Monday, October 31, 2011


Looking back on the past few weeks, I think I was standing in the sun. If grief is a forest then I had found a patch of sunlight. For what ever reason, I decided to start walking again. It's dark again. Really dark.

While stumbling around in the pitch of black, I keep encountering different painful, emotional, poignant moments. Moments like yesterday. We went and did a little upkeep on Aidan's spot. Nothing major just some weedeating and reorganizing. As we were standing there as we do every Sunday, it hit me. We were standing there while others were putting their own babies in costumes getting ready to show them off. Others were basking in their future halloweens of dressing the growing babies. So, I came unglued. I sobbed it out on Evan and then Mom. And then I got it together enough to be there to watch my knight, skunk, football player and ladybug be adored.

I hadn't given much thought to Halloween before now. I know now that even the smallest of holidays are going to have this bittersweet twinge. I'm always going to wonder what we would have done with him, the pictures we would have taken, the love I would show him. And while I am beginning to hope for a day where I do get to have my own trick or treater, I know that I will always reserve a special moment for him. Some time to spend with him. Something to make sure he is always remembered.

So, I have survived my first holiday without Aidan. We didn't do anything. I'm afraid to say we didn't even turn on our porch light. But, I made it. Now, I have to get through some more darkness.

I've counted my first contractions that weren't my own, Thursday is the first shower that won't get to be and Friday is two months. If I can find the courage to face these moments then on Sunday I get to spend a day that is very much about Aidan. It's All Saints Day and he is being celebrated. I will have to summon the courage to tell our story. To somehow find the words to explain the impact he's had. I'm open to any ideas or suggestions. It seems I'm having a hard time finding the words for this one.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The Best Day

There are a lot of words, thoughts and feelings on my heart tonight. Things that I want people to know. Things I want Aidan to know. So I come here. My place to say them all without having to see the reactions. The place where anyone or noone can listen.

There are so many things. I keep typing them and then erasing them. Nothing seems to encompass what I want to say.

What I want is to go back. To go back to what I'm sure most people would call the worst day of my life. I would relive that day everyday if I could. Because it would mean that I would get to hold him again. I would get to do so many things I didn't get to do. And things I did do, that I want so badly to do again. The only way I get a part of that back is by telling our story. It only seems fair to share that story here.

Is it coincidence that I went into labor on Labor Day Weekend? The irony in that doesn't bypass me. Labor Day weekend was perfect. I spent so much time with people I love. I watched one of the most deserving people I know get her happy ending. My Vos married her Martin. It was perfect and I am so thankful that they allowed me to be a part of it. I am also thankful that God let me have that time. You see, I don't believe God took Aidan. I believe that life happened and in life bad things happen. But, I do believe that in these moments God is present. God was present in every single second for me. He couldn't stop what was going to happen, but he could give me shining perfect moments.

Once we got back to the hotel, I attempted sleep. It would not come. So, I sat listening to music and reading. I was so uncomfortable and eventually that turned to pain. I finally admitted to myself that something was wrong. So, after waking Evan and Dad we went to the hospital. On the way I prayed, but not what you would expect. I prayed for peace and understanding. I prayed that God would show me his grace. And he answered those prayers big time.

When the doctor told me I was dilated to a six my world stopped. I went from convincing everyone that we were going to be fine to realizing I needed to cherish whatever time I had left. I needed to soak up as much of Aidan as I could. So through the hours of back labor, being inverted, the back and forth with the possiblity of being med flighted, the friends and family who came by, the prayers going up, I stayed calm. I stayed in the moment. I held onto my sanity.

While I was holding on for dear life, others were experiencing Aidan for the first time. We were four hours away from home and yet, there was always someone there. Someone to hold the monitor when he got squirmy, someone to hold my hand through the intense contractions, someone fighting for us. Apparently he showed off for quite a few people during this time. Kicking and making sure we knew he was a fighter. He wouldn't give up.

