I consider myself strong. Capable of weathering all that this earth can crash upon me.
My life has been much like an ocean. Waves, ebbing and flowing.
Just as a wave will fill every nook and crack as it seeks the shore, so does this life. Echoing into every inch of us, changing us, eroding us, exposing us. Washing over us unceasingly. Life, indeed, is much like an ocean. And a rather unfair one if I do say so myself.
Blogging is a great form of escape. Smiling faces, clean homes, well mannered kiddos. Just hop on Pinterest and it is a world full of bright and shiny. It can make a grilled cheese sandwich look like the best thing on earth.
And honestly I am so grateful for the bright and shiny. For the everyday normal moments. For the smiles and fresh baked cookies. For the hope and promise and especially for the forgiveness. I am so thankful for the waves that bring refreshment and peace. For the waves that bring love and family. For the waves that bring bounty.
But what about the moments, days, years, that the waves bring pain. When all that washes ashore is loss, tears, death, poverty. What of those?
Tonight I mourn for a friend whose baby boy was taken far too soon. The aftermath of a loss like that rings so strongly that it is hard to breathe. I hate it.
Call me vulnerable, but this has hit a spot in my heart that I have been trying to heal. I am so blessed, so blessed to have my three boys. Words can't express the joy they bring and the thankfulness that I have in every breathe just for the opportunity to be their mom. I love them and they are the reason I have survived some of this life's hardest times. They are the beacons that bring me back.
But I am here to say, that the pain is still there. It still hurts. It still lingers after all these years. It may not wash over me every day or even every week like it once did. But when it does, it breaks me. Because I miss him. That sweet baby, who I am thankful for having the honor of knowing if only for a very brief time. For seeing him alive. For being given the gift of seeing his heart beating. For life. And for the inconceivable pain when his heart was still. Motionless on the grey screen. November 11, 2008 was his due date. He would be three now. And I let myself wonder what he would have looked like.
Then I look down and see EJ asleep in my lap. Knowing he wouldn't be here if Max was. I can't really explain what that feels like. An ache and a joy intertwined. An ache for the loss, and joy for the gift that is in my lap. And the one in his bunk, and the one in his crib. I have lost much, but have gained more. But it still hurts.
I hurt for all six of my babies that left my womb much too soon. And I ache for the emptiness that my friend now carries.
I don't have the answers, or the ability to attempt to justify why babies die.
But I trust. I have faith. I know He can fill the emptiness. Maybe not in the way we want as humans, but in the way that does bring sweet comfort and does bring glory. I will say it a thousand times, not only for you, but for me. His strength is sufficient. He does sustain. When life crashes, He carries.
The storms of this life will pass. They will. And when they do, the coming sunrise will be more brilliant because of them. The air crisp and the land washed clean. It is coming friends. It is coming.