Wednesday, December 15, 2010

home

well...we made it to little rock, through our echo cardiogram and ultrasound. and the best part is that everything looks wonderful. her heart is healthy and working properly. i can't begin to tell you what a relief this is. i remember when wyatt had gotten out of surgery and ryan looked at me and said, "well at least we know we can survive this." and he was so right. we did survive, and while i would do it all again if we had to...i am so glad we don't have to. when life gets hard you kind of take it as it comes. you don't really have another choice. at this point, i can't even begin to imagine what is like to come home with a healthy baby. in fact, i can't even imagine leaving a hospital with my baby in my arms. i remember my mom wheeling me out the day i was released and i just kept thinking this isn't right. i so badly wanted to just walk out. if i didn't have a baby with me, i didn't want to even give the impression i had just had one. of course, that was not going to happen.
i have to say our visit went very well. not only did we get good news, God blessed us with wonderful techs and nurses. i had been warned that the exam could be a little unnerving. just the waiting and unknown. having heard this, i had prayed and prayed that God would bless us with nurses, techs, and doctors that would be sensitive to our situation and needs. that He would grant us peace. and He did just that. the tech that preformed the echo cardiogram was simply wonderful. she talked to us the whole way through and was very sensitive to our situation. while she could not tell us if all was ok or not, she did a wonderful job walking us through...telling us what part of the heart she was looking at and what the echo cardiogram was showing. i am so thankful for her and this huge blessing.
when good things happen, people often say "God is good." and He is. but He is good everyday and in every situation. those words just don't often pass our lips when times are tough or we don't understand something. i have to say today that God is good. He was good yesterday. Today. and He will be tomorrow. thank you for your continued support and love. today we celebrate a healthy baby. we can't wait to meet you little one!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

so sorry...

i am so sorry it has been so long since i have written. it was never my intention to keep quiet this long :) life has just been full. and as i take a minute to breathe i realize how thankful i am that it has been so full. i am doing pretty well, but to be honest, this is such a hard time of year. i hesitate to say this, as if every other day is easy, but their is such a stillness amidst the chaos this time of year. so i am thankful that my hands have been busy for this leaves a little less time to focus on another holiday without wyatt. i am not totally sure what it is about this season, but as we celebrate the birth of Christ and the hope that brings, i find myself more homesick for heaven. which really, is a good place to be. it certainly keeps things in perspective.


i will not even to try to sum up this past month. but towards the end of november we did attend the candlelight service at memorial gardens. it was such a nice celebration. they do a wonderful job celebrating the lives of those who have gone before us and celebrating our Savior. Both of our families made the trip up to be with us and to celebrate wyatt's life. it was so very special. i am so thankful to have parents and family who so willingly wrap their arms around us and join us in celebrating our son.

Every year they read this poem entitled Christmas in Heaven by Wanda White. it always brings tears to my eyes, but i love it. i have to admit that while i cannot imagine how wonderful Christmas is in Heaven...i still wish i could celebrate with wyatt. one day.


i will have to post a picture of his marker soon. it is finished and i believe it has been fixed. this is a picture of it the night of the candlelight celebration. so sweet.



on another note, our little one due in march seems to be doing well. i have really started feeling her move around...which i love. what a sweet reminder of what is to come. i am not one to wish time away (or usually not) but i am so ready for march to get here. i am certainly getting anxious to see her face to face and hold her sweet body in my arms. only a little while longer :) i will be sure to update you on our nursery progress and her name. we have decided on a first name, but are taking our time on a middle name. so, i will let you know as soon as we start making decisions :) we have our big appointment in LR on friday. so, if you think about it, i ask you to please pray for our anxious hearts and for our little girl. there are so many emotions about this appointment...yet, at the same time, i certainly feel graced by God's peace. i will definitely keep you posted on what we find out. thank you in advance for your prayers.

"But the eyes of the Lord are on those who fear him,
on those whose hope is in his unfailing love"
Psalm 33:18


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

it's true....

i am so excited to have some good news to share! we had our ultrasound yesterday and as far as we can tell baby ritchie is healthy! HER heart has four chambers and all. we couldn't be more thrilled or feel more blessed. even having gone through what we have this past year, i still feel so undeserving of such a precious gift. i know that God's hands are all over this precious life just as they were all over wyatts. i am so very humbled and thankful that He has blessed us with this sweet baby girl. the more i live and the more i understand how fragile life is and the more and more i realize what an intricate part our Heavenly Father plays in it all. so we are anxiously awaiting the safe arrival of our little girl.

"Let everything that has breath praise the Lord. Praise the Lord."
Psalm 150:6

Friday, October 15, 2010

pregnancy and infant loss rememberance day

today....october 15th....is pregnancy and infant loss remembrance day. a special day for us to honor our sweet little ones who are no longer with us. while some of these babies and children were held here on earth there are others who were not. yet we miss them all...whether they were merely an image on a screen or a weight in our arms. they are missed. so in remembrance of wyatt today and all of his wonderful new friends, i am lighting his candle. we love you wyatt and miss you so very much!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

just checking in...

well, it's been a while. so sorry! i love fall, but i am ready for things to slow down... just a tad :) everything seems to be going well here. we are 17 weeks now and i am feeling good. my energy is beginning to return. we were able to hear the heartbeat for the first time at my last appointment two weeks ago. such a sweet and promising sound. it was 140 and the doctor said he/she is a mover. definitely my kind of kid :) we get to find out the gender at our next appointment in two weeks. i'm so excited...and admitably a little nervous. to be honest, i don't care either way if we have a boy or a girl...i am just anxious to hear he/she is healthy! we were not aware of wyatt's condition until hours after his birth, but truly this ultrasound should tell us a few things. wyatt had double outlet right ventricle with pulmonary and mitral artersia...which is really a couple of different defects that tend to come together...not always...but usually. this is a complicated defect to explain for it can look different in different patients. but i am hoping to hear that this baby's heart has four perfectly formed chambers. which is something that should be picked up on during this ultrasound. so while this appointment will not put us in the clear it will address a major concern. we will have another appointment in little rock december 12th to have a level 2 ultrasound and echo cardiogram....which will tell us more and we will get a more detailed look at the heart at that time. that pretty much sums everything up though. wyatt's marker has arrived. it was actually placed on the 28th...exactly a year from the date of his service. i haven't posted pictures yet since it was not done the way we had asked, but they are working on getting it fixed. i think it is close. i'll definitely post some pictures once it looks perfect :)

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

september 23rd


well it has come...and gone...but i cannot not acknowledge this day. wyatt has been in the presence of our Father for one year now. it is so hard to believe. i continue to miss him as though it were yesterday. yet we have still come so far. there are so many layers to who we are and we have become. wyatt will always be a huge part of those layers. which is so wonderful and yet so painful at the same time. i carry such a huge piece of him with me...and always will...yet as time passes, he becomes less and less of a piece of others. which is painful to watch and acknowledge. i am fully aware that others will not always carry him with them as we do, but i do not want him to become lost either. he is a piece of us that continues to need to be acknowledged and loved. so thank you from the bottom of my heart for all of the cards, emails, texts, and phone calls...over this past year, but especially last thursday. we miss wyatt every day...it does not have to be a holiday, or his birthday, or the anniversary of his heavenly homecoming, but these days we have to face a little more head on. these are given days that bring more to the surface although there are random days in between that come with this same emotion. again, thank you for being such a huge part of our lives, for your continued love, and support. thank you for talking to us about wyatt, for asking questions, for looking at his pictures. thank you for acknowledging this huge part of us over this past year.

