Friday, December 25, 2009

Season Thoughts

An updated picture....I cherish the smiles on our faces. I do not take for granted the life of my children still here.....

I have found myself with LOTS of thoughts...but few words. Sometimes I find myself analyzing...sometimes reviewing..sometimes critiqueing life...and mainly life that last few years. Mostly I find myself reflecting. They are..and will changing years. Years marked with heartache, but also with hope and faith. They have really been years that have shaped me more then the 34 years before. This may really sound dramatic...but really they are.

As we all go through physical growth spirts and pains...God will put us through spiritual growth spirts and pains. While I believe these past few years have been some of my most painful...I know that God has grown me. Even then...I know I have much more to know about God and learn about Him. I always say that I am careful what I pray for, but painful as these few years have been...Im not sure I would change them.

I got the privledge of carrying, meeting and loving a piece of Heaven. While also getting to know my Lord and Saviour more. I felt His love...His presence..His peace..His hope. And still I only got a bit more.

I can't say I miss Larson any less. I can't say I am over the pain of my loss. I can say that as time continues, I have just learned to live more with his absense. It has now become more a part of my life. I try to shake the painful thoughts off less and ride the wave more. Some of those painful thoughts and memories are also some of the best. Lots of oxymorons!

As I put his ornament on the tree this year...less tears feel, and more smiles arose. How can I not smile? He has changed my family in some incredible ways. We appreciate life and heart beats more. We appreciate health and laughter and for sure have a passion for the sanctiy of life. We realize each day is a gift that God has given to us.

We think of Larson worshipping His Saviour...but in Heaven! Wow! That is an amazing imaage and one I think of often. Everyday is Christmas and Easter in Heaven. For our Saviour has been born...He is risen...He is alive...And Larson is with Him

As much as I have wanted more time with Larson..I would not choose to have him here. He truly is in the best place he can be and without a doubt I know one day I will be with him too!

I remember 2 years ago while still pregnant with Larson. I knew he would not be with us so most of my thoughts were imaging Larsons life in Heaven. Those thoughts remain. Know I just have more of a mental image of a precious boy at the feet of Jesus.

As we read the Christmas story...I get so teary.... For God gave His Son TO DIE for us. While my son did not die for others, his life is such a reminder to me of my Saviour who DID COME TO SAVE. We knew at 20 weeks, that Larson was here for a short while. He was created to die. Why? I don't ask this as much. I know God knows and that is enough. My son came to die....but not for sinners. Larsons life was full of love and his death was no less. He died peacefully and know resides in a peaceful place forever.

Christ came to die. He came from a peaceful place to a place that was full of sin. He lived a PERFECT life with NO sin...yet God still had him come to die for sinners like me. It sure is an amazing thought. I can't fully understand this miracle...yet by faith I accept it. I worship God today, Christmas, and every day, for the birth of His Son. That He came to save. So someday we will have eternal life with Jesus.

My heart is in 2 places now. I so enjoy the blessings of my life with the children gave me to raise here. Although I imagine often the life my other son is living now also. My life will always have a piece missing....I know God understand...

With that...Merry Christmas, a little late. May we worship our Saviour throughout the year....

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Friday, November 27, 2009

Seeing Gods Hand.....

Not long after having Larson I received this poem from a Godly women who is about 60 years old...her mother had lost 4 it is....

The Weaver

My life is but a weaving
Between my Lord and me,
I cannot choose the colors
He worketh steadily.

Ofttimes He weaveth sorrow,
And I in foolish pride
Forget He sees the upper
And I, the underside.

Not 'til the loom is silent,
And the shuttles cease to fly,
Shall God unroll the Canvas
And explain the reason why.

The dark threads are as needful
In the weavers skillful hand,
As the threads of gold and silver
In the pattern He has planned.

So here is my story that I feel the Lord has blessed me to see some of the weaving...Bear with me, it may be long. I hope I can explain it well. It is one of hope!

About 12 years ago I was teaching 2nd grade. During this time one of my students came into class with a picture he was sooo proud of. This was no ordinary picture. It was a picture of his sweet baby sister Cassidy. Cassidy was born with spina bifida. Was born early and many surgeries ahead of her. Her parents were given a grim picture, and much to my young ignorance or lack of life experience I really had NO idea what they were venturing into....

Fast forward 10 years later....In October of 2007 we found out about Larson. My ignorance changed. Life had taken a major turn. Now it was my baby with a fatal diagnosis. Not someone elses story anymore. Now I was living a life far different then I had expected. Like many moms with this...or maybe not...I started researching. I came across the It has stories of all different diagnoses. In my obsession...I hate to admit I read MANY of them. I came across one in pitucular. It seemed so familiar. It was! It was the story of baby Cassidy. Thats right..It was the story of the little girl ten years before. I though of her I had NO idea back then her pain could be so intense...her questions...her thoughts. And know...I could relate more. Not completely...but more!!
Here is Cassidy's

Cassidy was being used in my life....and yet, the story continues....!

A year after Larson passed away I had the opportunity to share his story with a bible study here in town. I was nervous but thankful to be used how God wanted me to! And who was there...Yep! Cassidys mommy. I hadn't seen her in 11 years. She cried with me and suddenly this mom was someone who I could connect with in a mighty way....this was God.

Ok...but that's not it! Fast forward one more year. I reieve a call form my aunt. Her daughters baby...Evan...had been diagnosed with Spina Bifida. I immediately thought of Cassidys mommy but had NO way of getting a hold of her.

The next week...I kid you not!...I ran into her at park. I have gone to this park with my kids MANY times and NEVER ran into her. The last time I had seen her was at the bible study and before that about 7 years before when she showed up at my church for a visit. She never came back...she was attending another church in town. And before that, I had seen her around the time Cassidy was born...

So back to the park.

I ran into her at the park...Cassidy was with her and I approached her and told her about my cousins baby. So the two of them have been connected ever since. this is a long story, but really its amazing to think that 12 years ago Cassidy's mom had NO idea how she would be used. I hope that she is so encouraged to see that Cassidy is being used 12 years later through a teacher that her son had. 12 years is a long time. I certeinly want to see what my son has done quicker. Now I know Cassidy has been used more then this, but I feel God has shown me that He is faithful...Things do work out for good. This story makes me amazed and THANKFUL.

While still sometimes feeling like Im in a valley...feeling like there is nothing new in my life. That there are things I have hoped for and desired...things that God has not desired to give. I find myself still missing Larson and dealing with chronic back pain. I sometimes wonder what is next. I am reminded by this story that God knows. What happens next in my life may not be what I hope for or maybe think I deserve...want...or expect! But I can trust that The Weaver is painting a PERFECT picture that I will be blessed to discover someday. Maybe not until eternity...but His hand will not stop and the painting will not be half done....

What often doesn't seem!

And now...Id like to show you a picture of sweet baby Evan. The one you have prayed for...a little guy that has only begun to change lives....

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Heaven is a Place

Great song...great a very talented singer whose walking the journey of grief. Praise God that Steven Curtis Chapman is using the gift he was given to minister to so many....grieving parents...orphans...and more!

Friday, October 30, 2009

Evans out of Surgery!

Another Evan seemed to go well. The doctors seem to think that his hips may be dislocated. So please pray for wisdom and direction for the doctors. Evan already has casts up to his thighs for his feet. The little guy has had more done to him in the last 2 weeks then I could imagine. More obstacles he has overcome, but there seems to be some more things to figure out. My cousin Lisa has been so brave but as you can imagine it is exhausting. Please pray for her, her husband Jeff, her daughter Lauren and her mom Barb (my aunt) as they continue on this journey. There are some things that are unknown, and maneuvering through them can feel daunting.

Evan Update!!

Wish I had pics of this cute little boy....and he is cute! Today Evan is going in for a shut surgery. Fluid has begun to build up in his body and some in his head. Praise God for doctors and nurses who are on top of things. Please pray for Evans surgery...that is would be quick and successful and that he may begin to move his lower body! He has already had casts put on his legs for club feet and he had one surgery already right after birth. He has been such a fighter. Born at 4 lbs 6 oz and now up to 5lbs. Thanks for your prayers for this little guy....I know his story has just begun.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

He is Enough!!

I have to say...I can't wait for November. For some reason...October seems to still be a hard month. It was the month I miscarried in 2006 and it was the month we had to mentally bury our dreams with Larson in 2007. It has been better then the last, but I find myself trying hard to find joy. I am not trying to make this post a downer and by no means am I seeking sympathy, empathy or pity. I just feel like sharing whats been going on.

Back in 2007 when we lost Larson I thought I could never do this again...Don't worry we aren't! Now its not that I don't want to now. I have the desire for a baby more then I thought I could. Yet it seems God has completely closed the doors on this. My back problems continue to get worse and instead of hoping for the possibility for another child...I am trying to find relief from chronic pain from my back. The pain is constant and goes from my lower back...down to my calves. Its all day long and often from sitting, standing, sleeping and everyday activities. I am praying for the Lord to take my longing away...and to turn my disappointment into thankfulness and gratitude. I know He will....eventually! :)

I am not looking for a means of me, I have tried MANY things in the last 10 months and all the "experts" now how to fix me. Problem is they haven't!!! I have tried both Eastern and Western medicine and I can tell you that neither has helped too much. I am currently trying another therapy and IF it works, I'll let you all know what it is...for those back pain suffers!! :) God has been gracious to point me in different directions and I have an incredibly patient and supportive husband. Although nothing has worked, I know that God has still allowed some options. Or....he may make this my thorn...lets hope not! Im too young..I THINK! :)

Honestly...I am not complaining about this, just perplexed! How could I have been going from wanting to have another having him not having that even as an option anymore. No...nothing has been done permanently and I know God can do ANYTHING, but right now it would seem to be very irresponsible of us to try to have another baby when I can hardly manage my children physically right now. My kids have been through alot as well, but they are awesome and VERY helpful.