After more than twelve hours of being inverted and starting to have hope the unthinkable happened. My water broke. For one brief second I let go and uttered the words no one should have to say, "I don't want to bury my baby." I remember looking up and seeing my mom. And then I realized I would soon be a mom and I had to keep it together. I had to be strong for him. So I did. I labored. I pushed. And finally after the longest day of my life I gave birth to a breech little boy. A perfect little boy. Whose lungs just weren't ready for the world yet. And God was there. He was there because he knew that I couldn't survive the hope of the NICU only to lose him anyways. And so he gave me peace. He let Aidan come to him in that final push. I literally handed my son to God as he entered the world.

When they brought Aidan back to me, it became the best day. I got to hold him. I got to kiss him. I got to memorize him and tell him how much I love him. I got to be a mom. The hours we spent ooohing and ahhing. The time we spent as a family will always be some of my favorite because that's all I have. That's all I get. I refuse to diminish that time by calling it the worst day of my life.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wish List

There are days when the emotions are just too big. The words just won't come. It is on these days that I just read. I read other blogs, I google research, I stare at the facebook newsfeed just hoping something will make my brain work.

I found this tonight and was just dumbfounded. It is exactly what I have been thinking, feeling, trying to stuff down.

BEREAVED PARENTS WISH LIST (The Compassionate Friends)

1. I wish my child hadn’t died. I wish I had him back.

2. I wish you wouldn’t be afraid to speak my child’s name. My child lived and was very important to me. I need to hear that he was important to you also.

3. If I cry and get emotional when you talk about my child I wish you knew that it isn’t because you have hurt me. My child’s death is the cause of my tears. You have talked about my child, and you have allowed me to share my grief. I thank you for both.

4. I wish you wouldn’t "kill" my child again by removing his pictures, artwork, or other remembrances from your home.

5. Being a bereaved parent is not contagious, so I wish you wouldn’t shy away from me. I need you now more than ever.

6. I need diversions, so I do want to hear about you; but, I also want you to hear about me. I might be sad and I might cry, but I wish you would let me talk about my child, my favorite topic of the day.

7. I know that you think of and pray for me often. I also know that my child’s death pains you, too. I wish you would let me know those things through a phone call, a card or note, or a real big hug.

8. I wish you wouldn’t expect my grief to be over in six months. These first months are traumatic for me, but I wish you could understand that my grief will never be over. I will suffer the death of my child until the day I die.

9. I am working very hard in my recovery, but I wish you could understand that I will never fully recover. I will always miss my child, and I will always grieve that he is dead.

10. I wish you wouldn’t expect me "not to think about it" or to "be happy." Neither will happen for a very long time, so don’t frustrate yourself.

11. I don’t want to have a "pity party," but I do wish you would
let me grieve. I must hurt before I can heal.

12. I wish you understood how my life has shattered. I know it is miserable for you to be around me when I’m feeling miserable. Please be as patient with me as I am with you.

13. When I say "I’m doing okay," I wish you could understand that I don’t "feel" okay and that I struggle daily.

14. I wish you knew that all of the grief reactions I’m having are very normal. Depression, anger, hopelessness and overwhelming sadness are all to be expected. So please excuse me when I’m quiet and withdrawn or irritable and cranky.

15. Your advice to "take one day at a time" is excellent advice. However, a day is too much and too fast for me right now. I wish you could understand that I’m doing good to handle an hour at a time.

16. Please excuse me if I seem rude, certainly not my intent. Sometimes the world around me goes too fast and I need to get off. When I walk away, I wish you would let me find a quiet place to spend time alone.

17. I wish you understood that grief changes people. When my child died, a big part of me died with him. I am not the same person I was before my child died, and I will never be that person again.

18. I wish very much that you could understand — understand my loss and my grief, my silence and my tears, my void and my pain. BUT I pray daily that you will never understand.

It's the loneliest place in the world. Grieving the loss of your child. There is no doubt.

