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Thursday, December 6, 2018

Through The Service of Others He Carried Me

Eleven years ago, after the devastating news that our tiny baby boy growing in my womb had passed away, I fell into a deep, dark place inside myself. I cried. A lot. For about solid 5 days I cried. I would wake in the morning, still wrapped in the fogginess of dreams-- Most often dreams of delivering a perfectly healthy baby boy--things were perfect. I would look lovingly down at my sweet tiny child and believe he was real, that he was really in my arms... then, something would snap me back to reality. I would awaken to find my arms empty and the hollow pit of grief still intact. I would again find myself unable to control my tears. I'd lie in bed and cry all day, trying to wish those sweet dreams into reality to no avail.

The grief of losing my child was overwhelming. It nagged at me relentlessly. I withdrew from friends and family... and from myself. I went into a sort of 'auto-pilot" and I hardly remember anything about the first 2 or three months after. I felt as though I had completely lost myself. I questioned whether the principles I'd had been taught my entire life were true. How could Heavenly Father allow such pain to tear his faithful daughter down??? Why would he want me to feel such pain?

I was so wrapped up in the hurt, I almost missed seeing the good that came of my little angel's short life.

Looking back and trying to remember the first few months after Andrew returned to Heaven are hard for me. I honestly cannot remember much. I do, however, remember the outpouring of service and love from dear friends and family. We had so much love and compassion showered upon us, and so much goodness passed our way. I know without a doubt that the Lord saw fit to humble me and allow me to feel the love and genuine caring of others. He wasn't trying to hurt me. He didn't want to see me stumble and fall. Now, it is clear to see that during my darkest hour, I was not alone. He was there with me. Through the service of others, He carried me. I am so grateful for the loving acts of kindness offered by others in my time of need. I feel so blessed to have had so many Christ-like friends who loved and cared about us. I have learned that a lot can be accomplished in a small act of kindness.

I remember one day in particular... I was unable to pull myself together. I heard my phone chime telling me I had a new text message. The message was from a girl I knew, but not really well. "I've been thinking about you. You'll let me know if you need anything. ANYTHING. Big hug." I was so touched by her simple act of kindness. It had made my day that day. It wasn't much... but it was enough. because of that simple text message, we have become lifelong friends.

Today, I am asking that everyone who has been inspired by Andrew's life pay it forward. Call a friend, share a talent, make cookies for your neighbor, send a text message to someone you've been thinking about. Just let the people you care about know what they mean to you. Any act of kindness will do. It doesn't need to be anything big or fancy. I know from experience a little act of service can go a long way and I have also learned that nothing heals a broken heart or grieving spirit better than offering service unto others.

It's been eleven years since we kissed our tiny, sleeping baby Andrew goodbye. It feels like an eternity has passed... but at the same time, I feel like it happened just yesterday. The wounds have begun to heal and the grief and guilt have long since been replaced with hope and joy in things to come and love for others whom I have served and for those who have served me. I still miss my baby. I think about his sweet little face every day. I look forward to seeing him, hugging him, and telling him how much he means to me. However, I am no longer painfully burdened with the loss. He gives me hope and a feeling of being fully invested in Heaven. We gave up precious time with him now, for something better... an eternity of love and family companionship together in the Celestial Kingdom. I am filled with love for my Heavely Father. I am grateful for the knowledge that we forever sealed as an eternal family.

Happy Birthday, Little Andrew. We love you.

There's a Special Angel in Heaven that is a part of me.
It is not where I wanted him, but where God meant for him to be.
He was here but for a moment, like a nighttime shooting star.
And though he is in Heaven, he isn't very far.
So I send this special message, to the Heavens up above.
Please take care of my Angel, and send him all my love

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