Friday, September 17, 2010

it's a special day

happy birthday to THE MOST WONDERFUL man in the world! love ya! (just had to embarrass him a little :) )

Monday, September 13, 2010

missing wyatt

i am so glad to have a minute to sit down and write. life has been very bitter sweet over the past few weeks. while i am so thankful the pregnancy seems to be going wonderful, my heart is heavy as i miss wyatt. i continue to think back to this time last year and how he was in our arms. i almost seem to be counting down until the 23rd as if we are going to loose him again. over the past year my emotions have ranged from a few good moments here and there to a few good hours and eventually into a few good days, followed by a few good weeks, and somewhere in there i have returned to the living but always have our loss just below the surface. and the longer it stays there the closer it gets to the surface. at those times i just have to embrace the tears and heartache, experience them if you will, and then put these emotions back under the surface so that i can continue on. now don't get me wrong, while the sadness is under the surface i am able to live and breath and enjoy life and the wonderful people in my life, but i feel compelled to say that i will always miss wyatt. words cannot tell you how over joyed i am to have a little one on the way, but i also must say that while this child brings us hope, he or she will never take the sting away of not having wyatt. this child is our second child...we love this sweet new life as we love wyatt. they are both our children and our blessings from above. so i humbly ask that you continue to pray for mine and ryan's hearts as we miss our little one. and to pray for this miracle yet to be seen by our eyes. that he or she is healthy and growing and developing as he or she should. thank you so much for your continued support, love, and prayers.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

redeeming hope


i'm not sure where to begin today. there is so much on my mind and in my heart. but one thing i have learned over this past year is to truly celebrate God's gifts and our blessings. not to take anything for granted. so while i want to tell you so much about where we are right now, i also want to soak in the moment of our blessing. God has been so good to us and we have been blessed so i will keep it short and simple....wyatt is going to have a brother or sister! our hearts are full in a new way as we miss our sweet boy and begin a new chapter in our lives. we are so thankful for this new life and humbled by God's gracious gifts.


here's a sneak peek of the little sprout....almost 12 weeks!

"for you created my inmost being;

you knit me together in my mother's womb.

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;

your works are wonderful,

I know that full well."

Psalm 139:13-14

Thursday, August 26, 2010

moment by moment

as august winds down we have survived yet another first and a year has passed since our sweet boy was born. it is so hard to believe he would be a year old. it is also so hard to believe that we have made it this far. i'm not really sure where the time has gone. it certainly has stood still in some aspects and disappeared in others. i think our year has been all about survival and so far we have at least done this. i have to admit, there have been moments i did not think we could make it this far. had it not been for the grace of God and the prayers and love of our friends i am certain our lives would look a lot different today. this year has been about taking life moment by moment. each week, each day, each moment is different. and there is certainly no way to predict our emotions or feelings. so step by step we have made it this far. as i think back over the past year, i cannot begin to tell you how much our friends have done for us...and usually when they didn't even know it. the texts, emails, cards, calls have meant the world. i have been so blessed to have friends just show up and check in. there have been days i just to needed to talk and i have had friends who have just listened. there are times there have been no words...but it has been comforting to just sit with someone. i realize you don't always know what to say or not to say, but God uses you in ways only He can when you allow Him...so thank you. thank you for taking care of us this past year and for continuing to do so as we continue to take our lives moment by moment. the video below is a small look into our past year...from having wyatt to last wednesday...his birthday...from planting a tree in his memory to his celebration dinner. i know i have left so much out...is just impossible to capture it all...but i wanted to look back and savor our past as we look forward to our future.



Tuesday, August 17, 2010

happy first birthday sweet wyatt

as i read this the other day, i couldn't help but think how accurately this sums up our past year...during this year it has been so difficult to separate the sorrow from the joy in our lives.

"sorrow was beautiful, but her beauty was the beauty of the moonlight shining through the leafy branches of the trees in the wood, and making little pools of silver here and there in the soft green moss below.
when sorrow sang, her notes were like the low sweet call of the nightingale, and in her eyes was the unexpectant gaze of one who has ceased to look for coming gladness. she could weep in tender sympathy with those who weep, but to rejoice with those who rejoice was unknown to her.
joy was beautiful, too, but his was the radiant beauty of the summer morning. his eyes still held the glad laughter of childhood, and his hair had the glint of sunshine's kiss. when joy sang his voice soared upward as the lark's, and his step was the step of a conqueror who has never known defeat. he could rejoice with all who rejoice, but to weep with those who weep was unknown to him.
'but we can never be united,' said sorrow wistfully.
'no, never.' and joy's eyes shadowed as he spoke.
'my path lies through the sunlit meadows, the sweetest roses bloom for my gathering, and the blackbirds and thrushes await my coming to pour forth their moist joyous lays.'

'my path,' said sorrow, turning slowly away, 'leads through the darkening woods; with moonflowers only shall my hands be filled. yet the sweetest of all earth songs-the love song of the night-shall be mine; farewell, joy, farewell.'

even as she spoke they become conscious of a form standing beside them; dimly seen, but of kingly Presence, and a great and holy awe stole over them as they sank on their knees before Him.

'i see Him as the King of Joy,' whispered sorrow, 'for on His head are many crowns, and the nailprints in His hands and feet are the scars of great victory. before Him all my sorrow is melting away into deathless love and gladness, and i give myself to Him forever.'

'nay, sorrow," said joy softly, 'but i see Him as the King of Sorrow, and the crown on His head is a crown of thorns, and the nailprints in His hands and feet are the scars of great agony. i too, give myself to Him forever, for sorrow with Him must be sweeter than any joy i have ever known.'

'then we are one in Him,' they cried in gladness, 'for none but He could unite joy and sorrow.'

hand in hand they passed out into the world to follow Him through storm and sunshine, in the bleakness of winter cold and the warmth of summer gladness, as sorrowful yet always rejoicing."

Gregory Floyd

both joy and sorrow have been prominent in our lives over the past year. woven together and never separated. we have experienced pure joy and such sadness over the short life of wyatt. from the celebration of his birth to the sorrow of his condition. from the joy of his recovery to the sorrow of his journey. from the joy for his new life with our Father in Heaven and the sorrow of being left behind. the two have never been separated. how great is our Father that we can experience both simultaneously. that we are not overcome with joy to be let down to sorrow. that we are not hopeless in sorrow and have reason to believe joy is coming in the morning.

wyatt, we miss you so very much, but we celebrate your life and the lives you have forever changed. we celebrate as sorrowful yet always rejoicing. happy first birthday to a boy who has touched many beyond his years. we love you!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

the perfect start to a hard week...




my friend bek came over again this afternoon. i had really missed spending time with her. there is something so wonderful in taking time to work on something that is made in honor of wyatt...to share it and him with someone is even more incredible. i am so sad our project is almost over. just a few coats of sealer and we are finished...maybe we can start another one sometime soon :) today we poured a CLEAR wax over the canvas...we were both a tad hesatent after our last adventure with the beeswax (which was yellow and we had to scrape off with knives) but this worked great. i wish you could see it in person. there is so much depth and texture it is beautiful. the third picture is of the heart we attached today. as some of you may remember, my mom peeled all of the tiny labels from wyatt's milk bottles and formed them into this beautiful heart. what a tangible reminder of where we have been...and what has been ours. the canvas has turned out beyond my expectations. thank you bek for taking time out of your busy life and away from your sweet little one to help heal my heart.
as we start this week, i'm not really sure where to begin. i will say i am doing much better at the moment than i could have ever expected. my heart is definitely heavy and there are moments i cannot catch my breath but thankfully God has been good to fill me up in ways only He can. i am so thankful that He knows the depth of my pain and the depth of my loss. for as He knows these things, He brings peace to my broken heart. it is not a peace that makes me miss wyatt any less, but a peace that allows me to survive this life here on earth. i don't miss wyatt anymore today than i did yesterday or the day before...that would be impossible. but, as his birthday creeps up i find myself missing more of what could have been. at times like these, there are moments my mind wonders to places i rarely let it go. to the details of the night wyatt passed away. to the terror i felt as they prepared him for emergency surgery, to the helplessness i felt as we watched our little boy's body fail. i so vividly recall the details of that night. the ups and downs. i remember the way it felt to hold and touch his sweet face after we had lost him. how scared i was to see him. not knowing when death would set in and so afraid the memories of life would be erased in a moments time. i remember so much. most days, i tend to linger on the way it felt to hold him, how tightly he would wrap his little hand around our fingers, how sweet he looked as he slept in our arms. i tend to remember the details of his life and not focus on the details of his death. but at times such as this, these thoughts tend to linger a little longer. i am so thankful God is ever so present as these thoughts make their presence known. may He continue to protect our hearts and hold us close. as we begin this week, i am so looking forward to celebrating wyatt's life. i celebrate all that he was, all that he is, and all that he will be. we love you wyatt!
"my flesh and my heart may fail,
but God is the strength of my heart
and my portion forever"
Psalm 26:73


