Monday, May 12, 2008

My Other Boys

March and May are bittersweet months for me. I love Spring—everything about it, but as the daffodils bloom I'm reminded of two precious little ones I have waiting for me. They're safe in Jesus' arms. Here's my journal entry from 9 years ago in March:

“Elijah is his own special miracle. Just 14 weeks after conception and Elijah was so perfectly formed. I was able to count his little fingers and his tiny toes as I held him ever so gently in my hand. With his eyes beginning to open and his mouth open there was no mistaking his identity--he was my son. So longed for. It didn't matter that he was Baby #5 for us—we knew the joy children bring with them and we couldn't wait to get to know this special baby, with the unique personality God had given him. Each baby is unspeakably special and so cherished.

Elijah was a gift from God...but for some reason God sent him over five months early and as I held this precious child in my hand, I sat in awe of God. Just 14 weeks and he was so perfectly formed. His little ribs and plump belly reminded me of all I would miss in the coming months and years...

We only had Elijah with us for 14 weeks, and then, as even now, we treasured him. His absence is felt deep within us, and we know there will always be one more than is with us here. Elijah is his own special miracle. He is forever imprinted on our hearts.”

The following year, almost 14 months to the day, we miscarried another little one, this one at 18 weeks. This is what I wrote in May, 2000:

“...'Safe in the arms of Jesus' has taken on a whole new meaning for me and resting in God's sovereignty has kept me securely anchored. Reading God's Word has truly been a balm to my ragged spirit. In the midst of my grief my Bible reading brought me to Habakkuk and I found my spirit crying out with him, 'Yet I will exult in the LORD, I will rejoice int the God of my salvation. The LORD God is my strength, and He has made my feet like hinds' feet, and makes me walk on my high places.' (Hab. 3:18-19).

Through the blackness of my grief I saw the candlelight of God shining through. As I turned my focus from my loss to God's light the blackness began to recede. Yes, there's still grief, but grief without blackness is bearable. I long for my two boys who are safe in the arms of Jesus and I weep for them, but God's light and comfort are here, surrounding me. As a result I was able to sing through my tears 'My God how great Thou art!!' and mean it with every fiber of my being! Worshiping God has made my feet sure and steady as I climb this rocky path, and this rocky path is bringing me into the Sonshine.

'...Then sings my soul, my Savior, God to Thee,
How great Thou art—HOW GREAT THOU ART!!'


Just so you know, 8 months later we learned I was pregnant again and when fear threatened to choke me I had a verse to cling to—one I had found right after singing 'How Great Thou Art' that first Sunday back at church. It was Isaiah 41:13 “For you are the LORD my God who has declared, 'Do not fear, I will help you.'” Throughout my 36 week pregnancy I clung to that verse, knowing that even if we lost that baby too, He would help us through the grief. But there was only joy when Isaac was born 4 weeks early. And he's still a joy—just as our four other children here are.

8 comments:

  1. O Patty, wow! I am so sorry you had to go through such hard times. This is a beautiful tribute to them. So sorry, my friend, but so glad they are playing in Heaven right now and climbing all over Jesus' lap.
    Love you, sister,
    Laury

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  2. Mom, it made me cry and I still cry when I think about them. Love you lots and lots, Abby

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  3. There is not a dry area on my face right now. What incredible ashes turned to beauty, precious one. Bittersweet for sure. Thank you for your authenticity, your wisdom, your story. Such power in it. You touched me today.

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  4. Dan Shelley5:47 PM

    Patty,

    Wow.

    You touched my heart by sharing this. You helped me to re-focus on what matters instead of the circumstances I find myself.

    I look forward to meeting your boys in Heaven someday.

    Thanks for sharing this!

    /hug

    Dan

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  5. Patty, I'm in tears trying to comment here. This was such a beautiful tribute to your boys. I'm so sorry you had to lose them so soon. I recently wrote a blog about my own miscarriage and put together a lens on squidoo about it. It's been on my heart lately and was healing to do. If you don't mind and if I can figure out how, I'd like to add a link to this on my squidoo lens. Sending hugs and prayers! ~ Tracy

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  6. I actually shed a few tears while reading this, and usually I don't cry unless it is something that really touches me.

    I can't imagine the pain that you must have been going through, and yet, your faithfulness to God and his Word shined through. I think that is what touched me the most about this. It's so easy to say that we love and trust God until something tragic happens, and that is when the true test of our loyalty and faith come into play.

    Thank you for sharing your story and testimony. I'm so glad that God has blessed you with 5 children and two waiting in Heaven for you.

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  7. Thank you for sharing this. There is no greater testimony to the worth of our Lord than the sound of his praises being sung sincerely in the midst of grief. God will perfect those tears so that someday you will see them in his "bottle" in Heaven, and will see Him turn them into something beautiful!

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  8. Peej, today I needed to read this. I will share it with someone I love very much.

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