my mind around that in the first place. As if life is just a crap shoot. As if we're all here stumbling around, created by chance, living for nothing, and dying only to rot away. I can't see it.

So, when Jorai passed, I "knew" or at least wanted to think, that her brief life meant something. That I had to lose her for my life to touch someone...change something. And though losing Selah, shook my foundation, there was still this hope that her death had purpose. Her life and imprint on my heart, had purpose.

Tonight's message reminded me that their lives, our loss, our pain, all has a purpose. I can't rejoice in my loss. I can't thank God for my suffering. I'm no where near that nor do I think I'll ever be that person. I want my babies back. I have no problem confessing that. Selfishly, it sucks. I'm mad. I cry out, "Why me, Lord?". But I also embrace that their lives had meaning and that I hold fast to that knowledge. I hold fast that through their short but meaningful lives, God shines and He'll use their lives, their story, my loss, our sorrow, for His goodness. His glory. I know for a non-believer this may be too much...it may be wacko. I was there once. I would have spent 1 minute reading this and then wrote it off as crazy talk...but my heart has changed and for me, this is the only thing that makes sense.

Tonight, the band played Never Let Go. Not sure who wrote it...but it just really rang true tonight.

Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
Your perfect love is casting out fear
And even when I'm caught in the middle of the storms of this life
I won't turn back, I know you are near

I will fear no evil
For my God is with me
And if my God is with me
Whom then shall I fear
Whom then shall I fear

Oh no You never let go through the calm and through the storm
Oh no, You never let go in every high and every low
Oh no, You never let go, Lord, You never let go of me

And I can see the light that is coming for the heart that holds on
A glorious light beyond all compare
And there will be an end to the struggles
But until that day comes, we'll live to know You here on the Earth

And I will fear no evil
For my God is with me
And if my God is with me
Whom then shall I fear
Whom then shall I fear

You keep on loving and you never let go

And i can see a light that is coming for the heart that holds on
and there will be and end to the struggles
but until that day comes
Still I will praise you
Still I will praise you.
I know I've talked about this before, but when we lost Jorai, as devastated as I was, I knew in my heart that God was near and that though her loss sucks and I was full of sorrow and sadness, there was a reason. But when we lost Selah, my faith was rocked. I was torn. I was crushed. I was selfishly pissed and wanted to curse God. Well, I did curse God to tell you the truth. But I knew God remained by my side. Waiting for me to accept the love He wanted to show me.
"Oh no You never let go through the calm and through the storm
Oh no, You never let go in every high and every low
Oh no, You never let go, Lord, You never let go of me"
Tonight I was reminded that it's not about me. Whether my girls were taken from me for a reason or they just passed because of something doctors couldn't find, it doesn't matter. God will use my suffering to help others. I may not know who and when He'll help others, but He will. And I'm also reminded that no matter what hell on earth I go through, He never let's me go. He's there, holding me through the pain. And for that I rejoice.

To You be the glory. I'm still sad. I still mourn. I still cry out at times. But to you God, be the glory.