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Sunday, January 10, 2010

One Month of Missing Mariah

(Another "journal entry" post. Just letting you know.)

Every night, every single night, after Brian and I have knelt in prayer and then snuggled into our blankets, I cry. Sometimes I just weep quietly, sometimes I sob uncontrollably. And every night, every single night, I say to Brian, "push play". He knows what that means, and he starts reciting as if he were a tape recorder... "Heavenly Father loves us. He has a plan for our family here. He is doing something good. He has a plan for Mariah. We can trust Him. She is not lost. We will hold her again."

And so it has been every night for a whole month.

Grief is a weird thing. I don't know if it actually gets better, or our ability to bear it just increases. The Lord makes us stronger some days, lightens the burden on others. I don't know how that works. But I do know that I would not have survived the heartbreak and sorrow of these past days if it wasn't for Him. I am trying with everything in me to turn my heart over to Him and let Him help me and heal me, mold and shape me. I believe He is trying to make my heart more like His, and I want to let Him do it.

And He is teaching me. And giving me even more reason to hope. Isn't this treasure of knowledge lovely?

"The Lord takes many away, even in infancy, that they may escape the envy of man, and the sorrows and evils of this present world; they were too pure, too lovely, to live on earth."

“A question may be asked—‘Will mothers have their children in eternity?’ Yes! Yes! Mothers, you shall have your children; for they shall have eternal life, for their debt is paid.”

“Children … must rise just as they died; we can there hail our lovely infants with the same glory—the same loveliness in the celestial glory.”

-Joseph Smith

Those are such promising words, and I try to hold on to them every minute. And though I am so very sad and miss her so very much, I am trying to surround myself with the light of the Lord, who can dispel all darkness. And the Lord is helping me. I have been inspired to place visual and tangible reminders of His promises around our home, and they bring me comfort and peace.

Dear friends sent us this lovely quote, and we hung it with some pictures of our Angel Baby.

And another friend stitched love into this powerful reminder that I placed where I can see it throughout the day.

Around the house I have left scripture quotes to strengthen me.

My favorite reminder of God's promises is my Mariah necklace, engraved with a picture and words given to me while I was in the temple 2 weeks after we laid her to rest.

"Each tear we shed is one of love,
While we're down here and you're above.
Forever loved is what you'll be.
Always in our hearts through eternity.
When at the trump we'll again see your face,
Then in our arms once more, darling Mariah Grace.

It is on a chain just long enough to rest right by my heart. I wear it all the time.

And with the Lord's strength, I somehow made it through the first month without her.

Brian and I visited her grave on her one month birthday. It was as bitterly cold as the day we buried her. I placed a single pink rose, along with a pink banner and a small picture on the site where the little perfect body of my sweet daughter is laid. Brian sang "How Great Thou Art" while I cried.

After dinner, the children all blew kisses to heaven for Mariah to catch, and ate pink cupcakes I had decorated with candy hearts.

Brian and I knelt in prayer that night, and then snuggled into our blankets. He wiped my tears, and I said to him, "push play". And he started reciting as if he were a tape recorder... "Heavenly Father loves us. He has a plan for our family here. He is doing something good. He has a plan for Mariah. We can trust Him. She is not lost. We will hold her again."

Happy One Month Birthday, Sweet Angel Baby. We miss you so very much, Mariah, and love you even more.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Farewell to the Holidays...Hello New Year!

Yep, the tree is down, the lights are no longer twinkling, and I am just now doing the holiday blog!!! We were just too busy having fun! Here are some of our Holiday Highlights!

I just love holiday clothes....and especially the cuties in them!!

How about cute Christmas Elves helping in the kitchen?!?

And those excited Christmas lambies on the morning of the big day?!?!?

Oh, the joy of visits from loved ones! Thanks for coming to see us, Katie and Andrew!

Don't forget the gingerbread house decorating!

Even better...the lights at the temple!

And more Christmas posing for momma...

And even MORE Christmas posing.... (can we be done, yet, mom?!?!?)

Ok, how about some family field trips while we enjoy Dad?!?!? Yahoo!

And let's add in some cousins for some New Year's Celebrating!!

But the best of all:

The sacred wonder of the babe born in Bethlehem, who brought the greatest love the world has ever known. So magnificent, it seems incomprehensible, but so beautifully simple, even a child can feel it.

Yep, that's how it makes me feel, too!

May it fill all of our hearts each and every day!