Wednesday, August 26, 2015


This month marks the Lily-would-be-starting-Kindergarten milestone. Since spring, people have been posting on social media about their children who are starting school this year. My heart has been anticipating this milestone since then, so I've been feeling the sting of it already for a while.
Friends, acquaintances, and family members have children born within days, weeks, or months of Lily... A couple children I know were born on the exact same day.

And I wish my sadness this month was the same as theirs. I wish I could be emotional because my baby is growing up too fast, but instead I cry because she won't grow up at all. I cry because I'll never know the children she would've called friends or their parents who would've become my friends. I cry because I'll never be able to post a picture of my first-born at the beginning of her new school year, whether she was homeschooled, at a Christian school, or public school.

Instead of getting her ready for school, I'm going out to Colorado to Ellerslie, something I most likely wouldn't be doing if she were here.

As John Piper wrote in a letter to a mother whose son was stillborn: "God’s crucial word on grieving well is 1 Thessalonians 4:13: “We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers, about those who are asleep, that you may not grieve as others do who have no hope.” Yours is a grieving with hope. Theirs is a grieving without hope. That is the key difference. There is no talk of not grieving. That would be like suggesting to a woman who just lost her arm that she not cry, because it would be put back on in the resurrection. It hurts! That's why we cry. It hurts. And amputation is a good analogy. Because unlike a bullet wound, when the amputation heals, the arm is still gone. So the hurt of grief is different from the hurt of other wounds. There is the pain of the severing, and then the relentless pain of the gone-ness. The countless might-have-beens. Those too hurt. Each new remembered one is a new blow on the tender place where the arm was. So grieving is like and unlike other pain."

This Kindergarten milestone is one of those countless might-have-beens. The gone-ness doesn't get easier through the years. But I grieve with hope and know that if Lily Katherine were meant to be starting Kindergarten on Earth this year, then she would be. She already knows far more than I ever could, about what is most important.

For all the should-be-Kindergartners, I'm thinking of you and your parents who wish with all their hearts they were packing that Hello Kitty or Spider Man backpack and lunchbox with their little one's favorite foods, the parents who wish they even got to know the things their child would like or prefer, the parents who should be crying this month for an entirely different reason, the parents who are feeling a fresh pain of gone-ness.

Some of the children I'm remembering: Addison, Angela, Lillyan, Matthew, Charlotte, Lillian Joy (I'm sure there are many I'm forgetting, these are the names that popped into my head).


1 comment:

  1. God bless you, Hannah.

    Keep looking up...keep looking for Jesus and his outstretched arms.

    This blog reminds me of the one thing I have learned...Faith For Now!
    Pastor Folk had been teaching on that for the entire year prior to our Lilly's coming and going. (God's provision for us.)
    I have to do "just NOW."
    Sometimes I'll get myself worked up and then realize that I'm not doing the NOW so well. That's when I remind myself, Faith For Now...or as Pastor Folk says, "FFN."

    When I was sitting in my hospital bed, trying to take in the horrific news, the clock across the room from me continued ticking ceaselessly. That clock became my grounding point instead of my burden. When I was sitting there questioning how I was going to pass through the time ahead, Pastor Cammelleri gently reminded me that God would give me the grace I needed when the time came. Oh blessed realization.

    Keep on clinging....for the clock has not stopped! We continue to pass through the moments though our children's bodies have been laid to rest in the grave. Most people do NOT realize what we have to pass through, even still. The funeral is over, but our loss and our longings continue on.

    HOWEVER, we as Christians must cling to our everlasting hope, to the everlasting love of our everliving God. He is still loving us...amen. He has never stopped...woo-hoo!
    “The Lord hath appeared of old unto me, saying, Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love: therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.”
    ‭‭Jeremiah‬ ‭31:3‬ ‭. (Pastor Folk sent that Bible verse out TODAY!). What beautiful love words!

    Keep on pointing the hurting to your loving Lord...OUR loving


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