Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Cake & Cocoa

It's been 4 years since we said our final goodbye and had to leave her tiny casket at the cemetery.

I've discovered that this day is harder than her birthday as an anniversary.   

I miss her.

I woke up to find that my brand new dairy free creamer was bad so I couldn't make coffee.  Not good.  Then I had this great plan that after Ezra's ENT appointment today we would head over to Rachel and eat her ballerina cake there... maybe get some hot chocolate and leave one for her...  I had the cake packed (along with gluten/dairy free cupcakes for me & Des).  We've had decent weather on the 3rd every year until this one.  So this has been hard for me.

I started to realize that I was more emotional than I had anticipated I would be when I was in tears on the way to the ENT.

When we got out of his appointment, it was raining and VERY cold and the kids were not in very good moods....and I had a bad headache starting again.  There isn't much you can do except drive through the cemetery when it's that kind of weather, so I decided we wouldn't be able to go visit Rachel.

Plan B was to go home and try to figure out a way to make hot chocolate that I can drink and eat her cake there.  I made the hot chocolate our of cocoa powder and almond milk.  (it was better than nothing, but would take getting used to, the kids weren't impressed!)  

I got all the cups ready for pouring.  I counted them out and there were just enough for the kids in one kind of mug, so I picked a little different one for me.  I had already poured E's in to a sippy with extra milk... I began looking around for one to use as Rachel's.  I went back and forth in my mind trying to figure out if that was a ridiculous thing to do... I put the idea on hold for a second while I helped the kids add their fixins... and then I realized....

I had 6 kids cups out... 5 of the mugs and the sippy.  I said to Des "There are already six cups there... it's an automatic thing for me to count her." and found myself in tears again.

This day was a constant battle against tears.  I have been so sad... feeling so much like I hate that she is dead today.  Feeling the sting of trying to get into the Christmas cheer when I feel so heavy hearted.

We finally cut her cake and all sat down to have some with our cocoa.... I'm so thankful for these 5 precious kids... and it blesses my heart to hear their little voices talk about Rachel... to hear them say her name is a beautiful sound. ♥

And of course we left her cup on the table with us.  

It worked out ok because when my sister and Jailyn stopped by, she asked for some and I said "You can have Rachel's!"  

Then we sang to her... which was a mess, but they had fun.... You will notice Asa under the table at one point... that is what he did when the doctor asked him to stand on one foot yesterday... LOL

I took a quick trip to the store to pick up a couple things and on the way I heard the song "Hope is what we crave."  I know I blogged about that song a long time ago... today it had me in tears as I looked at our Christmas lights all across our fence that we light each year on the 3rd for her birthday... I usually leave these lights going until into spring time... Mother's day even at times... because 'light' is 'hope' to me. And hope is what I crave....

 "Hope is what we crave"
Hope is what we crave, and that will never change

So I stand and wait
I need a drop of grace to carry me today,
A simple song to say
It's written on my soul:
Hope's what we crave 
To live, to die,

To lose, to get,
To rise above
To love again

It's the 9th of December... the day I had to leave my baby in a grave in the cold.  If there was ever a day I needed to cling to HOPE, this day in 2010 was it.  Today is a very hard day for me, but not one on most people's radars.  It's hard to have everyone around me, every store, every music station, all be covered in Christmas... and my heart hurts so much.  It's hard to live, to die, to lose, to get, to rise above and love again.  It's hard to have a broken heart - to be missing a piece of you - and for the world around you to keep moving.  It feels like everyone is going at a speed that I just can't keep up with... and don't really want to.

Then on the way back I heard "Broken Hallelujah" which was a song I blogged about on her birthday, last year I think.... 

                                                           "Broken Hallelujah"

I can barely stand right now.
Everything is crashing down,
And I wonder where You are.

I try to find the words to pray.
I don't always know what to say,
But You're the one that can hear my heart.

Even though I don't know what your plan is,
I know You're making beauty from these ashes.

I've seen joy and I've seen pain.
On my knees, I call Your name.
Here's my broken hallelujah.

With nothing left to hold onto,
I raise these empty hands to You.
Here's my broken hallelujah.

You know the things that have brought me here.
You know the story of every tear.
‘Cause You've been here from the very start.

Even though I don't know what your plan is,
I know You're making beauty from these ashes.

I've seen joy and I've seen pain.
On my knees, I call Your name.
Here's my broken hallelujah.

With nothing left to hold onto,
I raise these empty hands to You.
Here's my broken hallelujah.

When all is taken away, don't let my heart be changed.
Let me always sing Hallelujah
When I feel afraid, don't let my hope be erased
Let me always sing Hallelujah.
Let me always sing Hallelujah.

I will always sing
I will always sing
Here's my broken hallelujah.

I had this crazy thought this morning as I drove... I remembered the vision in my head of how many cars were here on Saturday and I had an overwhelming feeling of gratitude - For Rachel's life... for her death... and even for what took her from me... anencephaly.  I doubt this is something I will feel regularly, but today I thanked God for anencephaly because people don't love Rachel despite her defect... they love her *because* of it.  She is a special girl because she shows us all how much God can do with a little innocent and not fully formed baby who never made a sound or stepped foot on the earth that has people all over it still talking about how she changed them.  For a moment, I felt like I had finally made peace with anencephaly and what it means for our family.  Because this road has been broken and painful, but it has been beautiful and full of praises to our Lord.   

My 'hallelujah' is broken - but it's not going anywhere... and with each year, even with all the ups and downs emotionally and physically - my trust, my hope, my praise is with the One True God Jesus Christ who holds my little girl as I wait.

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