Today, March 7, 2011 marks the nine year anniversary of the day my first son was born. He was beautiful and perfect, but never took a breath. At 37 weeks pregnant, and a “textbook perfect” pregnancy, I realized that my reality was the one thing that “could never happen”.
Words cannot describe how my world crashed down around me when my doctor spoke just three words: there’s no heartbeat. While my son had been active just hours before, my womb was now still and quiet. Even nine years later, everything is so very vivid and the pain so easily breaks through the surface of time.
Even in the midst of the immense pain I felt, I had an unexplainable peace. After our son was born, I remember Chad’s arms wrapped around me, but I could also feel the arms of my loving Heavenly Father wrapped around me. I knew He would be with me as I walked the uncertain path ahead and I felt comforted in a way that I had never felt before.
During the past 9 years, the Lord has always been faithful. This does not mean that my heart does not still ache, it does not mean that I don’t shed tears and it doesn’t mean that I miss my son any less… but it does mean that through this journey, my faith has been strengthened and I have been comforted.
While I may never know the full reason that God chose to take my son from this earth, I do trust that His will is always good and perfect. I know that the 37 weeks I carried Grant in my womb were the days that God ordained for his life. I know that from the beginning, God knew the pain I would feel and that He allowed it for my good.
I also realize that the Lord has blessed me abundantly through Grant’s life and through Grant’s death. God has given me opportunities to reach out to others during their darkest hour. He has held me when I could not stand, He has led me, and He has grown me in ways that I could not have grown otherwise.
My life has changed in so many ways in the last 9 years and I am thankful for the blessings and for the pain. I am thankful He has given me a desire to live fully for Him and I am thankful He is continually growing me in my walk.
While grief is a journey, life is also a journey. I know that my destination is an eternity in Heaven praising my King and being reunited with all of the loved ones who have gone before me who were called by God to salvation. I have hope and I have peace. I have comfort and I have joy – even through trials and affliction.
On this day of my son’s ninth birth-day, even though my heart still aches, I can praise the Lord. I look forward to the years ahead and how the Lord will continue to sanctify me and bless me through the life and death of this beloved son.