Tuesday, October 28, 2008

No longer ordinary

Since I am not actually posting this tonight, I should probably note that tonight, is Tuesday October 28th.

I'm not sure where this goes either...this blog? A place so devoted to the lessons and journey through faith that came from my sweet little Eden. Or is it better posted in my other blog? Somewhere where I am trying to live my faith out loud in my reality.

In the end, I think it goes here. Much of this particular story is directly influenced by Eden's life and death.

Tonight My husband and I decided to share a secret with out three living children. A secret we have been keeping for nearly a month.

Tonight we told them that we are, once again, expecting.

I think they almost melted from the sheer joy. My daughter especially. Eden was supposed to be her special gift. Her only sister thus far, born just two days after her birthday.

Her heart craves that sibling even more so than her brothers. She craves a sister most of all...and for lots of reasons I hope this baby is a girl. Never to replace Eden, but to meet a significant need in all of us.

There was joy tonight in the announcement. Joy even from the little one. And lots of jokes. A few times my children started or ended with "If this one lives.". It was the most innocent and non jaded ways it could ever be said, but it cut me to the quick. I don't even think they think this baby may not make it, but they don't live in a world where all babies come home either.

It both breaks my heart and makes me glad as well. Breaks my heart that so young this their reality, but so glad that this house is a safe place to talk about such things. That it's not a secret fear or dread.

So once again I covet your prayers. We all do. Prayers for a healthy baby. A safe delivery...and so much more.

God's grace is heavy here but the enemy whispers words of fear and dread almost constantly.

And now an update on Thursday October 30th:

Not even 24 hours after we told the kids and within hours of telling my mother and my pastors wife , I noticed some unusual things happening with my body. So this morning I had my first OB appointment.

My dr seemed rather unconcerned given the size of my uterus but, with "spotting" and such we opted for an ultrasound.

What we saw was neither good, nor horribly bad. A fetal sac in the right size and shape, but no little kidney bean.

What this means is that, either I was just a little too early to see the baby, or...and my heart breaks to say it... there is no baby.

Needless to say I left the office thick with emotion. "How could something like this be happening after all we have been through?"

I can't help but wonder, what is the lesson? What is the plan?

The mood is not bright in our house today but I can feel, somewhere at the fringes of by battered heart, I can feel God reaching to comfort me. To tell me...something.

God still has dominion over this pregnancy. He can still reveal a healthy little baby. I can still hold this baby in my arms this summer.

My faith and hope tell me these things but my heart is having trouble truly believing them.

I am begging for and coveting your prayers. I am oing in again next week and hope with all the hope I can muster to see a little miracle.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

One very amazing year

A few weeks ago someone asked me how I planned to remember Eden this week. At the time my husband and I had made no solid plans but knew that what we really wanted to do was just be together as a family...

One of the things I said to my friend was that really, I wanted to fill the house with flowers and celebrate her.

We have had flowers in the house ever since I returned from the hospital. Flowers from friends filled the house in the weeks following , but as they slowly died and the number dwindled it became something that we could do to remember her.

We have a spot in the living room that always has flowers. Something bright and beautiful and cheery... we make a choice to remember the joy rather than the pain with these flowers.

So I just wanted to fill the house with them. So many that I wouldn't know where to put them. Roses, daises, lilies...

I only mentioned this to one person, not even my husband, but one person in another country.

Monday morning when I woke up there was a vase of flowers and a plate of cookies. Happy flowers with an adorable pink bow. My husband had discovered them outside our door that morning. It felt wonderful to have such a thoughtful gift, even if there was no card. Later We received flowers from some very special friends of mine and I smiled at my two beautiful vases of flowers. I slightly remembered the conversation about the house full of flowers.

