Life After Loss: 7 Months Into This Journey

ch_ 16Last weekend marked seven months since my baby girl went to heaven. It’s crazy to believe it has been that long, since the pain and the trauma still feel fresh. Yet in so many ways, it also feels further and further away, which I think is probably good and bad. Good, since it would be impossible to function and live very long in the immediate shock of death. Yet bad, because it hurts so much that the memories feel distant. I don’t want to let any of them go.

Every day, I am still met with reminders of what our family should look like now.

As I traveled to New Jersey last weekend, there was a family on my flight with a baby that looked to be a few weeks old. I imagined my little girl, 7-8 weeks old, snuggling in my arms. I thought about how different our lives would be…had she lived.

Every day, there is still a tangible hole in our home.

Instead of waking in the night to answer my newborn’s cries, I sleep all night and wake to a silent house. Instead of using the baby gear in the garage, I see it everyday, and consider getting rid of it since it probably won’t work by the time we need it again. As Kyla outgrows clothes, shoes, toys, and “gear”, I feel the ache that I don’t get to pass these things on to our next girl.

Every day, I relive so many scenes in my head.

I know the traumatic ones will always be there, but I want so much to remember the joy too. I want to remember the excitement of being pregnant with Esther, and I want to be able to still grasp what life was like before tragedy forever changed our family.

IMG_1178.JPG (2)Another day, another week, another month without my 2nd girl. Sometimes I still can’t believe this happened to us. I almost feel like I am looking into someone else’s life. It just doesn’t seem possible.

I am still left with empty arms and a baby in a grave instead of a cradle. I feel the frustration of utter helplessness to change anything. Just this week, I went by Esther’s grave on my way out of town, only to find that the shepherd’s hook and beautiful hanging basket that I so carefully made had been removed and thrown away. My tears wet the small, etched stone again.

Yet, as I look back over the last seven months, I realize how miraculously God has sustained us.

Back in February, I literally could not imagine seven months into the future. It was too overwhelming. Yet here we are.

I see a strength that has been built inside Adam, me, and our family.

I have a deeper trust in God than I have ever had before. I have found a deep place of surrender like never before. And I have found a sweet place of daily reliance on His power like never before.

Adam and I have grown in our marriage. We have all three been knit closer together.

And I know I am one month closer to seeing her again.

I can’t wait get to heaven. I have always looked forward to seeing my Lord and Savior. I have served Him here on earth and I long to hear to hear those words “Well done, good and faithful servant!” But now I look forward even more to the finish line. I can hardly imagine the joy of being reunited with Esther. A piece of me is already in heaven! Of course I want to complete the plan God has for me first. But I know that I am most effective doing that when my eyes are on the prize at the end.

So as we head into the 8th month of life after loss, I pray that while the grief is still very real, our family would continue to press on closer and closer to Him.

What about you? Where are you at on your journey through grief?

Comments

  1. Wow … Your posts are so hard to read but I am so glad you are continuing to share. I just wish i could take some of your pain for you. Im very proud of how you have handled it all over these seven months. Im not sure I could have been so strong. I love you and am praying for you constantly.

    Nathan

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