Monday, August 2, 2010

selecting a marker

this weekend ryan and i went to choose a marker for wyatt. this was something we had been putting off for quite some time....and to be honest, had gotten pretty good at it. we just felt like there was something so final to picking it out. and honestly, deep down, i still liked having something to do for wyatt. it was the only way i could still take care of him. i also was afraid it would be very emotional and was not sure i wanted to put ourselves through it. it was kind of the thought that when we're doing ok let's enjoy being ok and when times are rough let's not make it worse. but, we made the decision about a week ago that it was time. and much to our surprise, it was not near as terrible as we thought it was going to be. i will admit there moments i was fighting back tears, but the lady we worked with was incredible. she was so sensitive and sincere, yet still upbeat and happy which made her a joy to work with. i had visited with her on the phone friday before we went out there to give her a rough idea of what we were looking for. this may sound funny, but ryan and i both wanted something simple and even vintage looking if there is such a thing. we know it will not come aged, but we both agreed that we did not want a shiny marker. it's so funny how everyone is different....i'm just glad ryan and i agreed :) we walked around the cemetery with the lady who was helping us and fairly quickly we were able to come up with some ideas of what we wanted. the exciting part is that there is not another marker in the cemetery like the one we want. so it will be unique and special just like our little boy. we haven't totally decided if we want an upright or a bevel (which is flat but raised up about 4 inches from the ground). i'll keep you posted on the one we choose. i cannot wait to show it to you. over these past months, i have come to realize just how differently people grieve and handle loss. i know that choosing a marker is no different...that being said, while i know we put off picking out his marker for so long, as we left the cemetery saturday i was so glad we waited until we did. i had felt guilty for not doing this before now, but i feel like we were really able to select what we wanted this weekend, while i am not sure i would have been able to do so before. for one, i did not have a clue what i wanted. but i also think i would have been so overcome by grief that in a way i would not have been able to think straight about this important decision. i remember walking through the cemetery before wyatt's funeral trying to figure out which plot we wanted and to be honest, nothing was going to be good enough. i had no idea of what i wanted or where a good place would be. while i am very happy with the spot we chose, there is such a difference in making these decisions today. it will most likely take four to six weeks to get it from the time we order, but i will be sure to post some pictures and tell you all about it.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

11 months

today wyatt would be 11 months old. so hard to believe. i cannot even begin to imagine what he would look like at this stage. when i think of him, he remains a tiny baby. not a little one who is sitting up, learning to walk, and doing all of the things he should be doing. i am sure he would look just like his dad...maybe because i heard that a lot in the hospital. while time is not healing our pain we are continuously finding ways to live with it and occasionally around it. i pray today that our Father in Heaven is doing all of the things with wyatt that i so long to do. i find comfort in knowing that while wyatt is not physically here on earth with us, he is taken care of.

You, my God, are the Rock.
Your works are perfect, and all Your ways are just.
You are a faithful God who does no wrong.
You are upright and just.
Deut. 32:4

Thursday, July 8, 2010

today

this morning, as i was getting going and ready for the day, i pulled out my beth moore daily devotional..."praying God's word day by day." i love this little book. short and sweet but filled with God's word. not to mention, a close friend gave this book to me shortly after wyatt's death. she even went to the trouble to place little sticky notes here and there commenting on the devotions. so thoughtful and such a sweet reminder of the love and support we have. well...back to my point :), one of the verses for today was Psalm 31:7-8...

"I will be glad and rejoice in your love,
for you saw my affliction
and knew the anguish of my soul.
You have not handed me over to the enemy
but have set my feet in a spacious place."


i just loved this and really wanted to share it. i know this verse can apply to so many of us in so many different situations. but ultimately, it is nice to be reminded that HE is not far.

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

i'm here. i'm here...

well once again, life has been super busy...which i am still so very thankful for. i think God knows i need to keep my hands full right now. a couple of weeks ago ryan and i went to the beach with my mom, dad, and sister. we had a wonderful time. it was so nice to get away and to be with family. the weather was great and i think we may have just missed the oil. the beach is one of my favorite places to be so i am so glad we had the opportunity to go. ryan doesn't usually get to go but, he was able to sneak away from work and join us...what a treat! we would get up early (only because ryan does NOT sleep in) and would go on a walk or bike ride. it was so relaxing. here is a picture....i'm not sure why ryan looks so red :) he really didn't get that burned.

on another note, i want to send you over to my dear friend sarah's blog. her daughter, mamie, was born a sleeping angel last june. sarah has been such a wonderful friend and support since we lost wyatt. in honor of mamie, she has teamed up with a local pottery store to create and provide plates for moms and dads who have lost children. i am so impressed! and i cannot tell you how special this will be for all of these parents. i know wyatt's hand and feet prints are some of my favorite keepsakes. they mean so much to me. while i love his blankets and the few clothes he got to wear, his prints are a part of him. i know the plates will mean the world to the parents who receive them. way to go sarah! i am so very proud of you and mamie!!! the link to her site is: http://www.adamsfamilylr.blogspot.com/

enjoy!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

happy father's day!




i know wyatt is looking down today thanking God for such an amazing dad. i hate that he cannot be here loving on ryan today, but i pray that ryan feels his presence. i knew ryan was going to be a good dad...there was never a doubt in my mind...but there are no words to express how wonderful of a dad he is. i keep thinking about the way he followed wyatt to the hospital and how he had to deal with so much by himself. how he fought off sleep by wyatt's side in the NICU and then ended up sleeping in the car because he did not want to leave him. i think about how he never complained about taking care of wyatt or myself. he has truly been selfless. i am amazed by his strength and know wyatt and i are blessed to know this man. we love you!

10 months

it's hard to believe that tomorrow wyatt would be 10 months old. i'm not really sure where the time has gone. i keep finding myself thinking of things we should be doing and how big he would be. i think about how i would be working on his birthday party...i know it would still be 2 months away, but i have day dreamed about his birthday since we found out we were pregnant. i was so excited he would be born in august...i wanted to have all of our friends and family over to celebrate. i wanted to be outside soaking it all in. now instead, i dread this day. i can't help but cry every time i think about how we are going to make it through. i know we will though. just like every other day. i think i spend more time getting anxious and upset over days and then when they arrive we survive. just like every other day. i think i hoped that there was something magical about a year and that once we had made it through all of the firsts life would be easier. sadly, i realize that this is not totally true. there is nothing magical about a year. it is just a year without my sweet boy. i am sure with time the pain will lessen, but there is not a schedule or a time frame from which i can expect this. i am learning more and more everyday how to rely on God. i am to a point, that i am too tired to make it on my own. i know there are days i push Him away. not always on purpose, but sometimes to "protect" myself. i cannot lie, it is tiring to pour your heart out all the time...and so at times, i build a wall. but these are the days i feel Him the closest. i love that He knows my heart and while i may get defensive with Him He knows that i love him and need him. i love that He loves me despite my emotions. what an awesome father.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

bek came back!






