"Everyday holds the possibility of a Miracle."

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

When Things Fall Apart

A friend gave me this card a few months after Ethan's death and I keep it stuck to my bulletin board, today I felt the need to pull it out and read it again, and thought it appropriately matched my feelings right now... "They say what doesn't kill you makes you stronger.  Well, what if you didn't sign up for extra-strength training?  What if you'd rather catch a few breaks once in awhile?  Is that so much to ask?  At some point, you'd think you'd be entitled to a free pass or two: Skip this challenge.  Avoid that crisis.  Delete these problems. It's not that you're not strong or that you don't have what it takes to get through this.  You are, you do, and you will.  But you've built enough character already, and its time for things to lighten up a little!  I know its not really my call, but if I were in charge of life's wheel of fortune, you'd get a free spin. And I'd be right there, cheering you on!" - Linda Barnes.  It feels like our carefully balanced tower of blocks of life is toppling around me and I can't do anything to stop the free fall.  No matter what we do, or how much we try things keep falling apart.  My husband has been out of work for a while now and is getting so frustrated with the job search process that he is now looking for a job overseas - another block just fell... I really need to see a doctor but haven't been able to since last July because our health benefits were tied to my husbands job and well we can't afford to buy into anything - there goes another block... I remain in a job that is overwhelming emotionally most days because we need the money - oops another one... I am walking in a constant fog lately - one foot in front of the other and I find myself not able to be the mother and wife that I desire to be - there go a few more...  I need a long peaceful break, and while there hopefully God chooses to reveal himself.  Our old pastor stopped by last night, unannounced, and proclaimed that it was time for us to move on - to get back into life/church and keep moving forward.  I wasn't aware that I ever departed this life - my life is not as it was before and never will be.  I have been profoundly changed, there is no going back... I just don't know how to go forward when the way is strewn with debris - I can't see where I am going - I feel certain that more terror is lurking ahead; and all I desperately want is a little relief.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

this time...this time...this time...

We have a movie that the boys enjoy getting out every once in a while, it is a really cute movie about the life of bees, and there is one part of that movie that always has them in giggles.  The bee is trying to get back outside after he gets in to get away from a storm, but the window has been shut and he keeps trying - flying himself into the glass and bouncing off, saying, "this time...this time...this time...".  I feel like that bee today.  Spring is here, and everyone has emerged from their homes after the long winter, and are out strolling the blocks.  Those who are pregnant are showing off their bellies, and those who had babies during the winter months are out proudly strolling them around.  Conversations are happening as neighbors reconnect, catching up on what is new since the winter shut us in.  Once again we don't get to join the parade or share anything new, as everything is the same.  I find myself in the roll of the bee, captured inside the glass house of struggling to have a healthy pregnancy and baby for the past three years.  I find myself thrown against the glass time and time again hoping this time, only to find it is not to be.  I was so filled with hope, as Spring approached, for the first time since Ethan's death.  I had met some amazing women who have given me great courage, I have been reconnecting within myself with God; felt like I was finally making progress on the path of healing and being alive again, and we had even begun talking about trying again.  Then one and a half weeks ago we found out we were pregnant.  Elation!  Joy!  Some fear yes, but hopeful that this time would be the time.  Only to have that joy last five days before another life slipped away from ours.  So I stand inside my glass house, watching the world, and wondering why I am trapped inside this body and this pain.  Do I keep going, keep trying, or do I give in to the reality of the glass and the pain in my way and learn to live where I am.  I don't know if I am strong enough to keep throwing myself against the glass hoping that this time will be the time, honestly I am getting really sore and I need a rest.  So I return to the beginning of my journey, one step at a time....

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Save Me

I just watched a fierce battle rage - one that is fought every morning in our house.  I will set the scene - I open the garage door and let our nine pound watch kitty into the house after I get up in the morning.  She purrs ferociously, gobbles down a meal and then goes on the hunt...  The willing or unwilling participant of this battle (I haven't decided which it is yet) is huddled outside between my lilac bush and the window well.  An adorable bunny huddles absolutely still as our kitty stalks her from the window.  Our cat is frantic pacing back and forth, then crouches and looks like she is going to launch herself through the window.  Then as if knowing that - the bunny takes off around the house, and our kitty takes off after her - not outside obviously but through the house she dashes to the front window and waits there when the bunny rounds the corner.  The bunny skids to a stop and you can see fear shaking its very fur (or maybe it is just our fierce winds) - and the hunt starts all over again.... Every morning my nine pound gray fur champion enters my dwelling and goes to battle for me.  She has found me willing to defend and every morning I appreciate her efforts at saving us all from the savage bunny outside.  What is the point of this story on my blog you might ask....  The thing is that yesterday I wanted to write something and couldn't find the words.  I felt listless and tired - the stress and fears were overwhelming and I felt the walls caving in, and I told my husband I just want someone to sweep in and pick a stress and say "I've got this one for you - you don't have to think about it or carry it anymore."  What a huge weight off that would be, maybe my shoulders wouldn't be as hunched anymore, maybe my head would feel lighter and I could carry on with more hope.  The thing is I wish that I could rely on God to fight my battles for me - all my devotionals this week have been about the need to turn myself to God and let Him fight my battles for me - fight the fear and anger and jealousy.  I wish I could and I want to, but I have trouble believing that He is fighting for me and not against me.  If God were as visible as my nine pound furry warrior is every morning , and I could see the evidence of the passion on my behalf  - I would feel comforted and at peace and could let go and let God... I guess right now in my journey I desperately need to see God - God with skin on - I need to see and feel the passion and fierceness on my behalf - I desperately need that now more than ever.

