The last few weeks have been extremely difficult. The numbness, stress and sadness that accompanies the weeks leading up to April 14th hit me like a freight train every single year. I walk through the past. I remember the goodness of God and the pain of disappointment. Something that always sets in during this time is fear. I begin to hyper focus on little things. Lately, Sadie Grace has been running and all the sudden she turns her right foot in a bit. She has done it several times at random. The first time I saw it, I panicked. Could she have some kind of neurological problem I have not caught? Am I am missing something? I quickly go down the road of thinking about how I will not survive another catastrophic event. I’ll need to go straight to the mental institute because I just cannot take another tragedy. Last time Sadie Grace turned her foot in, Bryan saw it and the fear in my eyes. He assured me she was doing it on purpose. I was ready to get an MRI. I know it sounds extreme. I know it sounds irrational. But it is real fear. So, I have been pondering how to overcome this instead of focusing on it. I was reminded of this quote from President Snow from the Hunger Games movie,
“Hope. It is the only thing stronger than fear. A little hope is effective. A lot of hope is dangerous.”
This quote comes to me often because I struggle with fear. The fear of losing someone. The fear of not doing what I am supposed to be doing. The fear of what is happening to my kids when I am not with them. The fear of forgetting Meredith as time goes on. Much of my fear is surrounded around my children because I have experienced a parent’s greatest fear- losing one.
For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.
I rarely learn anything new or life changing in movies, but I have to say that President Snow’s quote is not only true but inspiring. God promises me hope even in the midst of my grief. He promises He is with me and that He will not leave me until He has fulfilled His promises. As I look back over the last 8 years I am grateful for the hope that He has given me along the way and promises to me in the future.
In remembrance of Meredith’s 8th death anniversary, I have decided to donate my wedding dress to Angel Gowns. This non-profit makes beautiful dresses to give to bereaved parents. Seamstresses all around the nation create gowns that children can be buried in. I cannot wait to see my dress recreated into such an amazing gift. I will never forget a complete stranger buying and delivering the most gorgeous gown for my daughter. At the end of Mer’s life, her body was so bruised and she hardly looked like my baby anymore. I almost had a closed casket for her. But, then I saw her in the most amazing, white, delicate dress with a bonnet to cover her wounds and it was like she was back to being the baby I knew again. She was the most beautiful child I had ever seen. Peaceful and perfect. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate Mer this year than by giving another mom the most perfect dress for her little angel and maybe even a little bit of hope.