Tuesday, August 30, 2011

two months ago...

this sweet baby boy left us for life eternal.





He'd be two months old today...bright eyed, smiling, chubbalicious, I just know it. (look at those cheeks up above!!)

thanks for your thoughts and prayers on this two month date...I can tell I'm going to need them.

I know Jack is in a wonderful place, with angels singing, worshipping the Lord and I'm so happy for him...doesn't change the fact, for I'm a human mother, that I long to have him here...in time, I know this will fade. But it hasn't yet...thank you for letting me voice that. I'm still grieving...I will always be grieving. That is not a bad thing...it's just the way it is.

Job 13:15a Though he slay me, yet will I trust in him...

Friday, August 26, 2011

Happy birthday, Kara!

Hope you know just how much I love and appreciate you, my cousin by marriage!

Happiest of birthdays to YE! I know that you will be celebrating it up right...

Happy Birthday, Sweet Nora Bean!

July 5, 2011

Not too sure she really wants to go to school...

My very favorite first photo of Nora and Molly together. Keep in mind that Heed, aka Molly (lookit that great noggin) is 7 weeks older than Tiny...this picture really just sums it all up! I love our babies...so sweet.

June 2008...these baby girls would be inseparable if we'd let 'em be. Though nowadays, Molly would try to mother Nora, boss her around, maybe cut her hair or her clothing, I dunno...I love that they have each other!

On August 26, 2009...my family, Uncle Tom and I were at Lake MI in Holland...so we wrote the Bean's name in the sand to remember her!

Christmas 2010...so stylish!

Christmas 2009 - hanging out in a clothes basket? really? and to think, we just bought you all of those amazing toys for Christmas.

Summer 2009...these expressions...ahhhh, just does not get any better! Molly LOVES celery. oh my, this makes me laugh!

Man, these two make theeee best faces, don't you agree? August 2009. Love these little sillies.

Time to get back to blogging for my loved ones' birthdays...sorry if I've managed to forget yours. (Kara, I'm planning to dig up a pic of you as soon as I post this)

Nora, I will never forget how happy I was when your momma called to tell me that her ultrasound said you'd be coming. A friend for our baby girl, Molly. In November of 2006, when I found out I was prego, I told your momma that she'd probably ought to get pregnant too.

Your momma was always so obedient (shyeah). it was one of my favorite times of my life, being pregnant together, and then finding out we'd both have baby girls. Molly, Gramma and I got to be in the room on August 26th (which just also happens to be one of your momma's best friends birthdays also. Happy Birthday, Amanda!) and it was so exciting when you plopped out. You were so tiny and your mom was wondering where all of your hair was. She'd had bad heartburn the whole time! 5 pounds, 12 ounces of Scott Cunniff glory...you are Cunniff thru and thru, no denying who your daddy is! (that was a close one! whew...ha ha. I kid)

I look forward to all of the shenanigans that you and Molly will get into in the coming years. I'm sure Molly will be the ringleader..

We are so glad to have your squeaky little self in our family. Can't wait to celebrate your FOURTH birthday this weekend, sweet girl. I love you and I'm blessed to be your aunt!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

some days are better than others...

I'm working on a way to always have a little charm of Jack with me, so I can look at it when I need to, show someone without overwhelming them with a gigantic pic of my sweet angel boy. I am also working on, and hoping to have a sterling silver JOY bracelet made up soon. I will post when it's done.

Jack's grave last week...

There is a page for each kid, and this one, which has a pic of our family and one of Jack in the pocket...such a cute idea.

she wrote me a letter, which is safely tucked away in the pockety part of the lunch bag book.

the cover of Mel's gift to me...lunch bag book...held together with sock monkey ribbon.

Hi there. It's hot today. Our septic tank is backing up. Kids are busy,busy, busy with their school work and I'm stuck in a rut of sadness.

I put on a normal face but he's always there. From the book I'm reading, called "They Were Still Born", this is just the way it's always going to be. I like this book because 1.) The title implies that he was STILL born, even if he died...and 2.) It's chock full of essays written by people, men and women, that lost their baby before birth. Some lost their babies days before, knowing that they would deliver a still child and some, like me, thought that they were delivering an alive child only to be smacked in the face with the reality that our babies had died. I still can't believe it. I'm really struggling with this today, really missing that little fella. It's 8 weeks tomorrow...life goes on, right?

Yup. septic tanks back up, bills get paid, kids need to be run here, there, hither and yon and I still wish my baby boy was here. That will never change. Life does go on, God is still good, I still trust His Son, Jesus Christ, but my family is missing someone. This is my story...

Had a good, unexpected cry driving up 37 today...the close your eyes while you drive, uh oh, kind...then while making salsa because I kept thinking about all the salsa I ate while I was carrying Jack, and the thoughts that would run thru my head..."Ohhh, such good baby growing food I'm eating today...this boy will love salsa"!

