26 October 2010

Presence & Comfort

I have some pretty amazing friends -- some of whom I've never ever met before.

Hugging a friend at Ewan's funeral

Many of you reading here also know Jill. You may be here because she pointed you my way, or maybe it's the other way around. In any case, she's coming to Seattle on Wednesday morning to visit for a few days. We connected somehow over Twitter several months ago when, both of us pregnant (she about five weeks ahead of me), we were seeking to connect with other heart families. We were prenatally diagnosed (her baby Joshua with HLHS, and my baby Ewan with TOF and Pulmonary Atresia) about a month apart, our boys born about a month apart, and died just two days apart. We shared so much of this journey together, each of us having the chance to hold up the other.

And now we're taking advantage of the opportunity to connect in person. I think I can say for us both that we really don't want other people to share in common with us the thing that brought us together. But I think I can also say that we are incredibly thankful that each of us found the other: that if we had to walk this path, we did not have to walk it alone. It is so good to have someone else who can truly say: I get it.

I am also grateful to have other friends who can come and sit with me during this time. Christianne will come to visit for a few days in early November, and Sarah and Terri will follow shortly after. There is no agenda, and there are no set plans. These women are simply offering themselves and their hearts to me, to sit with me, cry with me, laugh with me, listen to me, and remember Ewan with me. I cannot think of a more generous offering.

I know it's not an easy thing to do, to sit with someone who is grieving. Grief makes for an unpredictable and rocky terrain with sharp peaks, deep valleys, and unexpected turns. Having people alongside for the journey may not change the severity of the terrain, but not having to navigate it alone makes a world of difference to the one who must walk it. I hope that someday, I can offer to someone else what these women offer me -- the chance simply to listen and be present, be available. Not to offer words where none will do.

To all of these women, thank you. To those who come and read here, thank you. To those who leave comments and send me e-mails and offer suggestions of ways Ewan's legacy can be passed on, I thank you. You all offer presence and comfort. You all remind me that I don't do this alone.

15 comments:

BJ mommy to angel Alexis said...

You and baby Ewan are in my thoughts he and every day. Sending you much love!

Ausmerican Housewife said...

I am *SO* glad you and Jill can meet up. (My husband and I found eachother online and are quite familiar with this friendship and meeting people face to face thing.) Oh I pray that meeting eachother and that first initial tear filled hug will be such a comfort for the both of you. Bless you two dear mamas.

hopeannfaith said...

What a blessing for you all!
It is definitely in the human contact that we get our greatest comfort, and I am thankful to God that you will be receiving it from some of the women in this wonderful community that you and Ewan built.

It really is a community of mothers. Each with her own function, each able to understand if only a facet of what we celebrate here.

I thank God for you Kirsten, and that He is faitful and providing you with this special gift of meeting some of your girls.

Enjoy Love <3 You most definitely deserve it.

Andrae

hopeannfaith said...

What a blessing for you all!
It is definitely in the human contact that we get our greatest comfort, and I am thankful to God that you will be receiving it from some of the women in this wonderful community that you and Ewan built.

It really is a community of mothers. Each with her own function, each able to understand if only a facet of what we celebrate here.

I thank God for you Kirsten, and that He is faitful and providing you with this special gift of meeting some of your girls.

Enjoy Love <3 You most definitely deserve it.

Andrae

christianne said...

I love you, dear girl. And I've been lifting up in advance our time together, asking Jesus to allow whatever it needs to be, to be. No expectations or agenda, just letting Jesus be with us and between us in whatever is best and fitting and right for that time.

xoxo always,
Christianne

Papillon Sky Photography said...

I am so sorry to hear that your friend Jill lost her baby too, but am grateful you do have someone on your journey with you right now, in the same place, who can be there with you as you go through this process. Thinking of you every day. I keep hearing the song "Hold On" by Sarah McLachlan in my head when I think of you. Have you heard that song?

terri said...

i can't wait to get off that plane and give you a hug that is bigger than the ones that fit in these comment boxes.

Jacky said...

You and your family are still in our prayers every single day and will continue to be.

Genie

Katie said...

I'm so glad you have Jill coming up! Hopefully, you both will find so much comfort and healing in each other's company.

I read your blog daily and I'm amazed by you Kirsten. I'm so glad you're willing to keep posting, I do believe that what you're doing is healing and teaching us all. Ewan will not be forgotten and with each new person that reads his story and your beautiful words, a life is surely to be touched and hopefully changed in some small way. I know mine has.

I look forward to meeting you someday too- we don't have any trips planned over to the westside but I could surely make one anytime :)

Enjoy these next few days...big heart hugs to both of you.

Sheila said...

We haven't met face to face, but you amaze me. Your grace in grief is a model for all of us.

God bless you and your husband.

Anonymous said...

I'm not sure how I stumbled on your blog, but I am grateful I did. Ewan was a darling boy, and a serene and peaceful spirit. No one can ever understand what you've experienced, and I would not begin to try. I did want you to know how strong you are, and how lucky I believe you and Ewan were to be touched by one another. God bless you and your family. And thank you, sometimes it is so easy to forget what's important.

felmleyfam said...

praise be to God for His presence in such a great time of need, for meeting your need(S) so specifically. we'll be praying for your time together. my kids still enjoy saying your sweet phrase, "baby ewan, how you doin'" it just sounds so sweet and reminds us of your playfulness and care as a mother.

Anonymous said...

Family of Ewan,

I just wanted you to know that I'm so impressed with your faith and courage to share your inner most thoughts and feelings.

My situation is different from yours (lost my twin girls, just brought one son home after 10 weeks in the NICU and the other is in the NICU) however I feel so connected to you. Your words have helped me grieve for and honor my girls.

At the ICN service for our lost babies, someone sang the following song by Andrew Peterson. It was so incredibly beautiful that I thought that I would share the lyrics with you. It is called "Lullaby":

Well, I haven't got a lot to offer
Just a rhyme and a melody
But I promised I'd write if it took all night
A lullaby for thee

CHORUS
They say there ain't no sleeping in heaven
Baby, that don't mean that you can't dream
So when you close your eyes
Know your mother and I
Pray the Lord your soul to keep
And we never got the chance to hold you
And we never got to tell you goodnight
So we hope you can hear as Jesus cradles you near
Baby, this is your lullaby

So are you running with the angels?
Are you singing with the saints?
Are you throwing a ball against a heavenly wall
Maybe swinging on the pearly gates?

Well there's so much love between us
And so much that I wanna say
I wanna ramble awhile with my beautiful child
Baby, I can hardly wait...

CHORUS

With love, prayers and hope
Maria

Beth W. said...

Praying that you and Jill have a restful time of healing and comfort while you visit. We continue to pray for both of you as you walk through this valley. May God be your light and your salvation always. Blessings, sister.

melifaif said...

I hope you enjoy your visits and I pray they bring you comfort, peace and joy. And I still ache for your loss...but I am happy to see my visiting and umimportant words are still wanted. Or appreciated....