Frequently, but especially this time of year, two special friends and their families are on my heart. They are mothers who are without their children, fathers without their daughters, and brothers without their sisters.
Yesterday would’ve been Reese’s second birthday.
I remember a playdate at Katie’s house just a few weeks before Reese was due. The anticipation of that baby girl’s arrival was so sweet. Katie and Jason had her room ready and Zach was eager to meet his little sister.
Just days later, the heartbreak of Reese’s loss was so very real to many of us. Katie does a fabulous job expressing her feelings and sharing openly on her blog. Her strength and dependence on the Lord is an inspiration to me (and many others). I love the things their family does on a regular basis to remember Reese and honor her as a part of their family. Big brother Zach and little brother Colson will know and love their sister, even though she can’t be with them.
Today would’ve been Isabella’s fourth birthday.
Becky and I were pregnant together. In fact, Caedmon and Issy’s due dates were just a few weeks apart. We envisioned having lots of playdates and watching our kids grow up together. They certainly liked to get feisty when Becky and I were around each other while they were still in utero. About a month before our due dates, Becky and I spent one particularly sweltering week in Kansas City nearly walking ourselves to death. Bonding at its finest.
Becky and Brad, along with their twins Nate and Noah, have an amazing testimony because of Isabella’s life. At their 20-week ultrasound, they were told the worst news an expectant family can imagine and in the following weeks they were given little hope by the doctors. But their hope was in the Lord. And despite all the odds, Becky carried Isabella nearly to term and she was a beautiful little girl when her family laid their eyes on her and she met Jesus. In addition to the special things they do to remember her throughout the year, Becky plans a special day for Isabella’s birthday. I know that today, they are celebrating her. Big brothers Nate and Noah and little brother Levi will always know how special their sister is.
Today, I am especially thankful for these two families and the testimonies they have through their daughters. They continue to express the love of Christ though pieces of their hearts are missing. They know their daughters are with Jesus, but that doesn’t make the hurt go away. Still, they know that one day their families will be whole again, and that gives us all hope.