So spiritually this has really taken me down a different path. Many questions and LOTS of prayers! As I see others share about their new joy and restoration through another child...I wonder if I will ever fully regain the joy I had. Will I see the healing that God has given them? Will I always long for a baby or will God take that away? Don't get me wrong...I am so happy to see so many babies enter this world without complications. I know..or can only imagine...that they don't fully fill the void of the loss of the sibling that preceded them. Nor do I think any of these parents are doing it for that reason. I do know that I won't have the opportunity to feel what it COULD be like. I must leave that to mystery and continue down the path that God has chosen for me and my family.

I do rejoice in the miracles of what God has chosen in the life of others. There have been some pretty darn cute babies born this last year! I don't find myself bitter. I truly am happy to see so much joy in the lives of so many who have had to endure so much pain. These are a stories to be told and cherished. And of course each one of them comes with its own challenges, dreams lost and hopes gained. Honestly though..I can't write their feelings or thoughts here. I can't explain what it looks like with new life...I can only say where I am at.

So I'm not just writing this for myself. I am writing it for anybody else who may be in this same state. It may not be just from the loss of a child in the hope of having another one. You may have a broken marriage and wonder if it will ever by restored. You may be single and wonder if God would allow you to ever have a husband. You may struggle with infertility and wonder if you will ever be a mother. You may have been hurt by a friend and wonder if you won't feel so lonely. You may be having financial issues and wonder if you will see food on your table today..or have your house tomorrow. You may have lost a loved one that will not be here to share in your earthly joys. All the uncertainties of life. Dreams dashed...feeling challenged. Feeling defeated!

This world is filled with hurts, pains and disappointment for so many. The loss of a dream, hopes or the future we thought would look differently. We may wonder if it will always feel painful or if we will have the chance to see something joyful again....

And so I ask myself daily...What if I never see what I want things to look life? What if God never provides me another tangible joy (at least my definition of joy)? What if my back remains so painful? What if things seem so dark?

And then I go to scripture....Is God enough? Is His Son enough? That Christ died for that enough? Do I deserve anything more? Do I NEED anything more?

Confidently I can say Christ is enough. It will not always take away my questions, thougths or sadness....but it will ALWAYS complete me. He is enough. He heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds (Psalm 147:3)...He will NEVER leave me or FORSAKE me (Genesis 28:15)...He bestows a crown of beauty instead of ashes(Isa 61:3)..He turns my mourning into dancing (Jer 31:13)....He promises to complete the work He has started in me (Phil 1:6)...he weeps with us...rejoices with us..walks with us. He is Father...He is Friend.

In Christ there is no "what if's".... He never changes! He is ALWAYS there...through the ups and downs. The heartaches and heartbreaks. Through the questioning and misunderstandings. He is always your friend. HE WON'T change. HE WILL ALWAYS BRING ME THE JOY THAT THIS WORLD CAN NOT. He has defeated the One who has caused so much pain to enter into our lives. His name is satan...he is real..but he is NOT in control.

My dear friend...if you are reading this and wonder why life has a way of seeming to beat you up...turn to the only One who will Always be there for you. It is not your husband, or children, or friends...they are all sinners just like you and me. Our stories will all look different, but we can trust that they are what God wants for us. Accepting our life the way it one of the battles!!

Turn to Jesus Christ...our Saviour AND our friend. Really quite amazing to me. He was called to die for us and take OUR sin and yet He will still be our friend. Flee to His word...pray to Him to reveal Himself to you and comfort you...He will. Through the heartache and pain, He has never left my side. Although it feels that way at times... I know He hasn't. Press on towards the prize...Eternity with our wonderful Saviour. Where there will be no more tears, questions, pains, disappointments or heartaches.

If you need prayer...I am up at night lots with pain and I know that the Lord uses this to pray for others! Please share your prayers...I would be honored to pray for you. You can do it anonymously or email me. My friends...we are all in this together no matter your hopes, fears, dreams, joys or heartaches.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Evan Update

Thanks all for praying....Evan has had his surgery to fix the opening in his back. It went well and he is still breathing on his own. Keep up the prayers. At 34 weeks he is a premie and with surgeries ahead of him.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Prayers for Evan Samuel

Hello all my prayer friends!!

My cousin had her baby today and I am asking for prayer. Evan was born at 34 weeks. My cousin had severe preclamsia. Aside from that Evan was born with Spina Bifida and club feet. There is no chromosomal issues so praise God. But it is still a scary time. My cousin has been brave and strong but we know we can use strength that only comes from the Lord. Please be praying for Evan. I believe his surgery on his spine will be on Sunday. Ill keep you posted. As of know he is breathing on his own, angry and ADORABLE!

Saturday, September 26, 2009


We got back from our family vacation and wanted to share this photo. Besides having a blast as a family it was a sentimental trip for us as well. Our very good friends live there and we went to see them. We visited them in Newport beach 2 years ago. On that visit we had also announced our pregnancy. I was only 8 weeks pregnant and really had no idea what was ahead of us...although I had an instinct something was not going to be good. It was on that beach that I told my friend that I was nervous about getting a 12 week ultrasound in case something was wrong. Of course we did by pass the 12 week ultrasound, but our 20 week still changed our life!!! Well this picture is at that SAME beach at the SAME place I was. Without our son.. but still in our minds and hearts. I love this picture and being taken at the same beach he was with us at some point....VERY SENTIMENTAL!!!

As we approach Larsons D-day..diagnosis day...he is very much on our minds. Taking a break has been good for me. I have realized how much has gone on in our lives in just 2 years. I am continually amazed at the work He is doing in so many peoples lives. It is all written different then we would hope...yet it is all written perfect. No erase updated editors approval. It is unfolding perfectly.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Please Pray!!

I am asking for prayer for a 6 year old girl who has been diagnosed with a malignant brain tumor. She has 6-9 weeks to live without radiation and if they do radiation 6-9 months. God knows the name and faces of this brave family. PLEASE pray for them. As many of you who read this blog...we have seen miracles in different ways, but I am praying for a miracle of healing. Its too much to think of another family having to say good-bye to soon. Christ asked for the His Father to "take this cup from Me"...he understands our desire for a different outcome. He asked for Gods "will to be done"....He understood Gods Sovereignty. PLEASE storm the gates friends!! For the cup to be taken or an eminence amount of GRACE to be given. My heart is breaking for them.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Another year approaching

Well I am coming up to the 2 year mark of Larsons diagnosis. October 2nd to be exact. I am not sure if D-day (which I call it) is the diagnosis day or death day. Really both things happened that day. Larson was diagnosed and due to the severity of his condition, our dreams of having our fifth child at home died. Yes....he was still alive, but only time would tell how long.

Really we were so blessed and quite surprised to have him for 23 hours due to the issues going on! No brain...fluid in the chest and yet God gave us 23 hours.

So I thought I would write how things are...2 years out from d-day and 21 months from his birthday!

The Colorado air has been a hard reminder of the season that is changing into Fall. I really love the beautiful Falls in Colorado, but the crisp air is now an eery reminder of the season...the day....that changed us forever. Somehow it is weird how smells can trigger a reminder, an emotion of good or bad times.

Right now my family and I are enjoying a beautiful vacation in Newport Beach. this all has been interesting as just 2 years ago...right before my ultrasound appointment...we took our family to Newport Beach. It was on this beach that i confessed to my friend that I was nervous about the baby. I was only 8 weeks, but already feeling that instinct that something was going to be wrong.

So I guess it is sort of interesting that we left the cool Fall smell in Colorado that reminds me of the beautiful beaches in California that hasn't taken Larson to far from my mind either. Not that I want him to be...but sometimes its the ache that I am having. It still comes but not as often. Mostly I feel so blessed to have had Larson for the time we did.

So here I am just 2 years later and I still have my moments. Moments of heartache that I had to bury my son and not have him here. my kids would love to have him on the beach or on their first day of school.

The aches certainly come, but God continues to be faithful in my heartache. He is faithful to bring me the right verse....the right friend...the right moments. At times I think I want the ache to go away entirely and at times I want it to stay to remember my son. I certainly know that God continues to navigate me through these thoughts and struggles. Letting go of grief has continued to be a daily choice for me...sometimes a moment choice...some days are harder then other, but I'm in the fight and my desire is to let that part go.

And even at that....I have to really pray and meditate on whether I am not letting go of grief or if this is just what it will be like. A constant battle of settling into Gods plan. Only God can reveal that through His Word. I know that it can not be compared to others grief...or their story...or their thoughts. Each person does this journey different.

I wish I could tell you I am healed from my loss. I really can't. The Potter has molded me and I am getting used to the new look of the pot. He has had to stretch me more in some areas then others. He is still stretching me.

