Grandma never got to see me become a mom.
It’s funny that thoughts of her have come often in these busy years as my family has grown just like hers did years ago.
When i lost our second baby 4 months into my pregnancy – it felt – just a little bit – like everyone i knew kind of held their breath. It felt like they looked at me like someone who had just done the biggest face plant, & they were waiting to see if i would recover. Should they pretend they didn’t see? Should they keep on walking - & not add to my shame by acknowledging my fall... my failure... my loss...?
In those dark days – i received note after note – from my sweet aunties & even one from my uncle – my dad’s siblings - acknowledging our little son, recognizing my grief - & sharing in our sorrow. They rescued me in my wounded state as i reeled from my collapse.
Later on, i remember letting my dad read some of what i had written about my longed for son - & him responding, “Gramma never got over losing Carol either...”
Carol was Gramma’s second baby – she died when she was days old, due to a heart defect. & suddenly my Gramma’s influence became clear to me.
In a world that hoped i would get up, brush myself off & continue on with life – Gramma had raised children who knew better. They knew that my loss was a heavy blow... they knew how precious my darling was to me... they knew that there would be no recovery... there would just be a new normal. They revealed to me their own scars from their own losses & let me finger the jagged wounds – in the form of their tenderly written words - when i couldn’t even answer the phone for months. They reminded me that my little one was safely home, & had tied my heart permanently to heaven. They raised my eyes to the King who so gently shepherded me.
i saved each of their letters in the little beatrix potter baby book i had bought for my baby as soon as i found out i was pregnant... & i still go back, every now and again, to read and remember... Wise words about men and women grieving differently, people wanting to comfort – but missing the mark, grief breaking open, healing again and taking time to form a scar, seasons and dates that would bring my little one to mind... words that i have found over the years to be full of truth.
In my time of loss – my gramma’s heritage of love – reached across the generations to meet me in my grief.
Almost a year after losing Caleb, i delivered a second daughter on my Gramma’s birthday.
We gave her Gramma’s name in reverse.
i’m so grateful for family who recognize the fragile gift of life - & the Faithful Father, who gives and takes...