Ok, well, just so ya know, that's where I'm at. missing our baby, loving and enjoying my living children to the best of my ability...cherish.

Hope you are doing well! Thanks for stopping by, thanks for praying, thanks for thinking of me, dropping me notes, sending things, crying with me. Means the world to me.

Friday, August 19, 2011

a little Molly Moo, Levi and a garden too.

Jack's Garden...I. love. this. place. I love that there is a little piece of his life buried here...even if it is the cord that caused him to not be here. mostly. why isn't that sinking in?
I will definitely be posting pix as we progress...I'm just trying to get the plants into the earth. Not sure when we will be leveling it, getting the landscape blocks around it. A definite work in progress...Mary Helen brought some butterfly weed and echinacea. Tambo gave me some Russian Sage, butterfly pic with the glowing marble and the butterfly bush smack dab in the center, which is over the placenta, Jodi gave me some Foxglove, the Ochoa's and Greenhill's gave us the angel and yellow miniature roses, Mary gave us the JOY stone....Grandma G gave me the Butterflies welcome pick, Beck gave the Angel ornament hanging from the solar light that Always remember you are loved....Can't wait to get it mulched and enclosed. A bench will be there eventually. If you have something you want to have planted, or plant yourself, you are welcomed to.

wild and crazy guy...

Molly crashed at the table at last weekend's reunion.

Lady Molly woke bright eyed and purple bushy tailed the next day. (name tags were for Prince Ryan of Tobey-Logan's 1st birthday. Dragon, castle, knights, ladies and kings and queen themed party)

I had to change that last blog post because on my Mac...it keeps showing up and sometimes it makes my belly hurt to see that cute little boy who is not here with me, in the flesh. I'm just mostly not ok with that. He should be here. Lord Jesus, please tell JOY that I miss him and love him. deeply.

Ok, well, all that said...to say well, I'm not sure what I want to say...hope you have a lovely weekend...hope to be back with more later on. I think I need coffee...which, thanks to my lovely cousin, Tory, I got a Sbux Via in the mail today. How cool is she? very cool. I tipped back a mug with you, dear....thank you so much for thinking of me. You just have to know what that does to my soul and spirit.

Much love to you all...

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

coping with grief

so perfect...just can't fathom this loss. even still.

how many times in one day can I replay this scene over in my head??


How are you?

I'm not gonna lie...I've had better days. not that any one thing happened to make this day horrible. I worked in Jack's garden, trying to get the plants from Mary Helen and Tammy into the ground...and I find that it's a good time to just reflect, pray, and cry a lot. It's very healing.

it's just all the remembering, replaying, beating myself up for not "listening" to my maternal instincts, God's preparing me for what was coming...

Whatever it is, or was, I'm in this phase now...grieving mother.

After searching other blogs out, blogs by women, mostly, who have lost babies thru stillbirth or sometime in infancy, I find that I'm quite "normal". whatever that is. I didn't think I was normal before Jack's birth so I'm even less now.

How I'm coping with grief:

1.) I want to talk about Jack. If it's the first time I've seen you since we lost him, and you don't ask what happened or acknowledge him, I will be sad. more for you than for me. but still sad. He was real, he was here, we were excited, he is still a part of our family. Our family chain is broken and will be re-linked when we meet up with Jack Oliver Young in heaven.

I do appreciate prayers and I know David and the kids do too...just when I think I'm doing ok, a wave of sorrow (daily) hits me. it's honestly the weirdest place to be. I sob while I push-mow the yard. I find it's really cleansing...I'm sweating anyways so I might as well bawl and wail. so keep the prayers coming...I wail while I drive. It's sorta unsafe.

2.) If you don't know what to say, that's ok, just give me a hug. When you act like things are as they were before my life changed forever, I will not know how to deal with that. The woman who weighed me at Weight Watchers last night, who knew me because I look just like Becky (who goes to WW with me and she told this lady about JOY) even said she was sorry and hugged me. I don't expect you to know what to say...say his name..I love it. Hugs are welcomed.

3.) I do know where Jack is and while that is extremely comforting, I'd like him to be here. I'm ok with people saying that to me because at least they are saying something.

I am only human. What they say is true, my arms do ache for him. I have images of Jack that I carry with me and they all contain vivid pictures of that wild hair and that Molly face and mouth. I imagine little wings and those long, curled up feet that were so like Levi's. (go to YouTube and enter Chris Rice's song "Spare an Angel" or another CR tune "Untitled Hymn (Come to Jesus)). I am not hopeless...