I do know that Larsons story has certainly revealed to me areas in my life that I had not struggled with before. The fruit of the Spirit is easy when you don't have anything testing them. To be gentle and kind and patience and faithful. To love and have joy and peace and self-control. Wow! Those are hard when you are trying to navigate how to just get through a moment let alone have everything else in life still going. Marriage, kids, finances, school, work, friends, family, church...

If only things would stand still as you navigate grief and when you are ready you can jump back into life. Part of the trial is facing life with an amputation and then figuring out how to use a new prosthesis! The limb is gone and you need to use the artificial one to keep going. And as time continues, the artificial one becomes easier and more of a habit! You become faster and it just starts to fit.

Well...I am sure this post may be wording and confusing. Sometimes that is just how my thoughts seem to be. I've always thought faster then I can type and talked faster then I can think! :)

So for now...I will get back to the beach and remember, this was one place we visited all together as a family of seven. Larson WAS at the beach with us! But NOW...he is worshipping God in Heaven! The beach is such a reminder of the Majesty of God and to think Larson is worshipping and praising Him face to face, really can just take my breath away. Larson is complete..Larson is safe..Larson is healed. I will see him one day. And until then...God will be faithful to persevere me and grow me and walk with me.

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Mission Trip to Ukraine

My dear friend Aimee and her friend Jamie are going on a mission trip to an orphanage to the Ukraine. I have been so blessed myself by the things God has done in this family's' life....I look forward to following this part. Please pray for their mission and all involved. The following is the link to her travel blog. To God be the Glory!

Monday, August 17, 2009

The Garage Sale!! and a new blog-

We'll...I made it through the garage sale. Hard to watch things walk off my driveway. Clothes...carseats AND my crib!! :( So many precious memories that only I will cherish and do not walk away with the "things" although it feels that way at times. I can't say it was easy but when would it? My hearts desire was always to have MANY children and so its rough to feel like we may not. Who knows...Only God!

I started this blog specifically to update and communicate with family and friends on life after Larson. The changes it brought us. Our ups and downs. Just how we were feeling. As so many know...its hard to talk to everyone directly after the loss of your child and so this worked so well! So many of you who have read this blog are going through this very thing. It is taxing and emotional. This blog has helped me to write down my be honest in a safe place, without judgement from others. I really felt supported while keeping loved ones up to date. It definitly became something so much more then that. I would come hoping the Lord would also use this in a way to help others. If it has been used in that way at all...Praise God!

This blog was initally created for family and friends, and yet I have "met" some amazing people. These blog friends have gone through the same heartache of losing a child....some more then 1! I can't express enough of my thankfulness and gratitude for those of you who have listened and read. For your kind thoughts and prayers. Our family forsure felt them all! I am so incredibly grateful for the support and love from you all! I now have more friends who understand my new normal and what a treasure that is. God has provided well in our time of need.

Larson has 3 brothers and a sister who keep me on my toes and help me to stay present. After much prayer and thoughtful considration, I have decided to start a family blog. Our story for sure continues and for some reason this just feels right to me to start something new at this time.

This has been a hard decision because by no means do I want to diminish the life of my son. There is some fear that peopole will think I am over it and so I am "moving on"....I assure you, Im not moving on or over it...but just moving forward and pressing on. I know that staying at this blog doesn't mean that I am not pressing on. Either way I am just wanting to share the story of our family so I will have a journel for my children to have one day. So staying here or leaving...I have the same motive in mind...Glorifying God and sharing His story.

I know that God so blessed us with a son for 23 hours and with 4 more children here. I don't take this task lightly. Starting a new blog does not diminish the work God is doing in my families will not heal my pain...nor is it to make me forget. I am not switching blogs to leave him behind or to not embrace the story God has given to me, but to continue to write about our family with EVERYONE in it! Larsons blog will be up...I will still write from time to time.

For those who want to continue to follow what we are up to, may email me at, Looking forward to sharing! Thanks again for all your kind words, your compassion, patience and undertanding.

I will continue to follow so many of your sure has been fun to watch what the Lord is doing in so many of your lives and to advance His Kingdom.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Letting Go

This is the title of the last page of Nancy Guthries devotional..."A Year of Hope". This book has been a tremendous encouragement to me as I have walked this road of grief. Not only has she lost 2 children...she also is faithful to point us to scripture in the heat of the battle.

This page of Letting Go has been difficult for me. I know the devotional is for A YEAR and here I am 18 months later trying to let go. She states that the letting go is not of our child...but of the grip that grief has on us. I have said in the last couple posts that this is not as prominent on a hour to hour or even day to day basis...but when grief is gripping me....IT IS GRIPPING ME!

I have decided that it is time to go through things and let things go physically. This has been MUCH harder then I had thought. I had not gone through ANY of our baby clothes for Larson even when we knew he was a boy. I knew his condition was grave and the possibility of him coming home was not good. I wasn't being a pessimist..just a realist. Besides...he was 4lbs. 14oz....the little guy would not have fit. So I tucked the bin away. It moved from our garage to the crawl space without taking a was just so painful.

So in the last couple of days I have been taking things out of the crawl space for my garage sale. I wonder if I should just pack it up and give it away but my kids have begged to do a garage sale. I thought this would be a good learning experience for has turned out to be a grieving time for me.

Our parenting journey began 9 1/2 years ago with our eldest child Emma. We knew we wanted alot of children but were unsure exactly how many. After Larson we felt that the Lords desire was for us to have one more. Why one? That was what we felt was put on our hearts. After losing the two babies after Levi we tried one more time. We agree when we found out we were pregnant with Larson that this was our last one.

So here I am closing a chapter in my it seems. Its just that one of them is missing. I thought I was doing good until I started dragging everything out of that dusty crawl space. Wiping dust off of things seemed so cutting. Then into the bins I went. Looking through all the adoring clothing. It has been harder then I thought. I know this is what I need to do...what is holding onto all this stuff going to do?

Maybe I held on to it thinking maybe we would still have another...but it seems that right now we will not. I am grieving this as well. I certainly didn't want this to end this way. I know it is not the end with my other children. I have SO much to rejoice with with them. But even Landon sees the loss. Today while putting things out he said....
"Mommy....if Larson were here we would not be selling all of this stuff. He would be sleeping in the crib...riding in the stroller...and wearing the clothes. And we would be giving him tons of hugs" Out of the mouth of my 6 year old boy!!!

Landon is right. We would be using them, but we are not. We all know what we hoped would have been...yet trust what is right now by faith. I could only be doing this "grief walk" by the Grace of God. The Grace that He has givin to me to walk a journey in my life I NEVER wanted.

So I see others continuing there life with new hope and new joy, I certainly wonder what the future will look like for us. Not what I thought...but beautiful none the less. Beautiful because my relationship with my Saviour is biggest then the clothes Larson would have worn or the stroller he would have rode. My Saviour is for eternity. So for the moments I live on earth that may be painful and even seem unbearable. Well they are because my Hope is not in this world and the things in it. My hope is in eternity. Eternity were there will be no more grief...or tears...or disappointment...or sadness.

So really I am just sharing my thoughts. Not because I am hopeless...but that I am hopeful that I can continue to let go of the things I had hoped for and HOLD on to the only thing I can....Jesus! This is not always easy. I wont' claim to have done it well or even right. But I am doing it....and the miracle is that I am still doing it by faith and faith alone.

So if you think of it. Pray for me Friday and Saturday as I tangibly let go of the things I wish I didn't have to....the things I wish a sweet 18 month old baby boy was wearing...but pray that I would hold so tightly to the One who is worthy to hold onto. The One who will not change...who will not fail...who will not die!!! I have definitely been fighting a spiritual battle in the last few days and I am praying with all my might for trust.

Monday, August 3, 2009


For some reason I have really been aching for my sweet baby. More time...If only we could have a re-do! I really would be willing to go back...just for my 9 months and 23 hours with that precious gift! It hurt so bad...but was so worth it. The sting doesn't stay as long these day...but it still comes. I think I am more acquainted with the ache. It has become a part of who I am. Just as a scare becomes part of your skin. Its as though I just don't notice the ache until it becomes more intense or something triggers the wounds to open. It eventually closes up...but the subtle ache remains. But who could ever fully get over this....?

He was worth all the pain...all the tears and all the SMILES! If only we could do a re-do!!!

Sunday, August 2, 2009

My back is back!

I wanted to thank you all for your prayers for my is my update. I got the cortisone shot a week ago Wednesday and it has worked!! Praise God! I would say I am 80% better. I have actually been able to go on walks this week. I really am so grateful and I know that the Lord was guiding the doctors hand to the correct spot. When getting a cortisone shot it is likely that it will not work the first time. They told me that often they don't know the exact tissue to I'm thankful it hit the right area.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Asking for Prayers

I just received a call from a friend last night asking for prayer for a dear family. So I am coming to you faithful readers and prayer warriors this morning.

On Friday the family she was calling about....well call them the V's, God know them....were on a lake water skiing. On their way back to shore they hit some rough wakes and their 11 year old daughter flew out of the boat and died. Please be praying for this family. For those who have lost a loved one..their is many areas that are stretched and pulled. Your faith is very much tested. This was a "freak" accident and yet there will be so many questions. We can trust the Lord and still wonder why these things happen. This family will be changed forever and July 24th will be a day that marks that!

