Tuesday, May 24, 2011

what mighta been

Toilet training. Bicycle riding (afterall, this is Mr. H's kid we're talking about). Playing catch. Learning colors. Singing Jesus Loves Me. Holding out three little fingers to show mommy, "I'm three!"

Three years have gone by. THREE years! My Nathan would be doing all of those things above and celebrating his third birthday today were he not born-still that horrible day back in '08.

So where am I now three years later?
A random daily glimpse would reveal me running around chasing my 18 month old. Helping my 7 year old with homework every afternoon.
A deeper look would show a mommy with a wounded, but still overflowing heart. A mom that has, only by the grace that God loving pours out on His children, continued to parent her daughter and had hope enough to try and conceive again. Born 18 mos. after our loss, attempted because of that intangible, almost hard-to-explain, hope in God, you'd see another baby son.

What is kind of "weird" though, and if you are a mommy of a "glory baby" this might resonate with you... I almost feel guilty missing my son. What I mean is that I feel bad missing the son who never took a breath on this earth because I know that had he lived, I most likely would not have been trying to have another baby a mere nine months later. In some twisted way, it's like if I grieve Nathan's loss, I am saying that I don't care about Zane or want him in my life. I know that's not true, but that's what I end up feeling.

I had some time alone Sunday afternoon, while we were out doing yard work. I was weeding around the base of our "Nathan tree." I couldn't help but try to picture a three year old. The three year old that I won't see at that age. I can think of my friend's three year old and the types of things she is doing and saying. I can picture my 18 mo. old and think of what one of my own little boys looks like, but I won't ever have a real picture of how Nathan would've developed. The eyes, hair color, and skin tones he would've had. I think that's what makes it so surreal. I just had another mom of loss ask me how I picture Nathan. If I still see him as I said goodbye in the hospital or if I try and picture him older. The only way I can actually still "see" him is as he was at his birth. And while that's not a pleasant memory, that was my son I carried for 36 weeks, so I'll hold onto those memories as long as the Lord allows my mind to function.

Life is certainly precious. I remind myself that on days like this. Days that I get more caught up in the "what was" and "what could have beens." I remind myself to live with purpose. With love. With an intentional awareness of what's going on around me. With eyes focused outward to others' needs (that might not be so easy to glean from the outside). To live.

The photos included are of Nathan's tree - a royal purple smoke tree (or "cotinus"), that actually bloomed quite nicely this year, several weeks ago.

1 comment:

Amy Haley said...

Wow. I like how you mentioned living with "intentional awareness" of everything going on. Very good point.

Your blog is very encouraging! Thank you for posting!