Esther’s Week – 2 Years, 1 Year, Today

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThis is an important, painful, and special week of memories in our home. I wanted to share some of our joy and struggle as we navigate the two year anniversary of Esther’s passing from this life into her eternal home…

Two years ago this week, I was about to be blind-sided by the tragedy of my unborn daughter’s death. The cold reality that was about to greet our family would leave me grappling with pain I had never imagined. The loneliness would be unbearable, the sense of emptiness overwhelming.

One year ago this week, I was 11 1/2 weeks pregnant with our third child, struggling to have hope while searching for ways to honor Esther’s life. I wanted to believe the outcome of this pregnancy would be different, yet the pain of what had happened before left certain fears constantly weighing on my heart.

photo(8)This week, I am holding my miracle “rainbow” baby, and preparing to remember Esther’s 2nd birthday in heaven. I am enjoying the fact that in 2015, this week is fairly mundane. Sometimes non-eventful is good. In the last two years, I have certainly learned to appreciate “normal” days. No crises, catastrophes, surprises, or tragedies…just life. There is something very beautiful about simple life.

I still miss my girl. I always will. I think about her many times every day. I dream about what life would be like with her here.

I still struggle with (sometimes irrational) fears that someone else I love will be snatched from me. This did happen two years ago, and it left a big scar on my heart. I check my kids breathing multiple times each night and I still often wake from nightmares that one of them is in trouble and I can’t save them.

But this week, I also have a peace because life is still a beautiful gift. I have experienced deep loss, but I have also been given much. Both are part of my story. Even while I type this, I have a three year old who’s imagination is blooming as she dresses her stuffed dogs in photo(10)doll dresses. I have a 5 month old son snoozing contentedly, who will soon bring a smile to my face with his toothless smiles and warm personality. And I have a little princess who I cannot hold now, but who is being held by her real Daddy, the King of Kings.

This year brought a lot of healing to my heart. As I enter into this memorable week on the calender, I can see how much God has grown me the last two years. I can see how faithful He has been to see me through. I can see how eternal His love for me really is.

Some days are hard and I can’t see these things through the pain. But today I can…and I am thankful.

I wrote this two days ago.

Today, this is what I found myself writing…

This is such a hard week. The reality that I couldn’t save my own child weighs heavy on my heart today. She was my child, I was her mommy. I couldn’t bring her safely into the world. I know all the logical replies like, “it wasn’t your fault” and “there is nothing anyone could have done.” But this week is not logical. I miss my girl, my middle child. She should be here.

So many emotions are trying to rule my heart…Anger, sadness, frustration, and loneliness. Today feels so much like that day two years ago. As I was running this morning, I just felt weak. Out of gas. Drained. Already today, I’ve lost my patience with my husband and kids for no good reason several times. My mind feels like it’s in a fog. I know this is what grief feels like. I know I’ll be okay because I’ve been here. I’ve lived in this place before and survived. Right now, I’m just visiting. I will ride out the waves, let my heart feel the pain, and cry the tears that need shed. Then I will smile again because I have been given so much. I will smile again because she lived. I will smile again because the story isn’t over.

photo 2(9)Two days ago, I shopped for Esther’s hope basket supplies, and felt somewhat on top of my emotions. Today, I’ve been a crying mess. Having this boy to squeeze sure helps, and I am SOOOOO thankful for his beautiful life, his beating heart, his little chest rising and falling as he sleeps. But of course he doesn’t replace Esther – he is his own unique blessing. This year is very different for me. It is remarkable how having another baby truly brings so much healing, yet there can also be some confusing feelings of grief.

As I contemplated my own crazy up and down so far this week, I realized I’m going to be facing a lot of February’s in the future. With this in mind, I have decided to call this week Esther’s week. February 10 – 17 is now officially Esther’s week in our family. This week calls for some extra understanding, extra snuggles, and space for emotions. Although Adam and I both tend to be go-getters, this week we won’t try to solve the world’s problems. We will just show some love to each other and spend time remembering our little girl in heaven…

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  1. Adam Waller says:

    Yes, we will.

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