I am still confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the Lord
Psalm 27: 13-14

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

10 months ago tonight

...our boys entered our world far too soon. 10 months ago tonight our lives changed. 10 months ago tonight my faith was taken to a whole other level. 10 months ago tonight I learned yet another harsh lesson in a fallen world...not every prayer has the outcome we hoped/prayed/"expected". 10 months ago tonight I felt like I had aged 20 some years in the moment of one breath. And 10 months ago I began the hardest journey yet...living hand in hand with great joy and great sorrow. It's hard to believe that it has been almost 10 months since Zac and Evan were born. Zac at 10:51pm and Evan at 10:52pm. It's hard to believe that life has carried on without Zac in our home...at least not in the way we dreamed, hoped and prayed. He will forever be a part of our lives, our home, our hearts, our memories, our past, our present and our futures. Just because he is not physically here with us does not mean he no longer saturates our family and our lives. Last night at Costco we ran in to a teacher from highschool days. We had Evan with us...and there it was "is this your first?" My blood always runs cold when I get asked that question, and between Brett and I, our answers always differ. However, I just kind of lowered my head and let Brett answer. My answer usually starts out "not technically..." That's when I wish the answer was already labelled on our foreheads before anyone even asked the question so we didn't have to figure out how we are going to answer people! Ugh. It will never get easier for me. And every time we/I are caught off guard and we answer "yes"...my heart explodes in to a million pieces. I want to scream and shout or show pictures or tell of Zac and Evan's story. And thinking about it right now brings tears to my eyes. Again. I always said that whatever the outcome I wanted Zac's life to touch people and that I wanted to honor him in being the best mommy I can be for his little brother. Yet...the journey hurts. The valleys can be so low, yet the happy moments are like standing on a mountain side looking at the most beautiful sunset ever. Yet it isn't just Zac's life I want people to be touched by. Yes...I learned a lot (and am learning still) through the heart break of losing my little boy. But I'm learning so much through the life of my precious son Evan. This little boy is every answered prayer that was spoken for on his behalf. This little boy proves to me that yes, some times miracles happen and sometimes miracles happen in hard and sad ways. Both of my sons are miracles and answers to prayer. And I will never disrespect that. This journey feels so lonely sometimes. I am grateful for friends who have remained constant and present in my life. I am grateful for the words of encouragement I am given through an amazing support system I am a part of (Hannah's Hope - what would I do without this support site and these amazing women who have walked by my side...yet we have never even met!?!). I am forever blessed by the love of my husband and his strength and his patience and friendship and laughter...and tears. I am blessed by an amazing family, and by those who speak of Zac's name and even though tears may come to my eyes...you can see the joy I get in hearing his name spoken. I am FOREVER grateful to a few precious souls who included Zac's name in our family when we were sent Christmas cards! To see his name beside ours...you know...you know who you are, and you know how much that meant to me. Thank you thank you thank you. And to a special friend who sent a little gift with Zac's name on it too! Can I ever express how much that meant to me! You undestand that Zac is still present...and you touched me forever! Thank you! Today I've really been hit by the fact that over these 10 months...life has carried on. It doesn't stop in our joy or our sorrow. It doesn't pause for us to catch our breath along the way. It doesn't apologize for moving forward. It just carries on and makes us move forward with it. We somehow learn how to keep moving and keep living and breathing. We learn lessons from our yesterdays and sometimes through those lessons we can fear our tomorrows of what they might, or might not, bring. We have a choice. Live, or stay in our circumstance. Laugh, or lay down. Smile or hide our faces. Hope...or give up (not in the death sence...just give up on hope in general. Just want to clarify that!!). When I lost our first twins, Jack and Ethan, 2 years ago this past December...I couldn't move forward. I was terrified to go out on my own for fear that people would look and see that I had failed. Terrified that someone would look me in the eye and see the emptiness I felt. Terrified that someone would speak to me and I wouldn't know what to say. Because we lost our precious little angels so early on, not many people knew about them...and that was devastating. But...life went on. So many times I found myself not able to get out of bed. I was paralyzed by my grief and our loss. Then when I returned to work I just wanted to hide from people because hearing about others pregnancies and families were like daggers to my heart. I didn't know who I was anymore. I felt like a failure. Here it had taken so many years to even get pregnant...and then before I even knew our babies were gone...they were gone. I didn't know how to define myself as a person anymore. I didn't feel strong, I didn't feel hope, I didn't feel joy...I basically didn't feel...period! My husband, and my family lovingly came by my side and never left me. They didn't disapear even though their lives carried on too. They walked by me and loved me...and helped learn to live again. And...to hope again. My relationship with God moved to a whole other level. I was desperate to learn more and learn more of women from biblical times and learn how they moved forward after despair to be the women of God they knew they could be. I wanted that. I didn't want to define myself by my