Dear Father...
I pray for the V family. That you would protect them and their hearts. That you would protect their marriage and their family. know the details and you know their needs. We know you are in control of all things and yet this seems unfathomable. Another "accident" yet you never left them and you wont. Be with them in these days and the days to come. They will be dark...they will be hard!

Thank you heart is breaking for this family. I know prayers work....A peace is there that otherwise is not.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Having Hope...and a prayer request!

It seems hope is a theme so many of study and want. Last week in church the communion service was on hope. It was EXACTLY what I needed. We all hope is things. Hope for the future..hope for healing...hope for love....hope for health. We hope because we have not yet seen it happen.

I no longer hope for a husband...I have a great one. I no longer hope for kids...I have 5! I no longer hope for healing here on earth for answer was given on January 22 of 2008 that my hope for healing would be granted but not here. So the list goes on. I continue to hope for things... but I feel I have a little bit of a pessimistic edge. I am afraid to hope...because what if that is not the answer I will get. Should I just resigned to the fact that the answer has already been determined. That God knows the answer or should I still hope.

I have spent some time in the sci pures looking at hope alone. There is SOO much there and many answers for my questions are given.

For I hope in You, O LORD; You will answer, O Lord my God. Psalm 38:15
Yes! I hope and He will give HIS answer. May I be content with it?

Through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and we exult in hope of the glory of God. Romans 5:2
I hope in the eternal kingdom. For this earth is passing away. All my tears will be wiped...the pain gone and hope answered!

And hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us. Romans 5:5
I will hope in Gods love for me and remember the gift He has given through His Son. That although it may not be what I is still good!

Bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. 1 Cor 13:7
I will still hope in all things...just still searching!

But since we are of the day, let us be sober, having put on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet, the hope of salvation. 1 Thess 5:8
I will hope in my salvation

Now she who is a widow indeed and who has been left alone, has fixed her hope on God and continues in entreaties and prayers night and day. 1 Tim 5:5
In all the loneliness I will remember and hope IN THE LORD

And a few more....
Instruct those who are rich in this present world not to be conceited or to fix their hope on the uncertainty of riches, but on God, who richly supplies us with all things to enjoy. 1 Tim 6:17

in the hope of eternal life, which God, who cannot lie, promised long ages ago, Titus 1:2

Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. Heb 11:1

So with these thoughts on hope...
Right now I am HOPING for healing and pain relief with my back. My MRI results showed 2 bulging discs and a disc tear. The pain is constant and intense. I am struggling with pain management. I want to enjoy my kids and though I am...I can't do as much as I had HOPED!! I am going in on Wednesday at 10am for a cortisone shot in my spine by the disc problems. I would be so grateful for prayers if you feel led...Please pray for...
1...the shot would work and give some relief, immediate relief and relief for awhile
2..through other therapies the discs would heal themselves. I am looking into a therapy that a chiropractor has here in town. I have heard by the doctor that it is not likely for the discs to go back in place but not I will Hope. side effects from the cortisone shot....spinal headache/more pain/ ANY SIDE EFFECT!
and whatever else you can think of...
Yes...I am still going to HOPE for healing with my back. With Larson...the Lords desire was not to heal. We ask for the Lord to take the cup from us or let thy will be down. Well...the Lords will was not to heal. But I believe we can still Hope...its what we do when what we hope is not what we get.

Thank you friends!

Monday, July 6, 2009

String of Pearls Run

Many of you have already seen this foundations...but Id like to take this opportunity to talk about it myself. Laura...the founder...has become one of my treasured friends. We met when I found out that Larson would not make it. Lauras daughter Pearl has the same diagnosis as Larson, but aside from that, we are both Colorado natives and have many things and friends in common aside from our brave children!

Lauras friendship AND her medical knowledge helped me and my family more then I could have ever expected. Meeting her was definitely orchestrated by our Heavenly Father and so was her ability to help. It is no mistake that Laura was trained not only as a nurse, but a Labor and Delivery nurse LONG before she new of the story it would create in her own life with her brave daughter Pearl. Instead of tucking away her gift and her training...she has faithfully been using it to help many other families in the same situation we were in....walking the journey of carry your baby to term who has a fatal diagnosis.

On July 25th...if you are in the Denver area (or want to fly in!!!) I would love to invite you to join others in supporting this amazing and well needed ministry. The following is a letter from Laura that I emailed to friends in town, but would love to have you read it as well. Thanks for your support to this wonderful ministry.

Friends, Family and Patients,

On July 25, 2009 we will be hosting a 5K Run/Walk event in Parker, Colorado to benefit String of Pearls, a registered 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization providing perinatal hospice support to families who are struggling with the devastating reality of a fatal diagnosis for their unborn baby. String of Pearls is based right here in the Denver Metro-Area where their tangible and emotional support is available to families both locally and across our country without any cost. Their services include the crafting of unique birth plans, coordination with other professional support, liason between the family and the birthing staff, and precious memory making kits. This is a great nonprofit organization and we should all come out to show our support. Look for them on the internet at

The event will be held at Stroh Ranch Park which is approximately 1/2 mile west on Stroh Road from Parker Road (Rt. 83). The event will begin at 9:00 AM and race day registration will begin at 7:30 AM. Throughout the day, local businesses will be providing information about their new products and services, there will be many kid's events, and there will be activity demonstrations throughout the day, including a quick start tennis program, martial arts and others!

At 11:00 AM there will be a drawing for prizes and all registered participants will be eligible to win. There will also be an opportunity to pre-purchase additional tickets prior to the drawing to increase your odds of winning. Prizes include a one night stay at the Hampton Inn of Parker King Suite, four rounds of golf a Black Bear Golf Club, custom made foot-insoles and many more great prizes.

Registration is easy! Please open and print off the attached registry form and return it to us as soon as possible. Help us make this inaugural event a success by participating and telling everyone you know! Let's start the first year off great and set the tone for many more years to come!

If you have any questions, please give us a call or email us. Thanks for all your support!

Dr. Matthew Derry
Dr. Tanja Sukovic Derry
Back to Wellness, L.L.C.
(720) 851-7400
12919 Stroh Ranch Court
Unit B
Parker, CO 80134 <>

Laura Huene
Executive Director
String of Pearls
PO Box 630454
Littleton, Co 80163

Thursday, July 2, 2009


Happy 11th Anniversary...heres to many more!!!

Id like to think that my faith is strong. I am not wanting to say it is weak for sure...but in this season of my life I can definitely say it has been tested, tried, refined and questioned.

Steve and I just celebrated our 11th wedding anniversary. A feat I can definitely say I am so very grateful for. A milestone i can say was not achieved on our own. Then who possibly got us here? What got us here? Yep...our faith! But faith in what?

Just last week I commented to Steve that the last 3 years have been some of the hardest. It is almost 3 years ago that our journey of loss began. Sure we have lost...great grandparents,aunts and uncles....Steve has more then I, but for Steve and I personally, it hit harder beginning in 2006. That is when our first baby was gone. We went in for our check up...and no heartbeat. Shock? yes! Sadness? yes...But I didn't feel complete despair. I had heard of early loss. I knew it was not completely uncommon.

So we continued on...hoping for the baby after our loss. Another O'Brien to raise. Another sibling for our children. Well...loss again. Another heartbeat gone to soon. We decided to try again. Yes...we had hope...we had faith that it would not end this way...or did we. I have been told that if I had more faith I would not have c-sections? So...if I had more faith...would my babies die? I'm not trying to be cynical...just questioning the advice of some!!

Did we have faith that God was in control of ALL things? What we mustard up as our story...or did we have faith that the story to come had already been written by the Creator who had already written the story this far? Is our faith in our faith....or is our faith in God?

Can I have enough faith to change the story God has written to a story I want? Can my faith change the outcome? Do I believe that God has written the story and will get me through ANYTHING...whether I see it as good or bad...! My faith Has to be in God...not myself...or my life would not turn out the way it has. I would be a superhero and change that for sure....but I definitely wouldn't be who I am today.

Well...I can say looking back..I had faith. I had faith that things would work out. But my faith was in the story and how I WANTED it to look. Others around me had lost a child early in their pregnancy and ALL yes ALL had s HEALTHY baby after. So certainly I would have that "rainbow baby" as well. Or would I?

So this is where I am at. My faith for sure has been tested. And faith is being refined and redefined. No longer am I putting my faith in a story I have created, but I can not tell you it has been easy to put my faith in the story already written, but not yet seen. I trust in a God who has providentially given me life. Who has made me a wife, a mother, a sister, a daughter. I have seen His hand in my life...but can I see His had in the dark times as well?

I am really speaking out loud in this blog the thing I have been pondering in my mind. I guess really being vulnerable and sharing things that I have wrestled with during the last few years.

The questions were few at the beginning, but have grown as our season continued down the road of loss. Now wondering which direction we are headed.

Currently I am enjoying my children...but still a piece of me continues to miss the toddler not here. I have been experiencing a GREAT deal of pain in my back and have been in physical therapy for 3 months now. I am going for an MRI and hoping for more clarity as to the direction of my pain management. It could be anything from a bulging a ruptured disc. I have pain constantly in my back radiating down my legs and into my calves. I don't share this for sympathy or for advice, but because it seems to be another hurdle for me. Can I trust Gods decision to take me down this path that has been hard...but bearable, often dark...but I know He is there. The pain is often frustrating and making it hard to enjoy normal daily activities. I love working out, but have not been able to for the last 3 months. I can't rely on that for my sanity...although I did. So once again I am back to trusting God in this story...or wanting to!

