Monday, October 26, 2009

Something Wicked This Way Comes...

And by wicked, I mean awesome. Divine even. Heavenly.

I can feel it coming. There's a change in the air. A stillness. A calm. I can feel a spark of something new and exciting. A charge in the atmosphere, God at work. To those who are unsure about their feelings regarding God, it may sound strange, but I can literally feel his work, I can feel his presence in my life right now, and he brought hope with him.

I've been praying a lot lately. For guidance, for direction, and for comfort. It pleases God for us to admit that we need Him, and oh how I need Him. I invited him into my problems, and asked him to take care of them, in His way, in His time, I surrendered my sadness, confusion and grief and trust him to take care of me.

This feeling of serenity, of peace and calm, like the stillness before a storm, feels like His RSVP, he's coming. Change is in the air, I can see the clouds stirring, and something wicked this way comes....

Change often comes in a storm, sometimes violent and frightening, sometimes chaotic and messy, blowing through in a flurry and when its done, nothing is quite the same. God's change is the same. Its not a magic wand, no *poof* and everything is better, his change can be scary, or difficult, or painful, but in the end we're better for it. So I am getting ready for a storm, for I can see it coming, and I am excited for it. I can't wait to see what I can do with what God has planned for me. What will he do with my determination? What will he do with my newly fortified faith? He's given me incredible capability to love and to forgive and persevere, what will he do with them? Its all been set in motion, and there isn't any going back now, so its time to sit back and watch the storm from the safety of my faith in God's love for me.

The air is electric, and I feel energized and alive, full of hope and ready to weather this storm, be it a thunderstorm, tornado, hurricane or tsunami, I'll be watching for the rainbow at the end, God's reward for trusting in Him.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Something to cry about....

I was watching a photography "webinar" tonight, about maternity portraits, and this particular instructor is involved with the charitable organization Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep (NILMDTS), where professional photographers provide beautiful portraits to parents of stillborn babies, or babies who die shortly after birth. We never had a NILMDTS shoot with Everett, but it prompted me to go back to his photos and look them over once again, and the significance of his struggle, and of our loss hit me like a tidal wave. All over again. Seeing his life played out in sequence, in photographs we never knew would be our only photographs is unreal. If I had have known I was documenting the only days of his life, I would have done a better job, I would have taken more, I would have tried to capture every inch of his beautiful little body.

These pictures don't do him justice.

He looks big, but he was so little.

You can't tell just how much he looked like Landon.

But they're the only pictures I have, and they're haunting. They show his downward spiral, from healthy to incredibly and desperately ill. As each day passes more staff and more equiptment congregate around his bedside.

When I look at these, life seems to re-prioritize itself, what really matters becomes very apparent. When you realize there's so much we take for granted, including our children, it because very easy to see all the trivial things we take too seriously and get far too wound up about. Saucy kids? Drained bank account? A few extra pounds? A broken marriage? Insignificant. My baby died. My gorgeous, innocent, and much loved baby was born with a horrendous heart defect, lived 20 days of uphill struggle and then he died. That's something to cry about.

But, his strength, his endurance, his breath taking beauty, the lives he touched, the love he evoked, the memories he's left, the passion he's inspired, the good that has been done in his name, are all reasons to be comforted, and to be grateful to have ever had him at all.

At the heart of it all, the love we have for one another is all that really matters. And nothing is more worthy of your tears then lost or wasted time with your life's most precious people.

Put down that book, that broom, those dishes, that laundry, and go love up your children, who are the most amazing blessing you'll ever know. When the act out, act up, act horrible, even on their worst days, they're still more then you'll ever deserve, little gifts from God to teach you about what life is all about, cherish them accordingly. Life is short, sometimes exaggeratedly short, celebrate each and every second, as cliche as it may sound, as though it were your last together.

If I had have known I was living our last days together, I would have done so much more with it. I would have insisted on holding him more, touching him more, mothering him more, and capturing more of him in pictures, enough images of his sweet face to last a life time.


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

The "Suppose to's"

I've got them bad today.

Blame it on sad country music, but my mind is wandering and my heart is hurting and I can't help but think about what is "supposed" to be.

I'm supposed to be 13 weeks pregnant right now.

I'm supposed to have two little boy tearing my house apart right now while their big sister is at school.

I'm supposed to be waking my husband up soon, and getting some time in with him before he goes into work again tonight.

I'm supposed to be arranging my basement to accommodate an extra bedroom, so I can prepare to give our bedroom to the new baby (who's not coming any longer but is supposed to be!)