Tuesday was still a special day. Tuesday was the anniversary of, not the day Eden was born, or the day she died, but the day she lived. In the hours after Eden's birth I was obsessed with time. Each new hour was another hour she had lived and breathed on this earth. When the clock hit midnight I was ecstatic to know that when her name was written the date of her birth and death would be different... And when we reached midnight again, to know there was a whole day that she simply lived was almost more of gift than I could ask for.

Tuesday there were once again flowers and treats left for us. I cried. More bright and cheery flowers to mark this special day. When I brought the vase inside I found a lovely necklace with a silver E wrapped with the bow.

And today, more flowers and brownies. This time a card. Filled with love from friends who loved my little girl right along with me. Who now carry a precious child of their own.

It means so much to me to have her remembered and it brings smiles and happy tears to see my house filled with love...and Eden's flowers.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

October 15th

Also from my other blog:

Tomorrow is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Day, a day that I once knew nothing about and even if I had I wouldn’t have really paid attention.

One of the things I realized in the last few years is that, especially in western culture, we are so silent about death, about grief, and especially so about the grief of lost babies. It’s one of those things that people fear to talk about and so often just don’t acknowledge.

I have been blessed beyond measure that my sweet Eden has been celebrated and talked about and cried over openly. She is not a secret we just never mention. Her photograph hangs on my wall with her brothers and sister and doesn’t cause anyone to wince or become uncomfortable. I think it would actually make my friends and guests more uncomfortable if her picture wasn’t there.

So tomorrow I will light my candle in remembrance of some very special little people whom are greatly missed here on earth. Eden, Nathan, The Twins, Krista’s babies, The Triplets and so many more…

Monday, October 13, 2008

First Birthday

This post is taken from my other blog...

Today there is a sense that there is great expectation about something amazing and heartbreaking...

In reality I have shed several happy tears today. Been frustrated by some people. And had a lovely surprise on my doorstep early this morning...

Last week I received a card from The March Of Dimes because a good friend donated in my Beautiful Daughter's name. Standing at the mailbox I wept happy tears that, even a year later, Eden's life mattered to people who never got a chance to know her. That loving her didn't require actually meeting her. That a short little life could impact and change people.

Mostly I am just happy when she is remembered. Not as a sad footnote, but as a little girl who was celebrated.

Being Eden's mother has changed me in ways I never could have imagined and I am hardly the same person I was a year ago, and I scarcely recognize who I was two years ago.

This past year has been filled with a pain deeper than any I ever believed I could endure. I have watched my children and my husband weep from so deeply I thought they might never stop, I have wondered if I would ever cease to ache.

But in the midst of all of that God has revealed himself to me new, nearly everyday.

I don't know if I will ever understand why God denied the pleas of so many of His children. Why standing and silently saying no fit His plan better. And I believe I will always wonder about that... but still, I know that God is who He says He is. That His plan is perfect and that I have seen what true peace is. That I have lived it, felt it, breathed it.

The enemy has come many times to whisper in my ear about an impotent or uncaring God. He has poured salt in the deep wounds of my grief. He has attempted to shake me free of my faith many times.

And when he has, I have found renewed strength and renewed faith in the utter holiness of Eden's final breath. I can scarcely look back at that time without seeing all of heaven weeping as I handed my daughter into her Father's arms.

I have been through even more trials since I had to submit to the will of God and love Him while his actions hurt. I am in the midst of one even still. But when Satan tries to tempt me into depression and resignation I am empowered in my faith by remembering 36 holy hours that He gave me with my little one.

36 hours in which my baby girl cooed, cried, peed on so many nurses and guests, and proved her full humanness by getting cranky when she was unswaddled or cold. 36 hours in which I got to cuddle and love her. 36 hours that are so removed from everyday that they are almost like a dream, though they are forever etched in my memory.

So today is not a sad day. Today is a day I rejoice that God chose me. Trusted me with a difficult choice.

Today I remember her beautiful bowed lips and her feisty attitude, and celebrate the first birthday of my precious Eden.

I love you sweet girl. My arms ache for you everyday but my heart is happy to have gotten to love you!