I have felt somewhat down at times...just wanting some relief, but seeking what that relief is. Is is from the pain of this world? I know we are all meant to suffer and by no means to I believe my story is terrible suffering. I have seen many suffer more. But I have also seen many rejoice in the hope and faith of new children and new beginnings. I am wondering what mine will be. I know it will be my own story. Written specifically for me. Hoping for something great...wondering what that is. And is great my idea of great or the great that God has decided will be great for me.

Do I trust in my own a story I have written? Or is my faith in a God who is far bigger and better and more in control then I could ever imagine myself to be? I know I trust God...I want to trust Him more...I want to have Faith in HIM more...I want to rest in Him more.

Praying for more faith!!!

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Dash

Last Friday we had my grandmas funeral. My mom was brave enough to speak and talked about the life she lived. She also shared this poem by Linda Ellis...You may have heard it but Id like to share it...

The Dash

I read of a man who stood to speak
At the funeral of a friend.
He referred to the dates on her tombstone
From the beginning to the end.

He noted that first came the date of her birth
And spoke of the following date with tears,
But he said what mattered most of all
Was the dash between those years.

For that dash represents all the time
That she spent alive on earth
And now only those who loved her
Know what that little line is worth.

For it matters not, how much we own,
The cars, the house, the cash,
What matters is how we live and love
And how we spend our dash.

So think about this long and hard;
Are there things you’d like to change?
For you never know how much time is left
That can still be rearranged.

If we could just slow down enough
To consider what’s true and real
And always try to understand
The way other people feel.

And be less quick to anger
And show appreciation more
And love the people in our lives
Like we’ve never loved before.

If we treat each other with respect
And more often wear a smile,
Remembering that this special dash
Might only last a little while.

So when your eulogy is being read
With your life’s actions to rehash
Would you be proud of the things they say
About how you spent your dash?

I sat there reflecting on "the dash". Mostly I have read stories about children who have gone to be with the Lord. Although their dash may not be in years....they still have a dash. Either between minutes or moments....days or weeks....months or years. No matter what...they have a dash. I am constantly reminded of the dash Larson had. From the 22nd-23rd...from 1 minute to 23 hours. Yes he lived for but a day and yet he did get a dash. That dash did much for family...and those around me. And although the dash came to an end...his memory continues on.

As I remember my grandmother this week, I will also remember the dashes of so many others....Pearl, and Sophie Ann, and Issac, and Asher, and Noah, and Brinley, and Sydney, and Chloe....and the list goes on and on! I'll remember all their dashes and hope that as I continue my own life, that I will consider what will be in my dash. May it be filled with faithfulness to Christ and Him alone!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Saying Good-bye

Thanks for the Bubie (yiddish for grandmother!) passed away tonight! Saying good-bye is not so fun...she would have been 90 on June 16th! She taught us much and she will be missed!

Please pray

This is Corie's friend Laura, I am hijacking her blog today! Today is Corie's Birthday and she is facing another difficult path on her journey. Her sweet grandma is in the hospital and is not expected to live through the week. Her grandma is a precious woman who has been the source of so much laughter for Corie and her family.

Will you pray for Corie, her grandma and the rest of their family? I am asking God to bring hope, comfort, peace and the assurance that He is near, even in the darkest hours. I know He will wrap His arms around each person in the family and has promised that He will never leave them. I want this truth to be so real to all who are there waiting at the hospital.

The past 18 months have been long and full of so many unexpected turns for this sweet family. I am so proud of Corie...she is a gift to so many and I count her as one of my greatest treasures. She is walking this journey so bravely, even in the moments when she would like to just sit down and not take one more step. I want her to know we are holding her arms up, just like Aaron and Hur, held up his arms during the battle. I know all of you love Corie and her family and will hold their arms up. Pray for strength as well as moments of laughter and true joy.

Thank you for praying and for loving this sweet family so well. They are so easy to love...

Sending love to your sweet family,
Laura and co

But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Isaiah 40:31

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

When it stings...IT STINGS

Just a heads up...this could be a long post. Just writing down some of my feelings of today. It was a good day yet a rough day. A happy day yet sad day. This seems to be what life has for me now!! Let me explain.

I started my day with a fun trip to Casa Bonita with my sons first grade class. What could be more fun then spending quality time with my sweet boy. We traveled up with giggles and laughter in the back seat. What a beautiful picture from the rear view mirrow. A son gifted to me. children are a gift and more precious to me then ever. I hope I don't hold to tightly to them...but I sure do love them.

Well this joyous moment took a swift turn after a phone call from my husband. He graciously wanted to make me aware about something concerning another son...the one that we only have a grave site for, whose home is not here, who I miss so much....

This may seem so little to some...but for me it was big. Our sons grave stone had broken. It was his temorary stone and we knew we would have to get his permenant one soon. The problem is...we have just not been ready to do this. ITS PERMENENT! You don't change it out like you do the season or your clothes. IT will be his marker forever. We want to make it perfect...whatever that is!

Well after my trip to Casa Bonita with a wonderful boy...I dropped him off at school and headed to the cemetary. Not exactly the place I wanted to be. There was a time I found peace there...but right now, it just just stings. Why does that still hurt so bad? Will I ever fully embrace the heartache? I find that time does NOT just become accostumed to the pain and learn to live with learn to carry the pain...not try to get rid of it...just carry it!

Any way...I get to the grave site and go to his grave...but there is NOTHING there. Not even the BROKEN TEMPORARY stone. Nope! GONE! You could say I was hysterical...maybe a little crazy. Yep...I DID lay on the grass and weep. For this is where Larson is and yet there was NO STONE! After pealing myself off the groud, I got in my car and headed to the office.

Not the place I wanted to be. The last time I was there was for Larson Visitation before his service and then to pick up his death certificate. Looks like a great building on the outside...but you walk in and it has death written all over. I was greeted by a nice women who gave me a bottled water with none other then a label that said.....OLINGER MORTUARTY!! Nice think? So as I sip my water I am taken to a room to wait for a counselor. I realized that is what they call the "sales" people!

While waiting for the couselor...I thought usually you would read something. NOt much reading material here, unless you want to read about buying a headstone. The walls...filled with pictures then none other then grave stones. So I imagined whose they were. One was a piano...seriously! One was a small building! Crazy to be in this room. I shouldn't be here! I didn't want to be here! Larson doesn't care about his headstone...but I DO! Its all I have. No 15 month old here! Just a grave site to take care of!

So long story...short! I was told I need to pick out his final head stone. We are working on that. We are praying about what would be best. Really wish I had my baby and not these decisons...but I don't and I know.

What I praise the Lord for is...In spite of the sting and the pain and the tears and the hurt...Christ is on His throne. Like I said...the pain doesn't go away. Its just gets easier to pick yourself up from. I wasn't down all day...just a few hours. Honestly...that is progress people!

So I headed to get my toes mind together and then to go back to hug my W
WONDERFUL children. I know I have 5....I don't need everyone to know that anymore. I am getting used to the people who are uncomfortable around me....and so very thankful for my close friends who continue to walk with me through lifes highways and byways!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Angels Wish

I LOVE this song...This man writes incredible songs and to think so many were BEFORE Miss Marias home calling! The songs only get better! What a gift God has given him. Listen to the words...Wow!

Was God smiling when He spoke the word and made the world?
And did He cry about the flood?
What does God's voice sound like when He sings, when He's angry?
These are just a few things that the angels have on me

Well, I can't fly at least not yet
I've got no halo on my head
And I can't even start to picture heaven's beauty
But I've been shown the Savior's love
The Grace of God has raised me up
To show me things the angels long to look into
And I know things the Angels only wish they knew

I have seen the dark and desperate place where sin will take you
I've felt loneliness and shame
And I have watched the blinding light of grace
Come breaking through with a sweetness only tasted
By the forgiven and redeemed

And someday I'll sit down with my angel friends
Up in heaven
And they'll tell me about Creation
And I'll tell them a story of Grace

Well, I can't fly at least not yet
I've got no halo on my head
And I can't even start to picture heaven's beauty
But I've been shown a Savior's love
The Grace of God has raised me up
To show me things the angels long to look into
And I know things the Angels only wish they knew

Monday, May 4, 2009

Balancing Act

I find myself trying to balance myself between enjoying my children and missing Larson. Yes...I still do!! I often wonder what things will look like in a year and then I remind myself only God knows.

I should probably have learned this by now, but my personality has always leaned on being more anxious for tomorrow and so it will continue to be something I will battle until I am HOME!

My days seem brighter, and I am able to take more breaths. These last 3 years have been full of anticipation, "plans" and disappointments. I often wonder if I will see restoration and in what way. I certainly find times that I do feel God is doing just that. Restoring my joy, my trust, by peace and my life. Its not in the way I would have thought or maybe even hoped for, but that's how this journey all began right?...

Desiring to add to my family... only for the very thing I wanted to be taken. Hopes dashed...Yet a story so perfectly and lovingly written by my Lord. Not the script I would have chosen to be a character in, but trusting in the God who works all things for good. Trusting He knows the beginning and the end and that He makes NO mistakes...even what is His good hurts so bad!