One of my biggest fears, however, is that one of my sisters. One of my friends. One of you, my loves, will join me. It's this new paralyzing fear. I don't ever want anyone else to have to stand at their child's grave every Sunday remembering the birth and subsequent death of their child.

I know I am loved. I know Aidan is loved. I love you all for it. And yet, I pray everyday that none of you EVER have to truly understand.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Life Line

28 weeks. That's how far along I am supposed to be today. And to be honest, today has been rough. Really rough. All day I have questioned. How big would you be? How big would I be? Would you be already be here, but in the NICU had we known? Would I be on bed rest trying to give you more time?

Seven weeks tomorrow. Seven weeks. How is that even possible? It has been the longest seven weeks of my life. Yet, at the same time I feel like its flying by and you are getting more and more in the past for everyone else.

I feel like there is this hole. This grand canyon of a gaping hole that didn't exist until seven weeks ago. And as each week goes by more and more people are moving to the other side of this hole. What happens when it is just me on this side?

The hole is the part of my heart you stole sweet boy. Now, its filled with daily tears, my dreams for you, and my fears of what is to come. I can't walk around the hole. I can't build a bridge. Each day I am trying to find my way through it. Each day I feel like I'm going to drown. And then a life line appears.

By the grace of God alone, I am able to get back up in the morning and try all over again. No matter what the night brings, no matter how bad of a day, no matter how awful the dreams, the sun rises. And I think of you. And I smile. That may very well be the only smile of the day, but when I see that sun rising I think of you. And I smile.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

A vision

I keep waiting for that moment of clarity. A moment that I know won't come until I am holding Aidan in my arms again, but the naive side of me keeps waiting. I told a friend tonight I am having a hard time letting go and letting God.

I think I thought "his vision" would come with a big sign attached and full detailed directions on how to map out the plan. Each day I am learning that it comes in a gentle breeze, the glow of the setting sun or even just in the silence. Silence. Some mistake it for him not listening. I'm beginning to think we are the ones who don't listen.

God had a purpose for Aidan long before I even knew there would be an Aidan. He knew I would be tested. He knew I would doubt. He knew I would need to hear the story of yet another Thomas. The infamous doubter. So, that in moments like this week I would have something to cling to. The knowledge that it is ok to doubt and question. Because he is there and he is listening. He will answer me. I just have to be willing to see or hear it. Especially when it's not the answer I necessarily want.

I like to believe God chose the name Thomas for our son because through this journey, we will learn about believing God without seeing. (John 20:24-29) We are learning that being faithful doesn’t mean not feeling doubt or fear. Faith is believing God’s promises, clinging to His truth anyway, when you’re most afraid and filled with doubt and questions…still believing when the answer is not what you want to hear or when there seems to be no answer at all.

It is in these moments that we find the truth in his grace. The power of his glory. The strength of his love that carries us through. And in which allows us to share our story and possibly change someone elses. I found out tonight that I am going to have a major opportunity to share our story more than I could have ever imagined. God's vision is in motion.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

A letter to Aidan

It has taken me all night to be able to figure out how to describe today. I went back to work today. The only way I know to describe it, is to tell Aidan so here goes.


Sweet boy. I went back to work today. I was anxious about today. Secretly, I was hoping it would be what everyone had been me telling it would be. A distraction. The next step on our journey. Good for me.

I don't know if any of those things apply to today, but I do know one thing. You were there. Every single second of the day, you were there. It was in this building that I knew something was off about my body and decided to go the ER that Thursday afternoon. That's the day I found out you existed! The parking lot was where I first said I'm going to be a mom! In my chair was the first time I ever felt you kicking and playing. The little tickles were such a magical day. I just sat there and cried. And it was as I walked out of this building on yet another Thursday afternoon that someone looked at me and said "Wow, your little boy is really growing! He'll be here before we know it!" Little did we know that next Sunday would be your birthday.

