I have yet to write about Charlie’s entrance into this world, especially in this space, but if you’ve been visiting, you probably noticed the tweets and Instagram pics of my earth baby. That story will come… I am still processing his birth.
Today, I wanted to share Charlie’s first event: A Time of Remembrance, which is an annual memorial gathering at the hospital where I delivered him and his big brother, Calvin. It included a slideshow with the names of children who had died. This is the slide with Calvin’s name:
There was also a flower ceremony where we went up to place a flower in an an arrangement and said the names of our children out loud into a microphone. I carried Charlie, and this was my first walking while holding him (because of my pelvic injury). It was a surreal feeling, walking up there with my earth baby in my arms to say the names of my children in heaven. To look into the faces of the therapists who facilitated our support group and be embraced by them as I held our longed-for baby to-keep.
I wonder what people thought when they saw us there with a newborn. If there was resentment or a twinge of pain. I wonder what people thought as they watched me carrying my fourth baby, my only living child, as I tried to quiet sobs and tears for the babies I miss poured down my face, as I said three names into the microphone. Could they see more than the blessing I held in my arms and know that my story still includes pain and heartache?
Dear Calvin, I feel so blessed to have your baby brother with me today, on your 40th month in heaven. It’s still hard to believe I am a mother of four, that I’ve had to accept that three of you will “grow up” with Jesus, that Charlie is really here. I love each of you so much. Each of you occupy my heart and mind. That will never change.