I am a SAHM with 5 children. My 5th child,Larson, lived for an amazing but short 23 hours. He is now safe in the arms of Jesus enjoying his eternal home. I also have an amazing husband who I have been married to for 10 years!! Praise the Lord.
Please be gentle with me for I am grieving. The sea I swim in is a lonely oneand the shore seems miles away. Waves of despair numb my soulas I struggle through each day. My heart is heavy with sorrow. I want to shout and screamand repeatedly ask 'why?' At times, my grief overwhelms me and I weep bitterly,so great is my loss. Please don’t turn away or tell me to move on with my life. I must embrace my pain before I can begin to heal. Companion me through tears and sit with me in loving silence. Honor where I am in my journey,not where you think I should be. Listen patiently to my story,I may need to tell it over and over again. It’s how I begin to grasp the enormity of my loss. Nurture me through the weeks and months ahead. Forgive me when I seem distant and inconsolable. A small flame still burns within my heart,and shared memories may trigger both laughter and tears. I need your support and understanding.There is no right or wrong way to grieve. I must find my own path. Please, will you walk beside me?
Oh Little Larson
Little Larson Oh Little Larson You died a long time ago. Oh how we miss you. You were cute and little. But you struggled deeply. You tried to fight,But it was to hard. And now you are with the Holy One. In Heaven playing with your mates who suffered too. You are perfect now. Oh how we all long to live with you there. Oh little Larson we miss you.
Go ahead and mention my child, The one that died, you know. Don't worry about hurting me further. The depth of my pain doesn't show. Don't worry about making me cry. I'm already crying inside. Help me to heal by releasing the tears that I try to hide. I'm hurt when you just keep silent, Pretending he didn't exist. I'd rather you mention my child, Knowing that he has been missed. You asked me how I was doing. I say "pretty good" or "fine". But healing is something ongoing I feel it will take a lifetime. ~ Elizabeth Dent ~
It’s hard to believe how long it’s been since I have written on this blog. It’s even harder to believe that it has been 4 years since we said hello and good-bye to our son. Life is different. Life is good. Life is sobering. Life is real. Life is amazing with a faithful God.
I have spent some time this week reflecting on the past 4 years. It’s amazing where we are at right now. It really is. I know that when I was pregnant and reading blogs, I couldn’t imagine what 4 years would look like. I couldn’t imagine anything going forward because quite frankly at that time, life was standing still!! Would I ever feel joy again? How?
I realize now that joy is different for me. It is not joy in the things I had before. It is a scared joy in the things above.
Four years ago as we anticipated and prepared for Larson’s birth, I knew that the inevitable would happen—DEATH. I had already had 4 children. I knew what it was like to add to my family. It was easy. Sure there was a season of craziness. A period of transition as we got used to more work. I didn’t know how to have a child die. This was not normal. You get pregnant and anticipated the arrival of a spectacular event. You don’t get pregnant to plan a funeral, but that’s what we did. We had been planning a funeral for 17 weeks.
We made a decision when we received Larson’s diagnosis to watch his life unfold according to what God had desired. He arrived with an incredible smile and a miraculous cry! That cry was like no other. He had fluid in his lungs! It was a gift for sure! God gave us 23 amazingly sacred and beautiful hours of life. It’s not what I wanted. It’s not what we had hoped for. We wanted more. We wanted years!
The first couple of years where the hardest for me. Yes! 2 years was rough. Not what I expected. At times unbearable. I wrestled with God. He listened. I asked God questions. He answered. Not always how I had hoped or prayed for but he did answer. I went through dark times. God was there. A year after Larson died, I had incredible back and leg pain. I wondered why this? Eventually I had back surgery and then spent time recovering from surgery. The path I continued down was nothing I had imagined. I wanted my son. I wanted more children. That was not a part of our families story, but God has been faithful. Yes, He is Good!!
I have come to see the beauty of God’s faithfulness. It's not always been easy but it is being created by the Creator Himself. There has been darkness and depression. There has been laughter and tears. There has been pain and suffering. There has been smiles and anger. There is the good, the bad and ugly. There still is! But I am no longer stuck in the darkness. There truly is beauty from ashes. Not the beauty that the world looks for. My son is still gone. There will always be incompleteness in our family. But beauty isn’t there. Beauty is in hope. Beauty is in mercy. Beauty is joy in the LORD. Beauty is in a unchanging God. Beauty is in Jesus.
I still think of Larson daily. I smile as I consider his little body and every detail about it. I like that I can still imagine all of it. I don’t want to forget anything about him. When I think of Larson, it is no longer painful. It is not filled with the gut-wrenching grief and sadness. I don’t fill like I’m in the slough of despond and will not make it out. I am no longer in a pit. I am so very grateful for what God has given to me. Yes! Grateful for each one of my children and my husband and everything that is wrapped up in it. It’s not always easy, but the dance between joy and grief is beautiful. It’s beautiful because God is here! I don’t hope for perfection. I am satisfied with imperfect.
Last week, I was caught off guard by my attitude. After sailing through the seasons and feeling quite settled, suddenly I felt a stir in my heart. A darkness. I was anticipating Larson’s birthday. I’m not going to lie. His birthday is hard. The day to day of life is now normal, but there is nothing normal about celebrating a birthday without the birthday boy. How do you celebrate? We have done something with our kids each year and I am so grateful we have. We take the time to pause. To celebrate life. To celebrate another day of life. To thank God for getting us through the good and bad. We celebrate the incredible gift in a son, brother, nephew and grandson who impacted many! We celebrate Jesus who has allowed us the hope to see our son again.
After trying to fight my emotions, I decided to give in. To which his video and let the tears fall. He is worth the tears and heartache as much as he is worth the laughter and joy. Because in this place of grief (even 4 years out!) is also an amazing God. A God who was with us at Larson’s diagnosis, during the 17 weeks that we carried him, in the delivery room as we greeted him, in the hospital room as we enjoyed our time and God was there when we had to say good-bye and let Larson go. Yes, 4 days later I am still in this dance. And I am still dancing!!! Sometimes it’s graceful and smooth and other times I fall. But my partner is amazing. I don’t stay down for long because I have practiced this dance for a while now. It’s not uncomfortable anymore when I am clumsy, and I am ok with falling, because the fall is as beautiful as when I get up. Somehow in the fall the worship is sweeter and my gratitude deeper.
Thank you to all the many friends who continue to think about Larson. It always warms a parent’s heart to hear about their children and Larson is no different. We have some incredible friends who have walked by our side all this time and we have made many more. Until next time…
This blog was created in order to communicate with our family and friends about our journey of grief with our son Larson. Larson was diagnosed on October 2nd, 2007 with HPE alobar. He was born on January 22nd, 2008 and lived for a wonderful 23 hours. I created this blogt to make communicating easier and more efficent following Larsons death. It journals my emotions, hopes, fears and everything in between. Grief is difficult...unpredictable...exhausting and confusing. If you are in a similar situation feel free to email me. I know that the journey can be a bit easier when traveled with a friend who has gone through it also. May Larsons story declare the Lords faithfulness during lifes most trying and darkest times.