Thursday, December 31, 2009

ok not to be ok

I was thinking the other day about how I just wish we could wake up and just be 'normal' again. Well, to be honest, this thought passes through my mind several times each day. And I started thinking about our friends and how painful it must be to watch us suffer from the outside... I am sure that they must get so tired of us and our needs. I know we are very needy at this time :) I am totally aware that we are not a whole lot of fun right now. But, thinking about this really made me thankful. Thankful for our friends who are still supporting us and loving on us. I am sure they want the "old" Ryan and Jessica back.....probably as much as we wish we were back. And while I am slowly seeing us "come back," I am so thankful for friends who love us anyways and who are waiting patiently for us. Please just keep waiting....we will be back....and hopefully better than before :)

While I was reading the other night, I came across something that really struck me. I think I want so badly to be ok...I can forget that is ok not to be ok. God does not expect me to pick up and keep moving. I loved that Beth Moore wrote that "God does not minimize the things that break our hearts." Jesus walked the earth and suffered here as we do. He wept and cried for the loss of his friend Lazarus. He truly felt the pain of a broken heart due to death and loss. How comforting to know that He has been here and felt these emotions. He truly knows our hearts. I also loved that Beth Moore wrote that "if we're so 'heavenly minded' that we grow out of touch with earthly hardships, somewhere we've missed an important priority of Christ. God left our bare feet on the hot pavement of earth so we could grow through our hurts, not ignore and refuse to feel our way through them." Amen to that! I am ever so thankful that God does not expect me to be ok. That He does not think that due to my faith, I should not allow myself to feel this pain. I know I will see Wyatt again in Heaven...and how thankful I am! But God knows that I will feel the pain of his death even though I believe in eternity. My faith brings me hope and healing, but it does not take away my pain. It is not a wounds cannot be covered to heal on their own. My wounds are deep and they will leave a scar...but with much care they will heal. Heal to a point that I can live again among the living. And I will learn from this pain. Wyatt's life will not be lost in vain. I have faith that good is and will come from this. I cannot pretend that this not a painful place....but I cannot ignore that even if it was not God's will for Wyatt to leave this earth so soon....He did allow it....and there is gain for Jesus' sake if we will allow His life to be revealed in us. So while I feel my way around this pain and grief, I pray that God will continue to help me to grow through these hurts.

"For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake,
so that his life may be revealed in our mortal body."
2 Corinthians 4:11


Well, we survived Christmas. I can't say there was much of a celebration, but we survived and today that is worth celebrating. Ryan, Avery, and I did go visit Wyatt. This was Avery's first time to go visit him. I am so glad we brought her! She was so happy (as always) and while it was hard to make that trip on Christmas day, she definitely made me laugh and smile. She loves the it was fun to watch her roll around and enjoy herself. I have no regrets for the way we spent Christmas this year, I am just looking forward to a lot of celebrating next year!
Mom has been up here since the day after Christmas. I am so blessed to have family that will drop everything and attend to my needs at this difficult time. I was so worried about the week after Christmas and how I would be doing that asked her to come hang out with me and keep me company. There seems to be such a let down after big holidays and events that the days following are usually more difficult than the actual days themselves. So, we have just been running around staying busy. Just what I needed!
Thanks mom! I love you!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

3 months

It has been 3 months today since I last saw Wyatt's sweet face or held him close. If feels like eternity. I miss him. Really miss him. But, I am ever so thankful for his life and the time we had with him. As I have said, I wouldn't change anything...even if I knew he would not be here in my arms today. He was such a breath of fresh air. Truly a gift from above. So, while today is painful, I remember him with a smile on my face. I remember him the way he was...spunky and full of life. He has truly blessed my life and has touched it in such an undeniable way. How I praise our Father for blessing me with this gift. Love you Wyatt! Happy three months in Heaven!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

In the arm's of an angel

As Christmas approaches, I know Ryan and I are growing more anxious. I am sure we will survive just as we survive every other day. There just seems to be so much build up before the holidays or even just big get togethers. You begin to dread that day, while deep down, I know it is no different than any other day... It is just the thoughts that we let rob of us of our joy. Thoughts about how this day "should be." As a mom, you fantasize about your firsts with your child. And yes, I had expectations for Christmas...expectations and dreams that will never be met. But, we will survive. It just may not be the way we had envisioned, hoped, or prayed for. Instead of celebrating and holding Wyatt in my arms, we will be thinking of our son and longing for him even more. We will be visiting the cemetery and holding our breathes....counting down until the day is over and has passed...only to survive another of firsts we will never experience. And while I write this, I don't want to sound is just honest. This is hard. I find hope in knowing that while we are suffering, Wyatt is not. I know he is happy and could not be in a better place. I know that God is and will carry us through all of this and through all of these emotions. It is just hard to get through the build up we create and the excitement that society invests in a single day. I want to celebrate Christmas for what it is....the birthday of our Savior. For I am truly THANKFUL for the true meaning of Christmas.