yea! today bek came over and we started painting! it was so nice to see her and to paint a little. i have really missed her! it is such good therapy to paint but also just to spend that time talking. so thanks for spending the afternoon with me! we had quite the time :) i laugh because the painting looks so simple and abstract...but when you start trying to get it down on canvas things get a little more difficult. from the beginning, i knew i wanted the verses to be the background of the painting. i want you to be able to see them and read bits and pieces of them, but i didn't want the verses to be the art work. i really wanted a piece i could hang just about anywhere and not get tired of. i also didn't want it it to look crafty. lots of requirements, huh?! i'm not real into abstract art, but i do love aspects of it at times....usually the colors and the ways they blend together. so when i saw this painting on the internet i thought it would be the perfect painting....it looks like a piece of art and you would still be able to see the verses without them being the focus....perfect. if only i could paint like this :)





i was a little nervous to start the loops on it. i had practiced, but let's just say ryan was FAR from impressed and thought it might be better to let bek do her thing. i'll admit, i agreed! however, bek just wouldn't do it :) i don't think she wanted to be held responsible. ha! so, with a little encouragement and a pep talk, i got started. i'm almost embarrassed to post a picture so close to the one i was attempting to imitate :)....

my version is not quite a as busy as the true artists but i was afraid i would totally over do it and liked the big loops. one thing we really wanted on this canvas was lots of texture. it is hard to see from the pictures, but we're getting there. one way to add texture was to cover the canvas in wax. well...that turned into an adventure. we started putting the wax on and i noticed that the painting was turning a little yellow. hmmm....not really what we had in mind. so we tried painting a little varnish on to see if that would clear things up....nope. so off it came. we got most of the wax off with butter knives :) needless to say, we touched it up a little and stopped there for the day. i think my arm may be sore tomorrow. i still LOVE the idea of coating it in wax so i'm going to find some clear wax and coat it with that. we'll see! i may be scraping again, but hey at least you can't really mess anything up. i'll be sure to post some more pictures when it is totally complete! and bek thanks again for all your help!!!











Wednesday, June 9, 2010

purpose

ok, so i'm not as computer savvy as i would like to think...so you'll have to go to the link :). but i just love this lesson. occasionally i need to be reminded that no matter how deep the grief is, God's will is being accomplished...and while that does not always bring peace, there is meaning to wyatt's life and our life here. i can get so lost in the grief and heartache that i forget i'm still here to serve a purpose. i hope you enjoy!

http://proverbs31devotions.blogspot.com/2009/09/different-way-to-look-at-suffering.html

Sunday, June 6, 2010

it's been a while...

life has been busy. which is a good thing right now, but it also wears me down and therefore, my emotions are right under the surface. As of the past few days, I have been shocked by the amount of grief and loss i feel. i know we are not far on this journey, but i feel as though i lost my son yesterday....except now the reality has sunk in and is hard to swallow. everyday remains a challenge. there are certainly more good days, but even on those good days there is a strong sense of loss. i think of wyatt constantly. i mean just about every minute of everyday. as i have said, the grief tends to come in waves for one reason or another. so i have faith that this will pass.
i have really had such a wonderful time with friends and family lately, but i have become painfully aware that our appearance of "being o.k." sends a confusing message. which i totally understand. grief is so different for all of us. there are times that ryan will tell me things that are hard for him that i had not even thought of. there are times i am sure i tell ryan things that are hard for me that he never would have thought of. for example, shopping :) this used to come so naturally, but i have to admit that it has been a hurdle i have had to make my way around. it seems so silly, but for so long i had envisioned myself hanging out with wyatt strolling through stores and enjoying ourselves, that it has been a true battle for me. there are so many everyday life things that have been unexpectedly difficult. things i never would have thought of i had not been placed here. and to be honest, i am still very sensitive to the loss of wyatt and not being able to watch him grow up or take care of him. i miss him very much. so thank you for your continued support and prayers. i truly appreciate them.

Monday, May 24, 2010

happy anniversary!

well it has been a rough few months to say the least, but I woke up happy today to have my husband beside me. i just had to give him a quick shout out :) and say happy anniversary! i am the luckiest woman in the world and am ever so thankful for him. i could go on and on, but i'm going to keep it short and sweet...i'd hate to embarrass him :) so...happy anniversary!

Friday, May 21, 2010

a better day

so happy to report that today has been so much better. it is so pretty outside and i have a wedding this afternoon. i can't wait! so thanks for the prayers, i'm glad this week is about over.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

trying to find peace

i so badly want to say that i am doing well and holding up, but this week is wearing me out. it is nothing out of the ordinary, it just feels long and exhausting. i know my grief comes in waves and varying degrees. right now the days seem to go on forever and i want nothing more than for them to pass quickly. i so badly want to hold my little boy again. there are days when i can find peace in knowing that i will see him again, but there are days i feel as though i cannot wait any longer. i am ready for this wave to pass.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

9 months

it is so hard to believe wyatt would be 9 months old today. i'm not really sure where the time has gone. i am still having trouble grasping that summer is on its way. That winter has come and gone without him. it's funny how time stands still at times like these. love you little man!

Friday, May 14, 2010

pretty in pink

ryan and i are so blessed to live by some wonderful people! my sweet neighbor, ashley, brought these over the other day. they also took care of our yard for us while we were in little rock. i can't tell you how much we appreciated that. ryan is a BIG yard guy and it was so nice to know everything was taken care of while we were away. i just wanted to share them with you. they smell incredible. i love them!!!! have a good weekend!







Sunday, May 9, 2010

happy mother's day

those of you who know me well, know that i have been blessed with an amazing mom. a mom who always provided direction and guidance, yet has let us experience life and make our own decisions...even when she knew heartache was to follow. i know this is hard for a mother to do. she is a constant in my life. a mother and a dear friend. she is a wonderful lady outside of being my mom and i am so proud of her. i have always loved her presence in my life and am still loving it to this day. thank you mom for being present in my past and my present. i love you dearly.

today has been such a bitter sweet day. ryan, my mom, dad, sister, avery, and i headed out to devil's den to "hike" and get out of the house. it was so nice to be with family on such a difficult day. it was nice to be outside and not idol at home. there is something about being outside that makes you feel more alive. i have received so many texts, cards, and words of encouragement today. thank you. i can't even begin to tell you how sweet it is to receive letters and messages wishing me a happy mother's day. it's nice to know others are thinking of us today, but it is especially nice to be called mom. i have wonderful friends who so sweetly remind me that i am and always will be wyatt's mom. and yet while i know this, and am so proud of this, i do not feel like a mom. my arms are empty and i feel helpless. miles away from the one who would call me mom. never to hear his sweet voice cry out for me. i feel like there are so many things a mom does for their child and yet i cannot do anything for mine. i cannot hold him, take care of him, i cannot look into his big eyes and tell him how much i love him, i cannot teach him about life and watch him grow. i long for these moments with him. i simply long to BE his mom.

my heart aches with all of my sweet friends who have lost their precious babies. i look forward to the day we are all in Heaven holding our little ones.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

trying to find patience

another day down. today has been better than yesterday, but yesterday was rough. real rough. it's just a hard time for us and this week is so difficult leading up to mother's day. i think i have been dreading this day for months. i just wish we could skip it all together. i have the most wonderful mom in the world, but i can't get over not having wyatt here to celebrate with. there are so many people that have lost children, miscarried, or who long for a baby and haven't been able to get pregnant. i know that i am not alone in wanting this day to come and go. quickly. i know it stresses ryan out too. he is such an amazing husband and doesn't know what to do to make sunday less painful. but as we well know, there isn't a thing anyone can do....but just be there. i am so thankful to be married to such an amazing man who cares so much about our family. i love that he can still make me smile and laugh when i am feeling so defeated. i believe there is good in our future, it is just hard to see through the fog right now. i can't wait to look back and say "look at us now." i believe God has big plans for us....i'm just growing a little impatient ;) which really is no surprise....patience is not my strong point.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

