"I live in your light"

November 18, 2013 at 6:04 PM

“God Blessed your life. I do not live less, I live in your light.” Avett Brothers.

 Last Christmas my husband put these song lyrics in a book he made for me to read when I wanted to connect with our son whom we had lost at 13 weeks. It was the first time I really reflected and listened to the song and what those words meant for me. As I embark on this Christmas Season, this holiday season of lights, this month of friendship, family, and love, I cannot help but be reminded of these words and what they mean to me.

 I reflect often about what Jude’s short life has taught me. It is amazing the positive impact your children have on the way you view life. I know I have learned about family, about the importance of spending time with those you value and love, about making time for those who are important to you.  I have learned that my husband and I are stronger today then we were two years ago because we have been through some of our most difficult days leaning on one another. I have learned about friendship; that those friends who run toward you when a tragedy occurs in your life are the real friends you want with you as you walk through your adult life. I learned that the human spirit really will never be broken. The Grace of God and the relationships brought to you in these moments of weakness are to lift and buoy that spirit to a place you never thought it could go. I am reminded that this death did not bring with it darkness but a great light that was sparked in me and around me.  

 Sometimes, I criticize myself in my own grief process. I often wonder if people are uncomfortable when I mention Hopeful Connections or question why I began this project. I wonder if they think I am stuck in my grief or if I should just get over it. I wonder if they think that when I speak about Hopeful Connections or Jude that it makes me sad. In fact, it is the opposite. This memory of this child is not stricken with sadness, he is not a burden or cross that I bear, he was a child, he was our son, he was a gift to me.

 As my husband reminded me last year, I do not live less because of him; I just live in the light of him. I live in the hopes that we will meet again someday, in the hope that he is watching over my family, guiding his brother and sister from heaven. I live in the love he is sending to us - his parents - to have the energy to keep his memory alive; to continue to work towards education and awareness around the losses so many families feel. I live in the hope that we will help make it socially acceptable to talk about these losses so we are not an exclusive group of men and women but rather an inclusive society embracing the memory of children who have gone too soon.  I do not live less because of this experience; I live more because of the love he gave to me. Yes, of course some days I am saddened that I don’t have a two-year old running around here on earth but in those days I light his candle and remember and feel the warmth he has brought into my world. 

During this time of gratitude, of holiday cheer, of celebration; I want you to remember the light that was brought to you through your child. It is so important to remember the everyday miracles that help you through this loss, help you laugh, help you cry, encourage you to grieve, listen to your stories, hear your tears, and most of all feel the love you have for your children. These moments, the people we meet, the times we share, are my little gifts of gratitude.

In honor of this light, Hopeful Connections will be sending painted votive candles during this holiday season to any family who has lost a child. We hope this will bring peace to families who often find the holidays a difficult time. Please email me at Maura@hopefulconnections.com or send us a message on our Facebook page at www.facebook.com/HopefulConnections if you would like to receive or send a candle to someone who has had a pregnancy loss or experienced an early infant death. We will need your name, address and baby’s name. We hope you all feel the light and love of this holiday season.