Wednesday, May 25, 2011


Grieving is a funny thing. Not that the word 'funny' should really be associated with grief. Maybe I mean Grieving is a strange thing. It feels like an ever-changing process. First you feel one way, then another. You think you are past a certain feeling and it creeps up again out of nowhere. You feel like all your tears are cried, your cheeks have been dry for a few days, then out of nowhere come buckets full of tears. It's kinda like being on a roller coaster in the dark: you can't see whether there is a hill or a drop or a turn ahead. You just ride it along.

Going through this season I have been sad. So sad. Sad doesn't feel like a strong enough word. My heart has hurt. Really really hurt. I find myself experiencing something and thinking 'my babies won't get to do that.' They won't get to go to a Reds game, or swim in a pool. They won't walk a beach or marvel at the Grand Canyon. They won't run around the zoo with their friends and blow bubbles on hot days.

What hits me in those moments, though, is the realization that my babies aren't missing out. They aren't going to miss those things; I am. I won't get to see the smile on their face at the ballpark. Or catch them as they jump into a pool. I will miss hearing their shrieks as waves come at them, and the chance to answer their questions about nature. As I watch my children run around with their friends I will miss the children who aren't there. But those children won't be missing anything. They are in the courts of the King, walking streets of gold. Their little bodies are already made perfect, and they will never have to hurt. They won't have skinned knees or hurt feelings. They won't feel left out by their friends or fall and break an arm. No stitches, no hospital visits, just perfect paradise.

It is I who will hurt. My arms ache to hold them; my lips yearn to kiss their sweet little noses. My eyes seek out a face that isn't there. My body yearns to cuddle them close. My heart...oh my heart wants first steps and first words, kisses and 'mamas,' story time and naps together. My mind wanders down paths of what might have been...favorite colors...sports to lessons...who would they have been? My spirit yearns for what I will never have in this world, these beautiful children, but my soul will know them someday.

Grief is not for those gone. They have nothing to hurt over. Grief is truly for those of us left behind. We are the ones to hurt. I stop short of saying it's a selfish emotion, because I don't believe it is. The Bible tells us "Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted." I don't believe grief is something I have to 'get over' or 'work through.' At least not on my own. I believe, at the end of the day, the moral of the story is where I go with my grief. Or more importantly, to Whom I go. I can't process it on my own. I don't understand the how or why. But I do know Who is my Refuge. I know Who will hold me when I need to be comforted, Who will strengthen me when I want to fall. In turning to Him I can be made stronger, I can love more deeply, and rely on Him more fully in the future.

I read recently that our scars remind us of 'God's unfailing presence' in our lives. I am not looking for God to completely heal me on the other side of this grief. I'm not looking to be the person I was before. As a good friend pointed out, what's the point of growing through something hard if you don't end up better for it on the other side? So I choose to take refuge in my God. I choose to trust Him when it doesn't make sense to me. I choose to live in faith, to love and take risks with my heart, trusting in Him to make the pieces fit together.

Monday, May 23, 2011


Have I posted about community before? Quite possible. Maybe it's because we are blessed with such great community. Or maybe it is because I crave community. Or maybe it is because God wants us to be in community. Regardless, it is an increasingly more important part of my life.

This has really hit home for me recently. Going through some difficult times we have really leaned on our community. I have appreciated friends calling to see how I am doing. I have valued a shoulder to cry on, an outing to distract me from my thoughts, words of wisdom, and prayers on my behalf. Having such support is invaluable.

Last night was a night of community at our house. Some folks we know (and some folks we didn't know!) came over for a night of 'church.' People shared their lives, their hurts, what they were hearing from God, how they were growing, and challenges to the rest of us. It was good stuff. It culminated with a baptism in our pool. Awesome!

While this was going on, Jameson had his own little community of friends as all the kids were playing together, pushing around trucks, throwing balls, with very little fighting and lots of sharing. It was precious!

Today I had a doctor appointment. Two wonderful friends made it possible for me to go to the doctor and the lab for bloodwork on my own, no kiddo attached! One friend watched him while her daughters were at school and napping. Those of you with kids know how precious that little bit of down time is, yet she gave it up to love on my son. And another friends brought her daughter home from school to make it all possible. And when I walked in the door woozy from giving 10 vials of blood a nice lunch was awaiting me. How generous is that?

I love my community. I love the people God has blessed me with in this life. I love how we are all gifted in different ways, and those gifts come together to make a perfect picture of His Kingdom. Makes me want to go out and bless some others!

Sunday, May 22, 2011


To my fellow bloggers: do you ever go through life thinking 'wow, this is big. I am learning something. There is truth in this situation. This is something I want to process, to journal about, to blog about.' Then, by the time the baby is in bed, the kitchen is cleaned up, the dog is out (insert your own list of chores here) you finally sit down at the keyboard and all the words are gone?????? What about all those good things I was learning? What about the ideas I wanted to put out there to see what your thoughts would be? Where have they gone? Will they come back?

