I'd like to share some pictures to show that while there are days when I want to hide and cry in my bed all day, there are also days that I laugh, smile, comfort, and teach. About eighty percent of my days are spent trying to be normal. People who've never met me have no idea what I've been through, and then someone asks about my tattoo (Yes, I got a tattoo for Mila that I just adore!), or asks me if Charlie and Sofie are my only children. Suddenly I have this unbelievable story that I don't quite believe myself. I don't know how to wear it, how to own it, at least not yet. So, here's a quick peek into my life lately.
Here I am getting my tattoo. It was an amazing experience.
As long as there is time, as long as there is love,
As long as I have a breath to speak your name . . .
I will love you.
So much of my healing has come from being creative.
I think this is my favorite picture of Mila and I. It was taken at a time of so much hope and joy. I try not to forget that the nine months I carried Mila were simply extraordinary.
Charlie and Sofie have made me so proud.
They turned five on May 31st and the three of us are 'besties' as we enjoy
our last summer before kindergarten.
We spent Memorial Day at the lake, cherishing family,
and trying to find gratitude in the every day moments.
My darling, Sofie, had her first dance recital in May. She totally lost her place and panicked because she couldn't find me in the audience. She danced anyways, and left the stage with a smile on her face!
Then, only five days after her birthday, Sofie fell at the park and broke her arm. She had surgery to place pins in her elbow and set her arm. It was a strange, surreal night in the same hospital I spent much of last July in. We even had one of the same nurses I had. My mom took me back to the ICU to see with healthy eyes where I had stayed, where my family waited and prayed for days, and to meet the nurses that helped save my life. The last year seemed to come full-circle that night as I was suddenly aware of how blessed I am to be alive. What if I had died? What if I couldn't have stayed with Sofie, comforting her through a very scary time? I was back in the hospital as a strong, healthy, capable, and brave Mommy. I had to be, and it felt so wonderful.
This summer will be different. It already is. Instead of a one-year-old, I have a new appreciation for life and a deep compassion for those who are grieving any kind of loss. I'm taking a "life is short" kind of attitude most of the time. There are days I want so badly to be with Mila that I could leave it all behind, but I don't. I will have eternity with her, or so I am promised. I believe this and now I am trying to live the life God wants me to. I told Charlie and Sofie the other day about why we go to Heaven. I told them that God promises us eternal life with Mila and all of our loved ones as long as we live the kind of life he wants us to: kind, loving, compassionate, and humble. I felt proud and grateful for my beliefs, even though they may just belong to me.
I felt grateful to be speaking to my children from a place of faith and of hope.
Mila's birthday, July 1, is just one day away. We will be having a sweet celebration with family. We will send balloons up to Heaven with messages to Mila. We will also be lighting a candle at 7:57 a.m., the time Mila was born. I invite you to light a candle as well, if not in the morning, then some time during the day, in remembrance of our sweet angel. On this special day, kiss your babies, grand babies, nieces and nephews. Spend some time with those who mean the most to you. Life is so precious and so short. We never know when it will be time to say goodbye.
Oh yeah, to kick off a year of living with hope, faith, and gratitude, I got a major haircut. It was as if I cut off all of the pain, the hurt, and the death. I feel fresh and ready to live.
Also, in order to rewrite history, I am spending the nineteen days I was so near to death, really living life. I missed nineteen days of my life last year! Charlie and Sofie missed nineteen days of their mother's love and nurturing. I know with all of my heart that Mila would want us to live life to the fullest, now that we have the chance. Please join me for the next few weeks as I celebrate 19 days of living. I will try to post as often as I can to share how we are celebrating our new life and the love little Mila Louise gave us all.