day by day

i have learned so much about myself and mine and ryans's relationship over the past eight months. i can tell you that this magnitude of grief and the emotions it has brought to the surface has really surprised me. i am often told that we are so strong and people often tell me how they could not get through this. i am so humbled that people see us as strong. i often think to myself if you could only see the tears we have cried and felt the depth of our pain you would realize we are not strong at all. not even close. but i often think of 2 Corinthians 12:10 "...for when i am weak, then I am strong." when you get to a point such as this, you realize...whole heartedly.....that we are not in control. ryan and i did not choose to be here. but were chosen. and i cannot lie and pretend that that brings comfort, because it does not. but we have no other choice than to survive this. our only choice is are going to suffer alone or in the arms of our Father in Heaven. and we choose to share our pain with our mighty Father in Heaven. we could not do this alone. we are not doing this alone. i wish i could tell you that because of our faith the pain is less severe. but it is not. our faith brings us hope. hope for our future and hope to be with our son again...but it does not in any way take an ounce of our pain away. our loss is what it is. there is no way around it. last week i was on my way to visit a dear friend who has also lost her sweet baby, and i was listening to the radio. they were interviewing a woman, a missionary, who had been held hostage with her husband for an extended period of time. unfortunately, her husband was not released here on earth. but while she was talking she said something that really hit home with me. she was talking about grief and how sometimes people make the assumption that because of her strong faith her pain was less in some way. and she then went on to say that you cannot put a "spiritual band aid" on grief. yes, we have hope for our future and believe that God is good, but the feelings are not any less real...any less painful....any less in anyway. but what faith does is allow God to bring healing, restoration, and revelation. not too long ago, i read that "basing our faith on who God is rather than what He appears to be doing is crucial to our spiritual health." you cannot imagaine the things i would say to Him if my faith was based solely on what He appears to be doing. i do not know His plan and neither do you. but i trust that no matter how painful this journey is, i can and will trust what He is doing and where He is taking us. which totally ties into a conversation i had this morning with a friend. we have to trust God more than we question Him. i don't know why we are here or even what we are doing, but i do know that God is getting us through this diffiuclt journey one step at a time....and He is using you to support and hold us up when we cannot stand on our own. so thank you from the bottom of my heart for holding us up with your prayers and presence. i cannot even begin to tell you how truly important it is just to have you present. present to keep living with us and by us. present to talk or not talk about wyatt. just present. i find that because some people do not know what to say to us they tend not to say anything at all. sometimes people avoid being with us and aviod talking to us. but i have to tell you, that not saying anything at all is worse than saying the "wrong thing." just a sweet text saying you're thinking of us or praying for us or just wanted to say hello means more than you could ever know. it's the "little" things right now that mean the most. so thank you for the "little things."

Saturday, April 24, 2010

still here

Still here :) work has REALLY picked up. it didn't really slow down as much i thought it would for it being sooo cold, but now that it is warm, i am working over time. life is still pretty much the same here. i am learning to enjoy myself amidst the pain. i am really trying to stay strong. i know to some, we really look like we are doing great and everything is fine...we'll just say i'm glad we look ok, but we are still surviving day by day. it is better right now, don't get me wrong... but there are moments that a life time just seems too long. as the emotions rise, i am reminded that God has and will keep us going. i am amazed and so thankful for what He has done with us so far. so, i just thought i would check in. didn't want anyone to think i had disappeared :)

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

sweet memories

i just had to post a few pictures....these always make me smile. love you sweet angel!


this is our little man in his bouncy seat his aunt les gave him...and he LOVED it!

here we were cheering the hogs on...hence my razorback shirt and his red socks. this is the day i found out it was ok for him to wear clothes. i was soooo excited, i slipped out while dad baby sat and tried to find him something red for our big date that night...obviously i came home empty handed...but hey he had red socks :)

and here he was just hanging out...being dramatic ;)

Monday, April 12, 2010

right now i am in the middle of a Bible study on David. i am always amazed how God reaches out to me through such studies. always when i least expect it. it really wasn't until day 3 of my study that it all begin to hit home. on this particular day, we focused on how David was angry and afraid and wondered how the ark of the Lord could ever come to him. the study went on to say that we need to be determined to allow God to take us and our families "so far" that He alone can be the explanation. i am so anxious to allow Him to take us that far. i can't wait to come to a place where i can say, "look where God has brought us!" right now I am just trusting that He will. but how exciting! the study also talked about moving past our devastation with God. really?! i had never thought of it this way. but yes, i have been devastated with God. while i can say i haven't been really angry with him, I have been devastated. my feelings have certainly been hurt. how could such a loving and faithful God not hear our cries as we poured out our hearts and our desires and trusted him alone with our son. truly, i know He heard our cries and hears them still. i know His heart breaks with ours. but i also know that how i handle this has a direct impact on my relationship with my Father. the maker and creator...the author of life. i am ever so thankful that while i struggle, He knows my heart. the moment David could say, "look how far you have brought me" came after heart ache. the study also talked of how true intimacy with God cannot grow in an untrue environment. I love that the author wrote that "our hearts never need pouring out more than when they are filled with the toxic waters of bitterness." how true this is. how grateful i am for a God who knows my devastation with Him and is not offended. He waits patiently for me. how wonderful it is to trust that God's ways are higher than mine and that i don't have to understand His ways to settle my heart ache and hurt feelings. i can and do trust Him.

"trust in Him at ALL times, O people;
pour out your hearts to him,
for God is our refuge"
Psalm 62:8

Friday, April 9, 2010

making it

this past week has flown by. there are times i don't where the days go and others that seem painfully endless. i can't say much has changed here...which is why i haven't written in a week. right now, the heartache is just below the surface. enough that i am pretty much doing ok, but it doesn't take much to rock my world. easter was most definitely the hardest day i have had in a while. the tears started before we ever left for church and pretty much lasted all day. i would think i was ok and then find myself bawling again. i just kept wondering where the tears were coming from. do we ever run out?! it was just one of those days. i really miss him. i wasn't really prepared for easter to be so difficult. i guess it just breaks my heart that there are so many holidays i will never get to spend with him. year after year.
we brought Wyatt's easter lily to the cemetery today. better late than never :) it was so beautiful there. the grass is green, a great deal of the markers have flowers, and the birds were chirping. as i was standing there by his grave, i couldn't help but notice the birds and flowers. but it is funny that no matter how beautiful is, it cannot take this pain away. i love the sunshine and beauty spring brings...but at times, it is just a distraction. a distraction i am certainly thankful for, but a distraction none the less. i only wish it could take away the sting of death.
so for now, i will enjoy these somewhat lighter days. for the only thing i have learned about grief is that it usually comes in waves and is extremely unpredictable.

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion
and the God of all comfort..."

Friday, April 2, 2010

same

well, not much has been going on. the past week has been pretty good. still emotional, but also busy and productive which is good. i have found that this past week or so my good has been better and my bad has been worse. the grief never totally leaves, but comes in degrees and waves. right now, i am pretty neutral. not totally up or totally down. just in between and surviving...which is better than just down. someone once made an analogy about grief that makes total sense. she said that grief is like being in a room filled with people smoking (and you don't). after a while, you begin to get used to it. when you get out to catch your breath and breathe for a moment you remember how nice fresh air is. but when you have to go back in, the smoke feels much heavier and it feels more difficult to breathe. it feels much worse. as time goes on, you get to get out more and breathe more fresh air, but it gets harder and harder when you have to go back in. this is so true. i can get out of the smoke for a bit, but i always return....and when i do it is harder and harder to breathe even though the smoke has not changed. i have just had a moment to escape. i can't wait for the day to live "outside" a little longer. but i believe that God is faithful and it will come. there will always be rougher days, but i know God will restore us and allow us to breathe.