One of my very best friends from high school painted this picture for us. It is breath-taking. I just know that it is a picture of Heaven...our little boy in the arms of an angel. How great thou art. How great thou art!

I love you Wyatt!

Monday, December 21, 2009

lesson three

I know that everything comes in God's perfect timing...such as today's lesson. The third thing we learn here in the depths is to hope. And I can certainly testify to this. At times, hope is the only thing I can hold on to. The comforting thoughts or feelings I experience come from my hope or confidence that God will see us through. He will not and has not abandoned us. I have hope for our future and for our healing and that alone is my driving force.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

lesson two

While we are here, in the depths of our sorrow, we also learn to wait. Wait like I have never had to wait before. This is something I am terrible at! Really terrible at. Life has certainly slowed down...I am still running around like crazy, but I am so much more aware of every minute, every hour, of every day. I still feel as though I am constantly holding my breathe...trying with all my might to hold back my tears. Or to at least have a little more control over them. They still pour like rain, but I am learning to hold onto them until I have a minute alone to just let them pour. It is still exhausting. Exhausting to live and survive.
My thoughts are more focused and my actions more deliberate. I am focused on what truly matters...not the things that simply "fill" my life. I wait on the Lord to heal me, to heal my heart, to heal to my soul. I wait on the Lord to bring joy back to our lives. I wait on Lord to lead me...I wait on the Lord to welcome me home and back to "life" with my son.
Wyatt would have been 4 months old on Friday. It is so hard to believe he would be that old! I wish he were here. I wish I could see him face to face. See what he would look like big he would be....My heart aches for him....all the time.
I know that while I learn to wait, I must also learn to survive without him. To keep living even though I am tired. It is such a battle to survive and not give into the strong desire to simply lay down and let life pass by. To stop working at "getting better" and just let life happen. I can honestly say I do not want to let life just pass me by...but I am so worn out. It is while I am waiting, that I will truly get to know God. I need Him...I need Him to fill me up and keep me going.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

lesson one

It is amazing to me how time is passing so quickly, yet I feel to be standing still. I am still as I remember what we have been through, still as I think of Wyatt and what it was like to be with him, still as I think about our future. I just cannot imagine having to live my entire life without our son. Yet, I know we will have to. We will have to be patient and wait. And while time is passing, I know that God is slowly healing my heart. The pain is constant and unrelenting, but it is more dull. I am at a place now that I simply miss him. There are not words to describe this, but just an emptiness I know will never be filled. People have told me that we will never heal from this, but will learn to live with it. I totally believe this. I will never stop hurting for Wyatt, my arms will not stop aching to hold him, and I will never stop thinking of him..every minute of everyday, but I will learn to live with this. I will learn and am learning how to keep living even though a piece of me is dead and gone. What a terribly difficult lesson to learn. But God is good and He will restore us and bring joy back into our lives. Of this I am also sure. I have been reading a book about grieving the death of a is amazing! Truly amazing! In this book it talks about the depths of grief and sorrow. And while I was reading this, I came across something that really hit me. It says that there are lessons that we learn in the depths of our sorrow that we cannot learn anywhere else. Hmmm...something positive? One lesson we learn in the depths, is to live by faith. Loosing a child makes us realize how little we are in control. We will only survive by trusting God. How true this is. I have to say I feel so out of control...of everything. That I have been forced to TOTALLY give everything to God. I have learned in a very real way that I am simply here on this earth living...that I cannot make decisions about what happens to me or to the people I love. I am NOT in control. If I were, Wyatt would most definitely and literally be in my arms as I sit here this very moment. So, my faith is growing...constantly. The weaker I am, the more I accept God's presence in my life and my inability. While I miss Wyatt very much, I realize there are positive things coming from the short life he lived...and even his death. So while I cannot hold my little one, I will embrace my faith and my God in Heaven who loves me more than I can even imagine. What a blessing in such a very dark place.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

