Saturday, July 19, 2014

A Witness to Grace

Today, our little guy would have been 17 months old. He'd be walking and babbling and melting our hearts just like his siblings. Our lives would be immeasurably different.

 Instead, I am struck daily by the fact that I will never hold or see or smell that beautiful little boy again. Sometimes, it registers and passes quickly. Other days, it knocks me to my knees and leaves me with a tear-streaked face and an aching heart.

Yesterday was one of those that left me struggling to catch my breath. I'm really not even sure why it hit me so much harder than usual, but I literally had a few moments where I just could not get it under control. My oldest is a very observant young lady and she noticed immediately that I was upset. This isn't the first time it's happened for any of us and we've always used the tears as an opportunity to discuss how much we miss Baby Aaron and to talk about how it is okay to be sad.  Usually, both of the girls will respond with "I know Mommy, I miss him too."

This time, however, Tori decided that she wanted to do something more.  She immediately set to work drawing a picture and said the following to me:

"Mommy, I know you're sad about Baby Aaron today, so I'll draw a picture of you with him!!"

  "Look Mommy!! He's all wrapped up 'cause you just got him from the hospital! And he's all better because God found a way to fix him. Do you like it??"

For a moment, I was simply speechless.

Then her sister chimed in,

"Look Mommy!!  I made this one for you!  I used lots of purple because I know it's your favorite!!"

It was at that moment that I realized, "This. This is the reason that we made sure that the girls got to meet their brother.  This is why they got to hold him, kiss him, hug him and love him. This is why we don't try to hide our grief. This right here."

They know that he was real and loved and cherished.  He exists for them in no less real a way as our rainbow baby does. They continue to grow and learn and amaze me in ways that I could never have imagined.

As much as I hate the fact that our children are so well acquainted with grief and death, I feel so completely blessed to be witness to the grace with which they handle it.