You knew this was coming.

So, what will tomorrow be like?

Will the hurt go away? Not likely. At least, not completely.

Will we have another child? God will have to make that decision for us. Honestly the thought of trying again frightens me. I don’t know if I can take that chance.

Will we have brought some good to the world through our tragedy? If we allow God to do the work He wants to do in us, yes, I believe we will. Who knows what it will look like, though.

Will we love without restraint? Will we NOT stress over the little things that mean nothing in the grand scheme? Will we cherish every single breath we are given? Lord, make it so.

A wise man once told me “Knowledge of tomorrow has not been given to us, and for that we should be grateful.” Only God knows what tomorrow will bring; all I can do is wonder about it. (NOT try to will it into being) My goal for “tomorrow” is to merely be a vessel, a vehicle for what God wants to bring to people. Whatever that looks like I hope I will recognize it.

This is a long, long road I’m on. Some of you are on it with me. Thank you all for sticking with me.

Here’s to all of our tomorrows.


After my post about yesterday I decided to write about how I am living today.

Today I make sure to talk about my sons. With my children, with my husband, with our families, with my coworkers, and sometimes with strangers. I am getting less and less shy about it. I feel like that is a good thing. Felix and Gabriel are my children and deserve to be shared with everyone. They were beautiful and strong and wanted. They are loved.

Today I am more honest about my feelings than I had been. I don’t always share exactly what I feel (and I don’t have to) but when it is appropriate, I do try to share. It isn’t easy to live each day as a mother who has lost some of her children. (I really need to think of a name for us. We’re not orphans, not widows, who are we??) But somehow God gives me the strength to get up and face each new day.

Today, even in the midst of such pain and wonder and sometimes still some anger, I live with hope. Hope that they did not die for nothing. Hope that God will use this for something. Hope that our other children will share their brothers with others. (actually Chloe already is) Hope that we will be reunited one day.

Today I am learning how to live a new and different life.

in other news

Today we got the artwork we commissioned for the boys’ headstone. (ooh, did I sound like royalty just now?) This has been a long time coming and now we can finally schedule an appointment to order the stone and get it installed. (or placed – I don’t know the lingo) Maybe this will help a little with the (earthly) finality of it all. Maybe not. At least soon we’ll have a place to leave flowers and drawings from the kids. I thought about posting the picture but I think I’ll wait until it’s carved in stone. hee hee (Hey, I have to laugh about something or I’ll go insane.)

In other news, I am having another rough week so any prayers you can spare would be appreciated. I am trying so hard to be loving toward everyone I come in contact with but it is REALLY hard. By the time I left work tonight I had just had it. I mean “up to here” had it. Like Mrs. Spit said – some days I wonder why some people get to have children when they have no apparent desire to care for them. (I also wonder why I thought it was a good idea to go to a meeting across the hall from a NICU earlier today thus expending all energy I had to “keep it together, man.”)

So many of my coworkers tell me they can’t believe how strong I am and how they would never be able to keep their cool in some of the situations I have been faced with since my return. Well, while it may appear that I am long-suffering on the outside – the words in my mind sometimes tell a different story. And I don’t want it to be that way. I want to be real about it but in a loving way. Am I making any sense? I want my attitude to come in line with my heart – inside and out. It is so easy for me to start complaining about people and I shouldn’t. I need to love them because that is what God told me to do.

Well, I think that’s enough for tonight. I have to set a blog curfew for myself because while what I’m writing makes sense to me now, it might not in the morning.

That’s it, no blogging after 11.

a wondering day

As I have been at work this week life, death and suffering have come to the forefront.

For those of you who don’t know, I work for a home care company in the pharmacy and nutrition services department. Basically I am in charge of providing patients with supplies to care for their IV lines at home and also provide formula and supplies for tube feedings.

Since I am the supervisor I have been covering for my friend who takes in new referrals for tube feedings this week while she is on vacation in Dubai. (and you owe me BIG time, Jen!)

This has stirred up a lot of thoughts and feelings about children with birth defects.

I wonder why God allows some to live without too many problems while others have all types of special needs requiring multiple therapies and meds and so on. I wonder why God allows others, like Gabriel, to be “beyond repair.”

I see so many kids who have admission after admission to the hospital. Some have had multiple transplants, others trying all different types of treatments to help cure their diseases – standard and experimental. Parents and kids fighting for their lives against things like cancer, short gut syndrome, cerebral palsy, pulmonary (lung) disorders… the list just goes on and on. And it makes my heart ache.

