Oh my precious sweet pea–
We’ve made it. Well… sorta? All parents long for this day. The day when you’re so pregnant and your feet are so swollen and you’re so ready to get the baby out of your body.
When I started writing about us I knew I wanted to document everything about our journey. I wanted to write about how I felt when you were growing inside of me and then continue writing at least through your first year on earth. I didn’t know I’d be writing about you going to heaven early. It’s been a full 9 months since we’ve met and looking back I’m so amazed I’m still standing.
One of my middle school youth told me the story of “when she and her mom were in labor.” I was confused at first and then realized she meant they were in the hospital and she was being born. It sounded silly, but I think its a beautiful image. She and her mom did go through labor together, and it didn’t stop there. They are journeying through life together and celebrate every little thing. I wanted that for us. I thought I’d spend your due date crying, and so far that hasn’t happened. Since you died I’ve been grieving so much that its been hard to me to recognize all we’ve done together. I’ve spent today looking back at our time together and all we were able to see and do!
We found out about you on Ash Wednesday. From dust you came and to dust you have returned. I was so surprised and nervous that I could hardly get my words out when I called your dad to tell him you were on the way. That night you and I taught a confirmation class and imposed ashes on hundreds of people. Not many babies can say that!
Things were good for a while, but as you began to grow I became more and more exhausted. People are right, growing a child is very tiring. I remember one day I worked until about 2pm and then took a nap before you and I went to the Methodist Building to protest injustice and fight for full inclusion for our LGBTQIA+ siblings. That was your first protest and we even made the news! A few weeks later we went on a beach retreat with over 100 youth and nearly 40 adults. We were both so tired that weekend. We stayed up late with the youth and preached four sermons together.
Do you remember confirmation weekend? We took the students to Frankie’s Fun Park and enjoyed pizza and belly laughs. I was so protective over you that I wouldn’t even play laser tag. The youth know I like to play, so I’m sure they thought something was up, but I would do anything to keep you safe.
Those are things just you and I were able to share together. Your dad spent time with you as well. He kissed my belly and even though it was weird, he just wanted to connect with you in the same way I did. I feel bad that I focused so much on getting you to 9 months that I didn’t spend enough time focusing on the present. You and I were able to do so many incredible things and nobody else can take that from us.
So today instead of wondering if you were a boy or a girl. Instead of wondering if you’d show up today or late like most first borns. Instead of wondering what it would be like to count your fingers and toes I’m focusing on us. I’m eating cake with your dad and celebrating all we have been able to do as a family.
I love you,