a picture of love

When I got home yesterday there was a message on my answering machine from a local florist. They were wanting to set up a time to make a delivery. It totally caught me off guard. I knew that it wasn't the 18th (the day of the month Wyatt was born) and that it wasn't the 23rd (the day of the month Wyatt was taken to be with our Father), I couldn't figure out who would be sending us flowers or why. A little bit later, the doorbell rang, and much to our surprise someone had sent us a poinsettia. Ryan had answered the door and I could hear him saying how sweet this was. I asked Ryan who it was from and told me to read the card. I knew this going to make me cry...and it certainly did. The most wonderful tears....happy tears. The OT that had worked with us at Children's had sent this most precious gift. Precious not because it is beautiful, but precious because she is thinking of us....months after we have left the hospital. I feel as though she knows how difficult this road is...especially right now. This therapist is so very special to me. Special because she was our constant visitor, one of our biggest cheerleaders, and someone who sincerely cared for Wyatt, Ryan, and I. I always looked forward to her visits and to her friendly conversations. I never saw her without a smile on her face and that was something I needed to see...everyday.

We have received several cards and letters from the doctors and nurses that took care of Wyatt...I cannot tell you how truly special this is. I will always have a special place in my heart for these people. Always. They are the only people that knew Wyatt the way we knew him. They cared for him...I mean truly cared for him....beyond their job requirements. They provided medicine and took his vitals....but, most importantly, they cared for and loved our son. I cannot imagine doing the job they do day in and day out. They are truly special people. Gifts from above. Words cannot express my gratitude for these doctors and nurses. I so appreciate the way the kept us company and in a way held our hand throughout our journey. There were several nurses that Ryan and I grew extremely fond of. I can't tell you how wonderful it is to feel safe as you have to walk away and leave your child in the care of someone else. I remember one day in particular that I had just had enough...I was exhausted and scared and to be honest...just worn out and worn down. So, naturally, I lost it...just standing there beside Wyatt's bed...I just broke down. I couldn't take anymore and I certainly couldn't get a hold of myself and stop the tears from coming. Wyatt's nurse...and my newest friend...was so comforting. She teared up with me and reassured me that it would be ok and that it was ok to cry. Of course I felt like an idiot and wanted so badly not to look unstable, but she did not care. Not for a second. In fact, she came over and hugged and comforted me. What a have someone there to care for Wyatt...and to care for me. I could go on and on about the people we met while in the hospital. I know God placed each and everyone of them in our lives for a reason...and I am forever grateful for each and everyone of them. I miss them very much. So, when I look back and think of our stay at Children's Hospital, my heart smiles. To me, it is a picture of love. True love.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

a gentle day

Today has been such a sweet day. It is cold and raining outside, but I was able to spend the entire day with Ryan and eat lunch with some dear friends who are also traveling this long and painful road with us. It was so nice to see them and be able to about our thoughts, our feelings, ask questions, and most importantly...share about our little ones. For a moment, we did not feel alone. Like someone understands our emotions and us. It was absolutely wonderful and uplifting. I hope we can do it again soon ;) At lunch, we talked about how awkward and hard it can be when someone asks you if you have any children. You never want to deny your child, yet it can be so difficult to answer this question. To be honest, I am not good at it. It is so hard to say yes and then follow that with "but he lives in Heaven." It takes about all I have to say this. I know it...but the words are so hard to say out loud. I laugh because I always find myself following that with it's ok. I feel such a need to protect those who ask. I don't want to make them uncomfortable or feel bad for asking. The other day, someone at the gym I work out at said hello and that I didn't even look I had had a baby. (She had seen me there working out while I was pregnant) at first, I said thanks and kept on walking. Then, I stopped and walked over and whispered to her that our baby had died. Of course I followed that with "but it's ok." She looked at me and said, "no it is not. I am so sorry." And I remember being so relieved. She was right. It is not ok! She did not seem worried that she had hurt my feelings, she did not back away, or even try to change the subject. I loved that she felt sorry for our loss...but that was it. It was so refreshing to be able to say that and not have someone awkwardly try to move on. So, while I am not good at this, it is something I will have to learn to do. There are so many things I will have to learn how to to protect myself, how to acknowledge Wyatt's life without feeling guilty for making someone feel bad or for asking, and how to simply live without him. These are certainly not things I want to learn how to do....but must.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Trusting in Him

I absolutely love opening the mail and finding more verses! I truly cannot tell you how encouraging it is...and how blessed I feel to have friends who are thinking, praying, and loving on us! Tomorrow I am going to spend my quiet time reading through the verses...oh I cannot wait! Thank you for taking the time to do this!

