Sunday, April 17, 2011

A Year Ago Today

One year ago today, I found out I was pregnant with Rachel.  Matt & I were away at a Marriage Conference in Portland (go figure...Portland)  That morning, they had the husbands go into one room and the wives into another for a special speaker for each.  I remember sitting there thinking, I'm not just one right now.  I'm not here alone.  And as the reality of the fact that we would never again be just a family of 5 set in, my heart grew with joy and excitement.

So today is Palm Sunday.  Ironically this day usually comes closer to the 9th or 10th, but this year it falls on a very special day.  Our Palm Sunday Service at church consists of a short sermon on what baptism is and why we do it and then dozens of people get baptised.  It's always an amazing day and today was no exception.  With each person who went under the water, we were reminded of Christ's death and resurrection... and what my heart longs to be reminded of every day since Rachel died... Jesus overcame the grave.  His and Rachel's.  That is a reason to rejoice!

I wasn't sad today for the reasons I thought I would be.  I thought about Rachel just as much as I always do; constantly.  But the reason my heart was heavier today was because there are so many people I love who don't believe in Jesus....and I can't do anything about it no matter how much I want to.  What do you do when you lose people you love and on top of it you don't know beyond a shadow of a doubt that they are in heaven?  That's the only thing that brings me comfort with Rachel...  And so today more than grieving Rachel, I'm grieving what I want for my other loved ones and the fact that I can't give it to them.

At the end of church we finished up the last fundraiser for Rachel's Playground.  We still have a bunch of people who haven't returned their money and even still, we are now $175 over our goal!  This is great news because this week, we found out that we need to put in a french drain which wasn't factored in and that will help with that.  I am hoping that that if there are enough donations, the memorial sign will be able to be included.  I had originally planned on paying for it myself and so didn't include it in the total, but if it can be considered part of the project, that would be better since we are... well, broke.  I was trying to find a cooler way to say that, but it is what it is and I'm okay with that.  It's a small sacrifice to be with my kids. I'd give the rest of what we have to be with Rachel. We are poor where money is concerned, but rich in Christ.  And I know He'll provide Rachel's sign.  He hasn't failed me yet.

We decided today would be a perfect day to bring Rachel her new garden bench that Donna got for us.  I got it personalized with most of what will be on her actual headstone and when that comes in, we'll be able to move the bench here to our garden so that we have a special spot for Rachel here too.  It is absolutely beautiful.  We went to Rachel's grave and removed the other stuff that shouldn't be there anymore.  I have mixed feelings about moving forward in this...  to some degree it has been really good for me to have to care for her grave so much.  I want to nurture her so bad.  And there is a part of me that as much as it hurt, when I look at the pictures from our first trip or two to the cemetery,  I miss that she seemed closer then.  And God did too.  With each new step I take in this direction, both of them feel further away...

And still I somehow find the strength to take each step and make the most of it.  God is not as far away as He seems, He is always right there giving me what I need to continue to heal.  However long that may take.

I tucked the flowers underneath and put the solar light next to it
The grass is finally getting green!

I just had to at least leave the pinwheel...  Isn't Des pretty? 
I bet Rachel would have looked like her.

See the little bow on the ground?  That's my palm that I got at church today.
The kids wanted to tie it in a bow and leave it for their sister.
Well, I made it through the first of many anniversaries.  I know this day is obviously an easier one than her birthday will be, or the day we found out she had anencephaly, but it is still a day that forever changed my heart, my life and the world.  The day Rachel Alice Aube presented us with two pink lines.  The day God let us in on the miracle He was knitting together, perfectly, in my womb.  The day I started making plans for a baby and child that would never come to be.  The day my heart grew the extra space that can never be filled with anyone else but Rachel.  2010 held so many blessings that I will be left to grieve in 2011 and for years and years to come.  But I would do it all over again.  She is worth every ounce of heartache.

I miss you pretty girl....Keep dancing in His love.


  1. Wow Stacy. The bench is really beautiful.
    I look back on 2010 and I can't believe all that happened. It still sometimes doesn't feel real............. but it all is.
    Love You, Mom

  2. What a beautiful bench - for a beautiful little dancer ! We think of you more than you can know and we send our love... Ron and Sharon

  3. Love the bench! You are so right our kiddos are worth every ounce of heartache. So glad to hear you are over your goal a bit for Rachel's playground!

    Just said a prayer for you!


  4. Thinking about you. April 17th is a painful/joyful anniversary in my own life as well. It reminds me to pray for you.


  5. Stacy,I love the bench, it is so beautiful! Thinking of you always <3
    Love you,

  6. I love the bench, it is gorgeous. What a beautiful post. It speaks your heart so openly and clearly. I am constantly thinking of you and praying for you. May each anniversary bring you more healing and one step closer to seeing your girl.....
    Love and prayers,

  7. The bench is just beautiful. As is the mommy and baby girl it is for. (:


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