Saturday, December 27, 2008

Christmas Eve Visit

I visited my girls in the cemetery for the first time on Christmas Eve. I have tried to visit them before but was unable to bring myself to go. I just was not ready. But with Christmas the following day I felt compelled to see them. I had to let them know that they were included in our lives and in our holiday celebrations. That I thought about them day and night and still cried for them. And I just wanted to spend some time with them. I have missed them so much during this holiday season. The night before I visited them I wrote them a letter:

Dear Aubrey and Ellie,

I am sorry that this is the first time I have visited you since your funeral. I have not been able to muster up the courage until now. It is Christmas Eve and I needed to come and visit, to bring flowers, and spend some time with both of you. I don’t want you to feel left out. You are still a part of my life. You are a part of everything I do. You always will be forever.

There is so much I want to tell you that I don’t even know where to start. First I want to say that I miss you both so much. There is not a second that goes by that I don’t think of you. I have tea with you every morning, I look at your pictures daily, and I cry, a lot. It is still hard for me to get out of bed in the morning and you are the last thought on my mind when I go to sleep at night. Living without you has been the hardest thing I have ever had to do. The only peace I have is knowing that you are both together, whole and restored, in the presence of the Lord, waiting for me. I can only go on because I know I will see you again.

I am so thankful that God gave you to me. I wish He would have let me keep you longer, but I don’t regret one second of being your mom. You two have changed my life more profoundly than any person or experience in my life. I was thrilled to death when I found out about both of you. I always felt privileged and special to be blessed with identical daughters. I was completely in love with both of you from the very beginning and my love for you has only grown, even after your death. You will always have a place in my heart and a place in our family. I will never pretend like you didn’t exist or keep you a secret. I am as proud of both of you as I am your brother and it is an honor to tell your story.

I am sorry that I didn’t know how to pray for you. I only ever wanted what was best for you both but I didn’t know what that was. I felt so helpless while you were alive. But I never gave up hope or lost faith, and I never stopped loving you. Forgive me for not dressing you before you were buried. I should have put clothes on you and looked at you and held you one last time. It was hard for me to think clearly at the time. I hope you understand.

Aubrey Elizabeth- I am so sorry for not visiting you in the hospital the Sunday before you died. Please forgive me for taking our time together for granted. It is one of my greatest regrets. I would give anything for one more day with you now. Also forgive me for not pumping my milk while sitting by your incubator looking at your tiny little face. I intended to do that and am not really sure why I didn’t. I regret it. Thank you for giving me so many special memories of you. You were so feisty and strong. I know you would have made a great big sister to Ellie. I loved the day I got to change your diaper and touch your skinny little legs. I treasure most how you opened your eyes a few days before you died. I know you could see me with those smoky gray eyes. It is my favorite memory of you. Whenever I picture you in my mind I see you looking back at me and it comforts me. And it was my privilege to hold you before you went to heaven. I wanted to hold you the entire time you were alive but was not allowed until then. It was my dream to hold you and it came true. I remember your cheek against my cheek. You were so tiny. I miss you everyday.

Ellie Alexandra- I am sorry for not giving you a bible verse until after you died. That was not my intention. I am so thankful that in the short time you were alive I got to make so many special memories with you. I was so worried about you. I was worried about you and your sister both but you got so sick so soon that I couldn’t help but be concerned. I love how you waved you left hand at me when you heard my voice. And I loved the day I got to lift you up while your dad changed your bedding. I loved sitting next to you while I pumped my milk imagining nursing you someday. I am so thankful that I got to hold you before you left us. I loved petting your hair and kissing you. You were so sweet. I think you would have been my easy baby. I miss you everyday.

There are feelings in my heart that I cannot put into words. My deepest pain seems to come only in the form of tears. Something happened to me when you died. You each took a part of my heart with you to heaven. I will never be the same. But I promise to heal. I promise to honor your lives with how I live my life. I will never stop missing you. I will never stop wondering what you would have sounded like or what color hair you would have had. I will always feel sad that you are not a part of my daily life or a part of my future. And you will never be forgotten or replaced. You are my precious baby girls. I will love you forever.

I will see you soon. Wait for me.

Love,
Your mom.

When my husband and I arrived at the cemetery it was cold and rainy. We put purple and pink lisianthus flowers at their grave. I intended to read the letter I wrote to them but could not bring myself to do it. So I folded it up and put it under the flowers. We stood there a while holding each other and cried. I watched my tears fall into the grass. I felt so sad. It was hard to read their headstone and accept that I buried my two babies. I never imagined such a tragedy in my life. But I was glad I went. I needed to see them. I needed them to know that I was thinking of them. I plan to visit them again soon. I hope to feel more and more comfortable each time. I don't think I will ever feel good about visiting their grave, but I do think I will have peace about it someday. At least that is what I hope for.

2 comments:

  1. That was a beautiful letter to your babies.

    Praying for you and your family to contine to find peace in the coming year.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Your children are blessed to have you as their mother, Rachel. All of them.

    ReplyDelete

 
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