So I will continue to strive to balance my "new" life. Embracing what is new and letting go of the old. He makes all things new...NOT He makes all things what they used to be. Thankful for change!

Thankful for a God who is continuing to gently show me HIS goodness..not mine, HIS story...not mine and HIS promises...not mine.

Blessed by God....that He would walk with me even when I ask the same 'ol questions time and time again.

I have begun to stay balanced more...but I still have my times that I fall off the beam.....But grateful He is there even in those times.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009


I have probably not mentioned this blog very often, but I know there are many who have already read her story. She had a daughter 3 months after Larson was born...who had a fatal condition that was diagnosed at 20 weeks...and died after a beautiful 2 hours. If you haven't read her ....I encourage you to do so. She is honest, frank and LOVES the Lord!

Right now...she is overseas on a Compassion International trip with several other people...Compassion International is an AMAZING organization....This is the description from their website!

Compassion International is one of the nation's largest Christian child sponsorship organizations, working with more than 65 denominations and thousands of indigenous church partners in Africa, Asia, Central and South America, and the Caribbean. Since 1952, Compassion's revolutionary approach, through one-to-one Christian child sponsorship, has touched the lives of more than 1.8 million children. Compassion has been recognized for its financial integrity with top ratings and recommendations by several "watchdog" organizations. Sponsor a child in need today.

After reading about them...I decided to also look up the work Compassion in the Websters Dictionary. This is no ordinary dictionary....This is our AMERICAN DICTIONARY!!
It very simple yet directly states that Compassion means:

sympathetic consciousness of others' distress together with a desire to alleviate it

I had to ask an American, a child of God...what am I doing to be conscious of others' distress and how am I helping to alleviate it? God says in his word;
Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. -James 1:27

Compassion International in no way takes away all of my responsibility, I know there are many other ways to help these children around the world. But honestly....what is $32 dollars in many of our pockets..
A month without Starbucks?
Not going to a movie?
Not getting that extra pedicure?
Not going out to eat as much?
Budgeting $32 less in groceries?
Not going to Red Robin!!!

I know my children can learn alot from saving their own money...maybe not all of it yet...and then gifting it to someone else. So can we as adults. So I just felt compelled to write this on my blog. Check out the site....I hope you will be as moved as I am. If you can't "adopt" a child now, or maybe you can only do one, or maybe you can have a friend join in, maybe you can in the future...

I ask...What can i do? What can you do? to help the WORLDS children?

Saying good-bye to my sweet Larson long before I wanted too, has led me to see things much differently then before. For this I am SO THANKFUL that God picked this story for me. Now..I am no saint forsure. I have not somehow achieved something great, but I am thankful that some of my ignorance from before has changed to the realization that there is much more going on in the world around me. Maybe it was not ignorance, but since it wasn't affecting me directly it was easier to ignore.

What saddenes me the most is many of these children are without parents, and if they have parents, they are still unable to have food on the table and a descent education...let alone being able to enjoy the things that we do on a daily basis. How heart wrenching it is to know that there are SO many orphanes and it takes just $32 to help 1! I can't imagine not having food for my children and yet my children get to go to Red Robin...MUCH TO OFTEN! That is humbling to just write down in words. Yes...we see these children on the news in a 1 minute segment at most. Their life is more then a second. It is filled with heartache. There is SO much pain and suffering. And though I tasted a bit of it myself....I know that there are many more enduring hardships on a daily basis. Lets just say...God used my sweet boy to get my head out of my "dream world" with my perfect plan and has taken me to a reality of the pain of this world. This is not our hurts...others hurt....What can we do to help?

Thanks for your eyes and ears!! I apoligize for any ramblings...hope it all makes sense. It does me!!!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

I Will Rise

2 Corinthians 4:17-18
For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Celebrating Christ

Lots of thoughts as we celebrate this weekend the death and resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. How can I not think about the death of the one who came to die for my sin and for all of those who come to Him.

How often I think of Christ. Of course I celebrated before, but it has changed in the last year. I am not going to claim I fully understand the depth of Christs grief and sorrows as He walked to the Garden of Gethsemane. For He knew His death would be painful and yet He knew it would be with a purpose. He knew everything from beginning to end. He was fully God...yet fully Man. He had emotions like we do and yet they were perfect.

I can't help to think of Gods grief for His Son as we celebrate this weekend. For God so love the world that He GAVE His is ONLY Son that whoever believes in Him SHOULD NOT perish but have eternal life. John 3:16 Yes...God GAVE His ONLY Son. Wow. That just makes me amazed. He was willing to give up His beloved for the sin of the world. He was willing to put the perfect Christ on the cross to pay for all our imperfections.

I know I will not fully grasp this, this side of Heaven, but I had to give my own son, and it has grieved me immensely. Yet I know that Larsons life was perfect, his death could not have been sweeter and now he is with the Lord because of what Christ did. Yes Larson is in Heaven because of the same reason I will be in Heaven. Because of the sacrifice of Christ for our sin. God was merciful to give Larson a sweet life. God was willing to give His Son...let Him go through a horrible death for us.

I think of asking God to take the cup from us. To heal Larson and to take away the trial. But we also prayed that His will be done. Wow does that prayer mean so much more. Christ said the same thing. He asked His own Father in Heaven to take the cup from Him...take the cross away or let His will be done. Christ was willing to die for us. If God can let His own Son die for us...How much more should I trust God in the story He has created for me? I know with all my heart that through the heartache...that this story is perfect and will continue to be. It's perfectly written, with heartache and all! Yes this is love. Because the greatest gift still remains...the gift of Christ.

So as I celebrate Christ...I think of my joy in Him as my Saviour and yet my grief in my sin that He would die for. Yes the cross was perfect. There was joy...and there was grief. I believe I have felt my own joy and grief collide in my story with Larson and yet I can look to the Cross and see that joy and grief can collide and it is good and it is what God intended.

May you all have a blessed resurrection day!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Nighttime thoughts

Well its afternoon as I write this!, so I guess kind of a weird title, but it is in the night that I start thinking. Since starting this new journey of my life, the night has always been the hardest time. The house is quite, my sweet children are no longer fighting! and look so incredibly peaceful off into their own precious dreams. Ok...they don't fight all the time...just often displaying sibling love in the many different ways. So the days are pretty busy...thankfully...and when I begin to rest my head on my pillow is when I begin to think...analyze...ponder...pray...fear...and the list goes on.

I do really think I have turned the corner in this grief journey. No longer is the pain so intense and mostly when I think of this year...I look upon it with a smile. Yes..these smiles may be joined with a tear...but not so despairingly. I realize more and more each day that my lifes story is and will continue to unfold. It definitely doesn't look like I though nor hoped it would...but God is so faithful. I really hoped to be bouncing around with a toddler...but Im not.

I think when I lay my head down at night is when I begin to think about what I will continue to transform into. Ok...I know I am not a gorilla or that we come from them...but when accepting Christ as our Saviour I became a new creation. No longer wanting to please myself....but live to bring Glory to God. So this year I wonder...Have I brought Glory to God? Through all the tears and questions and thoughts. I can not completely with confidence say yes...but I do know that God will judge my heart. I am thankful that this walk does not rest in the hands of my friends...or my neighbors...or my family...or my blog readers...I mean that with the utmost respect. Because if I put out a survey on what people thought...I guarantee the responses would very.

Yes..I have been concerned about my response to all of fears and anxieties. But I come back to what a dear friend said to me.

We need to be more concerned about our CHARACTER before God,
Then our REPUTATION before man.

Seems easy right? Well when I sit down to think about seems difficult. God is a good God, who has given me a perfect story and continues to write it. But He is the only one who can rightly judge me. Scary without Christ as my mediator. So I continue to desire to want to grow in my wisdom of Christ and also my character that would please Him. Good I only have to think about Him...because the rest gets overwhelming.

So my nighttime thoughts go to how I am sharing, looking and responding to praying that God would keep me focus on Himself!

There are times I still dream about if I had Larson...or if we had another...or if we adopt, but then I realize, Why go there? Its not a story until God Himself reveals that. I continue to stare (yes I do) at pregnant women and newborns...and cute China girls, I have to remind myself....That is not my story, that is their story and it is perfect. No longer do this images hurt so much. Ive always loved to people watch.

Now I wonder if the pregnant women has a healthy baby or if she has lost a baby or if she has some other pain. And the China girls...what is their story and all the other "obvious" children who are adopted. There are others around me I would never now. Everyone has a story. Yes...there are some who still live in the American dream with their white picket fence, I did! But I don't miss it. I don't miss being comfortable in what was comfortable situations. I appreciate the work God is doing. I hope to think of others and their pains and not just try to get back to my "comfortable" life. Don't get me wrong....I have ALONG way to go. Thats the problem with this, as you grow in some things more sin is revealed. So I may be growing in Compassion, but sometimes I don't have patience for other things. There is always going to be contradictions in life. Doing better in this....not so good in that!

But I know that God is faithful and He declares and I am CONFIDENT that "he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." Philippians 1:6. Yes the getting to completion will sometimes be uncomfortable, unwanted, uneasy and ugly, but HE will complete it!

Thanks for reading...Random post from a random girl!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Praying for...

