Monday, November 25, 2013

Sunday, November 17, 2013

When I see you in Heaven

Dear Rip,

I used to worry about when my time came, and I made it up to heaven, if you would know me.  If you would know that I was your Mama.

The day you were born, I only got to see you for a few minutes before they wheeled you away.  You were black hair, pink cheeks, and even from feet away, mine.

After that I didn't get to see you for one whole day.  You were too little to leave the nursery and my body wouldn't let me get to you.  It was terrible.  I cried and cried, and asked anyone who would listen if you would know me.  If you would know I was your Mama.

But you did.  You did, you did, you did.

The moment you heard my voice, the minute you were in my arms, it was so obvious you had very literally been a part of me and that nothing could make either of us forget that.

Even as you took your last breaths on this earth, I knew you were at peace because I felt your peace in my arms. That was a gift you gave to me.

So I don't worry about it anymore.  When I see you in Heaven, I will know you and you will know me.  We are part of one another.  You will always know me.

I will always be,


Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Why its sad

This probably seems like a no-brainer.  The fact that I am sad on Rip's birthday, that is. But its more than the fact that he is not here to celebrate it...I deal with that kind of sad every day.  Note that I did not say that every day is sad, I have lots (more than not) of wonderful, happy days.  Its just that each of those days I carry with me the fact that my son is not here.

When I was a little girl, every night before my birthday, my dad would tell me the story of how I was born.  The lead up (my mom eating cheesecake and watermelon just beforehand), the wait (aka my dad took pictures in the hall while my mom labored for hours and eventually had a c-section), and finally the big reveal (a little girl, surprise!).

Every person has a birthday story. A story of when your life changed the lives of your whole family. What makes me sad on Rip's birthday is that his birthday story was such a happy one.  On any other given day, I can say "well at least I know things are better than they were three years ago".  Except on the night before Rip's birth and the day after.  Those days were happy, so exciting.  The pictures we have from those days show nervous, excited first time parents about to have their lives changed.  Those pictures show our families with huge grins on their faces. They show a perfectly healthy little boy. Those were happy, happy days.

Parke and my biggest statement about Rip's life is that he is A Good Thing. He will always be A Good Thing.  We are trying hard to make our lives reflect his as A Good Thing.  But while I cherish his birthday as A Good Thing, it still makes me sad, and it is much, much harder on me than the day he died. So that is why yesterday was sad, but my sincere hope is that we will find a way that it won't always be so.  Thank you so much to all of the people who reached out yesterday and remembered our boy on his big day, it helps more than you know.

Monday, November 11, 2013

My Person

"For where you go, I will go and wherever you live, I will live.  Your people shall be my people and your God my God"
Ruth 1:16

Happy Birthday, my Rip.  Wherever I am, there you will also be.
I love you so, so much.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Four Hundred

This is my 400th (okay, 401st) post on this blog.  I didn’t really start writing until after Rip died, so going back over some of my older posts today got me thinking about the past three years.

I realized that one thing grief did was give me the ability to be wide open.  Especially in that first year, I could have cared less about what anybody thought about the way I was feeling.  My grief for Rip was so all-consuming I literally did not have the ability to think about other people outside of my little family I was trying so hard to put back together.

I go back and read some of what I wrote and know that I could not write it now.  Over the past three years, as that all consuming grief has subsided so has my ability to write so openly about what is going on in my head.  Don’t get me wrong, I still try my hardest to be honest and “real”…but there is a certain amount of privacy that I think we all strive for even when we choose to blast our lives out on the Internet.

I’m so glad that sense of self-preservation left me when it did.  When I wrote how much the day sucked and the arguments Parke and I had after Rip died, that is exactly what was happening.  When I wrote about the gripping, strangling fear I felt being pregnant with Gracie, that’s exactly what I was feeling.  When I wrote about the ways I felt God touch my life during those first twelve months, I was hanging on with everything I had to believe them.

I know I would not be able to see the transformation that happened and has continued to happen in my life over the past three years, my life that has been transformed by one baby boy, if I had not written about it then.

For three years I have been writing about Rip.  That is almost 1095 days longer that he lived on this earth.  But his name has lived on through writing about him, he has lived on in us since writing this first post…and, yes, these days the good outweighs the bad.

I used this blog as a way to vent through my pregnancy. We lost our little boy, my perfect Rip, eight days ago. There is nothing I can say to express how heartbreaking, devastating that has been. There are no words to adequately say how much he was and is loved, how he taught Parke and me more about life in seven days that we ever thought was possible. All I can say about Rip is that from the minute he was born he was a miracle.
Today is my 30th birthday, a day I was dreading so much. Yesterday (Thanksgiving), was much harder than I thought it would be...the holidays have always been such a fun and exciting time for me, the loss of Rip was almost too much to bear during a time I am used to being so happy.
This morning I woke up, made Parke coffee (something I have started doing since we lost the baby), got back in bed and cried. Parke comforted me, told me it was okay to cry. My mom called to plan our day of Black Friday shopping, everyone just wants to make it better. I buried my head down deeper in the covers and decided maybe I could just skip my 30th birthday all together.
Then the dog threw up. In the bed.
Parke ran to get paper towels, tripped and fell down the steps.
So there I was, no option but to get up and deal with my sick dog, groaning husband, and soiled bed spread. And I think that is what life, and yes, God, gives us. We can be in the worst situation imaginable and life makes us get up and clean up dog puke.
I am still lonely, confused, and so so sad. I am also, at times, hopeful and thankful. I am going to try to keep up this blog during my 30th year. I want to see how much my life changes by the time I turn 31. I hope to have love, laughter, and maybe even a baby to fill my year. For now, the bad outweighs the good, but there is some good. By this time next year I pray, pray, pray the good will outweigh the bad.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Thanksgiving for Halloween

There is a lot a want to say with Rip's birthday coming up one week from today, and all of the things that are going on inside of my head...but for now, I am just going to put up a bunch of Halloween pictures.  Because I think it is important to know that even with the sadness that comes with this time of year, there is also a lot of joy.

It all started with Gracie's school costume parade...she looks happy here, but she was kind of a nervous wreck
Thankfully, Dorothy was thrilled with her red sparkly shoes

Not to mention her candy

Even the boys joined the fun

Gracie's Pop reeeeaaaally got into it

Mama, Mam, and SuSu had the good sense to go with "the pretty witch" approach

I think she was in sugar shock...

The next day, Pop (my dad) volunteered to watch Gracie.  I was skeptical of his approach...

but it seemed to do the trick

All in all, we couldn't have asked for a better weekend

So Very Thankful.