A few days ago, I went to breakfast with my mom and little guy before I went to work …Bad decision…By the time we were done, my hair was decorated with butter highlights as was my black sweater. Of course this made for entirely appropriate Court attire complete with the sweet scent of pancakes and maple syrup.
But before that, my morning had already started out on the wrong foot. I jumped in the shower, always trying to hurry before the little monster finds me as his obsession with toilets and showers has progressed to a dangerous level. Before I could get out, he had snuck in and grabbed the plunger, and paraded around the house with the dirty tool. ABSOLUTELY DISGUSTED, I quickly wrapped in a towel and chased him down, returning the plunger it to its place, then corralled the critter and washed his grimy little hands.
After diffusing that situation, I began to comb my wet hair when I was ambushed by my daughter as I sat in the chair to get the tangles out. She smelled so WONDERFUL…Agh…the aroma was absolutely suffocating!! While I was in the shower, she had not so discreetly helped herself to a healthy dose of my perfume…Trying not to gag, her desperate pleas requesting to brush my hair won me over. Even knowing this is always a painful experience, I caved..So this was the result…a comb stuck in my hair, how she does it, no clue… but it hurt and took me minutes to undo the damage….Perfect start to the perfect day!
Well, the kids had a wonderful Easter as we celebrated the amazing hope of Jesus and they delighted in their Easter baskets that cheerful Sunday morning. We went to church, played in the nursery, took pictures and visited with the congregation. The children were all raving about their chocolate bunnies and eggs, barely able to contain their excitement. However, my little one thoroughly over enjoyed his chocolate eggs and with the onset of a cold, his chocolate booger covered kisses I have had my fill of for sure!
Later, we dropped the boys off at grandma’s house, leaving just the girls. On our way to town, my daughter wanted to stop at visit Lydia and I was so happy to do so. We pulled into the cemetery and were the only ones there. The sun was out and spring was in the air. She hopped out immediately, ran to Lydia’s headstone, and draped her little hands over the front, staring at Lydia’s portrait which laid in the center of the stone. It caught me by surprise and I ran to grab my phone and snapped this priceless and timeless photo in the still of nature. The moment and picture were beautiful, yet simultaneously sent tears of heartbreak down my face.
This was a time where it was just her without her brothers, able to be herself and spend moments alone with her sister. A sister she will know and love through pictures and stories. I can’t help but think of all the what ifs. What would they be like together? To see them playing, laughing, sharing, as sisters do. Oh what I would give to have them here together.
For now, she wears her sisters old clothes, plays with her Barbie’s and looks beautiful in hand me down hair bows. They have a special relationship, one like no other. They will forever have each other, a bond that will last for eternity.
Yet God has given her the gift of three earthly brothers to love her, guide her, teach her, protect her and one beautiful heavenly sister to carry in her heart wherever life takes her. Yes, this little girl is incredibly blessed.
After our visit with Lydia ended, we loaded up and headed out to our property to plant a few trees as well as enjoy an egg hunt with the rest of the family. When we first moved back, we took with us a few trees and plants that were given to us right after the car accident.
We transplanted them and have done everything in our power to protect these plants and keep them alive.
This particular task is very challenging for me as I definitely do not have a green thumb! I’m thankful that my mother was given this gift, but it just wasn’t in the genes for me.
I began to think about the importance of these lively beings and wanted to share. In the weeks following Lydia’s passing, we received an abundance of thoughtful gifts from books, stuffed animals, mementos, to plants and trees. Every one of these holds a special place in our hearts. By keeping these gifts of all kinds with us, it’s like hanging onto one last thread, not wanting it to break, while holding on to the connections and memories of days past.
My one favorite was the sunflower shrub we received from dear friends the day after accident. We planted it at the head of the driveway and it became the little ray of sunshine that we saw every day when we returned home, giving us that little bit of hope we needed to see each new day. A year later, on the one year anniversary, we received an angel. A green shrub, displayed in the shape of angel and it was just what we needed. I’m happy to say the angel is with us and we will be planting it soon at the new house!
Not too long ago, I came across Ellie’s Way. A fabulous organization which aims at bringing joy to widows and bereaved parents. They offer gift boxes to those new in their grief consisting of books, music, poetry, jewelry, resources and more! In addition, they offer other services including, a wonderful team of Ellie’s Angels, to assist families during that first week after loss and then some. Personally, I think this is such a fabulous idea and fills such a need, as this is when most families are in such extreme shock, they cannot even begin to understand their immediate needs. I know that my family, without a doubt would have benefitted from these heartfelt services. Thoughtful gifts are such a blessing to grieving families.
Ellie’s way assists with meal planning, memorials, resources, stories and more. Established after losing their young daughter to a tragic accident in 2012, Ellie’s parents have created a compassionate organization while honoring their dear Ellie.