I'm lost for words on this post right now, but if I don't share it now, it won't happen.
I hate that I feel like I'm good at planning a funeral.
I hate that I've planned one...
And I really hate that it was Rachel's... although I do have to say it was a beautiful service - for a funeral.
But about the time that I stepped foot into the funeral home on our way home from the hospital, I realized that my life had just taken a turn that no matter how "pre-planned" it was, I could never have anticipated. I was not ready for what that December - and every December to follow - was going to hold for me. Knowing ahead of time didn't change a single thing about how the loss of my daughter hit me.
That night, December 6, 2010, I left the hospital with empty arms to go visit my dead baby at the funeral home and I was scared to death of what she was going to look like - but couldn't wait to get to her. It had been 2 days since she went ahead of me from the hospital.
I remember the director holding the door for me as I walked in... I remember her saying quietly, "She's right in here on the couch." And I remember dropping to my knees next to her and kissing her all over. I remember them telling me to "Be careful" because I had just had a C-section.
|A long time after hearts became another one of Rachel's "hi's" I realized that there were hearts on the bottom of the footies I buried her in. Makes me think of her little footprints everywhere.|
But I didn't remember if I had held her. I knew I must have picked her up - and I remember having a breakdown because I was trying to swaddle her and it wasn't working out right. (Ironically, as I wrote that I just remembered that the same thing happened when I first had Ezra - hormones are fun) And I knew I put her into her casket - because I have photos, not because I actually remember that. But I don't have a photo of me holding her on that couch. I wish I did.
I remember the Christmas tree so brightly shining in the dark. It felt so warm and cozy in there. I called it "Rachel's tree."
On the way over yesterday, I said to my friend that I was wondering if they had put her tree up yet.
Once again, Tammy held the door open for us and we chatted for a minute before she said "Would you like to see the tree? We just put it up today."
|This year they did a patriotic theme... Let freedom ring...|
After we went upstairs so my friend could pick out the items she wanted, we came back through and stopped at the room Rachel was in. My friend said "I see you still have the kids room?" And I smiled because I had not known that room was meant for kids... but how appropriate that is where Rachel awaited her burial.
I went in and looked at the couch. Everything in the room looked just the same. Even the blanket and pillow on the back of the couch. I expected to have a breakdown and fall to my knees again, but I didn't - and I didn't feel like I wanted to.... At the risk of looking and feeling crazy, I pulled my Rachel bear from my bag and sat with 'her' on the couch. Maybe if I was alone, I would have cried... maybe not...
I propped up my Rachel bear and took a picture of her sitting in the last place Rachel ever laid outside of a casket.
When we got in the car, I cried on and off the whole way home - pretty much any time I talked about her, I cried.
This morning I woke up and saw the snow. December 1st.
I looked at it and looked away as I said "Ugh, December... I'm not ready for it."
And I'm totally not ready for it. Please pray for me.