Monday, March 7, 2011


I have met some amazing people in the past few weeks...  Women so full of courage and strength that I am in awe of their journeys through the battle of Neonatal Hemochromatosis.  Many of them embarked on this journey that I too find myself on years ago, and some are much more recent then my own but their will to overcome a disease that ripped so much from all of us is inspirational!  So many demonstrate their courage and faith through the stories they tell of their daily heartache and struggle as they desire to overcome, and I find myself emboldened on my journey.  I have felt so very alone as I walked through this valley - sure people who care about me have been there and loved me through this and for them and their efforts I will be eternally grateful, but none of them understood the blindsiding pain of what NH does to a family and a mother.  I have found a sisterhood - one that all of us wish we had not been inducted into, but one that we are living through, and I see their courage and I find hope.  Meeting them and hearing their stories - the good, the bad, the heartbreaking, and the triumph has done more for my heart and soul then anything else since Ethan's death.  Our babies are in heaven together gathered in the arms of Jesus, and we have found the arms of each other here - comfort across vast oceans - the arms of shared pain and joy are there wrapping around me reaching out as I read their words on my computer screen.  Why God has chosen us to walk this path I do not know, and will probably never understand.  But something I have found in these past few weeks is that I am honored to be a part of a group of women (and men) who are so full of courage, faith, and hope in their journeys.  They honor their sweet angels they sent to heaven ahead of them, and find the most amazing strength to endure and live each day.  Grief is an ever present companion for the children we do not have in our arms, and yet I am finding the ability to fill my arms with hope.  God is present - I needed this amazing group of women right now, as I have felt more in despair and without hope right now then anytime since Ethan's passing.  I keep thinking about how the year anniversary is approaching and how a year ago we were celebrating the movements of our Ethan in my belly - glowing in the joy of our growing family - happy as we have not been since.  And yet, the women that I have met and their stories have shown me that we can be happy again - it will be a new kind of happy - a deeper happy - one that understands how precious our time is, and how precious are the arms of hope.

Thursday, March 3, 2011


Since Ethan's death I have felt bathed in pain - mostly from grief but it has often been compounded by the well meant comments of others or the comments from others that they did not think about before they made.  I have taken these hurtful comments or actions personally and allowed them to compound my pain with anger and disbelief at the other persons inability to think about how that might have just affected me!  "What audacity! - How could they?! - How dare they?! - Do they not think?!" - all of these thoughts have floated through my mind after an unfortunate encounter with the cluelessly thoughtless.  The thing is - in my disbelief at their unfeeling words and actions I held on to the pain they caused me.  I held on and let it fester - taking me deeper into the quicksand of focusing my pain and frustrations at where I currently find myself in life on others.  I have been reading a devotional book by an amazing woman - she has 7 children - three on earth and four in heaven.  She is an inspiration to me as she has found a way through her pain to reach out and hold on to God - a feat I have yet to accomplish.  I just finished a section on Forgiveness.  She talked about forgiving yourself for whatever guilt and what ifs you may carry.  She also talked about forgiving others in the words of Jesus, " Father, forgive them for they know not what they are doing..."  That really struck me - forgive them for they do not know... they do NOT know!  I stopped to think about all the pain I had held on to because of the unfortunate things said or done since Ethan's death and realized that not a one of those who had committed these seemingly horrific acts knew - they have never been here - they have never lost a child - they have never buried a son - they have never faced an uncertain future like this - fraught with anxiety over whether or not another pregnancy will ever happen and if it does if that baby will survive or if we will be faced with the burial of another part of our hearts.   I found myself in that moment able to let go of the anger and pain and forgave them - each of them...I suddenly felt lighter...then she asked if I had also forgiven God.  I sucked in a breath...much harder...God knew...God knows and yet he allowed it anyway.  I still can't wrap my head around that and see a loving Father who wants for me a hope and a future.  I do not deny that He is and is here in this journey - we occasionally see His fingerprints even if we don't hear His voice.  But, forgiveness is another step..one I am not sure I can yet take.