"His divine power has given us everything we need for life and godliness through our knowledge
of him who called us by his own glory and goodness."
2 Peter 1:3

Sunday, March 28, 2010

high heels

so i guess it is my turn. i have put it off long enough :) most of you who know me well...or even really at all...know i am big fan of heels...it is not a secret. they are usually on my feet. that is except in the summer when i am able to wear sandals and flip flops. so i guess it will not surprise most of you if i told you that i wore my wedges a lot while we were at Children's. but there is a difference in wedges and high heels. in my defense, our trip to little rock was unexpected and i pretty much had to leave with what i had packed for my original trip to the hospital. which included the shoes i wore to the hospital...my brown wedges. don't think i hadn't thought that through...i didn't care if i had just had a baby...i was leaving the hospital in style :). which also brings me to the story. while we were in little rock we would occasionally have to do laundry. to be honest, my mom usually did it for us so we could stay with wyatt and not miss out on time with him. but occasionally, i needed out. a little fresh air and time to re-group, refresh, and re-energize. one afternoon, when ryan returned from work, i decided i would slip out and go tackle some laundry at my parent's house. maybe even get in a good shower if i had the energy. so, i packed up our dirty laundry and a few odds and ends and left. well, i wasn't ten feet out of our door when i totally busted it. flat on my back. thankfully, no one was around expect for the sweet janitor who was mopping the floor. she of course ran over to help me up and see if i was ok. about this time i turned around and ryan was standing in our door just laughing. apparently, the fall had been really loud ( i did have a lot of milk bottles in my bag as well). i was totally fine...a little embarrassed, but not hurt. thank goodness! another nurse came over and they continued to quiz me and insist that i see a doctor or get checked out. ha! NO WAY! i insisted that i was fine. i told them my pride was a little hurt, but that i was good to go. i quickly made my way to the car and tried to disappear for a while...hoping no one would remember the incident later. about an hour into laundry, i got a phone call. it was ryan . i just knew he was calling to make fun of me. let's just say, he is totally used to me running into walls and falling. as i answered the phone, i could hear him laughing on the other end. i of course, was laughing with him and then he said he needed my driver's license number. i could not figure out why in the world he would need my driver's license number...so i asked, and he told me they were having to file and accident report. i kid you not! i totally thought ryan was trying to pull a fast one on me and i refused to give in. but then i could hear two of our sweet nurses laughing in the background and telling me he was telling the truth. i reluctantly gave him my drivers license number and hung up. slightly embarrassed. when i returned to the hospital, ryan was so excited to show me the report and told me that he had requested a copy of it. ha! i began reading the report, and i could not stop laughing...first of all, it did not mention that the floors were soaking wet. and then it went on to say that my arms were full and that i was carrying lots of heavy bags (which was true) and that i was wearing high heels. it said i had gotten up quickly, resisted medical attention, and left rather fast. ok...yes, my hands were full, yes i had told them i was fine, but seriously?! high heels :) they were wedges. not quite as risky as high heels. oh it makes me laugh every time i think of this story and hearing two of favorite nurses laughing in the background. i know they all thought we were crazy there...ryan walking around with toilet paper flowing from this pants, me running around the hospital in "high heels." what a sight!

a little sunshine

i am so looking forward to a warmer week. the sunshine doesn't always make me feel better, but the rain and clouds definitely make some days worse. so, i decided to brighten up the blog a little too :) talk to you soon!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

why

Lately I can't seem to get all of the questions out of my mind...all of the whys...Why Wyatt? Why us? Why did this happen after he fought so hard to live? Why?! Why can't I have my son here with me...with us?! Why do we have to endure so much and then so much more? I even go so far as tell God that it isn't fair...and I mean it. Really mean it. And while these thoughts were pouring over me this morning, God answered. Not like I wanted Him to, but gently as only He can. He reminded me that it is not all about me. All though I do tease with Ryan and tell him it is all about me...I know it is not. I can't tell you the number of people who have asked me the same thing. Telling us that we are such good parents and that it just doesn't make sense. Going on to tell us that some parents just shut down when they hear that something is "wrong" with their baby and distance themselves...but we did not. We loved harder. Even though it doesn't really make sense to me, I know that God keeps telling me that it isn't about me...it is all about HIM and HIS plans. His plans to prosper us and not to harm us. His plans to use Wyatt's life to touch the lives of many here on earth. His plans to enrich us and remind us of His faithfulness. So while I don't ususally notice these things amidst the pain, there are brief moments that I do. Brief moments that He dries my tears and quietly tells me it is not about you...it is about me. What great things You have accomplished through Wyatt's short life. What peace I can find in trusting You alone. Thank you God for allowing me to be a part of this great work here on earth.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

update

I don't even know where to begin today...it has been overwhelming in so many ways. Both happy and sad. Thank you so much for the sweet texts and messages today just letting us know you are thinking of us. I am truly touched...and amazed that our friends continue to think of us and show us support on days like today. I don't know how you remember such dates...but thank you for remembering. It means the world to me! Happy 6 months in Heaven sweet baby boy!
So here's an update on the canvas :) I really wanted to get a picture of Bek hosing it down...but it was COLD and rainy and I felt like maybe I should help and not just take pictures :) It's coming along though. I am so excited! So excited!

Thursday, March 18, 2010

a better day


Thanks to so many WONDERFUL friends, family, some beautiful weather, and art :) I feel better. Today, my friend Bek came over and we started on "THE CANVAS." Oh I am so excited and thankful. Bek volunteered to help....really teach me and help....design and create the canvas. I am so incredibly thankful for her sweet spirit and tender heart. She is not only a joy to be around but is really helping me make something wonderful. Thank you Bek! You are WONDERFUL! I meant it! I took some pictures today while we worked. It is going to be a step by step process but I am excited already! So here's a few pictures of our progress from today...




Tuesday, March 16, 2010

I have been reluctant to write. I'm not really sure why. I think it is just because I don't have much to say....let me take that back...I don't have much to say that people want to hear. I try not to write solely about our pain. I don't know if it is because I don't want to "complain" all the time...if I feel like not writing about it makes it less real...or if I sometimes assume the world thinks we should just be ok by now. Not too long ago, I was visiting with someone about the things I have been doing. Just about life in general, when she asked me if I thought I might be expecting too much of myself. I laughed and said yes. But I then followed that with , "but I can't live like this forever." Grief is so hard to explain. It involves so many emotions and thoughts. Thoughts I would never have imagined...in my wildest dreams. I want to be in places that I cannot. It is a battle between being a good friend and looking out for myself. A battle between my desires and my emotions. So, I feel as though I am constantly having to put on a show and look ok from the exterior as I fall apart on the interior. It is exhausting. Yet I am not sure why I feel as though I have to put this pressure on myself. Pressure to appear ok. Maybe it is pride or maybe because I am so fed up with this pain I just want to convince myself we are making it. I don't know. So either way, I am just going to humble myself now and just say it...I am hurting. I am sad and frustrated and worn out. I am tired of living everyday in this amount of pain. Just fed up. So while I don't think anyone expects us to be back to normal...it is makes me feel better to just say we're not. Our loss is huge and is felt everyday of our lives. There are days I can handle the pain better...but there are days I cannot handle anymore of it. Today, I have reached my limit. But during times like these, I am thankful that God hears my cries and surrounds me with me friends. Friends who can handle this grief and who expect nothing more.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

no time like the present

As Wyatt and I sat in our room one morning, I happened to glance out of our door to see the doors of CVICU east closed. My heart sank and I immediately began to pray. During our time in CVICU east they had informed us that the doors were always open and we were always welcome. We were also told that if we were to visit and find the doors closed we were not allowed to come in...that in this circumstance a patient was needing immediate attention and visitors would be allowed back in after everything and everyone was ok. So naturally, I began to cry and hold Wyatt a little closer. But as I sat there, I kept telling myself that we were ok. That we had made it to CVICU west or in my mind the "safer side." The we're ok side. And I began to think about God's plan for me. I thought about how Wyatt was doing well and how I just knew that God would not have "allowed" me to quit my job to stay home and take care of Wyatt and then rip him from my arms. There is no way God would allow me to return home without my son....without my new job. By the end of this pep talk I had convinced myself that I knew God's plan and I rested in that false sense of security. And it felt good.
So you can only imagine the sickness that fell over me the evening Wyatt was rushed back to CVICU east to prepare for surgery. We were no longer safe and I was helpless. There was not a thing I could do to help my son but pray....and watch as his fragile life slipped from our hands as the doctors prepared him for his unexpected emergency surgery.
And while this is such a difficult lesson to learn, I have learned something so very important. A lesson I would not have learned any other way. I have learned that while I was sure...sure...I knew God's plan for me. I did not. I still do not. But I do know that He does not waste a single breath. So while, my eyes were focused on our future and where we were going and what God was GOING TO do with us. I forgot to see what He WAS DOING with us.
Numbers 9:23 writes about how the Israelites traveled and camped and God guided them. In my Life Application Bible it goes on to discuss how when you follow God's guidance you are right where you are supposed to be...all the time...whether it is sitting still or moving forward. It also talks of how we often pray for God to show us what He wants us to do next or prepare us for where we are going...but instead, maybe we should ask God "What do you want me to do while I am RIGHT here?" God places us right where we are for a purpose. I have learned that there are a thousand different ways to get to the same location....but God puts me on the path I am on right now to serve a purpose this very day. I hope not to waste a single breath waiting on God to show me where I am going, but spend my time focusing on the now.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

box

I almost forgot. I designed and ordered the box through the Dream Album company. They do wonderful work and donate albums to my newest love...the Tiny Sparrow Foundation.