Today I read that "joy may seem to pause as grief takes its course, but those who broken hearts are bound by Him will experience it again." (Beth Moore) This is just what I needed to hear. The past two days have been pretty good. I have not cried near as much and have really enjoyed spending time with my sis and friends. Everything just seems to come in waves. I guess this is normal. My good is still not near as good as I would like it to be...but I have faith that we will get there one day...just as Beth said, we will experience joy again. It is just so hard to imagine that right now. There is such an enormous whole in my my spirit...and at times it feels unhealable. And while I have been feeling good, I feel so lost at the same time. I guess I am such a planner I don't know where we are going or what our future holds. If you asked me what my life would be like before all of this, I would have told you that I planned to have a couple of children and that I wanted to stay home and raise them. Now, I don't know what we will have or what I will do. I am living one day at a time...and am not sure what to look forward to. I am so aware that there are no guarantees, that I am not in control...of anything, and that I cannot plan my future. I am realizing more everyday how much I have to give to God. How much I just have to trust Him. I am trying to learn to be ok with the uncertainty...this is definitely something I struggle with. I am trying so hard to just give everything to God...and to TOTALLY trust Him. I wish it was half as easy as it sounds.

"Surely God is my Salvation;
I will trust and not be afraid.
The Lord, the Lord, is my strength and my song;
he has become my salvation."
Isaiah 12:2

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

sabbath for my soul

A few weeks ago a very dear friend gave me a Steven Curtis Chapman cd. He wrote and recorded these songs after his sweet daughter had been welcomed into our Lord's loving arms. I have been listening to it a lot lately. One because I am not really into the Christmas music on the radio, but primarily because it brings me so much hope. And right is what I hold on to. It is amazing how much better my day goes when I am able to be hopeful rather than hopeless. I don't know if it is a decision I have to make everyday or if there are days that I am just too broken down to have enough hope....but today I have it.
Another friend told me that she has read that God provides times of rest in the middle of difficult times and that it is ok and good for us to enjoy the "sabbath of our souls." We should soak in these times because they give us strength to continue on the journey. Oh how true. I am completely aware of these fact, I think I could identify each of them. They seem to be few and far between, but a true blessing. So while, today has been hard, it has been a "sabbath for my soul" and I am ever so thankful! Thankful for a moment to breathe, thankful for friends who refuse to let us fall into our grief, and thankful for a God that remains faithful. Even when we think otherwise.

Monday, December 7, 2009


Today I have so much to say, but can't seem to find the words. I think I have talked and talked the past of couple of days. I guess there are days you just have to get it all out. So, while I am out of words, I will leave you with a few more pictures of our lil' man.

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace

as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with

hope by the power of the Holy Spirit"

Romans 15:13

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

a piece of my heart

Oh how I LOVE this picture! He really looks like Ryan :) I just love my handsome boys! Just had to post it...and check out those cheeks! I laugh every time I look at this picture...the only reason he had to wear the bandage under his chin was because that "extra padding" just kept rubbing his scab off. Ha! What a sweet round face!