So you see little one. There is so much of you wrapped up in "work." So pulling back into that parking lot, walking into that building, sitting in my chair and looking at so many people that literally watched you grow was more than I could ever explain.

I was your connection to the world. In the short time we had together we did so much! We got Vossie married, we took trips with friends, daddy and even just the two of us one weekend. I told you everything. I don't know why, but I just felt compelled to tell you so much. I told you stories from my childhood, I told you funny stories about the family you were being blessed with, I wanted you to know everyone immediately when you got here. I told you my secrets, my fears, my dreams. I told you the love story of your dad and I. I played you all of my favorite songs and even watched Gone with the Wind with you. All things that I thought I would get to do with you again. I am so thankful I did these things in the short time we did. We fit a lifetime of memories in such a short time.

I was so worried that you would want to spend all of your time with your dad. Hunting, fishing, playing soccer. All the things boys love. I had no idea how right I was. I just misunderstood which father you would be with.

You are so lucky. You never knew anything, but love. You'll never know anything other than the joy of heaven. You will never know the evils of this world. And in what will seem like seconds to you, we will be together again. That is my peace. That is my joy.

And that is why I will get up tomorrow and go back to work. I will hold tight to the memories I have of you. I will be the mom I promised you all those times I would be. Because, it doesn't matter where I am, who I am with or what I am doing, I will always be thinking of you. I will always love you.

I have been listening to the lyrics of Sidewalk Prophets song "The Words I would Say." At first I heard them as if your Aunt Staci was talking to me. Then I imagined me saying them to you. A lot of them I did say to you. And then, this afternoon after a day I could only say I survived, I heard them again. Only this time, you were talking to me. You were telling me.

You have taught me so much. You changed everything about me. God chose us as your parents for a reason. I will rejoice in that and for you until I get to run to you and sweep you up in my arms again. That night we had together I held you, sang to you, kissed you, memorized you and fell head over heels in love with you. One day I will get to do these things again. I'm not sure of most things these days but, of this one thing I am sure. And that gets me through. The image of you in Jesus' arms gets me through.

So, you keep playing. You keep entertaining everyone as I know you have such a big personality. You keep being everything you were meant to be. I'll keep following God's will and fulfilling our purpose here. I'll keep loving you without end.

With all that I am, with all that I have, I love you.


Monday, October 17, 2011


The question that has no answer. I could search everyday, all day and never find an answer that would justify my loss.

Instead, I do. I get out of bed everyday. I spread our story. I do at least one thing that makes me smile, I put one foot in front of another, I talk about Aidan with someone. Each day I spend trying to find and serve God's purpose.

And then others ask "Why?"

Because I have to. I was given the gift of being Aidan's mom. When I found out I was pregnant with Aidan everything changed. When Aidan was born everything changed again. When his nurse first handed him to me and I first laid eyes on my son I knew that everything I had been doing in my life had led to that moment. I am meant to be Aidan's mom.

Aidan's life was brief. His impact is not. He has changed a lot of things for a lot of people, forever. I don't think I can say that about my own life. And that is why.

I am now living for Aidan because he can't.

I have created a page on facebook "On Aidan's Wings."
I've created it, in hopes that our story will inspire others to share their stories. That this will be yet another gateway to awareness and openess.

Each day I take a step. This is todays. Please spread it around.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Balloon

October 15th is the national day of awareness for pregnancy and infant loss. It is the day that we are given the opportunity to speak out, show up and support one another. Our day to not only break the silence, but to shout it from the rooftops.

In one way or another the vast majority of us have been impacted by one of these angels. Most likely, more than we realize. Whether we are friends, aunts, uncles, cousins, grandparents or parents we have all crossed paths with an angel. Still, it is one of the the hardest topics to discuss. It is still considered taboo. Not today. Today there were so many balloons released, in so many different places for one purpose; to acknowledge our children that are now in God's arms.