Monday, March 8, 2010

things to come






Not too long ago, I decided I needed a special box to keep all of Wyatt's special items...his bracelets from the hospital...his foot prints....the ear muff from his helicopter ride...and all of the special cards, notes, and letters we have received. I have not thrown ANYTHING away. So, I was in full gear....searching for the perfect box...and I found it! This box is about 8x10. I am so excited to have it. The picture is absolutely perfect...the quality is amazing. I could go on and on...I wish the pictures did it justice! I just had to share!

Also...look what project is about to get started....my work of heart! Oh I cannot wait! I'll keep you posted on how things are going! Avery is obviously excited too...she thinks she has to be in EVERY picture :) Love her!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

thank you

Just before Wyatt's six month birthday my sister and a dear friend showed up at my house...I was very surprised to see them...They brought me a sweet card. The card read "thinking of you on the loss of your child" on the outside and "though gone much too soon, your child's life was a beautiful gift that will remain in so many hearts forever" on the inside. There was also a list of about 18 of my sweetest friends names listed inside the card. They had all come together to purchase a seat in the new auditorium or performing arts center where Ryan and I attended high school. Wyatt's name will be placed on a plaque on one of the seats there. Words cannot thank these girls enough. It goes beyond the seat itself....these wonderful friends have truly blessed us with an amazing gift. Not only will our son's name be written for many to see...but the mere gift of acknowledging his life is the greatest gift they could give. For, while I know I will never forget Wyatt, it means so much to know that he has touched other lives as well. And while he rejoices in Heaven his name will continue to be spoken here on earth. His life, though short, was great. Impactful. Meaningful. And missed. Thank you sweet friends for not only providing a way for his name to be read over and over, but for acknowledging him and his life on that special day. It means more to me than you will ever know. I love you all!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

I'm back!

I'm back! Ryan and I decided about a week ago it was time to get away. So, we took a long weekend to Utah to go skiing. It was so nice. Nice to get away...nice to be somewhere new....and nice to just be with Ryan. We had a wonderful time...even though I am not the best on skis :) and did I mention I have a serious fear of heights?! I am just so glad I am married a good guy....a good guy with lots of patience! He never rushed me down the mountain or pushed my comfort level...THANK YOU! Everyone kept telling us we needed to get away...and we did...but I am so glad we went when we did. It's hard to describe, but you have to go when you're ready....and I don't think we were ready until now. We just couldn't pick up and leave our emotions and pain at home...so we had to wait and go when we thought we could let down and still enjoy ourselves. Which we did. I can't say that I didn't think of Wyatt constantly...especially as I watched the cute little kids fearlessly flying down the mountain or as we walked past all of the families with little ones bundled up....but I was able to be ok which is what we had to wait for. I wish we could just pick up and leave our grief behind...but then again, I might never come back if that was the case :)
I'll be sure to post a few pictures from our trip!

Right now I am still trying to warm back up to being home alone. It's odd how we were only away five days but I have to readjust to a quiet house. I realize Wyatt never got to come home with us, but for some reason the quiet can be so painful. I just expect noise and crying and a baby to take care of. It's like I was telling a friend the other day it is so weird that we only had five weeks with him...but we will never be "normal" without him. Ryan and I have almost been married for seven years and up until we had Wyatt we were satisfied with just each other....and yet we can't seem to find contentment again. Not with each other, but with the whole we feel in our hearts. There is obviously something missing and our lives can't and won't return to the way things used to be. And while this sounds terrible, I have to say, I am glad. I don't want to return to life as if everything is normal....it is not. But also, it makes me think...think about God's plans for us. I really feel as though He is trying to tell me just be still because He can and will restore us. Maybe not on my time schedule, but He loves us so much that He will not leave our hearts bleeding here....He will restore us and make us whole again. Oh thank you God! In Bible study this morning we talked about how trust comes before something happens while thanks comes after something happens. As I sit here, I realize that I have to put my trust in God and His plans for us....which is right where I want to be...trusting Him. Not merely thanking Him after I get what I want. We also talked about it is inherit to have a longing while waiting for something...otherwise is not a wait. How true. I will certainly remember this as I wait on the Lord to restore and heal us...for I am certain HE WILL.

"Yet the Lord longs to be gracious to you; he rises to show you compassion. For the Lord is a God of justice. Blessed are all who wait for him."
Isa. 30:18

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

a wearing week

Whew, what a week. I am exhausted and it has just begun. Right now I don't even know where to begin. I feel as though I am about to just break down, but I also feel so thankful at the same time. I am just glad we have made it through this past week. As you know, Wyatt would have been six months old on Thursday. It is so hard to believe! The pain is still so fresh. Saturday was my birthday...well mine, my sisters, and my dads. I am so thankful we all share this day. And so thankful we could all celebrate together. I have to admit, Saturday was really rough. I woke up crying and didn't feel as though I had the strength to get out of bed. This is really the first time I have truly felt like I couldn't make myself get up. I am so glad it is over. I can't even begin to describe how much I miss Wyatt...and even more on my birthday. And then there is today...the day 5 months ago that we so unexpectedly were forced to say our last goodbyes. I am glad for an emotional break for a while. Not that I think I won't have hard days, but at least a break from more firsts we will never have with him. Thank you all for your continued prayers and support!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

6 months

Today I am really trying to relish sweet memories and celebrate that six months ago, God blessed us with the most amazing gift. A gift that has changed our lives forever. Love you Wyatt!

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

I hear ya!

So, I went to Bible study this morning feeling pretty good...I've recognized that while I feel pretty good...there is always so much under the surface. So, while I am looking like I'm doing great on the outside and I've convinced myself of this as well...it doesn't take much to bring all of my many emotions to the surface. I have also realized that there is such a fine line between shedding tears and loosing control. Well, I think God was really wanting me to ride that fine line today :) and He just wanted to use Beth Moore to yell out at me. Well, she didn't yell, but she might of as well had. I was just sitting there thinking ok God...seriously! I hear you! Loud and clear. Just please don't "make" me loose control here...in front of all of these people. Who I am sure already think I am unstable to begin with. For some reason, being in church or in Bible Study really brings my feelings closer to the surface and harder to hide. So, while I tried to keep it together and just shed some tears...not loose control...because there would be NO going back after that....I heard what God had to say to me...I really listened. And while yes, I wanted so badly to just lay on the floor and let it all out...God had such comforting words to say. Our focus for our lesson today was how Esther moved from self-preservation to brave determination. Well, I can totally see how I might apply this to our situation...but this probably would not have left me bawling in front of LOTS of women. It probably wasn't until we got to the second point of the lesson...first she had a choice...and secondly, Esther faced the fear, that I realized God was talking and that I was to lisen. As I sat there, I was thinking how does this apply to me...heck, I've already lost a child...what else is there to fear....and then she made us look at a sentence in our workbook that read: and if ________, then ________. We were told not to fill this out but really think. And like I said, I thought well I guess one of my largest fears has already come true...I'm just living it out now. And then it hit me. I have HUGE fears. I've known this, but even though we are surviving a deep fear...I still fear not being able to be mom...ever....what if I loose another child...what if...what if....what if...the list could go on and on. And so as I sat there and cried and faced these fears Beth kept saying and then what....and then what....ok...so I've lost my baby, I have felt the weight of my baby in my arms while his soul was resting peacefully with His maker, I have buried my baby....my only child...I have chosen a cemetery and a specific plot for his body to rest, I have met with funeral directors, I have picked out flowers to lay upon his casket, I have stood over his grave and wept, I have cried countless tears...and then what....I pick myself up and keep going. Not without a HUGE hole in my heart....but nonetheless, I keep putting one foot in front of the other...every single day. And so while I think of this I continue to think and then what.....I keep living and relying on God.That's what. That is ALL I can do. And how thankful I am that everyday as I force myself out of bed or at night as I lay myself down to sleep, my Father in Heaven is looking down on me and saying "I will take care of you." He tells me that I am not to have conditional faith, but I am to face my fear and trust HIM. The most frequent command in the Bible is "do not be afraid." Not "do not sin"....DO NOT BE AFRAID. I feel so blessed to be loved by a Father who wants me to feel and be secure. Hebrews 2:14-15 says, "By embracing death, taking it into himself, he destroyed the Devils hold on death and freed all who cower through this life, scared to death of death." So while I fear death...death of loved ones...I will hold tight to John 10:10 "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they have life, and have it to the full." It is impossible to have abundant life if we live in fear of death. You cannot truly live if we are living in such fear. As Beth would say, death is not my destiny. So watch out! There is a lot of living left to do....and while there are days and while there will continue to be days that my fear overwhelms me...I will take courage in knowing that when I put my trust in God, I can STILL live an abundant life. What a blessing!

