Merry Christmas Esther!

photo(5)Dear Esther,

It’s hard to believe today is your second Christmas in heaven. It seems like you were just here. I guess that is because you are always in my mind and on my heart.

A lot has changed this year. We have grown and learned how to live more like Jesus. We have healed and gotten more accustomed to carrying you in our hearts alone. And most excitedly, we have added someone special to our family: your little brother.

Yes, this year has been a big one for our family. We experienced the absolute miracle of birth and life again. Sweet girl, this year something was reborn in your mommy that was lost when you died. You have not been replaced or forgotten. Rather, your place in our family has been solidified in a new way. Youngest daughter, middle baby, and big-sister are all your titles now. And yet your new little brother, Elijah, has brought a little piece of heaven to me. This year for Christmas, we hold a miracle in our arms. The journey was rough. The doctors told us he might be sick. Yet here we are, snuggling our perfect boy in our arms on this special day. What a wonderful God we serve.

Something else has happened this year as well. Your big sis, Kyla, understands YOU in a deeper way. She talks about you almost every day. She says she misses you and she is sad you are not here. She asks if we can take “Lamby” and flowers to your grave. And she even blows you kisses at night before she goes to sleep. Any time she sees a tear on mommy’s cheek, she asks, “Are you sad about Esther mom?” What a sweet sister you have. She is trying to wrap her 3 year old mind around concepts difficult for the aged. Here is what I do know: she loves you and she looks forward to seeing you in heaven.

As we unwrap gifts today, I wish there were some with your name on them. I imagine you, at 17 months, ripping up every present in sight, taking all the ornaments off the tree, and posing for a picture with your two siblings. How beautiful you would have looked in a red Christmas dress! But we will celebrate Christmas in two different places once again.

I am so happy and overjoyed this day because God has so richly blessed our family! Yet I also cry because I miss you. I just miss you. I wish you were here…I always will.

On the way to Grammy and Grampy’s house, we will visit your grave. Kyla will leave a kiss, Lamby will sit for the day, and we will honor your precious life. We will remember the miracle and redemption of Jesus’ birth that has made the way for us to be reunited one day. Later, I will shed a few quiet tears for the gifts that aren’t under the tree. Yet I will rejoice that death and pain are only temporary.

Halelujah! Our Savior is born! “And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.” He truly has brought us a new peace this year. How amazing it must be to be with Him right now!

Precious daughter, I love you more than ever before.

Merry Christmas!


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