I like what I am doing at my job and hope that in some way it makes things easier on the families we serve. But sometimes it’s hard. Especially when I’m grieving the loss of children whose lives I fought for in the spirit but lost in the end.

the unlikeliest thing

Well, I did it. I survived my first week back at work. One of my staff called in the last 2 days this week so I was thrust back into coverage. I think I did just fine.

It really went much more smoothly than when I returned after Felix died. I really think the extra 4 weeks, and knowing what Gabriel’s outcome would likely be, made the difference. People were very glad to see me and were genuinely concerned about how I was doing. I am so thankful for the group of people I work with!

Friday morning I was chuggin’ right along, getting ready for work, wearing my Colts blue and overall just glad it was the last day of the week. Then it happened – grief snuck up in the unlikeliest thing… my hair. I know, crazy, right? Well, I was getting ready to leave the bathroom when I noticed a hair on the counter. When I went to pick it up I noticed it was in the shape of a “g” and I burst into tears. The first split second made me smile and say hi to him in my head. Then the hurt crept back in and I let it come. I remembered (like I ever forget) how much I miss him. I just wanted to be able to go into the boys’ room and pick him up and hold him and kiss him. But I can’t and never will again as long as I’m on this earth.

As the day progressed I started to feel better. But this was yet another lesson in grief. I don’t know when or where or how the sadness will come, but it will. And sometimes it’s okay to let it come. I will have to stay on my toes and be sure that I don’t let it consume or overtake me. I will lean on my Savior and ask him for comfort and peace in those times.

hello, old friends

Well, hello there! How have you been?

I think I must have developed an aversion to the internet these past few weeks. I haven’t been blogging or visiting blogs hardly at all. I haven’t seen many of my friends, either. (only 2, actually) I think I may have qualified for hermit status.

And now, “Let us go out into the world!” (that was for my 3 sisters and my brother)

I’m not sure where the withdrawal came from but it must have been necessary. I’ve had a good few weeks and was even able to squeeze in that MUCH desired trip alone with my husband.

I go back to work on Monday and, today at least, I feel good about it. I am ready.

So, as I ease my way back into the blogging world, and the world at large, I’d like to know how your holidays were. Even your resolutions for this year. I’d love to hear about them. I’m not really one to make resolutions, per se, but I am going to do Project Life this year so I’ll count that as my first official resolution. I always need to lose weight so that doesn’t count. (maybe I should resolve to have that OFF the list? we’ll see how that goes.)

Thanks for coming by even though I’ve been quiet for a while. I’ll come visit you soon.

it’s not personal, it’s grief

Did you miss me?

My family took a trip with my in-laws to visit the Mouse in Florida.  That’s why I haven’t posted for a while.  That and I didn’t really have anything to say.

It was a good time.  There were parts that were rough, too.  Like the day I just sat and cried the whole time we were eating lunch because a small baby was crying at the table next to us and I wish we’d had one to chime in with her.  (really glad the milk has dried up because otherwise I’m sure I would’ve needed a new shirt)  I also about had a heart attack on the carousel when I heard a woman say “Gabriel!  Gabriel!  Smile, honey!”  Ugh, this really doesn’t get easier.

Now, I know what you’re thinking.  “Why did you go to Disney when you know there are babies everywhere?”  Honestly, it wasn’t my idea.  But how can you say no to your other children?  (the man-child included)  For the most part I was fine but those few moments were really hard.

So… Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat and so on.  I still have shopping to do, which is neither stressful nor surprising.  I like to spread it out.  And, as usual, we have about 100 gatherings to go to starting this Friday.  There are Christmas and birthday parties, family gatherings (4 or 5 of them), my anniversary (#9) and a rehearsal and wedding to go to.  I really wanted to just hide and hibernate this year.  We’ve had a rough couple of years and I think that we deserve to do (or not do) whatever we want.  The problem is (for a few of these days) we can’t.  I suppose the truth is I feel like we can’t – in reality the wedding is really the only thing we absolutely can’t miss because Dylan is the ring bearer.  But, frankly, I don’t need the guilt from other people if we don’t show up for some of these things so we’ll go anyway.  Seems a little lose-lose when I put it that way, doesn’t it?

I’m really trying to get into the spirit this year but  I don’t really seem interested.  I’m going to try by getting the tree up tonight.  (yes, tonight, 9 days before the big day)  I am excited for the kids but I’m just not feeling it otherwise.

I know that once things get going I’ll probably be fine and enjoy the time but I’m not looking forward to it today.  (Do you like how I usually talk myself out of the funk-ish thoughts by the end of my posts?)

Time for another disclaimer: Don’t be offended if one of these events I’m not looking forward to is one you are putting on.  It’s not personal – it’s grief.

not very nice

This week was hard.

