Sunday, April 3, 2011
It is amazing to me, the vast and unbounding ability of my heart to feel deeply. The more deeply I allow myself to feel joy, the more deeply I open myself up to pain, which has the effect of further expanding my ability to feel everything!
April 1, 2011, my daughter went into pre-term labor and was hospitalized … in her new home town, 850 miles away from me!! So, I bought a plane ticket as fast as I could, and flew from Seattle to Billings to be with her, but not quite in time.
Too tiny and amazingly precious, James Peter Hicks entered this world, and left us just as quickly. My grandson. A precious and beautiful gift, his presence, though brief, created a new depth to my ability to feel. His departure created even more depth.
Her husband and I stayed in the hospital room with her. Trying to sleep. Walking the halls. Hugging, laughing, crying, sitting in silent prayer. We took turns holding James. Touching his precious tiny fingers and toes. Kissing his beautiful round head. Being amazed at the creation of life. Me being amazed at how beautiful and graceful my broken-hearted daughter has grown to be!
The hospital staff was wonderful, and created a beautiful memory box that includes impressions of his hands and feet pressed in plaster, and the traditional hand and foot ink print on paper. My daughter took several pictures with her cell phone, but my heart breaks that I did not bring my camera. Me. The family photographer at a major family event without my camera. I cannot beat myself up over this, but it sure is an important lesson for me to come away with!
I now have the beautiful opportunity to practice just being present with my daughter. I can’t fix her heart. I cannot offer wisdom. I can only love her, and hold her and be present if she thinks of something that she would like from me. Last night we laid, snuggled up, on the air mattress I’m sleeping on in her in-law’s basement. I held my grown daughter, with her head on my chest, listening to her Mommy’s heart beating. Reconnecting. Being present together in the moment. Loving. Hurting. My silent tears wetting her hair.
Healing will come for her and her husband. It did for me when I lost a baby 20 years ago. It is my hope, my prayer, and my encouragement toward them, that they will grow stronger together as a couple because of this experience. That they might be used of God some day because of this experience. That they will come to the comforting understanding that they are not alone, and that they are so deeply loved by so many people. Not the least of which is The Mommy!
That they will