Friday, December 16, 2011

My Precious Daughter

My dear Annaliah,
Today is your day.  The day you were predicted to be born.  The day, five years ago, when we expected your arrival.  I had picked out music for you to hear after you were born.  I had started your baby book, with a letter from me, and from your daddy, and from your grandparents.  I had felt you moving, felt the thrill of life that was separate and yet entirely dependent on me.

And then, you went to heaven.  You didn't wait until December 17th.  You met your Jesus months before that.  I know that you are safe, that you are warm and happy and not alone.  It isn't for you that I mourn... it is for the relationship I so desperately wish I had with you.

It is for sticky fingers and maple syrup kisses and sandy hugs.  If you had been granted an earthly life, you'd be around five years old now.  Do you know that at this age, I could start teaching you martial arts?  You'd still be too young for class, but on our own, I could show you things.  You could start learning the lessons that could shape your entire life.

If you were here, you would never lack for hugs and kisses.  Not from me, and certainly not from your daddy.  He would have delighted in you the way that only fathers can, and you would have grown up knowing that you were truly cherished.  If you wanted to marry, you'd have met a good young man, because you would already know what love and respect and honor looked like.

Sweet Anna, on your day this year, I am grieving more than in years past.  I used to think that maybe some day, you'd have a little brother or sister that could live with me here.  Someone who could absorb the love that is burning inside me, breaking my heart.  But I know now, that is not to be.  My body just isn't capable of doing that.  I know you've got your brothers and sisters there in heaven, though.  For that, I'm thankful.  I am glad there is such a place, for you and for them.  I am glad there is a Savior who loves you.

This year, you got to meet one of the Better Men.  You see, Anna, there are regular men.  And then there are good men.  And then there are Better Men.  Jim is a lot like your great-grandma Eileen.  Passionate for his God, gentle and generous in spirit, a person of integrity... and someone who had an unusual love for children.  Saying goodbye to Jim has been a little easier, because even though it hurts me to live here without him, I know that now, you get to be with him.  He isn't family biologically, not here on earth.  But your old enough now to start understanding that sometimes, families aren't made of biology... they are made of faith.  They are made of trust and love and loyalty.  I like to think that you know your family there... and that you know Jim and Roy, and have played with Natalie, and with Judith's babies.  I wonder if you've met my brother?

This year, I am sad as I think of all that I have lost.  All that I have missed.  But that sadness, dear child, is not all consuming.  There is also joy.  How well do you know Billy?  Has he told you how his cousin and her parents pulled me back from the destructive path I was on, and into their own family despite their horrible grief?  Do you and him share a bond - children whose mothers question their own responsibility for the end of your time on earth?  I am joyful, Anna, that you know this young man who changed my life.  Because I do not know him.

I wonder if you've met Grandpa Jean yet.  I remember sitting on his lap, as he gently traced my face with his fingers.  His eyes were unseeing, and yet he said I was truly beautiful.  I asked how he could know, and he said he could see me in his heart.  Anna, that's what I do.  I see you in my heart, and I know you are beautiful.

I'm not coming Home yet, my child.  I thought I was, several weeks ago - and the doctors did too.  But God spared my life, and I am still here on earth.  I have so many things to finish, so much work to do, so many people to love.  I long for heaven, though.  I long to hold you, to see you, to hear your voice.  I long to bow before our King beside you.  You may be physically unreachable, but you are always close to me.  And like Grandpa Jean... I know you are beautiful, because I can see you in my heart.

And I know heaven... heaven is for real.  I'll be there when it's time.  Maybe you can come with Great Gramma and meet me at the Eastern Gate.  When I get there, after Jesus, you are the first person I want to see.

I love you for always.


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1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"It is for sticky fingers and maple syrup kisses and sandy hugs."

That line made me cry because although I know your baby girl is surrounded with the greatest love there is, I know she would have grown to realize just how special a mother's love is. A mother's love is irreplaceable and so very special.

I am glad that GOD spared you for a few more years so that you can continue to bless this world with your kindness. An eternity is a limitless amount of time, and the short wait you have here before you can reunite with your baby girl will be worth the eternity you will have with her.

I am sure she is with your other family members and they have taught her all about how wonderful of a mother you were to her during her short life and how wonderful of a mother you would have spent your life trying to be.

Many hugs to you. (((hug)))