I’m not sure what it was, really.  Maybe it was because it has been a month since Gabriel’s birth and death.  Maybe it was because every day was cloudy.  Maybe it was the hormones.  I don’t know.  But (and my husband can testify) it was just an awful week.

This is a hard road to navigate and it’s scary when things seem hopeless.  It is so easy to let the thoughts and the sadness get the best of you.  I hate this fallen world where we have to deal with death and loss.  Especially with children because you not only grieve for what was but also what could have been.  And because of that the grief will come and go until I leave this world.  That is a LONG time to be reminded of what is gone.  Hopefully for the most part I will be reminded of what is to come when I do leave this world.  A sweet reunion with my baby boys.  (If they’re still babies and if I know they were my sons.  That’s a conversation for another post, though.  Maybe.)

Without airing all of the details let me just say it was an unpleasant week.  There were a lot of rough moments.  I couldn’t control my emotions.  One minute I was screaming and the next I was crying.  If anyone had asked what was wrong I wouldn’t have been able to tell them.  One night Chloe prayed and asked God to help me get out of bed the next morning.  That was a crushing blow.  I think I did get up earlier the next day but my mood was not much improved.

I was not a very nice person and I have apologized to my husband and children for that.  It did help that Brian and I were able to be alone for a while yesterday – driving a couple of hours each way on our shopping trip we were able to really talk without worrying about what the kids heard.

Did you know that I wish we could get away alone?  Some of you did?  Oh, okay.  Unfortunately it doesn’t look like we can swing that before I go back to work.  You know, the whole holiday thing kinda gets in the way.

So after all of what went on this week today has been a good day.  I hope the rest of the week goes well.  It’s hard telling since it’s Thanksgiving but I won’t dread what’s ahead.  I will try my best to be positive and also to give myself freedom to take a break if I need it.

If you would, will you pray for me and my family?  Pray for protection from attacks of the enemy and for strength in our relationships.  Pray for clarity when my mind gets clouded with emotion and negative thoughts.  Pray for my husband because his stress level is higher having to take care of all of us.  Pray for peace and joy in the midst of pain.

I’ll pray for you, too.


Whew!  It’s been a few days since I’ve been here.  I think I’ve been hiding out a little.  I did a lot of running around this weekend (too much, in fact; I’m still sore) so that may have a little to do with it.  This post isn’t going to be anything deep or profound (if any of my posts ever are) but I feel I need to get back here.

My cousin and her girls came over from Illinois for a visit.  We had a blast!  It was fun to watch my kids with her youngest who is about to celebrate her 1st birthday.  Ezra was especially cute with her.  Then that got me wondering what Ezra would have been like as a big brother to Felix.  (and Gabe, too, even though I got to watch him with Gabe for a few minutes)

A friend of ours brought us dinner on Sunday night.  Her daughter is just a few weeks older than Felix would have been had he been born on his due date.  I kept watching her and wondering what Felix would be like right now.  I wondered if he would’ve been bothering  her or if he would be taller or walking as well as she is.  I also wondered what it would be like if our house was full of all 5 of our kids.  (oh, the mayhem that would ensue!)

I had a great time this weekend but it was also a time of wondering what I’m missing.  I know full well that these times will come and go as long as I live and I feel like I know how to handle myself when they do.  I know it’s okay to let myself be sad and long for our sons who are separated from us.  I know it’s okay for me to be sad for our other children who won’t get to be big brother and big sister to the brothers who are gone.

I also know that I can’t let the sadness and the wondering go on for too long because it isn’t going to change anything.

a new look

Okay, so maybe I became a programmer faster than you thought I would?  Actually, I’m married to one so I cheated a little.  I didn’t know he was ready to work on and launch the new look already.  It may continue to be tweaked so please be patient with us.  Hopefully we can get the family site updated next!  I may have a “black eye” post to make tomorrow…

We bought bunk beds for the boys last week.  Before that we had Ezra on a mattress on the floor and he must be having trouble adjusting to the bottom bunk.  It’s slightly too high for him to climb up on his own so we have some wooden steps that he uses to get in.  Since the move I have been going into his room to scoot them out of the way after he falls asleep just in case he fell out of his bed.  Well, I hadn’t made it back there yet tonight until we heard a thud… and then crying.  He ended up with 2 cuts on his eye – one on his eyelid, the other at the corner of it.  He wouldn’t let me put the frozen peas on it to help cut down the swelling.  He kept saying “I don’t want you!”  I told him that if Daddy took him that he would put the peas on, too.  Anyway, he’s doing well now.  He’s been sleeping next to me on the couch.

I guess now Ezra has a new look, too.  Fortunately it’s temporary.  Unfortunately it’s not as pretty as my blog.