As I make my way through this journey, I am learning so much about myself, what I can handle, my faith, and what grieving is like. I am learning that while I thought I knew what friends who had lost someone needed...I didn't. Not because I didn't care or that I wasn't paying attention. I think I was paying attention from a distance...a safe distance. I hurt for them, but didn't want to intensify their pain or honestly my own. I even hate to admit this, but when I heard that a friend had lost her baby (before Wyatt) I cried for her and prayed for her, but thought I am sure she is getting thousands of cards and probably wants to be left alone. I smile now, and please don't misunderstand...there is no shortage of cards...but I find that I do not want to be left alone and the cards we have received are comforting. It is just nice to feel as though your pain is acknowledged. And as far as wanting to be alone....just being in this very place is lonely. Extremely lonely. There are not many who truly understand your pain or what you need. And this is no fault of their own. I NEVER would have realized how much I would need had I not been placed here. So, being here...I am finding that I need to be around people. I love people and thrive off of relationships. Huge crowds can be a little overwhelming...but being around close friends who I can just be myself around is such a wonderful gift. I don't have to put on a show...I can be happy and not feel guilty...I can cry and not feel as though I should hide those emotions. I have also learned that I don't need to avoid someone because of their hurt. I am not going to hurt them anymore...I can just listen and love them. I know I have said this before, but there is nothing more wonderful than talking about Wyatt. He is my son. I find that while I thought I was protecting a mom by not talking about a child they lost...I was inadvertently ignoring their child. I was acting as though their child did not exist which is so far from what I ever wanted to do. I know now that I just want people to acknowledge his existence. I also do not want people to feel awkward around me. At times, I can feel the no one wants to say anything that would upset me... so maybe they should just stay away. I still love to talk and see people. I will also say that since this has all happened, I have truly become an open book. There is not a question you should feel you cannot ask...I will answer anything. I had a friend ask me one night if we held Wyatt after he passed...and what it felt like. I smiled when she asked this, because I know this is something I would be wondering...I just wouldn't ask...and to be honest, I loved telling her all about it. This is something I have the fullest. And I simply love talking about what we have been through. Yes, I may cry...not because you made me though...simply because I long for my son and those precious moments. I truly treasure them. And to be honest, I think asking questions helps you understand where we have been and what we are going through. A lot went on the five weeks we were away. We did not just sit in a hospital....although I am sure it seems like that from the outside. There are definitely some stories to tell...even some funny ones. (I'll have to write about those another day). I have also learned that grieving for a child is different than grieving for an adult such as a grandparent. I have read that a death of a baby is more hidden because it violates our expectations...I believe this. When a baby dies, our hopes and dreams have already become a part of our lives. Wyatt's death is not just about the loss of his physical presence here on earth, it is a loss of a child I have wished and prayed for, it is the loss of fantasies, hopes, and dreams. It is a loss of a piece of our future...a piece of myself. And while that seems so is so true. I don't want to sound like I do not have hope for our future...because I most certainly do...but this certain piece of our future is missing. Looking back, I wish I had known these things that I would not have been scared of friends who were grieving or felt like I needed to back away. I would have been call and chat, to send cards, to plan little get aways, to listen, to distract at times, and to simply love them. I so appreciate my friends who are doing these things without me even asking! How truly special you are! I love you from the bottom of my heart!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving...a little late

Well, we made it through Thanksgiving. I am so glad that is behind us. Now I am just trying to get through Christmas. I know that sounds so terrible, and I am trying to remember the true reason for the season, but I can't is very hard. Saturday we went to a candlelight service at Memorial Gardens. It was absolutely beautiful. The streets were lined with candles and we had a candle placed on Wyatt's grave. They read all the names of the people who had been buried there this year. I was amazed at how many names there were. I believe there were six babies. I think I have always felt sorry for someone who has lost a loved one, but as they were reading off the names I kept thinking of how those were not just names...those are people. People with personalities and character and someone whose absence is being felt deeply by someone here on earth. While this has been a hard week, I have to say I have felt very encouraged. Thank you. I received a couple more verses Wednesday and Friday. My mom, mother-in-law, and sister also gave me special gifts. My mother-in-law gave us some verses and little angel...with the chubbiest cheeks...just like Wyatt. It makes me smile every time I look at it. I will have to post a picture of it! Les gave me a tiny bowl with a heart that said, "I carry your heart." I love is so true and it reminds me of the poem we had read at Wyatt's service. My mom gave me a heart to add to my canvas or make a paper weight out of. We had quite a store of milk in their freezer at home. The hospital would not let us donate it since I had taken medication after my, mom pulled all of the labels off of the bottles and made them into a heart. It is so very special. I can't say I was that attached to the milk...but while Wyatt was in the hospital, everyone kept telling me how important it was and how that was one thing I could do for him. So, I did. I would have done ANYTHING for him. Which is what makes this heart so special. It reminds me of the effort and the love I put in while taking care of my little boy. As the holiday season has made its way here, I ask that you remember us in your prayers. Please pray for peace and joy this season. That we will not grow anxious, but experience hope and a true calm that can only come from our Father in Heaven.

"May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him,
so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."
Romans 15:13