Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Happy Birthday Daddy...

Daddy and Christians last birthday celebration

Dear Sweet Christian,
Birthdays, birthdays and more birthdays, today is your daddy’s birthday (which I am certain you have already visited him and given him a hug and one of your sweet kisses where you run your hand down our cheek or hold our chin in your hand) and of course an important piece of our family is missing from the celebration. While we were in Nova Scotia Ryan turned 5, which I still cannot believe, and Joshua turned 2. Josh’s birthday is a bit of a shock to me, as his birthday will always represent the amount of time you have been gone from us.  On August 6th I quietly think of Baby Jackie and the few short hours on earth that he spent in his daddies hands.
Daddy giving josh a few golf tips

I think about your daddy and I am in awe of all that he has endured since meeting me and I often wonder, if he knew then what he knows now, would he have chosen differently? We have had a lot of pain and sorrow and frustration – which essentially started a few weeks after our wedding when we discovered that Baby Jackie was not going to survive. And since that point we have been flailing around in a whirlwind (which I will readily admit have created most of the time) spending the majority of our days reacting to our circumstances. Wedding, death of a baby Jackie, grief, Christian born, 17 months later Evelyn born, 15 months later Ryan born and four months after that a cancer diagnosis, your cancer diagnosis. You fought for two hard years but eventually we had to let you go, only to find out we would have another baby. Sweet Joshua who saved me in so many ways. Mix in there Daddy finishing his university, moving into no less than four different houses, three different cities and a new career, well I am not holding back when I say I am glad he didn’t kick me to the curb!!!
PEI bliss.....
Among the chaos we seem to be surrounded by, there is love, a deep soul crushing love that only comes from knowing and overcoming heartache, loss, grief, disappointment, frustration and setbacks. We have learned to love fiercely and live with our eyes wide open. We have been brought to our knees and had the skin worn clear to the bones… but that is not the end of the story. In fact it is the beginning of our beautiful love story. Between daddy, God and me. Once we were confined to our knees we learned what HOPE was. HOPE when there was nothing left. HOPE when all you wanted to do was die and crawl into a deep hole and never emerge. HOPE in a life that God created especially for us. HOPE in God who loves us and is refining us into His precious creation. I am still sad, and full of grief. I spend hours arguing with God about what happened and asking Him to change His mind (still). But I also feel excited about the life God has created for us. I am excited about our amazing family and how Evelyn, Ryan and Joshua are so special and equipped with amazing gifts of love and understanding. I have learned that I can be full of Joy (a deep bubbling joy that lays below the surface of your being and affects how you perceive the world and your response to situations) and still be sad beyond compare. There will never be a day when I am not sad because there will never be a day that I will not miss you. Not until we run into each other’s arms in heaven.
Ready for my first bus ride!

Evy pretending she is snoopy

Evelyn, Ryan and Joshua fill my days with amazing smiles and laughter. But had it not been for your journey I would have looked thru their smiles and been deaf to their laughter. You taught me to love, to relish in the good times, to sit peaceful when I was lost, to breath deep in the amazing moments of life and pray I don’t forget them.  Thank you for teaching me and allowing me to learn and grow from your suffering.

September is well underway and we spend the next 30 days recognizing childhood cancer awareness month. As well as back to school, lots of new exciting beginnings and of course your birthday. 8 years old. Every now and then I allow myself to go to the place and wonder what life would look like with you around still. Three kids walking hand in hand to the school bus: Kindergarten, grade 1 and grade 2. I don’t allow myself to sit here very long… it’s a hard place to be. I still have a hard time looking at the back to school pictures, the cute outfits and new backpacks. The excitement and nervousness of a new year – it doesn’t make a lot of sense because we also have those pictures and those moments. But I know regardless of the years that come and go there will always be something missing, just like my heart, a piece that cannot be replace, refilled or reinvented. We just find a new way to live with the void. I love you monkey butt….see you on Hoth, don’t forget your winter coat.
Girls day in Cape Breton

1 comment:

  1. We are in California on vacation and visited Disneyland yesterday. We saw a little boy who was there because of "Make a Wish". I thought of your sweet boy and how he became a jedi on his visit. It made me smile and cry all at the same time. We don't know each other but I feel like I know your sweet family through your blog.