Today marks the eleventh anniversary of the day when sweet Daniel was lifted from my womb into a world full of medical providers who would monitor him closely for the 36 hours he lived on earth.
Eleven years ago, January 26th was on a Friday. And today, being a Friday seems hard to walk through my normal activities without remembering exactly where I was and who was with me on that day. ELEVEN YEARS AGO!
Here is a picture of me about this same time (3pm on that Friday):
While time has/does heal all wounds, there are some scars that you never can forget the story to. I am not the same person that I was eleven years and one day ago. And praise God that I have grown closer to Him and understand more fully His love and grace today than my 27 year-old self ever did.
Yes, I just told you my age.
And even though I have been an absent blogger for, oh say, the last three months, I want to share eleven things that I have learned in the last eleven years thanks to the heartache of my son’s home being in heaven and thanks to a Heavenly Father who never gave up on me or my emotions or my broken heart.
So for those of you who are subscribed to this blog, you will get a notification for the next ten days because here is number one:
Lesson #1: Life is a gift.
Before we had Daniel, I had a spiritual equation that circulated in my brain. It is nowhere in the Bible, but I know I am not the only person who has ever thought like this….here is my spiritualized mathematical equation (I love mathematical equations):
Living Right + Loving God = Easy, Happy Life (Get what you want, etc., etc.)
All of you are right now rolling your eyes at me and saying things like, “Bless her heart.” Yes, bless it.
Because up until that point, life had been one big milestone after another…graduate school, get a real job, get married, have a dog (okay, I had the dog before we got married) and then start having children.
We had Ruthie very easily and then got pregnant again with Daniel and I was pretty sure this was just how we rolled. Having babies was easy. I was healthy.
I knew from the moment I saw two pink lines that this baby growing in me was a little boy and that his name would be Daniel Lee…I even sang to him in my womb.
And that was a gift from God. To KNOW Daniel from the moment he was the size of a pea until I finally got to hold him as his heart beats its last…I got to know him personally for nine months and I am grateful.
I realize now that my spiritualized mathematical equation is silly and COMPLETELY INACCURATE, but what I know for certain is this: LIFE IS A GIFT.
I got nine months with my son.
I’ve had fifteen years with his dad.
I’ve had twelve years with his sister.
I’ve had nine years with his other sister.
I’ve had seven years with his youngest sister.
And all of it is a gift from God.
All of life is a gift whether it is little or big…whether it is hidden or on the front page of the newspaper.
And I am thankful for all of the life in and around me. And I would encourage you to love the life you have been given today. Spend time loving on the people who make your world go round.
Life truly is a gift.
“I praise you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works; my soul knows it very well. My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately woven in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed substance; in your book were written every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.” Psalm 139:14-16