Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Who Am I?

Today was a tough day. No particular reason really, other than I just really wished I could feel Barrett kick me just one more time. I love the fall and I had planned on dressing up with Audrey for Halloween this year with some clever costume that played on my pregnant belly. So, as I see different Halloween costumes, of course it reminds me of what I thought I would be doing right now.

I thought that right now the frantic period of my pregnancy would be beginning as I rushed around getting things ready before I was too big and tired to rush at all. But I'm not. I'm staring at his ultrasound picture hanging on my wall.

One of "Barrett's Blankets"
If you were to watch me throughout the day, you would notice a pattern I follow. It's a little bit OCD, I'll admit, but I can't help that. I will reach up and hold onto Barrett's hand print on my necklace and squeeze it. Then I'll put both hands on my belly and wait for a kick that won't come. Then I breathe a deep breath and come back to reality. My new reality. My reality of living with a hole in my heart where my first born son should be. You won't notice it unless you're looking for it. It's only obvious to me in the moments where I let myself slip away for just a second.

But in saying that, there is another pattern I follow. When I see something that reminds me of him, or someone else tells me a story of how Barrett has touched them, I'll reach up and grab his hand. I smile as I give it a gentle squeeze as if just to tell him "I hear ya".

My post today doesn't have much purpose other than I need to ramble.

I don't paint much, but when I do, it usually isn't for show, but for therapy. I may use a canvas over and over and I usually paint when I'm alone. Most of it is private to me.

Today as I was missing my son a little extra today, I decided that I would paint when I got home. I thought it might distract me. So I set out a blank canvas, brushes, and a lot random colors. Then, I stared. And I stared, and stared, and stared. What should I paint?

I reached over to my iPad and turned on Pandora radio to the Contemporary Christian mix. I listened to a few songs, and I thought. I thought about how I felt like a different person than I was 6 weeks ago. I thought about how I almost feel as if I'm starting over and having to learn who I am again. As these thoughts raced through my mind, I literally said God, I feel so consumed by grief. I feel like I am grief.

The moment the words were out of my mouth, I heard a very familiar song playing right beside me. I am a lover of music. I love to worship through music by singing along to the radio or my guitar. I believe God can speak to us through music as I believe He has to me many times before. The song I heard today was Who Am I?  by Casting Crowns. I can't make this up. It was way too big of a coincidence to truly be a coincidence. It was God. I grabbed a paintbrush and slapped paint on the canvas to the beat of the music as I listened carefully to each and every word of the song.

And then, I wrote on the canvas. Who Am I? Christian. Wife. Mother. Child of God. Angel Mom. Servant. Saved by Grace. Friend. Daughter. Joyful. And on and on. I ended it with I am LOVED. It was not meant to be a beautiful painting. It took me all of 10 minutes. But man was it therapeutic. Sometimes a little reminder such as just the right song at the right time is the perfect reminder of how much God loves us and that, yes, He is always with us.

 I am full of grief. Sometimes, I have moments where I am overcome by it. But mostly, I am joyful. I have so many moments where I just can't stop smiling or talking about what God is doing. I am not my grief. It is just a part of me. I am not defined by it.


  1. I am so sorry for you loss. I too just suffered a recent loss. I am really interested in the necklace you talk about. How did you get his handprints on a necklace? I LOVE the idea! I too am looking for something to wear that is in honor of my baby.

  2. The funeral home works with a company that did them but here is a website that does them:

    I am so sorry for your loss and will be praying for you!


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