Another mommy to pray for and come along side of during this time of grief....
My heart always aches to know someone else has to let their baby go far to soon!

Saturday, February 28, 2009

How many children do you have? I know many people who read this blog have been in this situation. I still often wonder what to say.

At times Steve and I have said not to get into details and yet then we feel like we really have 5 and why deny Larson the life he had. There have been times that my children have corrected me when I say 4. I hear their cute voices pipe up and say.."no...remember we have Larson mom!" They are so proud of him like any sibling would be. They just don't get to share him in person.

As time has gone on Steve and I agree we want to say 5. We love to share the story of Larson and yet then there are times you can tell the other person is either uncomfortable or uninterested.

Really never thought I would have to think through a question like this. It is often asked. You mommies know...we all ask about the same things when we get to know one another. Now that my children are in sports...well this is asked often.

Trust me...I have done both and I have heard many comments pertaining to both...
-yes share...he is your son
-why do you need to share about it...hes safe with the Lord

I would love to hear from those of you who have lost a child. What do you say? For those of you have not lost a child...leave a comment also.

Honestly this has changed my life and really has put me on the opposite side of the field. I used to be safe in all situations. I used to feel comfortable in all situations. I used to not think twice what I said. I love meeting people and getting to know them. But this story...well it is part of me. I don't want to cling to it and yet I am not willing to let it go.

I want to be considerate of others and yet I want to talk about my son as I do all my other children. I want my other children to not be afraid to talk about their brother. Why is this so taboo? Why is there not some simple answer. Why are some uncomfortable talking about my dead son. Yes HE IS MY SON! And my children HAVE ANOTHER BROTHER.

So...would love to hear from you if you have some advice. Not going to get the t-shirt yet!

BTW...I don't share as much about my other children as I know this is a public blog and want to keep some things personal. I love them just as much. I say this because I have had questions about that. That maybe I don't think about them the way I should. I want to assure you. I love ALL my children and cherish them for who they are.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Our Story continues.....

For awhile after losing Larson, I wondered where our story would go from there. Quite fankly, I felt like I ran straight into a brick wall. I was totally unprepared to have this happen. My faith in Christ is what held me up, but I myself could not move forward. At least not as quickly as I had hoped. There was alot to process. I didn't want this trail to be in vain and I always hoped that I would be willing to let the Lord shape me. Therefore...I didn't want to ignore the pain or quickly run through it.

Well now 13 months later...our story continues. How? Exactly how God wants it to. No big news, no big story...its that we have gotten through this as a family that is our story.

15 months ago I had no idea what a blog was, nor did I have ANY desire to have one. Why did other have to know everything about what I was going through or how I felt. I also didn't have much to say. Life was carrying on just as I had hoped. When a friend suggested to me to start a blog when we found out Larsons condition I still hesitated. There just didn't seem like much to right about. His condition always worsened and I knew that giving out more information would allow people to GOOGLE more and send me stories. I know this may sound selfish, but it was taking everything to just funtion with my four other children. Ill be reactioned supriesed me as much as it suprised even close friends.

Well after Larson was born it was difficult to tell everyone individually...along with family and friends out of I was feeling. Steve and I both grew up here and are 4th generation Coloradans! So to say we had a support system was and is an understantment. Its just it got overwhelming at times. So I caved and began writing. For communication and also for an outlet for myself.

What began as a way to communicate...also became a new world to me. I didn't realize there was so much out there. Good stories and bad. I usually find the bad. Sadness takes comfort in sadness. While I began to meet some of the most wonderful peopel in blogland, I also become somewhat obsessed with blogs. You know...I wanted to know the WHOLE story. Well that takes time...too much time. As I found my favorite blogs to follow, I read every entry. I felt that some of the entries were exactly what I was feeling and others I could not relate to. While this is can make you question your feelings and emotions. I encourage those who are walking a similiar not question your emotions, the time it takes you to grief, your reactions. Its ok to keep them in check, but don't use other blogs to do this. We are ALL individuals and it just won't look the same.

It is safe to use this as an outlet until it becomes all you can relate to. There were times that that was me. being pretty transparent here! Well I have not written as many posts because I have not had the time and sometimes the right words. And really I know I have to re-enter things even if it is sometime uncomfortable. Ok...with honestly I have not just started doing this. I have done this all along, its just now it is even more often. I really love people, but for a season I needed some time to process and emerse myself into the Word of God. Tons of extra stuff was overwhelmimg. But praise be to God that things are much easier. back to blogland...yes this may be a random post.... Anyway, while surfing through bogs, I would see stories similar to ours. Bad diagnosis, death and then the process of grief was on their blog. I really enjoyed "contecting" to them as I did not have much experience it this and many were going through this for the first time as well. We have all done it different. We have all blog our stories, emotions, faults, strengths, weaknesses, etc. We have all written...some more honestly and transparent then others...some have not said as much. But all have done it their way AND well.

Ok...back on the trail...So these stories eventually went to new pregnancies. They had something new to talk about...It was hard to see at first, becuse as much as I wanted that story it was not mine. I heard all about "rainbow babies" and Gods promises. I read about healing from a new baby, restoration, redemption and moving on. I just wasn't there. But I wanted it so bad. I began praying..."Lord, take this desire from me if it is not your will. and if it is not your will help me to be COMPLETELY satisfied in you. For you give and take away and you are good. You may not give anymore and you are still good. I need to know that whether our story has a new baby or an adopted baby in it or not...that you have not forsaken us. That you will still restore us, you will heal us, you will not leave us"

Well over time I can assure you....I am so grateful for our story. God is good. Seeing the blogs with people who have had babies or are having babies are not hard anymore. I can say I truly feel myself rejoicing with them. I can seperate their blog from mine...their story from mine...and knowing God is in control of it all. He still loves me. His promises are still the same. Baby or no baby we will proceed the way God wants us to. We are not promised tomorrow, or anything beyond that. So I hope to live in the moment. And if God so wills us to have another child. IT WILL NOT be to heal, or be restored, or to be a symbol of Gods promises. We will have a baby because that was part of the plan all along....and because that is HIStory not mine. May my desires in my life be for Him and His Glory and nothing else.

So for all you amazing mommies who have gone throught the heartache of loss and now continue down the path of joy with a new baby. I rejoice with you...Im praying for your little ones. I know this doesn't take away the pain of the one lost, but where you learn to balance grief, heartache, and despair...with joy, love and hope. I am loving your stories that God is creating. I have enjoyed reading them all knowing they are written with perfection in mind.

For me...It has been good to follow these has been good to remember that mine will be different from theirs. All of ours will be different. So I hope that blogs will be a means to encourage one another, but not to compare one another. I was there...but God has carried me to a place where I can be thankful for the differences in it all. IT IS ALL GOOD....IT IS ALL FROM HIS PERFECT HAND....THERE ARE NO MISTAKES.

To God be the Glory

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Check it out

So I woke up this morning and had to check on my sweet friend Aimee. If you haven't seen the videos of her "Gotcha" Day...Check them out here...with kleenex of course. This made my day!

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Going to get Lily

So most of you who have read my posts for any length of time know my friend Aimee...She is my "online" friend that I met while pregnant with Larson. Her Sophie Ann had the same condition and God choose their birthday to be the same although they were due 5 weeks apart. Go here if you don't remember. She came to visit in March and I went to visit her in August. When we met I don't think we knew what it would it has become a wonderful friendship.

Well anyway....Aimee is going to get their 4th child Lily in China. If you would like to follow their travels and pray for them while on their journey, here is the link....

I can not begin to tell you the excitement I have for this wonderful family. So while they continue to grieve the loss of their sweet Sophie who is dancing in Heaven...they will be picking up her sister. Oh I just love this family. Ok enough said...enough ramblings...just check them out! You'll be blessed.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Living In A Fog

These last few days have been difficult for me to pinpoint exactly what is going on in my head. I really have felt like I am in a continuous fog. I felt this way at the beginning of last year after we buried Larson. Just trying to figure out what was going on. It has been a year now and it doesn't seem to be going away. I new I would not be the same, but I definitely thought some things would go back to how I was. I thought by now I would have clearer thoughts, I wouldn't be so overwhelmed and anxious. What I am realizing is my normal will never be what it was before. Although I feel like I am really fighting this. Back at the beginning of this blog I did a post on feeling like a puzzle...

I feel as though I have found many of the pieces to my puzzle although they just don't make sense as to where they go in the picture that still seems so fuzzy I believe I have also found some new pieces. I guess that I still have some of the old Corie. I look the same and many parts feel the same, but so much has changed.

I honestly feel like part of my brain has been fried/damaged/been taken out! Whatever you want to say. I know I was not in an accident of any kind, but I do feel like I have had trauma to my brain. I hope this post can sound even half-way clear, because quite frankly...I don't feel like I have any clear thoughts at all. I really don't even know how to explain what I am feeling.

Sometime things feel comfortable...other times they don't. Sometimes all I want is to be at home...other times I want to avoid home at all cost because its not the home I thought it would be. Don't get me wrong. I do have an amazing husband and 4 beautiful children. But things remind me of what was or could have been. I realize that it will never be that way, but my mind wonders. I've never felt so much intense spiritual battle. God has kept me and continues to...but I am still living in the flesh and tempted by so much.

