Thursday, February 28, 2008
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Look how big Gavin looks in the transport bed!
Monday, February 25, 2008
As many of you know . . . I love Saturday Night Live. Anything with Will Ferrell, Chris Farley, Cheri Oterri, Amy Poehler or Molly Shannon will make me laugh. Needless to say I was so happy to have a new episode to watch this weekend. I think I watched and re-watched the "Annuale" commercial about a million times and I laughed hysterically at Amy Poehler playing Amber, the one legged woman. Hahahahahahaha! If you haven't seen this episode hosted by Tina Fey, it is a must! A good laugh is never a bad thing!
Friday, February 22, 2008
Jason and I have searched out much information on coping and dealing with the death of a child, specifically an infant. I have found much comfort in a book titled "Joy Cometh in the Morning." Last night I came home from the gym and sat down to read. While I was at the gym I had contemplated my week and the anger and emptiness that I have felt in the thought that God was not comforting me or forgetting me. As I opened the book, the first paragraph I read spoke volumes to me. In this paragraph the author quotes a 1998 Ensign article called "Understanding Our True Identity" it says: "Sometimes the Savior calms the storms. Sometimes He lets the storm rage and calms you." I realized that I must have faith to accept what I cannot change and have hope that the Savior will calm me while my storm rages. While my winds and waves of sadness and anger blow I must stay "in the boat" with the Savior. I need to have hope that through this process I will become a better person - and more empathetic person who truly understands the meaning of service and compassion.
I have thought a lot about "but-if-not" faith discussed by Elder Dennis Simmons and the way we should approach our trials and storms. Here is my "but-if-not" faith scenario: "My God will give me a healthy baby boy, but if not . . . My God will make my son whole and heal him from his infirmities, but if not . . . He will help my son avoid death, but if not . . . He will take away my emptiness and pain, but if not . . . I will still trust in the Lord." I have faith and hope that one day I will not hurt this bad. I may always have a missing piece of my heart, but I know that through the faith and hope I put in the Savior I can have my burden lifted. Perhaps I will always feel intense pain when I think about the loss of my Gavin, but I know the Savior can calm me in my own storm.
Monday, February 18, 2008
This is the picture that will be placed on the back of the stone after the poem.
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Friday, February 15, 2008
Monday, February 11, 2008
Oh - and sorry about the spacing on this entry . . . I don't know what I did to mess it up so badly!
H is for HUMILITY ( AND HAIRCUT)
He taught us that we have to be humble so we can be prepared to accept the Lord's will. And Gavin was the only kid I know who was born NEEDING a haircut!
I is for INNOCENCE
Gavin's sweet, short little life showed the innocence and vulnerability of human life. In way way, the situation somewhat stole innocence from Jason and myself - life will just never have the same "carefree-ness" like it used to.
J is for JOY
Even with all of the physical discomfort Gavin had to endure, he was so peaceful. I know I have said this before, but standing next to his bed I KNEW it would be okay, somehow. And patience . . . well, that is a virtue our families never seem to learn well. And we are STILL learning patience.
Q is for QUIET
I like to think the Lord trusted me and Jason to be parents of Gavin. I am still to this day, grateful that I am Gavin's mom. I knew that if he had to be sent to this earth with so many complications, I was glad he was sent to our family.
From the day Gavin was born he had an outrageous amount of blonde hair that never seemed to be tamed. Jason loved to mess it up and give him crazy hairstyles. Even doctors and nurses couldn't help but touch his beautiful head of hair.
Yeah, this is a silly word but did you see the color of his skin the last month? Gavin's jaundice was caused by the medications he had to take - but he was as yellow/orange as a pumpkin! (I say that with all the love in the world!)
Thursday, February 7, 2008
"You tell him that he was the finest example of a father imaginable. He gave his son life -- he loved him and then he turned him over to the Lord. Jason was not selfish. He was willing to learn from the Lord and his son and honor Gavin's wishes and needs. He had to do the most difficult thing I can imagine a father ever having to do. And that is to do the Lord's will -- even when he knows it will break his wife's heart and his heart as well. Jason had to do things that honorable, experienced crusty men in their 90's have not had to do. And he did it well."