Oh, so many questions. But I guess the good news is that I am learning; I am growing. If I haven't remembered the details that seemed so important there must be a reason. Maybe I have already internalized that idea and moved on. Maybe it is still simmering, not yet ready to be captured in black and white. Maybe my motivation for posting it was wrong, maybe there was some pride in wanting to share, in looking for accolades. Maybe there is still too much hurt, the emotions are too raw.

Maybe it is just to show that I don't know the answers. Lots of questions. Lots of wondering. Isn't that the state of life? The more I learn, the more I wonder. The more I experience, the more questions I have. The more I know of God, the more I want to know Him more. That's what I want. So bring the questions, bring the search, for in them there is growth.

That's all I've got for right now, but I sense more coming...

Monday, May 16, 2011


What an interesting word. Redemption. We have heard it all our lives, often in very different contexts. A couple of months ago, when I had my first miscarriage, a dear friend shared with me some things God had told her as she prayed for me. These thoughts have been very dear to my heart as I have pondered them since. One was her certainty that God would redeem every tear, every moment of grief, every cell of thie pregnancy. I have clung to that hope since.

It is not for me to determine what that redemption looks like. Or when it will happen. Like everything else in life, I have to trust God, to lean on Him, let Him be my refuge and strength.

But, I had a glimpse of that redemption on Friday, and it was good.

On that day, Jameson was sick. Nothing major a little tummy upset, but he wasn't feeling well and didn't want to nap. I finally put him on my lap. We glided in the rocking chair while I snuggled him close, stroked his hair, and sang him lullabyes. With my rambunctious 19 month old, this doesn't happen often. Normally he runs at full throttle until he crashes into a nap, then he runs some more. But Friday he just wanted to be held. He wanted to be cuddled.

Like a newborn baby.

I, of course, ate it up. I rocked and I sang, I prayed for him and for me, for our family and my lost babies, long after he fell asleep in my arms. And I thanked God. I didn't get to rock those two little babies to sleep the way I would have wanted to. God had other plans. But I am certain they are in heaven with Him. I am certain they are happy and healthy and whole. And, in his infinite wisdom, He gave me my baby to rock on Friday afternoon.

I have been pondering those moments ever since. I treasure them in my heart. Today I took Jameson to get a haircut. He hated it. He wailed and cried and tried so hard to get away. Nothing distracted him, nothing placated him. I held him in my arms and he wailed against me while the poor stylist tried to finish. When we left, she gave him a blue balloon. The boy is in love with that balloon. We came home and he carried it all over the house, batted it around, showed it to the dog. He is in heaven over this new toy. And the similarities struck me. While I have been crying and grieving, God has been holding me close. He has never left my side, nor will He. And the heaven I look forward to is going to be so much better even than the blue balloon that put a smile on my child's face. My Saviour is there, my hope is there, and my babies are there together waiting for me.

So I wait...and I hope...and I anticipate redemption.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

A Good Day

Today has been a good day. A good day.

There were many reasons conspiring to not allow this to be a good day. In fact, there were many reasons for this to be a miserable, horrible, wretched day. But, we made a decision, I made a decision, that this was going to be a good, fun day. And it WAS!

I got to wear 4 outfits. You may ask why that makes it a good day. Well, it's what each of those outfits represents. I got to lounge around in my pjs while I fed Jameson breakfast and drank some yummy tea. Then I got to clean up (fix my hair, make up, the works!) and put on a cute dress and heels and my boys took me to brunch, mimosa and all. I felt like royalty. The food was great, I was relaxed, Jameson even behaved in his high chair. We took a leisurely drive home, where I got to put on yoga pants and a hoodie to watch tv while Jameson napped. Who can beat curling up on the couch with the internet and the remote (that's right, I got the remote!) When Jameson woke up I got to change into jeans and a t-shirt and we hit the road. We took a great drive, then met up with friends for an impromptu dinner and drinks. Jameson got to run and play outside at a driveway party. What fun! So many different aspects to our day, all of them so enjoyable, so relaxing, so out of the ordinary.

There is plenty of bad in this world. There are plenty of things that go on that make you not want to get out of bed in the morning. But there are also plenty of amazing things for which to be grateful: the smell of blooming lilacs, the sweet taste of a strawberry blintz, and a grin and a kiss from my sweet sweet son. What could bring more joy to a Mother's Day?

I could live life in a defensive mode, protecting my heart from all the potential for hurt in the world, but is that really living? I choose to live. Really, fully live life to the fullest. That might open my heart up to hurt along the way (and wow does it hurt right now.) But without the hurt how can we fully appreciate the joy? And I CRAVE the joy. I choose life, I choose fullness, I choose joy, and I trust God as my refuge through the hurt. Because he is the perfect refuge. His ways are not always my ways, but His love is so much bigger than me. His love is perfect. And perfect love drives out fear. So I will live on.