The crystal blue sky, the gentle but persistant breeze and the sound of Jesus loves me; that was my view from Kohen's Park. We looked straight into heaven as we released our balloons. Surrounded by those who have held me up these last six weeks as well as fellow angel moms. Aidan received balloons from a glacier in Alaska, a park, a front yard and a complete stranger.

It was the kind of day that made Alaska feel like home, old friends seem like not a day has passed and another angel mom feel like family. A day of peace, love and connection.

I am already planning the next one. There are so many things I want to do. So many things I have to do for Aidan. Because I can't ask why. Instead I have to work to glorify God, spread his message of hope, grow my own faith and work towards a future where one day I get to send Aidan a balloon while looking at his little brother or sister here with me.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

A legacy

Four years ago there was a man who walked this earth. Tonight is the four year anniversary of what was his last night on earth and he spent it in the desert. Away from his family and his fiance. He spent it fighting and protecting what most American's take for granted everyday. That man is Tom Martin. His sacrifice forever changed my world.

Tonight I was honored enough to stand beside his family and serve our community to raise funds for his foundation. Four years later and he is still making a difference. All because of the strength of his amazing family.

When we found out that we were having a boy, I immediately envisioned what he would look like, how he would act and what I wished for his future. I knew the kind of man I would want to raise him to be. Evan and I agreed that the name Thomas had such a lasting legacy we wanted it to continue. Hence our boy became Aidan Thomas. He would be strong. He would be committed. He would be proud. He would make a difference. I had no idea just how quickly he would accomplish all of these things.

I now believe there is another reason we chose Thomas. It's yet another example of God's presence being all over the life and legacy of Aidan. It drew me closer to Tom's mom, Candy.

A woman who knows what it is like to bury her first born. To fight everyday to keep him present and to ensure that his legacy has a lasting impact. When we left tonight after countless hugs and only a few tears, I looked at Evan and said I hope to one day have that much strength. I heard her tell Tom's story with such pride. Only the pride a Mom could feel. I now realize there is another reason I have felt so drawn to my beloved Martin's.

I chose Thomas so that I would have a shining example of how to be a mom to an angel named Tom.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A rainy day

The rain fell finally. It's the first day I can really remember it raining since Aidan earned his wings. And as I sat here watching the rain, my tears fell in sync. I have spent so much time here lately convincing myself and everyone else that I am doing better. I think today's rain was Aidan saying its ok to cry Momma. I mean really cry. The shoulder shaking, no amount of tissue can handle, soul cleansing tears.

And then the sun came out. In all of its beauty. My child smiling down on me and saying its ok. It's ok to cry. It's ok to grieve. It's ok to miss me. Just as long as you stand back up and keep living. My angel making sure his momma keeps breathing and taking steps.

Today was a hard day. It was one of those days when each moment is more than I can bear. Thankfully, the moon has come out. I can see Aidan's star shining bright. Tomorrow is a new day. And its a day of so much for me. I get to see a family that means so much to me I gave my angel their angel's name.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Breaking the silence

As a person who has never been able to draw or paint, I found immense therapy in both tonight! A dear sweet best friend took me to a place called "Spirited Art." They provide all of the supplies and lead you through step by step. It was wonderful! In the process of mixing colors to make it my own and with each brush stroke I felt this freedom. Part of this freedom is leading me to say this.

As the mother of an angel there is something that I feel like we need to change in our society. We need to change where we fit and how we are looked at. I have found so many mothers who have lost before me, but only have come out since my loss. On the other side, I have found this huge chasm between those who have lost and those who haven't. Some have managed to bridge the gap. The bridge is made of love and words. Words about Aidan, my grief, our story. Those who chose to ignore it because they are afraid to upset me feel light years away. It's such a strange thing when all I want to talk about is Aidan. They want to talk about everything BUT Aidan. So all that is left is this huge hole.

