Wednesday, October 2, 2013

18 months - Just as We Are

Today marks 18 months since Isaiah was born into heaven.  Though grief ebbs and flows, overall if asked how I am doing I'd probably say, "pretty good."  Yet moving out of our house in the cities and leaving the place where he should've come home -- coupled with a move and the constant struggle of knowing how to share about his life with new friends in a new town -- combined with watching our sweet baby girl grow, yet wishing I could still be watching him grow, too...those things are hard.  So saying "we're good" can be a mixed bag.  We are good - but there are still hard moments tossed in.  This sounds familiar...I have a feeling this will describe much of the rest of our lives.

As this date has been approaching, I have been drawn to pause and remember those early days.  I must say that thinking on what we have lost and what Isaiah has gained still pierces my heart - even 18 months later (and probably always will).  It is not the same suffocating grief - yet when I really stop and remember the day we met and said goodbye - it still brings the same gut-filling ache as the moment I saw his still heart on the screen.  As we finally make our final choices on his headstone - on OUR headstone - I still stare at his name and am so sad that he is gone.  And yet - somehow - through the grace given only by God - there is still an overarching sense of peace...moments of joy.  It's not that I miss Isaiah any less...the grief just keeps changing. Somehow we have found a way to keep living.  Though it is messy and I will never be the same, at least I know that there is life past the depths of grief.  I would never have dreamed that could be possible 18 months ago. 

C - 18 months  
                                                                                  L - 18 months

At a milestone like this, it would seem normal to imagine what Isaiah would be like if he were here right now...a busy, 18 month old little boy toddling around the house getting into everything.  Though I do think on this sometimes, I much more often gaze at my 6 month old rainbow girl (who we are SO VERY thankful for and in love with) and wonder if she looks like him or what he would've been like at this age. 

                                                                                         E - 6 months.

Sometimes as I watch E grow, grief edges in as I re-realize that I have lost these moments with Isaiah.  In that sense, some of the grief is a little worse since she came.  Sometimes I feel bad about that - and I pray that I will never allow her to be overshadowed by his absence but will instead cherish those moments with her all the more.  On the other hand (and this may not make sense) - sometimes as I watch E grow and try to cherish those moments, it brings some healing to missing his.  Isaiah has helped me to stop and enjoy these moments with E...he has made me a better mom.  Even with the pain, I am so thankful that I was chosen to be his mom. <3

The kids and I were reading from Genesis for "History" class recently and in the listing of Noah's genealogy, the verses would list each person living x number of years and then dying.  But when we came to Enoch it said he lived 365 years and then was "no more."  The fact that he was no more and taken to heaven without dying made us all wonder why?  In digging a little deeper we find that God took Enoch from this earth before death because he was so pleased with him.  This also made me think of Isaiah (obviously not at all a good comparison, but it brought this to mind all the same).  Why was Isaiah allowed to go to glory so soon?  In trying to answer that question, I realized just how far I've come in 18 months.  Early on, many of my "why" questions related to me -- why he was taken from us? -- why God thought we would be able to endure this loss?  But now when I ask "why," I wonder more about him -- why this was allowed to happen to him? -- why are God's ways are so mysterious?  I honestly don't know that I could say that I wouldn't choose to have him here if I could, but on the other hand, I couldn't not want him to be experiencing heaven either.  There is such a mixture of feelings - but being able to trust God and know that things are as they need to be for now -- that has brought much peace -- even amidst continued grief.

So that is about where we are these days.  Keeping on - and always loving and missing you, sweet boy.  Always. <3