desperate desire to be a mother, and then to be a mother of loss. I didn't want to define myself as a failure any longer. I needed to pick myself back up and make a choice...hope again, or give in to the lies I was listening to. Live again, or lose everything that I already had. Believe that I am a woman loved by God, or believe satan's lies that I was worth nothing. I think that is why the loss of Zac blew me to my core. And yet, looking back, I know I always said that these were God's children and whatever the outcome I would be blessed to be a mommy once more. Lets not kid ourselves...when we get the blessing we've always dreamed and prayed for we always feel more strong in our faith and find it easier to make these statements. But when I ruptured with Zac...all that strength and faith was flowing out of me along with Zac's amniotic fluid. I couldn't believe I was being asked to go through such a test yet again. I couldn't believe that I was facing the very thing I was proclaiming "whatever the outcome, these are God's children and their lives are in His hands". And now here I am again...lay down and give up...or pick up and rejoice. I have a choice. CHOICE. Yet...why didn't I get a choice whether or not Zac's membranes would rupture? Why didn't I get a choice as to whether Zac would experience his brain bleed? I can't allow myself to go to these places, because I will never have the answers. I can't ask these questions, because there will never be answers. I CAN live each day feeling Zac's breath inside my heart. I CAN live each day knowing my son lives the ultimate life. I CAN live each day knowing that I am a child of God, and He of all people know what it's like to watch His son die. I CAN live each day knowing that I AM blessed, and I AM honored to be called mommy to all four of my children. And I WILL live each day honoring the blessing and gift that we have been given...EVAN! I WILL be thankful for answered prayers in his life. I WILL be thankful for miracles in this precious little life. I WILL live in awe and wonder as I watch this sweet little boy figuring out life around him. And I WILL teach him about his brother, and about God, and about life not always going the way we think it should. Evan has also had to learn a hard lesson about how fragile life can be...he has had to learn by the loss of his twin brother. Oh my, there will continue to be tearful days ahead. Especially as we begin to face the one year markers and the pain of figuring out celebrations without both our boys together here on earth. For example...their birthday. And then Zac's heaven birth date. I want to honor these in special ways. I want Zac to be honored and remember too. I don't want to pretend we are celebrating only Evan. I can't. Even though this will be a special day for Evan and for us...it is still a part of Zac's life too. As is his passing date. I will not accept Zac not being mentioned or honored too. I am so blessed to be Evan's mommy. There are so many times where I wonder if I'm being a good enough mom, and some days where I feel like the worst mother in the world. But I watch this little guy growing and learning and laughing and loving. And I know we are going to be okay. I am blessed to have met so many women who, sadly, understand. And to have this support in a way that only a parent of loss can support. Not that support from all our friends and family isn't as strong, oh my, it is...but there is something about being a part of this sad unspoken "club" so-to-speak. Especially when someone has lost a multiple. Even though we understand the bottom-line pain...no one can fully say the "understand" because each persons pain is so individual. But in this common thread there is a support that we each need. I am learning so much through Evan's life. This little guy makes me laugh so much, and reminds me how much I can love and believe and hope in the past, present and future. He is reminding me of the person I want to be in my faith. The person I was before the loss of Zac, and the person I will evolve to once again. And once more, there it is...CHOICE. Am I going to continue to live in anger and question God and blame Him...or am I going to finally concede to the fact that death is a part of this life, a part of a fallen world. God does not DO this to us to bring us to His feet, He helps us through it in the palm of His hands. Today I feel strong. Tomorrow I might not feel AS strong. But I owe it to my children to live the words I have spoken through these past couple years, especially these last months. Life will always hurt, but in how we heal is up to us. And my fight to find my way back to God's arms and strength is back on. I hope you will continue on this journey with me. Thank you for being a part of our lives and thank you for prayers, support and love along the way. This journey is not over! "And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way; bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins." Colossians 1:10-14 "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves have received from God. For just as the sufferings of Christ flow over into our lives, so also through Christ our comfort overflows." 2 Corinthians 1:3-5 Continue on the journey with me! Blessings, Heather


  1. Big hugs and lots of love to you!!! Today, my sister-in-law and I were talking about how the dentist visit was (one of the first times I've really gone out on my own) yesterday, and as I told her it STUNK, we laughed about how much easier things would be if I just had a t-shirt that said, "YES, I had a baby!" so people wouldn't ask all the innocent things they do...it totally stinks in explanation.

    Praying for you and amazed at your strength and growth!!

  2. Heather, thanks for continuing to share your journey with us all. I pray that the Lord would continue to draw you near and give you strength and joy.

  3. I understand that feeling of "what to do??". My second daughter was born one year to the day exactly from her sister's death. This year was a challenge. So I'll pray for you with your upcoming days...