Saturday, June 8, 2013

Will They Be Loved and Acknowledged?

I've been doing a lot of thinking about how Lily and Luke will fit into my future hoped-for family...I've thought about it before, but it has been especially on my heart since I read this post on LifeSiteNews (please read before continuing).

My heart is heavy, yet hopeful.

I relate to so much of what she wrote. The quotes she shared are some of my favorites. Her thoughts, some of my own. It was really special to read her perspective as someone who lost a sibling. Her mother miscarried at just 6 weeks gestation...6 weeks, the same age my Luke Shiloh was when Jesus welcomed him into Heaven. Anytime I hear anything about that same gestation, it makes my heart beat a little faster.

Reading her words of love and acknowledgement for her sibling somehow makes it more real to me. I know that Luke was a real person and will live forever with the Lord. But, sometimes, it's harder for my mother heart to grasp that he was and is just as real as Lily. After all, I didn't get to hold him or feel him kick and all the other special things I shared with his younger sister.

At times, it hurts deeply to think of Luke and Lily being forgotten or not acknowledged by their future siblings. I don't think that is possible since I will raise them telling them all about their big brother and sister. I will be sharing my story whenever I get the chance, so I know it will be a big part of our family. But, I must admit...there is a part of me that fears that because my first two children will only be half-brother and half-sister to my future children and because they will never meet their younger siblings, Luke and Lily won't seem real. They won't be counted. And, oh how that grieves my mother heart. That's what makes it extra complicated - the fact that I am not married and the father to my future children will not be Luke or Lily's father...I am afraid I will be the only one who truly knows and loves Luke and Lily.

It is my hope and prayer that when asked how many siblings they have, my future children will include Luke and Lily among that number. I pray that the story of their older siblings will make them warriors for LIFE. I pray they learn to honor, love, remember, and celebrate them in their own special ways. I pray they know them through me and that my mother love will keep them alive in the hearts of others. They will always and forever be alive within my heart and memory, for I know they are dancing and full of vibrant life on the other side.

I love when the writer of the post said this:
"As someone who spends her life advocating for the rights of pre-born humans, I realized my lack of reference to Paul Francis was a betrayal of my beliefs—for if the pre-born are as valuable as the born, if I would reference a sibling who only lived until the age of 2, 10, or even 20 years, why not acknowledge this sibling?  Do I really believe Paul Francis was just as human, just as precious, just as unrepeatable as a late-term fetus, infant, toddler, or teen?  Would I hide the death of an older sibling?  Then why hide the death of a younger sibling?
By referencing my deceased sibling, some people inevitably ask what happened, and when you explain miscarriage, that individual is challenged to look at miscarriage in a different light—to look at it as a great loss, as losing a born child is a great loss.  As a result, my deceased pre-born sibling becomes the impetus for a discussion about how we view the pre-born, and an opportunity to normalize treating the pre-born like the born."

I believe that when people deeply grieve the loss of a child who passed away before birth (no matter the reason), it is a beautiful testimony to the beauty of each individual life. That's why I am so open and honest about my grief and love for both Lily and Luke.
"...we don’t find healing by stuffing—we find healing by releasing, wrestling, grappling, and honouring."

No matter how short or long one lives, they deserve to be acknowledged and celebrated. I thank this writer for discussing the topic of early pregnancy loss...the fact that her sibling can have a name, can make a difference, and can be a part of her life forever is a beautiful thing.

This writer ended her post with a special poem she wrote in honor of her brother who is in Heaven. This specific part brought me to tears as I thought about my future children thinking this very thing about their older brother and sister.

You were first to grow in her womb,
And in that way we’re connected.
We both spent time beneath her heart,
And with love we were infected.

They will be connected...I need not fear. All my children have and will grow within my womb, right beneath my heart, and that is a very special, very beautiful thing that brings peace and comfort to my mother heart. And though my two first babies now reside in my heart and memories, and my future babies will hopefully reside on Earth with me, they will all shape me in their own way. They will all be instruments that God uses to mold me into the person He's called me to be.



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  2. Just thought I would let you know about a friend of mine. She is the third youngest of four girls, but her youngest sister was born at 42 weeks. Shortly after her sister was stillborn, her father was diagnosed with cancer and died very shortly after her sister. Her mum was left raising 3 young children on her own.

    Somewhere in the next few years her mum met a man that she would come to marry. He has several children of his own that they blended together in a huge house.

    He got her a family ring for her birthday one year. And even though her stillborn daughter wasn't his and he'd never met her he included her birth stone in the ring. And that of her late husband.

    My point is that when you meet the right person, even if he doesn't understand your loss, he will see that it is important to you and support you in however you want to honour your babies. And he will make sure that he helps to explain about them to the future children you will have.

    Big hugs xxxx

  3. I think your future children will be delighted to know of their big brother and sister and love them as much as those of us who know their story. They are real and the world is a better place for them having passed through. You are and will be a great mother. J xxx

  4. Both articles (your post and the one you referenced) touched me so... it reminded me of Zachary John. Thanks for sharing!


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