My heart is heavy today for all of the moms I've met along this journey of loss who experienced their first Christmas without their babies last weekend. Many nights when I wake up to feed Kaylee, I pray for the incredible women whose stories and testimonies have greatly impacted my life. And today I hurt with them.
I remember just wanting to curl up on the couch in a blanket a year ago during the holidays. Celebration felt so forced and empty. In some way, I thought that feeling would disappear this year now that our arms are no longer empty, but I was wrong. This past week has been really difficult for Shaun and I. We have felt the hole left in our hearts and our family by Zachary more than we have in a while, and we grieved the fact that he wasn't with us once again this Christmas. It becomes more and more apparent as time goes on that the void left in our lives by Zachary's absence will never be filled.
But, we did enjoy celebrating with Kaylee. She is so sweet. As we read the account of Christ's birth in Luke 2, I found myself thinking a lot about verse 19: "But Mary treasured all these things, pondering them in her heart." I've read that verse so many times, but it has never clicked like it did this past week. So many times in the past five weeks, I have paused while snuggling my girl on my shoulder or giving her a bath or watching Shaun hold her, and I usually close my eyes in an attempt to store away a memory of that moment in time. I just want to treasure each day with Kaylee. And, I think that's probably what Mary did with Jesus, too...I think that's exactly what Luke 2:19 is referring to. Because, although she was chosen by God to carry and give birth to the Savior of the world, Mary was also a mommy who had an indescribable love for her baby and wanted to remember him at each stage of life.
What a gift to be a mom to two kids, both of whom continue to change my life every day.