It is because of this hole that we must break the silence. My loss, my grief, my child is real. And whether the child was miscarried in the first trimester, was alive up until the last moments before birth, was stillborn or died soon after birth it does not diminish their place in the world. They deserve to be acknowledged. They deserve to be loved as any other child. Yes, it is uncomfortable. Yes, it is scary. The only way for research to be done and awareness to grow, is to talk about it. The only way to learn, is to talk about it. The only way to one day stop it, is to talk about it.

So please, ask me. Talk to me. I might cry. You can cry with me. It is much better than the pretend face I put on to make everyone else feel better.

Maybe I should pick up a paintbrush more often...

Friday, October 7, 2011

Hide and Seek

Aidan's not lost. I know exactly where he is. There are just moments that I feel like we are playing a game of hide and seek. When the waves of grief are just too big. When the tears are too many. When the emotions are just too much. That's when he hides. Because he knows that I will come looking and when I do, I find him. At the feet of God. Smiling at me because I'm back where I belong. I'm back where I am meant to be.

It's not fair that I have to live each day without Aidan physically in my arms. Because of this, I look for him in everything. The beautiful weather, a butterfly, my blooming roses. I even look for him in the eyes of those who love him just as I do. And there he is. My beautiful perfect son.

I have heard a lot of people ask the question what is the purpose? Is there a reason? While Aidan may have never done the typical things a newborn does he did do the biggest of them. They placed him in my arms and he changed me. He made me want to be better. He made a part of my heart that I never even knew existed come alive. He made me a mom. And in doing this he fulfilled his first purpose. I believe that the rest of Aidan's purpose lies with me as well. It took him to change me. It will take the two of us to change others. Our story will not be a silent one. Our story will be told. It will be told of love, compassion, and grace. It may have started on May 26th, 2011, but it didn't end on September 4, 2011. No. We still have so much further to go. It's only just beginning sweet boy. The next step in our story has been the creation of "On Aidan's Wings" and his wristbands. We are going to change the lives of future familes. Hopefully, we will change the heartache to a happy healthy baby for someone else. That's what his wristbands stand for. As a reminder of the angel he is and the babies of the future.

Yes, there will be hard moments even days. Yes, I will still grieve and miss my son. However, he is not lost. He is merely playing a game with his mommy to remind all of us of our purpose.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

The Gap

The Gap

The gap between those who have lost children and those who have not is profoundly difficult to bridge. No one, whose children are well and intact can be expected to understand what parents who have lost children have absorbed and what they bear. Our children come to us through every blade of grass, every crack in the sidewalk, every bowl of breakfast cereal. We seek contact with their atoms, their hairbrush, their toothbrush, their clothing. We reach for what was integrally woven into the fabric of our lives, now torn and shredded.

A black hole has been blown through our souls and, indeed, it often does not allow the light to escape. It is a difficult place. For us to enter there is to be cut deeply, and torn anew, each time we go there, by the jagged edges of our loss. Yet we return, again and again, for that is where our children now reside. This will be so for years to come and it will change us profoundly. At some point in the distant future, the edges of that hole will have tempered and softened but the empty space will remain - a life sentence.

Our friends will change through this. There is no avoiding it. We grieve for our children, in part, through talking about them and our feelings for having lost them. Some go there with us, others cannot and through their denial add a further measure, however unwittingly, to an already heavy burden. Assuming that we may be feeling "better" six months later is simply "to not get it." The excruciating and isolating reality that bereaved parents feel is hermetically sealed from the nature of any other human experience. Thus it is a trap - those whose compassion and insight we most need are those for whom we abhor the experience that would allow them that sensitivity and capacity. And yet, somehow there are those, each in their own fashion, who have found a way to reach us and stay, to our comfort. They have understood, again each in their own way, that our children remain our children through our memory of them. Their memory is sustained through speaking about them and our feelings about their death. Deny this and you deny their life. Deny their life and you no longer have a place in ours.