I still can't believe that this has happened to our family. I wouldn't say that I'm angry but everything is not OK, hunky dory. I still yell at my living kids. I get aggravated with them, even still. Overall, I'm just so thankful for them...let me tell a story about my eldest son...Will Franklin Young:

Picture this: I'm at a family reunion this past weekend. At this point, no one had even acknowledged Jack or the horrible loss of him, which I know folks think I may not want to talk about it (see above)...and that's ok. (I've come to grips with the fact that people just don't know what to say, how to respond or if I'd want to talk about Jack Oliver Young)

We had taken our travel trailer to said reunion with us, as the plan was, so I'd have a place to take JOY for naps, or nursing whatever. so that, in and of itself made me sad because I didn't have that sweet boy in my arms. I retreated to the trailer because I could feel a big ol' sob coming. I sat in there and wailed. Will came in to get his suit on for slip n slide fun. I tried to act like I wasn't just weeping but he knew so he sat down with me, talked with me, asked if he could PRAY WITH ME.

We held hands, closed our eyes, and after a delay, I looked up because he hadn't started yet. He was crying...We stood up in the middle of that tight trailer and hugged. He had to, of course, lean down to hug me because I'm about 6" shorter than him now. After we got a hold of ourselves, he prayed with me. Held my hand, talked more with me...helped me process the things that were going thru my head...he is so patient (as are Ethan and Mel, it just happened that Will was the one that walked in. All 3 big kids have been so gracious to let me vent, cry, talk, weep, question).

Can I just say that it's a pretty cool thing to have something like the above happen? Makes all the years of being at home with kids so worth it. If that's you, you are home with littles, and it seems like it will last forever, it won't. suck it up and praise the Lord for the ability to mother your children.

Forgive the jumble...I am honestly a scatterbrained goof right now (right now, you say?). If I don't write something down, it's as good as gone. Thank you for letting me process here on this blog.

Finally, I thank the Lord for the things He is bringing to my attention. I am unsure of the ministry He has in store for my family and I but I have a pretty good idea that it will include helping grieving people in some way...then again, I could be totally wrong there. All I know is that we are open to whatever it is that He has for us.

Hug your kids, spend time with them that you don't think you have. They are worth it. (I'm saying this to myself JUST as much) Hug them, sniff them, let them know that you are so glad to have 'em. Gotta go sort all of this out...

Will Franklin
Ethan James
Melanie Kate
Levi Taylor
Molly Christine
Jack Oliver

Come to Jesus, and live.

Monday, August 8, 2011

JOY comes in the morning

front and back of Jack's bookmark. Let me know if you would like one...

I'm mush...

That part of grief where "they" say the griever is scatterbrained is where I am at. (among other emotions that flare up at the strangest times...)

I've replaced sleepless nights, up with a baby, with pure ditziness. If you know me, you know I can have ditzy moments but this is at a new level.

So, happy Monday...I hope to be blogging again soon.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Monday, August 1, 2011

JOY's Butterfly Garden beginnings...

the frozen placenta at the bottom of freshly dug hole...it looks creepy but it was Jack's house for 9 months...it was so cool yet sad to see his cord, the very cord (it's at the bottom of the pic) that ended his sweet life. The tradition is to plant the placenta under a tree to honor the life that it housed. it makes for some nutrient-rich soil, I'm guessing.
it's so cool that God created an organ that our womanly bodies make during pregnancy to protect our babies.
In this picture, Molly asked me if that was my blood. I said yes, it was. She replied, "Gross" and then proceeded to tell me about the FOUR babies in her tummy.

I'm sure I've blogged about this lovely butterfly bush...but just in case I haven't, here goes:
My good friend, Tammy, was on her way to Jack's birth. She wanted to get some flowers for me for after it was all over. But then she saw this awesome bush as she pulled into Home Depot. She nabbed it and headed down to our house...sweet woman. As she pulled into our neighborhood, she was overcome by the Spirit to pray for me, for us.
As she made her way down my street, she came upon the Harrison Township fire truck...

This angel baby, aww, I love it...is from my Uncle Frank and Aunt Nan, Uncle John and Aunt Darlene (my Dad's sibs and their spouses). They brought him, along with two miniature yellow rose bushes, which will join Butterfly Bush this week. I also have a neat JOY garden rock that we got from our friend, Mary (who is also our neighbor and goes to C4 with us).

I think this garden will be a really nice reminder of our little Glory Baby...it is a work in progress and a labor of love.

yeah, I'd rather have him here but since I can't, we will honor his life with this lovely little plot of earth that we will all tend together.

I have so many thoughts rolling around in my head tonight. it has been especially challenging to make it thru this day. I keep thinking of what JOY would be doing if he was here...he'd be one month old now. I look thru the pix of the night he died and his viewing and my body just aches for that little guy. I know we all do...I don't feel selfish wanting him here but I know he is in an incredible place...He wouldn't want to come back. Can't blame him. it's hot here. we're crabby, getting ready for school things and work and such. He would have been such a nice diversion from the monotony of life.

I miss you, Jack. I want so badly to sniff your sweet peanut head and nibble your toes. Your breath, I'm sure, would be heavenly.