Friday, March 26, 2010

our angel baby

...born into Heaven on March 11th.

"For You created my inmost being; You knit me together in my mother's womb. I will praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from You when I was made in the secret place. When I was woven together in the depths of the earth, Your eyes saw my unformed body. All the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be."

-Psalm 139:13-16

Journal Entry:

Monday, March 22, 2010

Dear little Baby,

I love you. My heart hurts. But, I see even now how God puts such great value on life. Every life. Wether you were here 8 weeks (in my womb) or on earth for 88 years. You are a unique treasure. Thank you for bringing so much joy into my life for four blissful weeks! I will always cherish that time.The details of your delicate unformed body were accounted for. You are baby #5 in the line up. (1.) Sadie Elizabeth: June 6, 2005. (2.) "David": May, 25, 2006 - born into heaven. (3.) "Grace" July 25, 2007 - born into heaven. (4.) Lauren Faith: August 16, 2008. (5.) "Matthew": March 11, 2010 - born into heaven.

I wish we could all be together right now. I'm glad God gave you to me. Your short time in my life has left an eternal impact. I'm so grateful for 4 weeks of irreplaceable ecstacy! Thank you for teaching me to embrace the beauty in this life, love deeper and help others who face this same heartache. I think of each of you everyday, you have made a mark in this world... Someday we'll all be together in the most beautiful place.


Sunday, March 7, 2010


I will remember this day for as long as I live.

My Uncle Dennis [my Mom's only brother] passed away unexpectedly, last Saturday. I will spare you the details as to how it happened and where he was. I want to focus on the amazing 53 years he spent on this earth. Rich and well lived years.

John, the girls and I were so glad to have spent the majority of the past week with my Mom's family. As dark as the occasion was it was filled with so much beauty, too. I'm amazed how God does this.

I think when we are left with a hole in our heart, in the shape of a loved one: to survive, we have to deeper embrace the one's we have left. Count our blessings and keep precious memories alive.

But, the other part of loss that currently facsinates me, is what goes on internally in each of us who are still here. I was given one. more. day. What will I do with this precious life? How will I help others? What kind of mark will I leave when I die?

Amazing how the rest of us are instantly closer. I will also [always] cherish the heartfelt, rich conversation between my Grandparents and I. Sitting in silence with my Aunt and cousins. Hugs. Looking at old pictures together. Laughing with family and meeting new distant relatives.

Around 500 people visited my Uncle at his wake, and over 200 at his funeral. These people included: Both his parents, his wife, his two sons, sisters, brother-in-laws, sister-in-laws, nieces, nephews, cousins, uncles, aunts, friends, co-workers, neighbors, classmates, his parents friends, and I'm sure I'm forgetting a few.

My Uncle Dennis was such a kind man. During his Eulogy, The Pastor challenged each of us to carry on the kind of life Dennis led. [Anyone else hope this is said at YOUR funeral?? I know I do!!] At the wake, This very thoughtful Pastor sat us family down and asked us how we would describe Dennis. Here's what I remember being said: Dennis was generous. kind. always thinking of others. knew what really mattered in life. positive. had a great laugh. knew how to have fun. loved the outdoors.

He was 100% present.

I heard a great story [one of many] from a guest who was at my Uncles wake. This man told my Grandpa that he had a tire go flat right in front of my Aunt and Uncle's home. [They live right off a major Highway]. My Uncle ran out and helped this man change his tire. This man said: He didn't have to help me. I'll always remember his kindness.

The little things are really the big things.

During the wake and funeral my Aunt [Dennis' wife] Stood. And. spoke with each guest. Travis and Kyle did the same [Dennis' sons]. Hugged them. Asked them about THEM. While visiting my Aunt at her home. She insisted I have some of the beautiful flowers from the funeral, and she arranged them nice and cute in a pickle jar. She interacted with the girls. She asked me about my current plans and my life in general. And she listened intently. She asked about my father-in-law's recent battle [and victory] over cancer. Her strength and sincerity awed me.

Dear Uncle Dennis,

Thank you for: Friendship. Living a life filled with integrity. Countless Christmas gifts. Smiles. Hugs. A ride on a horse when I was two-years-old. ATV rides with mud flying in the air. Filling the room with your great laugh at the Holidays. Memories at the cabin. Sitting around a campfire eating and listening to whippoorwill birds sing. Spending an overnight at your farm when Ryan and I were kids. Grilling great food at Travis and Kyle's grad parties. Opening every door to every building, to show us every animal, every time we visited. Thank you for showing me a life well lived and inspiring me to make the most of the rest of my days.

I love you.

Your Niece,