Before we began this journey, I was an out-going person. I loved people...still do!...but I could handle crowds, somewhat to the point of controlled chaos. I loved having people to my house often, play dates, birthday parties, you name it! I would plan it and enjoy planning it. I could do this while also keeping up with my daily task as wife and mother of 4 children in which I had in 5 years. Yes this sounds so great...right? I really probably looked like I had it all together. Well I didn't and now it is even worse. Just know its more obvious. I think and look more like a scatterbrain. I have even been driving and forgotten where I was going. Yes I know..freaky!

Before all of this...I loved to cook. Now just going to the grocery store can be overwhelming. Too many choices and what if what I bought no longer sounds good when I get home? What if I forget an ingredient...which I usually do with even when I have a list? I feel like I go to the grocery store everyday.

Now..I'd rather not be in big groups. Having a bazillion children running around and tearing apart my house makes me crazy because all I think about is how much work it will be to get my house back in order. I never enjoyed cleaning and now it is just plain and simply overwhelming to me. I don't know where to start cleaning and therefore it seems like a never-ending task.

NOW...I like to be around people I am comfortable with and who are comfortable around me. The ones who don't feel like they have to fix me, analyze me and give me the perfect advice. The ones who don't freak out that I still cry at times and STILL want to talk about my son. I like the freedom to be around people who don't expect me to be the old Corie, but are embracing the new one. The ones who ask about how I am doing...AND MEAN IT and don't try to "cheer" me up.

And my kids....with 3 in school, there is so much homework that I don't even know where to begin. I used to be a 2nd grade teacher. I could handle this. I could get 24children in order, talk to parents and run my house and now I can't figure out homework for 3? Where has my mind gone? I can't get my 1st graders homework in on time. There is such a list of things to do and although it may be 4 feels like 30.

I find that instead of doing my laundry or cleaning or office work or whatever...I avoid it because I just get overwhelmed by it.

I'm sharing this to help my Friends and family understand me. I am sure you may be thinking...its been a year, what is up with her? Well I really am trying. Trying to return emails and phone call and texts. Trying to set up time with people, cook dinner and do my kids homework. And well...I fail everyday at this. It just seems like a lot of work.

As I write this I want to let you know it may sound like Im despaired, maybe depressed, maybe defeated...but I'm not. I am just being real. I am fightening this like you wouldn't believe. Not fightening alone thats for sure! Christ is right there is front of me. What an amazing Sheperd He is. This is battle and well...I'm staying in the battle. I am not giving up. I won't give up! This battle is what continually takes me to the Eternity. A great place to be forsure. The best place to be and therefore a reason to keep fighting this great battle.

For those readers who have gone through the loss of a child...I would love to hear if you struggled with this at all. If you did...did your brain come back? How did you function? I really am missing the go-getter Corie, but have also learned to embrace the God who is molding me into what He so desires. If you have no advice...I would seriously LOVE your prayers. I mean it.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Larsons one year celebration pictures.

The day went will and we certeinly felt the prayers from all of you. I was and am so blessed by all your emails, phone calls, messages, texts and love. We received beautiful flowers, an amazing album filled with letters, a necklace with my kids names and have felt so much love and support. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you! We have been blessed to have so many walk this year with us and we love you more then you may ever know. Its a hard road, but a good road and you have helped carry the load by just praying for us and meeting us where we are at. You have listened well and cared so much. And her is how we spent our day.....

Larsons 1st year celebration video from Corie O'Brien on Vimeo.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Pray for....

I recently got a blog response from a mommy, Paige, who is prenant with twins. I am attaching her blog...she gave me please go and send her a note of encouragement. It is always such a blessing to know others are praying for you.

I will also being posting pictures soon of our one year anniversary celebration. God was so good in lifting us up throughout the day and blessing us with a day that was hard to plan!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Happy 1st Birthday

Larsons 1st Birthday Celebration Video from Corie O'Brien on Vimeo.
be sure to turn off the music below. Sit back and enjoy his wonderful life! Thanks for sharing our journey with us.

Dear Larson,
It’s hard to believe that it has already been almost a year that we have had to say hello and good-bye. It just will never be enough time. I loved you before I knew you…before you twisted and turned in my womb. I loved you when they said you were “not compatible” with life. I knew you were a gift from God given specifically for our family.

When you arrived your sisters and brothers were so excited to hold you. Emma was devastated when we called to say you had died. She told me later that she thought you would live for “at least a year!” She so hoped for that. She really wanted to bring you home and take care of you no matter what you were like.

It has been hard planning your first birthday. I’ve never had to plan a birthday without my little one here. So we are doing the best we can to make it a special day even though you won’t be there. You little friend Brees will certainly miss you. We thought we would see you grow up together. But just like your sister and brothers, her mommy and daddy are telling her all about you. She would have definitely been at your party if you were here.

Anyway, your sister is so excited to get her ears pierced…Grammie says it your gift to her seeing as she was not suppose to get them done until she was 16. We now know though that we don’t know how long we have. You really have shown us the fragility of life. So for your sister Emma…she gets a gift she has always desired and one that will remind her often of the gift we were given in you.

Your brothers love to pull out the clothes you wore and remember just how tiny you were. We often wonder what you will be like when we see you again. And trust me…mommy is teaching your sister and brothers ALL about Jesus. We know you are with Him right now and learning all about Him. I continue to tell them to trust in Jesus so they will see you too and learn with you.

I can’t begin to tell you what this year has been like. I am sure you don’t want me to have so many tears…but I just can’t keep them in much. Then come less frequent…but I don’t mind them when they come. Some people have a hard time knowing what to say. I just wish they would say your name. Like any mommy…I am proud of you. Maybe not of your first smile, your first steps or your first words, but I am still proud of who you are to your family.

You are one brave little boy for us. With many babies with your condition they probably would not have made it all. With a lung and/or heart condition and nothing pass your brain stem…well you defeated many odds. You cried when you came out and you screamed life to the doctors who thought we should deliver early to keep you from suffering. Well you should no signs of suffering…for that was a big concern. You seized often in the womb and stopped suffering, but you definitely didn’t show it while you were here.

I have never felt such love in that room we had you in. From doctors and family and friends. The love was intense because we knew we had limited time. But you were so patient and you let everyone hold you. What a fighter you were…born alive…lived passed delivery (which was a miracle because your heart rate was in the 30’s) and God gave us the gift of 23 hours. I know people try to make us feel better and tell us at least we had 23 hours, but that is not what we wanted. We desired you for a long time and when we found out we were pregnant we didn’t ask for 23 hours.

This year has really tested me little buddy. In my patience, my love, my faith, my desires, my hopes and my dreams. You see this was not our plan. I really thought I trust the Lord that He plans our ways. It sure is easy to say it when everything is going the way you want it. Easy to say its Gods will because you like His will. But when things are not as you wanted, you feel desperate, depressed and down. Well then that’s when the rubber meets the road. I had to wonder if God is a good God? Did He really want this to happen? Does He make mistakes?

This year has been the hardest and the best all at the same time. I have met some amazing new know their children in Heaven. I couldn't imagine not having them during this time. What a gift God gave me in two who began this road 15 months before me and one who is walking it at the same time. Its helped me to open my eyes to Gods blessing...whether big or small. On that note, we have also had friends we have known a long time who are still are friends. Seems strange I'm sure. You think everyone just embraces you however, but really its amazing that they have been so patient. This really has changed us sweet boy...but I'm ok with that. I'm learning to live with the new me and not try to go back to who I was.

Your life was a perfect gift to test me in areas I felt so strong in. I really did say "my children are not my own". I thought I gave all of you to the Lord. Sure is easy in word…in deed is a whole other story.

Even today I wonder what is ahead of me. Will I see restoration the same way that others have? My biggest prayer has been that Jesus would be enough for me. That I don’t need, nor deserve anything else, and that I can still say God is good. I find myself hoping for a healing like none other, but I also know my healing will look different from others. Maybe by nothing more…no gifts/blessing from God. Maybe my healing will simply be in that my gifts and blessing are defined by God and not by me.

I can tell you this son,if the Lord desires to give you and your siblings another sibling, in whatever means, it will NEVER be a replacement or a means of healing. You are your own little man...your own life to be honored. For God is so clear that He makes each and everyone of us perfect in His eyes. Psalm 139 is very clear. You are perfect. As we celebrate your birthday on Right to Life day each year, we will always remember that you were perfect and you had a right to life. You made your mark loud and clear. You were life and now you get to enjoy eternal life with your Father in Heaven. There will never be another like you!

That all being said. Larson… I can say that I DO with all my heart still believe in the same good God I did before. The same God that created me is the same God who made you. He DID NOT make a mistake. I know He loves you and I know He loves me.

He gives and He takes away and doesn’t always give another something tangible back. I know the one thing He will not take is His Son. The promise of eternal joy in Christ will never be taken no matter what I feel like day to day. I will step out into each day praying for trust in Christ, not in myself, and to be willing and able to following Him until I am reunited with you and I hear the words…”well done good and faithful servant”

So it is with a very heavy heart that we celebrate a birthday of a little boy. Its not the perfect birthday I planned for your sister and brothers…but it will be your perfect celebration. Of a life well lived but cut to far short…for me anyway! We don’t worry about you…you are having the best birthday ever. I’m even a little jealous! I love you little buddy! Have a great birthday with Jesus!