Thursday, December 12, 2013

12 Days of Christmas: Day Twelve

Written by Stacy Lockhart

November 19th 2010 our beautiful daughter, Hope Elna was born at 4:20am. She was born alive and lived for 32 short minutes. Hope was in her daddy's arms when she was ushered into heaven to spend eternity with Jesus. She is the sibling to our earthly children Rebecca, Angela, Audrey and Ernest. From what we know Hope had a fatal form of skeletal dysplasia that made life outside of my womb impossible. We carried her until my water broke and she was ready to come into the world.

To have such a loss right before the holidays was unthinkable! To have such a loss ever is torture! During Thanksgiving it all still didn't feel quite real. So we just did our usual and carried on as "normal". But by Christmas I was in agonizing pain because I just wanted my baby. I wanted nothing else but Hope to be in my arms. My heart literally felt like it was broken in half. I hated that the time I had with her living inside of me went by too quickly. I was resentful that I didn't get to have any of those cherished 32 minutes that she lived because I was asleep recovering from blood loss and anesthesia. I just didn't understand any of it.

Almost 3 Christmases have come and gone since that first awful Christmas without Hope and I'm now starting to want to live again and be involved with almost all of the fun stuff that is a part of this time of year. Almost. Sometimes it just seems too full of stuff instead of being full of family and love. For a mommy that has lost what is most dear to her and wishes with all of her life that she could have that beautiful baby back, "stuff" just doesn't matter anymore. The presents that mean the most to me are the hugs, kisses and I love you's that I get from my kids.

Although, the trinkets we do have that remind of us our baby are rare treasures indeed. Trinkets that no amount of silver or gold could ever buy or replace. Reminders that there is a little tiny life that existed and has a place in our family forever.

I'm now able to say it's ok that I don't have all of the answers I want. I'm happy Hope was here. She is ours. Mine and my husbands baby, my kids baby sister, my mom and dads granddaughter and my sisters niece. Jesus' death on the cross was for me and those unanswered questions I've had and the anger that came along with losing Hope.

We get through this time of year together. We hang Hope's ornaments on her tree, we wrap small presents for her and place them in her memory box after Christmas and we talk about her and how much we miss her. She is a part of everyday life. And we wouldn't have it any other way.

My suggestion for families that are facing the holidays without their precious babies is to remember them. And don't be afraid to ask others to remember them with you.

Put together a memory box that's big enough to hold all of your trinkets and special things that remind you of your baby that you just can't part with. And that you can add to over the years to come. Your baby will always have that special place in your family. Only you can know what is right for you and your family and how you want your baby to be remembered.

But I also know there are those times when it hurts just a little to much to do anything and that's ok too. Take your time and be gentle with your heart. It is in the process of being mended from a horrible tear that can be reopened at any time. Lots of love and gentleness helps that mending. It will never be a perfect heart like it was before the loss but it will learn to beat and thrive one day in a new way.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Stacy Lockhart is a stay at home mommy who loves Jesus, loves her family, strives to enjoy life, find healing through cross stitch and be brave in the face of grief. She is married to Ernest and has 5 children. Rebecca, Angela, Audrey, Ernest and their heavenly baby Hope Elna. She is from Nebraska but lives in Texas.

She blogs at Hope For The Day


Amanda Hoyt said...

remembering Hope with you, always, my sweet sweet friend.
love you!

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