The third week in July is always a tough reminder of what our family should look like.
With Kyla turning 4, we should have another little girl turning 2. The hole left by our loss in more tangible this week. As I approach the 2 year anniversary of Esther’s July 28 due date, I can feel it. I have some more grief work to do.
Grieving a baby is a unique kind of grief. Instead of grieving your past, you are grieving your future.
Until I came face to face with a deep heart wrenching loss, I didn’t understand that grief involves work.
What do I mean by this?
I mean letting myself feel.
I mean un-stuffing all the emotions I have started tucking away because they are still hard to think about.
I mean talking about her.
I mean reliving her brief life, and even thinking through the most painful days of her death.
I mean allowing myself once again to choose thankfulness – to purposefully be more thankful for her life than I am devastated by her death.
And I mean to once again trust my fragile heart to the all-knowing, all-loving, all-powerful Creator of the world, and letting Him bring me the next layer of healing that I need.
I am learning just how vital this grief work is for my own health and the health of my family. When I don’t take time to process and feel I find that I get angry easier, and sometimes even just pick up a looming sadness.
I have found that taking the time periodically to work through some more grief helps in many ways. First if all, it increases my own peace level. It also helps me connect better with my husband and children. It allows me to give the attention that I need to toward remembering my missing child, without letting the stress and pain of our loss damage my other family relationships. I also believe taking this time strengthens my connection to my little girl in heaven. And perhaps two of the most beautiful things I have found from these times are: another chance to reflect on my life and evaluate how I’m spending my time and energy, and new opportunities for fruitful things to come from Esther’s brief life.
SO in between planning a birthday party, and chasing around my 11 month old little MIRACLE, I am taking some moments to remember…to feel…and to prepare a special basket to give another family experiencing loss. I’m also dreaming about some new avenues that would allow Esther’s life to touch more people with the HOPE of Jesus Christ.