Monday, May 14, 2012

Numb, all-over-the map thoughts today.

That's how I feel today... numb. All-over-the-map. A mess. So muddy in my thoughts. That's me right now.  Yesterday was Mother's Day, and the day I was due with Hartley Joy. I don't know why I had to be due with her on Mother's Day. A day that is supposed to be a celebration of the precious little ones who make us mommies and yet I've had two Mother's Days pass laced with the loss of a baby. So many women can relate.  My dear friend, college roommate and fellow mommy to a baby gone to soon, Julie experienced the raw reality of her first Mother's Day without her precious son Timothy.  For us, we didn't look forward to yesterday.  

Can I be real with you? Good. We didn't go to church on Mother's Day. It was more of a last minute decision Saturday night because we ended up spending the night at my in-laws so we would be closer to Hartley's grave. We were planning to go see her and it just made more sense to stay there after celebrating Mother's Day with the hubs family so we wouldn't have to drive across town to go see her (not that I wouldn't drive across the nation and cross the seven seas if I had to because I would!). But, I have to tell you that I really didn't have a burning desire to go to church on Mother's Day because I didn't want to watch some video of all the babies born or see baby dedication or be reminded even more that today isn't what I planned. I don't want to be in a habit of denying reality and truth, but I didn't need more of a reminder that my reality isn't what it was going to look like before January 24th came.  I want to deal with what is my new reality, I want to join God in his plans for my life rather than what my plans are, but it's so hard when what I thought was God's plan to grow our family with the addition of Hartley Joy turned out to be God's plan to grow our family closer to Him with the stillbirth of Hartley.  

From the beginning of my pregnancy with Hartley I thought, "I'll never make it to my due date because Zach came a month early." Wow, I couldn't have been more right. What I didn't know at the time was that I would not only not make it to my due date, but that I would also not get to keep my baby. I hate that. There's no other way to put it. I hate not getting to hold my baby, I hate not having sleepless nights with a little girl who wants to eat every hour, I hate that to go "see her" I have to bring flowers, talk to an expensive piece of granite and by "see her" I don't really get to do that either. A beautiful, perfectly designed piece of granite, nonetheless, but it's just stone. 

Hartley Joy,
Sweet girl, your Mommy and Daddy miss you so much. There is no way around that. We long so deeply to have you in our arms. We don't understand why we received this cup of suffering.  However, we are so thankful that while we are hurting and broken and full of grief, your life has been absent of all those things. You are whole, perfect and have been given a body everlasting. You are rejoicing in the eternal life you have already received, and have a Heavenly Father who loves you even more than we do. Your life and your death is teaching us so much. Because of you, your Daddy and I anticipate Heaven and eternity. Because of you, your Daddy and I value life, no matter how short or long, even more than we already did. Because of you, we are better. We love you girl and cannot wait to meet you again in Heaven. 

-Mommy and Daddy

Hartley's gravestone. The flowers in the vase are from Caleb, Zachariah and me, the flowers on the left are from her Grammy and Grandaddy, and the flowers on the right are from her Mimi and Poppa. She is so loved and missed! 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

A Purpose for My Grief.

I have felt so lost on this journey of grief, so empty. I don't know why we lost our daughter, why we are having to travel this road. I have cried that question so many times in my head and out loud without an audible response. Sometimes, though, it seems as though scripture and the quiet whispers of my heart are leading me to deeper understanding...

I know that we are being refined in this process, have a deeper understanding of God, can relate to slew of people we poorly attempted to relate to before but couldn't because we hadn't "been there", and absolutely above all, desire Heaven in a very real way. Aside from the thought of leaving my son, my husband and all of my family and friends, I have no fear to die. In dying I know I will be reunited with my daughter and my Saviour who made it all possible. Gosh, what hope would I have without my Saviour, to know that my time away from my daughter is only temporary: only days, months or years separated now to be together again for all of eternity.

Can I ask, what is your hope, what do you anticipate within the walls of the grief in your life? Do you have any? You need hope... if there is no hope, what is there? How do you go on, what do you believe is the purpose for all this in your life? Can I tell you that this is not God's punishment, but He has a purpose for all of this in your life. There is a greater plan for your grief, for your life.

"As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?” Jesus answered, “It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him."  -John 9:1-3

I pray that the works of God may be displayed in my life through the loss of our daughter, not for our glory but for His.