There are so many thoughts that come to my mind today on Natalie's 8th angel day. I feel so sad, angry, and semi-in despair. When we buried Natalie 8 years ago it took everything in me to learn how to cope with her death and the fact that I was still alive. It took so much to figure out how to keep living and how to find Hope in the future. It took a lot of searching, crying, yelling, and sadness to acknowledge God never left my side, that He was crying with me, and that somehow He had a plan and the plan was for the Good. I sat at Natalie's grave yesterday and had some deep words with God again. I reminded Him of the Promise He made me that He would restore 3 things in my life, one being a child. I asked for Him to bring this Promise. We remembered Natalie by bringing her 8 beautiful sunflowers. But it wasn't enough...in the words of Bryan "We should be making her a sunflower birthday cake." Because we buried Josiah 6 months ago in a similar tragedy, the impact of Natalie's angel day was very hard, confusing, and made me angry in a way I haven't felt in a long time. I remembered believing God would somehow make it ok and that I had to believe in the future and keep His Promise in my heart. How can I say that this has happened? How can I look back into my life just 6 months ago and say that it is ok now...that God has done something wonderful since then in this area. But as the sun began to quiet, I realized the Lord was telling me again that He was there the day she was born, He was there the day her heart beat for the first time, and He was there the days and months that I cried and yelled in anger and sorrow. God said "I am not done yet. It is not over." So I left Believing. We drove away yearning for God's presence and desperately needing His Grace. I will keep Believing. Although it takes all that I have, I will Believe.
This past Mother's Day (one of the hardest days besides angel days) I asked the Lord to let me see my children. It was more of a physical sadness, a raising of the voice wanting my children with us, but God did answer my prayer. I had a vision of our 5 children in heaven. I drew it quickly in my journal and wrote a small explanation beside it. Only months later, my friend Jenn had a vision of our children too that nearly matched the one I had. I took a photo of the picture I drew and e-mailed it to her and she said that was it! She is a painter and asked if she could paint the vision and I said YES. I asked if I could post a photo of the painting and today is the perfect day in honor of Natalie Grace. The vision is of our 5 children, Natalie Grace, Malachi Bryan, Rachel Elizabeth, Jireh Tamas, and Josiah Keith walking toward a bright Light that is enveloping them. They are happy, clothed in robes with sashes. Natalie is in the middle of all of them holding each hand, keeping her brothers and sister together waiting for us. I can't explain enough the Joy that surrounded them. Natalie was proud to be the big sister. She lead them to His Throne.
I miss you and love you. I wish you were here with every ounce of who I am. You had beautiful lips, your nose was just like mine, your toes were small and soft. We shouldn't have to go through life without you, but we do. I want to live loving the God who created you, and live a life that would honor you as your Mother. I would have preferred to life Faithfully to show you how when you were alive, but all I can do now, is live Faithfully without you. Either way, I hoped it would make you proud. I know the Hope of seeing you is real. It is more real than even the life I live here. You are my first born and my legacy. You remind me what I have to come. Your life has unveiled the Power of Heaven and the reality of the Eternal. I love you always,