2 Due Dates – 1 Birthday

Waller Family HeartThe last days of July hold special significance in our home. This is when we remember two baby due dates, but only celebrate one birthday. What a bittersweet time. Kyla’s due date was July 30 and she was born on July 21, 2011. Esther’s due date was July 28, but she went to heaven on February 15, 2013.

It’s hard to believe a year has passed since we crossed this milestone for the first time. Esther would be turning one.

This week represents both the beginning of one dream – becoming a mother to my first baby, and the death of another dream – losing my second baby before she even took a breath.

I have found myself pondering many “what ifs” the last few days. I wonder if Esther would be walking yet. I wonder if we would have had a joint birthday party for the sisters. I wonder how Kyla would be different had she spent the last year with her younger sibling. I wonder who Esther would look like. But like so many times before, WHAT IS slapped me in the face.

There is only one birthday party this week. One cake. One celebration. One set of arms wrapping around mommy’s neck. One smiling face…Only one little girl here.

It hit me while I was at Hobby Lobby picking up tablecloths for Kyla’s party and I saw this:

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How I wish I was picking these up too.

 

It hit me when we were driving out of town for a day and four different times, Kyla saw a cemetery and said, “Mommy look, Esther’s grave.”

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How I wish my girls were making memories together instead.

 

It hit me when we set up the picnic table and only had one occupant.

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How I wish another child was grinning from the other bench.

 

It hit me when I was wrapping gifts for Kyla and packing a basket in memory of Esther.

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How I wish they were both in my arms.

 

But here we are in this familiar place again – feeling helpless, hurt, and heartbroken as parents.

And yet at the same time we have such joy, thankfulness, and incredible love in our hearts for our girls – whether in heaven or on earth.

I am so proud of both my daughters and thankful God chose me to be their mommy. That will never change.

One week ago we watched Kyla blow out her birthday candles. And today, we will take our “Esther’s Hope” memory basket to the hospital and decorate her grave with flowers. This year as we celebrate each of their precious lives in different ways, I am reminded that reality hurts – but the painful realities of this life are so very temporary for those belonging to Jesus. The joy will soon outweigh all of the pain.

Philippians 3:20 For our citizenship is in heaven, from which also we eagerly wait for a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ…

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