The sentence that caught my eye was the last line. "And he did it well." So many times we are given trials in our lives. For some it may be as obvious as the death of a loved one and for some their trial may not be visible to the world around them. We all have trials - we all have our own crosses to bear in life. We have been told to endure. Whether it is enduring the deepest grief or the simple challenges of everyday life we are told to not only endure, but to endure it well.
I cannot say I have dealt with this situation perfectly. I have had my fair share of self-pity and "poor me" moments (um . . . my last blog entry) but I am TRYING to do this well. I don't only want to endure this life . . . I want to live it. Someday when I meet up with my little Gavin again, I want him to know he has a happy mother and that he was the reason for so much of my joy.
Life has a way of giving us the impossible. It may not be now, but someday we will all have to do the impossible. None of us will escape this world without trials. Some may have already happened, some are in the future. We will all know what grief and fear feels like - and in the moments when we see the impossible infront of us, we can do what we never thought we could do. This isn't easy but I need to do this well.
PS - this was our version of feeding Gavin with his Gtube. The milk is in the syringe taped to Jason's chest and it dripped into Gavin's tummy. What a good daddy!
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
Am I faithless because I have a bad day? I try to convince myself that it's normal for a mom in my situation to feel this way, but I always end up feeling guilty for having a sad day. Like I don't believe enough or that people will judge me for not having enough faith. Today a friend of mine sent me a link to a blog of a mother in a similar situation. This mom is real and brutally honest and she said it perfectly, "I’ve heard it said of other mamas who have lost babies: Every conversation steers itself towards The Baby. It’s getting … tiresome. She really needs to move on. It’s not healthy." Perhaps you may be tired of hearing of my thoughts and feelings about our situation. But, this mother inspired me and I have decided I have to be real in this post . . . I just have to get it out. I try to always keep a positive attitude - I try to focus on hope and peace. I try to find these things because I KNOW there is peace and hope in our situation. We have every reason to be hopeful; however, I can't resist or supress my sadness at times. Hope doesn't fill a mother's aching arms. I feel like my work as a mother is unfinished. Jason told me the other night that he feels cheated. All I want to do is hold my Baby Gavin in my arms, kiss him and tell him, "I love you, I love you, I love you and I’m so proud to be your mama. I miss you so much."
After months of keeping his bedroom door closed, we moved Gavin's things from his room. What mother has to do this? My mom came over to help me pack his belongings while Jason and my dad moved the furniture. What grandparent has to do this? What father has to pack up a crib that his son never slept in? It was only appropriate that my mother was there to go through Gavin's things with me. She has been through every single day with me - she knows everything. Jason's brother Brent built a beautiful chest for Gavin's few belongings and as we packed the chest I felt sadness, despair, aniexty, fear, hoplessness . . . but I also felt a renewed sense of joy. Such conflicting emotions are confusing.
Jason and I often discuss this question, "Which day was more difficult . . . the day he was born, or the day he died?" Many of you may think this is an awful question to ask, but having been through such an intense, heart wrenching three months with him here, and now a lonely and desperate three months without him here . . . we can validate our thoughts on this question. Without a doubt we both say that the day he was born was more difficult. The day he was born I felt sorrow for myself, Jason and especially Gavin. Would he live? How different would be be? Would his life be painful? Would he have a life? The day Gavin left us I also felt tremendous sorrow for myself and Jason; however, I felt the most intense amount of joy for Gavin. I knew he would be happy. I knew he would be able to function. I knew there was work for him to do there that he would have never been able to do here. I didn't have one ounce of sorrow for Gavin. I am proud to be Gavin's mother - I am a lucky mother. And I tell Gavin that all of the time. Now, despite the moments of the heaviest sadness I’ve ever felt, there is love - more love than I’ve ever felt. Love for Gavin - love for my family - love for people I come in contact with - and more than ever, a love for my Savior.
Monday, February 4, 2008
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Ok - so my awesome sister-in-law Allison taught me how to do digital scrapbooking with PhotoShop. I am nowhere near Allison's level . . . but I thought I'd "display" one of my first pages. Of course it's of my boys. This is the picture that reminds me I am a very lucky wife and mother. . . I have the two best boys ever.