Something to Give

Yesterday, I stood again in the place where heaven and earth meet.

It has been fourteen years since I felt Him brush past me, filling the room with soothing peace that knows no reason, and love that floods with warmth and hope, as I sang to my baby boy when he went straight from my arms to the arms of Jesus.

“Guess what I got to do,” I said breathlessly, that day 14 years ago, when I called Dinah and Ginny, after holding my Thomas.

There is nothing so sacred this side of heaven. Nothing so precious. As the gift of life.

And nothing more miraculous and astounding than when heaven and earth meet for a moment. Anything is possible. Everything you hope for is real.

Grief and joy dance with abandon.

Because life…no matter how brief…is meant to be celebrated. Soaked in. Honored. Treasured.

Holly and I had the incredible privilege of walking with a family, waiting to say hello and goodbye to their sweet baby girl. We spent most of the night and the better part of the following day, standing on sacred ground with them. It was the first time we were able to offer in person support in those crucial moments…together.

As I scurried to pack my bag to take to the family, I ran through the SGM office, choosing crocheted gowns by Marlene, and satin wraps with pink lining and daisies made by Peggy, a Comfort Bear that several hands sewed and stuffed. Others glued hearts, others cut fabric. So many involved in the making of each bear. So many loving hearts and willing hands, working hours every month, so that babies that the world may never know will have something beautiful. And the families who miss them, will find some small comfort. I put pink bracelets made by Marlene into the bag. And, the Dreams of You Memory book.

I wondered on the drive there what it will be like on the other side. I’ve been the mom. But, what will it be like to walk beside a family. Will they mind our presence? Will we be helpful? Will they feel as if we’re invading this sacred place?

We have had the training. Read the books. But, what will the moment be like?

It was like breathing.

I remembered our SBD Birth and Bereavement Doula training, and how important it is to focus on meeting the baby. Soaking in this time with her. Filling her brief life with memories. I remembered my own questions years ago, as I tried to answer theirs. And, I have never been so grateful that I was chosen to be the mother of Faith, Grace, and Thomas. Because they lived, I have something…however small…to give. Reassurance. Hope. From a mother who has walked there.

When we meet Jesus, the crowns we get for the way we serve him on this Earth…the rewards. They aren’t for us. They are so that when we see Him, and we are so desperate to have something to give…to show our love…our worship…our gratefulness….that we will have an offering. Something to cast at His feet, because He gave us so much.

And, when we look into the eyes of a mother about to say goodbye to her baby, there is nothing so desperate as the longing to have something to give.

When we met their sweet baby girl the next day, I felt such unspeakable awe of the gift that I could be allowed to behold the beauty of this precious little one. She was already wearing the wrap with the daisies that we brought for her. And, the bracelet was dangling from her mama’s arm. As I slipped the bracelet on the arm of their daughter, I felt a stirring deep in my heart. The sacredness…the privilege…the nearness of heaven whispering. It was like putting the bracelet on my own little girls. Peace filling, surrounding. Oh, I remember this place well. This is the place where He is so near that you can reach out and touch the hem of His garment. I looked down in disbelief that it was my hands He would allow to do this most meaningful task.

I didn’t get to put beautiful bracelets on the arms of my girls or an outfit on my Thomas. But, in that moment, it was if they were there too. And He whispered to my heart, “It will be this way for each baby you meet.” I didn’t do this for them. But, I can offer the opportunity for as many moms as I am allowed the privilege to meet. Because they lived.

I held her in my arms. So grateful for the beauty and gift of this little girl’s life and the family that loves her dearly.

And, as we left, I felt the urge to call my Dinah and say, “Guess what I got to do.”

I’ve struggled a little, at times, with this new identity. Being the person people think of when a baby dies. But, yesterday, I embraced the gift.

We get to go to the place where heaven and earth meet. We get to witness miracles. We get to be there to honor lives that few will see. We get to stand on holy ground. We get to offer beauty and hope in the midst of a pain.

And, because of the amazing hands and willing hearts of the women who gather to use their gifts to make beautiful items for tiny babies and their families…

We have something to give.

And…I am overcome. With the amazing grace of it all.

Please visit our new SGM Perinatal Hospice and Bereavement Services pages to learn more about some of the services now available.

Comments

  1. That was a beautiful post Kelly… Left me with chills. What a priceless gift you were both given…

  2. It was amazing to be able to serve them in their need. God has def got His arms wrapped around this ministry!!!

  3. Oh, Kelly…this is so beautiful. I love your heart. Tears. <3

  4. Four years ago my beautiful Livvy died and my heart was broken forever. Two years ago I was honoured to spend a week at a hospice as her dear friend joined her. The gift which it was was heartbreaking but so worth it. To stand by the parents reminding them of the gift of home. Sharing stories from our memories imagining stories of the mischief they creating in heaven.

    Yet while it was a gift it was hard, I think it was after the funeral it finally hit me. Anyone lost, another one gone to soon.

    You are amazing women and what you are doing for the families is a true gift. May God please your sweet hearts xxx

  5. Sarah Eddins says:

    I am speechless…your writing is such a beautiful expression of your beautiful heart. I will be praying for this family and praying that God continues to bless you and Holly for pouring out in such a beautiful way.

  6. So beautiful! You are such a blessing with such a beautiful heart <3

  7. Thank you for sharing these sacred moments with us. I pray that God will continue to bless and guide you as you give your hearts and service to him. What a precious gift you were able to give these parents…allowing Him to bring beauty again from your own ashes. Thank you for all you do.

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