Whew, I almost want to shout "Amen" after all that :) While I am sure the girls in Bible study think I am on the edge of crazy...I am finding that I just on the edge of what God is trying to teach me and just beginning my journey to my destiny.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Love you

Today I just want to say "I love you" to all of you out there who have been so sweet to read this blog...which I am sure can be depressing at times....to those of you who remember us in your prayers, and to those of you who have allowed God to use you in our lives. I know Ryan and I would not be making it if it weren't for the love offerings you have made. Thank you! While I am really missing Wyatt today, I feel so loved. And I am so thankful that despite the pain, I can feel the warmth of your arms. I pray that you all feel loved today as well...that your cup runneth over. May the love, joy, and blessings that you have brought to us be returned on this day. Thank you again for your support, your sweet words, and for taking the time to care about us. I love you!

"I will praise the Lord, who counsels me;
even at night my heart instructs me.
I have set the Lord always before me.
Because he is at my right hand,
I will not be shaken."
Psalm 16:7-8

Friday, February 12, 2010

fear

Talking to a friend the other day, I voiced how our grief comes in waves. We are yet to experience true freedom from our grief, but there have been times of rest. At this time, I am experiencing some rest...but feel the grief creeping upon me. It is heavy, strong, and relentless. As I know we are approaching Wyatt's six month birthday I can't help but be flooded with thoughts about what he would look like and how he should almost be sitting up. Time has stood still here and I just want his little 7 lb. body back in my arms. I want to re-live these past six months with him here. I want so badly to watch him grow up and reach each of these milestones. Yet, I am here, just imaging what it would be like...what life should be like. There is a song by Steven Curtis Chapman that talks about how this isn't the way it could have been or should have been...but that this is the way it is. That song plays constantly in my mind...as I feel that this is not the way it could have been....but this is the way it is.
As I was doing my Bible study yesterday, I was reading about fear. While this is something that I will have to continuously fight, with God's help, I understand that I have to let Him bring me to a place where I trust Him...completely. There are brief moments that I am overcome with this peace...but there are certainly times my human nature allows me to experience pure fear. The study I am doing talked about how it is natural for us to plead for God to protect us from terrible things. And that when our fears become our reality we feel forsaken. This really makes me think...think about how we begged and pleaded for God to spare Wyatt's life and how our deepest fear became our reality. How it has made me question prayer and truly made me analyze my faith...but all of this analyzing and questioning has allowed my faith to grow deeper and stronger. I realize that I am not in control. That my life is not layed out the way I had planned...that to survive all of this...I have to trust God...alone. As I grieve, I often remind myself that God does not want to hurt his children. That there is redemption and fulfillment in living a life that honors our God our Savior. I look forward to this day.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Our Father's hands

I know it is my turn to embarrass myself, but I'll have to put that off :) I just can't help but share from my day today. God has truly shown himself throughout these past months and it is so encouraging to really reflect on His awesomeness. While there is so much to say about what He has done, I don't really even know how or where to start.

To begin, I had to have c-section...not planned, but hey this was just the beginning of God teaching a "planner" to let go. I know this may not seem like a big deal, but I totally believe God had a reason for all of this...when Wyatt was born we did not know he had a heart defect. In fact, he had a very strong heartbeat in my womb and besides missing it on the ultrasound there was no other way to know of his condition. To make a long story a little shorter, I was induced the day after his due date...August 18th. I went all day on petocin and never made any progress...I'm not sure I even dilated past a one. Yikes! So, around six that evening we decided to have a c-section. I often wonder if Wyatt would have even made it through labor had we not. He never appeared sick or fragile (well maybe a little with all his tubes in the NICU and CVICU...but never puny) but I can't help but think God was just buying us time with him. I am just forever thankful that God had other plans...plans for us to spend time with our little boy.

Our next blessings presented themselves at Children's. We had the most wonderful and caring doctors and nurses. Friends and friends of friends had called people they knew that worked there...and we were surrounded by people who knew us or knew of us. Which I have to admit, was extremely comforting. We were unable to hold Wyatt in the NICU due to all of his tubes and the risk of moving him...however, the night before his surgery, God placed Wyatt in the care of a nurse who had attended the same high school as us. She had watched over Wyatt a lot that week. In fact, she was with him and with Ryan the day I arrived...I can't even begin to tell you comforting that was! But the night before surgery, she allowed/insisted that Ryan and I hold our precious baby. We had only held him for a short time after he was born since he was born so late and then taken in the middle of the night. So, I can't even begin to tell you how wonderful it was to not only hold him in our arms, but hold him before his surgery. Thank you God for placing us in the care of such a wonderful nurse!

Obviously, there is so much more...such as his successful surgery and success in recovery. But to lead up to the purpose of my post, I have to tell you that last February I took pictures of a little boy who was also diagnosed with a congenital heart defect soon after his birth. This sweet little boy was the poster child for the American Heart Association's Heart Gala last year. His mom was a teacher, as was I. So, I while I did not really know her, I knew of her and had met her through several friends. I was very interested in their family and their story and truly honored to take pictures of this handsome little boy. I also ended up taking family pictures of them in the summer before I had Wyatt. Well, as soon as she heard about Wyatt and his condition she was sending us texts and calling us in Little Rock to check in on us and offer support...as she had walked down the same halls, sat in the same waiting rooms, and lived in the same hospital as us. She knew the road we were traveling and the weight we carried as we fought for our child's life. I remember walking in the hospital one evening and receiving a text from her asking if we had met a particular nurse. What were the odds? He was our nurse that evening! I remember being so relieved as she told me how much they loved him...it always made me nervous when we would be assigned new nurses...you just get used to them and it is so hard to leave your child's life in someone else's hands...anyways, she continued to call and text throughout our stay in Little Rock. And since we have been back, Ryan and I have gone to eat with her and her husband and had the chance to get to know each other better. Which I am so thankful for! She has been volunteering for the American Heart Association...as this is close to her heart...so another long story a little shorter....She gave my name to the Heart Association here and I was able to volunteer to take pictures this morning of all of the sweethearts for the Heart Gala this coming May. The girls looked absolutely beautiful and their pictures will be in a local magazine. They will also be recognized at the gala in May. Ryan and I are planing on attending the gala with our new friends...the parents of last year's poster child....we absolutely cannot wait! So, today was a good day...a day to give back and be thankful. Thankful for the way God has been wrapping His loving arms around us and thankful for the way He continues to work and show himself in our lives. I feel so honored to have been able to help today and to be so loved from our Father in Heaven...to see that He never takes His eyes or hands off of us.