We recognize that we have moved to an emotional place where it is often very difficult to reach us. Our attempts to be normal are painful and the day to day carries a silent, screaming anguish that accompanies us, sometimes from moment to moment. Were we to give it its own voice we fear we would become truly unreachable, and so we remain "strong" for a host of reasons even as the strength saps our energy and drains our will. Were we to act out our true feelings we would be impossible to be with. We resent having to act normal, yet we dare not do otherwise. People who understand this dynamic are our gold standard. Working our way through this over the years will change us as does every experience - and extreme experience changes one extremely. We know we will have recovered when, as we have read, it is no longer so painful to be normal. We do not know who we will be at that point or who will still be with us.

We have read that the gap is so difficult that, often, bereaved parents must attempt to reach out to friends and relatives or risk losing them. This is our attempt. For those untarnished by such events, who wish to know in some way what they, thankfully, do not know, read this. It may provide a window that is helpful for both sides of the gap.

I read this on a fellow mom's site. It says so much. And maybe just maybe it will help to bridge the gap between you and me. And Aidan.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Endless love

Grief. Everyone does it differently. And that's ok. I talk. I have to get out the emotions. The more I bottle it up the more I feel like I'm drowning. Bre found some words that perfectly match what I haven't been able to say. Sometimes because I am afraid of what others will think. Mostly because I am afraid that no one is listening. It seems the loss of a child makes people uncomfortable. I think it's because of the fear of it happening to them. There seems to be a mentality of if we don't talk about it, its not as sad, scary or huge. Well, that's not me. I'm not going to apologize for it though. Aidan is too much a part of me. And I have too much to say....

Please Be Gentle
By Jill B. Englar

Please be gentle with me for I am grieving.
The sea I swim in is a lonely one
and the shore seems miles away.
Waves of despair numb my soul
as I struggle through each day.
My heart is heavy with sorrow.
I want to shout and scream
and 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?

I may put on my brave face. On the outside I am doing everything I can to show my strength, but on the inside I am hurting beyond words. There are moments where I am lost and feel broken. That's when I turn to Isaiah 40. Beth keeps pointing me to these verses. Standing at Aidan's grave and hearing them shifted something in me. Listen and see if you can hear it.

28 Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The LORD is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.
29 He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 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.

I will always miss him. I will always tear up when I think of what we didn't get to do together. He will always be my son. I will always love him. And through that I will always have hope. I will rely on my faith. Because a mothers love is endless.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Our Journey

Aidan was born on September 4, 2011. He was born at 21 weeks and 1 day. He was born sleeping. He was born with his angel wings.

At 5:38 p.m. our world shifted. But, truly our story started September 30, 2006. The day Evan and I met. We spent five years together. We lived together, went on trips, got engaged, and got married. We watched as our loved ones became parents. And then on May 26th in the most unexpected of ways we learned it was our turn. Our family was literally growing. Once the shock wore off the excitement grew. And then it really grew when we learned our little one would be Aidan Thomas. He would be brave and make us proud. He would be the most perfect little boy. Because he was ours.

And then we had to give him back much to soon. We don't know why or for what reason yet but, God needed our Angel with him. And so our family has grown. We are now three, but we miss him. He is not lost. We know where he is. Our tears are for all of the hopes and dreams we will never get to live out here. Our tears are because we have been thrown into a new normal. Our tears are because we made the ultimate sacrifice. We live each day without our child in our arms.

We cannot be protected from the pain. No one can stop it. We must endure and just get through it. You cannot make it worse. The worst thing in the world already happened. All we can ask if for your love, prayers and faith. Faith in us, faith in God and faith that one day we will see Aidan again.

As Aidan's mom I made a decision when I realized we would be parted. I made the decision that he will never be forgotten. He will never be the tragedy that struck our family. He will forever be our little boy. Our first born. His legacy will leave its own mark. His footprints no matter how tiny are perfect and they will leave their lasting mark. On our hearts, on the hearts of so many, on the world. Because on Aidan's wings...hope flies.
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