Saturday, 13 July 2013

Victoria: Right Where I Am 2013: 20 weeks 1 day

Today, I am stronger than I ever thought possible.

Today, I am weaker than I ever knew.

I am thankful and blessed for what was... almost.

I am broken and sad for what it now isn't.

In those first hours and days I felt numb.  It was hard to fully accept that going forward our lives would not include Joshua in the way that we had hoped.  Sure, we would always carry him with us in our hearts, but it was our arms that longed to hold him.  Those first few days were such a blur.  There were lots of tears, little sleep, and so much pain - physically, mentally, emotionally.  Everything thing hurt including my soul.  After everything we went through, for this to be how it ended just seemed so very wrong.  We were devastated in the worst possible way.  We were prepared for a baby not for this.

The numbness wore off and gave way to anger.  Anger that this was our life now.  Anger that we knew mistakes were made by the hospital, by doctors.  Anger that we couldn't stop it.  Anger that God let us down.  Anger that all the thousands of prayers that were spoken for Joshua just weren't enough.  Anger that we were being forced to plan a funeral instead of a baby shower.

Today, I still have moments and days where I feel nothing but anger.  Anger has been such a new emotion for me.  I've always been positive, encouraging, optimistic - never angry and bitter.  I'm still trying to navigate these new waters.  Anger is not my friend - that much I know for sure.  Anger is like a giant wave pulling me under, consuming me.  When it hits, it makes it hard to breathe.  It's hard to think.  It's hard to keep swimming forward.  It pulls me back into that darkness of those first minutes and days and I have to fight hard to keep my head above the water.

Right now, I'm still swimming.

Today, I am still often completely overcome with tears.  There doesn't have to be a trigger - the flood of tears can come at any moment. Sunday, I had a fairly good day.  To-do lists were tackled, creativity happened, games were played, and yet as soon as my head hit the pillow the tears flowed freely.  The painful memories of those days spent in the hospital all came roaring into my head and I could not silence them.  I could not stop them.  I let my husband hold me, his desperate attempt to calm my pain.  One of the worst parts of this grief is its unpredictability.  There really is no warning of when it is going to come and knock you off your feet.

This grief has settled in and made it's home among us.  It lives in our 3-bedroom house.  It fills the quiet room that was supposed to belong to him.   Grief is in the stacks of boxes in the basement containing carefully chosen onesies, diapers, stuffed bears, and toys that will never be his.  The crib he will never sleep in.  The swing where he will never play.  Grief is now a member of our family.

Today, my faith has been shaken to its very core, but it is still strong.  It is a weird place to be in when you feel like you've never been more let down by God in your life, and yet you feel like you have never been closer to Him, because you've never needed Him more.

Now, I look for signs from Joshua wherever we go.  The rainbow in the stormy sky, the butterfly fluttering around, the bird at my window - I will continue to believe that they are signs from him.  We have seen small miracles happen around us in these last few months - things that cannot be explained any other way.  He is with us.  We believe that.  We have to believe that.

Today, I am still lost.  I am still broken.  I am still very much in disbelief that this is what our life looks like now.  But I am also learning that I am stronger than I ever knew.  My love for my husband has grown more than I could have ever imagined.  His strength is what holds me together.  My hope that I will get to see our sweet boy again someday and that my husband and I will get to spend an eternity being Joshua's mom and dad is what keeps me pressing forward.

Joshua Patrick Denney

Born: February 20, 2013 at 7:09 p.m.

Weighed 2 pounds, 11 ounces, 15 inches long

Went into the arms of angels on February 22, 2013 shortly after 8:30 a.m.

My name is Victoria and I am head over heals in love with my husband (Patrick), deeply grieving the loss of our son (Joshua), and clinging to the Cross with all that I’ve got left.  I blog over at Rooted in Faith.  You can also find me on TwitterPinterestFacebook, and Instagram.

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