Dear Alli,

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Two.whole.years.  Two years have passed since I was placed on hospital bed rest to wait.  To wait for your death.  To wait for your life.  To wait for all the would have, could have, should haves.  To wait for your miracle.  Our miracle 

Two years to mourn all the memories, pain, the feelings.  Two years to mourn the loss of a normal infant, toddler, and child (I hate the word normal by the way, but there's really no other word).  Two years to mourn what was our normal life.  Two years have passed since this all began.  In so many ways, we have moved on. 

We are healing.

We are alive and living.
We have survived. 

You have survived. 
But in so many other ways time has just stood still.  Two years later, the feelings are still fresh.  Many are still raw.  There are still flashbacks and nightmares.  I still jump when the phone rings.  I hear the trash truck coming down the road and I flashback to nurses running and pushing crash carts down halls to the rooms of little babies dying.  To the room of our little baby dying.  Certain smells set me off. Beeps wake me up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat to only find you’re tucked safely in your crib two rooms away.  It’s all still very much there.  It’s real.  It still hurts.  Even two years later. 

Two years ago at this time I lay in a bed, just down from the nurse’s station in 3E.  I listened to the cries of babies and proud families boast as they welcomed new healthy additions into the world.  I begged for more time so I could experience that same joy, again.  I begged for your health, your brain, for your lungs. 

And then a week later, fresh from a c-section and in a drug and trauma induced state, I lay in a recovery room, begging for more time to be with you.  Begging for your health, your brain, your lungs. 

As we approach your second birthday, just a week away, I remember what my wishes for you were two years ago.  My main wish was simply life, however that was to come to us; we simply wanted your life, here on earth, with us.  God allowed us to declare that.  And we witnessed many miracles.  The gift of your life is one of amazement and wonder.  It’s an amazing little life that’s already done amazing things.   And I can’t wait to see how God continues to use you. 

But I can’t yet celebrate your birthday.    

I can, however, celebrate you!

I can celebrate your 10 perfect toes and your 10 perfect for piano playing fingers.   

I can celebrate your green teeth.  They’ve actually grown on me and I hardly notice they are there.  Hardly. 

I can celebrate how ticklish you are and if I even put my hands up in an attempt to tickle, you throw your head back in laughter. 

I can celebrate you laugh, your smile, even your cries. 

I can celebrate how you adore your sisters.  And they simply adore you. 

I can celebrate your rhythm.  You’ve got moves, sister.  You can dance.

I can celebrate your voice, although rarely heard, you have noticed it in the last few weeks.  I celebrate with belief that you will one day talk. 

I can celebrate your ability to work your therapists.  I celebrate knowing, this shows your little brain is working.  You comprehend.  You understand….knowing your likes and dislikes.  You can play us all like a fiddle.  I can celebrate that. 

And I can even celebrate those hours and hours of weekly therapy that I feel are sometimes wasted.  They’re not.  You get it, you really do. 

I can celebrate the braces I put on your legs every morning.  How they give you stability.  How they make you mad.  How they even make you just sit for hours in protest because they are on.  I can celebrate your ability to protest and get mad. 

I can celebrate the oxygen I slip over your head and the pulse ox that’s wrapped around your chubby foot at night while you’re peacefully sleeping.  I can celebrate every.single.breath.

I can celebrate your g-tube because it has nourished you and kept you healthy for so long.  It’s a thorn in my side on a daily basis, no doubt, but your health has meant more than eating normally.    

I can celebrate the reciprocal movement in your legs.  Again it proves both sides of your brain are talking to one another.  I can celebrate and know that you will one day walk.  On your terms of course. 

I can celebrate how a tiny baby brought thousands of people together in prayer, in fasting, in belief. 

I can celebrate the patience and surrender God has taught me through you. 

Alli, I can’t celebrate your birthday.  Nothing remotely surrounding that day was exciting nor a memorable occcasion.  But I do, I swear on 5 Bibles I do, I celebrate YOU.  I celebrate your life.  And I celebrate all the things you are, all the things you can do, and all the things you will do in your life.  Even if it wasn't my plan for you.  It's His and I can celebrate that.   

I love you to the Heavens and back times infinity. 

Love, Mama



  1. So much I can relate to as we approach Asher's 1st birthday! Very sweet words.

  2. Jackie, you are amazing! Love to you and your sweet family!


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