Sunday, September 23, 2012

Dear Barrett

Barrett's Grave
Today makes one month since my Barrett was born, and one month since he died--two things that should never share a date. His big sister wanted to have him a birthday party and I thought that would be a good idea. I wanted to visit him, and I thought letting her do that might help me to make it through without losing it.

I've been transparent thus far, and I will be today. Today was hard. The drive to the cemetery seemed to last a lifetime. When we pulled up, memories came flooding back. I saw his grave immediately. The familiar blue wreath and flowers from his service were still there; the dirt on his grave still as fresh as the hole in my heart.

This was Audrey's first time to go to the cemetery. I knew she wouldn't quite understand, so I've spent the last week trying to prepare her that we wouldn't actually see Barrett. I explained to her multiple times that Barrett wouldn't really be there--only his body and that Barrett is in heaven with Jesus. I wanted to be sure that she knew that Barrett wouldn't miraculously be there for his party.



Audrey picked out everything for today--the balloons, the card, the flowers, and a stuffed horse because horses are her favorite. I set the card down with his wreath and put his flowers in the ground. I tied the balloons where they wouldn't fly away, and Audrey gently set the horse down on the side of the dirt. She told me that she didn't want to squish him.

As much as Audrey and I had talked about today, she still didn't quite understand. Several times I choked back tears as she begged me to please dig him up so she could tell him happy birthday and I love him. My heart broke into a million pieces. I explained to her that we couldn't dig him up and even if we could it wouldn't really be him because he is in heaven.

A few minutes later she said Where is God? I told her that He is in heaven, but He is all around us too and He can hear everything we tell Him. Then, Where is heaven? I didn't really know how to explain that, but I did the best I could.

Then, I saw her over by Barrett with her daddy and I heard him trying his best to explain it to her through tears. And then, my little girl started to cry and my composure was gone. She laid her head on her daddy's shoulder and she cried for her little brother. I see people all the time who don't give children enough credit as far as what they can understand--I'm bad about it myself. My daughter knew her brother was gone and she couldn't see him and she grieved for him.

Audrey and I talking about Barrett
Watching my daughter cry like that was the hardest part of the day. My son is gone and I can't do anything about it. My daughter desperately misses her little brother, and there is nothing I can do about it. I felt so helpless as I sat there and watched my husband and daughter grieving for our Barrett. I want to fix everything and I can't.

This is when I have to put my trust in God and His plan--his perfect plan. One thing losing Barrett has taught me is that I can't control everything and I can't fix everything--I just have to give everything to Him.

Dear Barrett,

Today you would be one month old. I had these football stickers I had planned to buy for you to put on your onesies each month for pictures, but I didn't get to do that. Instead, we celebrated your birthday at your grave. We cried, but we are so thankful for your life, no matter how short. I try to imagine what your smile would look like and what it would be like to see your eyes light up. I hope and pray that you know how much you were wanted here and how much we love you. Your big sister thinks the world of you even though she never got to meet you. I got your pictures out today and I stared at each one of them--taking in every single detail of you. I don't know why I am so afraid that I will forget how beautiful you were--how could I? I know that you are way too busy worshiping Jesus to worry about what we are doing here, but I hope you have at least some idea of the ways God is using your precious little life--I hope you know how proud I am to be your momma. Each time someone messages or emails or calls to tell me how you have impacted their life, I think back to that moment when I first held you and I knew in my heart that your journey wasn't over yet. Momma has a very special place in mind for your blanket I made you and I can't wait for you to see where it goes--I know you probably already know though. Momma is very busy trying to keep up with all of the things God is doing in our lives through yours. You must have known that your momma would need to keep busy in order to heal. I can't wait to see you and hold you and rock you--I love you my little man and I am so proud  of you--

Momma

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