I'm supposed to be planning a big family birthday party for the kids, which will now be half the size.

I'm supposed to be planning a family trip to Florida in the new year for our annual trip to Disney.

The "Supposed to's" suck.


Sunday, October 18, 2009

If we had only done this instead of that....

then things would be so different.

If only.

Those words echo in my mind day and night.

If only.

If only I got two steroid shots instead of one before the boys were born.

If only I went a few weeks longer.

If only he was diagnosed sooner.

If only we delayed surgery until he was bigger.

If only we had the option of a heart transplant rather then fixing the badly broken heart he had.

If only that surgery had gone better, or didn't take so long.

If only he didn't need ECMO.

If only he didn't need it for so long.

If only he didn't get that brain bleed.

If only.

If only I could have read minds.

If only he spoke up sooner, or clearer.

If only he said what was really on his mind.

If only his faith was stronger.

If only he wanted to try.

If only I had the strength to wait him out.

If only.

If only I didn't let the stress get to me.

If only I stayed calm in spite of it all.

If only my blood pressure was stable.

If only I could have done something.

If only.

Haunting words, and always present, I can't help but wonder why my life would look like now, if only something had played out differently in the past. If Everett had lived, if Elvis had stayed, what would I be doing right now? What would be be different? Everything.

If only.


Monday, October 12, 2009

Never wanted this......

I've always thought of myself as satisfied. I never wanted what I didn't have, and always wanted what I did have. I love life's little pleasures, back to school, the first snowfall of the year, Christmas specials, all the holidays, little birthday parties, family dinners... It doesn't take much to please me and I've always just felt content with what life has handed me.

Then my son died

My husband left me

And I lost a very wanted pregnancy

And suddenly I'm thinking, I never wanted this! And I am not satisfied. I don't like where I am and I very much want what I don't have. I'm struggling to find a sense of satisfaction and contentment again, because feeling this way is unpleasant. But how do I accept what life has given me when it isn't what I wanted? When it isn't simple, or pleasurable?

I was happily married and liked it that way. I had a husband I enjoyed and loved deeply and a marriage that felt comfortable and warm and safe. Now I don't, and I am not happy about that. So how do I accept it for what it is and move on? How do I imagine my future without the man I always envisioned spending my whole life with? How do I imagine some other man in his place? I don't even know where to begin? It feels alien and abhorrent to imagine myself with any other man then the only one I've ever known.

How does one make peace with having a child die? How do you begin to appreciate that it was just part of your life's plan and be satisfied with the way it all had to play out? How do you just accept that God understands and be content with your own limited understanding of life's tragedies? Don't ask me! I fake it, or I talk myself into believing I get it and my heart is healing, but in all honesty. I don't get it, I want my son back and I am not satisfied with how it all played out!

I never wanted to birth three kids and have only two to raise

I never wanted to find out I was pregnant only to find out a week later I wasn't pregnant anymore

I never wanted to be separated, or divorced, or looking for new love

I never wanted to start from scratch

But here I am.

I can't describe myself as contented anymore, or satisfied with all life gave me. I still enjoy the little things, like the first snow fall, which happened yesterday and made my heart feel 8 years old again. I still love back to school and Christmas shopping, but my enjoyment is clouded by worry and stress, loneliness and regret and its hard to just say "Ahh, life, it it was it is and I love it". Rather lately I find myself thinking "Damn! This is life? Is hard and its sad and I don't know what to make of it!"

I hate thinking like that! I have spent a lot of years in a lot of different relationships pointing out the joys of life, the grand scheme, the greater plan, ect.... And now I can't see it for myself anymore. I feel like life is big horse and I got bucked, and I'm sitting on the ground complaining of my sore backside from the fall and terrified to get back on for fear of greater injuries ahead. How many times can I get bucked from my horse before I'm not actually fit to get back on and ride some more? But, if I don't get back on, then the remainder of my life will be spent tending to old injuries and lamenting over past falls, watching others pass me by and wondering where they're going, and what excitement lies ahead for them. Worse yet, what if I'm that person sitting on the sidelines yelling to the other riders "You better just get off now, you'll only fall off and get hurt later if you don't", what if I ruin the ride for other more fearless and bold riders?

Its hard, and its scary, but truth be told, I need to get back in the saddle and try to enjoy all life has to offer again. I need to find my way again, I need to feel happy with what life gave me and find satisfaction in my world again. I need to take pleasure in imaginig a future that looks nothing like I thought it would. Its going to be scary, and I might fall off again, but its no life at all to sit on the sidelines.