Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Bursting Bubbles

Did you ever notice that when you feel good about yourself, and if you are reading this because you can relate to grief, have you noticed that when you think you are getting somewhere and doing ‘well’ with your grief, that something (or someone) always seems to burst that bubble so to speak. Sometimes, for me, it is a song, a memory, a picture, a card. Other times, in regards to the ‘someones’ I mentioned, it’s being told to your face or to someone else, that they are worried about you, that you need to move on, that you should consider getting help. There’s nothing like comments like this to make you question yourself, your motives, even your sanity. Having the confidence in yourself to know that you are where YOU want to be, doing what YOU want to be doing…well that isn’t always easy. Nor is expressing that to others.
For me, although I know I have moments of very intense sadness, I also know that I live with a certain amount of Joy and Hope from the knowledge that I have a son living in Heaven. I find peace in that most of the time. It doesn’t mean I don’t miss him or that I don’t have horribly crappy moments. But for the most part I am not crying each day or spending time living in the past and wishing he was here. I do talk about him a lot, I do mention what happened to others, I do talk about Cameron being a twin to many people. I spend a lot of time chatting with other TTTS moms, reading blogs and offering advice. I try to be a support person for those who need it…I try to be there for others the way a few moms who I met online while still pregnant with the boys were there for me but moreover I try to be there for the many families who need support in a way that I, most often, couldn’t find when I was pregnant….if that makes any sense. Those are the ways I cope, those are the things I do to find Hope. I really do feel a strong pull to be a part of this TTTS world, for others, for me and for Cole. My husband said that he thought maybe I was afraid I would forget Cole. I don't think that is true but I think I do feel like others will. Perhaps by seeing the good that can come of this kind of loss, others will find Hope as well. I don't know...I do it because it feels right!!!
Grief is a tricky thing, especially when it comes to the loss of a child. Parents were not put on this earth to bury their kids because along with burying those sweet children they are burying their dreams. You have such hopes and aspirations for your kids from the moment you know of their existence. You can’t just turn those emotions off and you can’t just move on…well not at the pace that some think you should.
I am certain that many people are further ahead in their grief process after two years than I am but there are also a great deal who aren’t. I am sure, though, that it is so hard for our friends and family to see us hurting almost and I know that they have the best of intentions. In dealing with the feelings I have had lately about the coments made about my grieving process I have, once again, done some internet searching and found this article. It is very long and filled with great insight into the loss of a child. I have cut some of the article out but I encourage everyone reading this to connect to the highlighted link and see if you can’t help yourself to understand your grief or the grief of a loved one just a little bit better.

It is frequently said that the grief of bereaved parents is the most intense grief known. When a child dies, parents feel that a part of them has died, that a vital and core part of them has been ripped away. Bereaved parents indeed do feel that the death of their child is "the ultimate deprivation" (Arnold and Gemma 1994, 40). The grief caused by their child's death is not only painful but profoundly disorienting-children are not supposed to die. These parents are forced to confront an extremely painful and stressful paradox; they are faced with a situation in which they must deal both with the grief caused by their child's death and with their inherent need to continue to live their own lives as fully as possible. Thus, bereaved parents must deal with the contradictory burden of wanting to be free of this overwhelming pain and yet needing it as a reminder of the child who died.

Bereaved parents continue to be parents of the child who died. They will always feel the empty place in their hearts caused by the child's death; they were, and always will be, the loving father and mother of that child. Yet, these parents have to accept that they will never be able to live their lives with or share their love openly with the child. So they must find ways to hold on to the memories.
Grieving parents say that their grief is a lifelong process, a long and painful process..."a process in which [they] try to take and keep some meaning from the loss and life without the [child]" (Arnold and Gemma 1983, 57). After a child's death, parents embark on a long, sad journey that can be very frightening and extremely lonely- a journey that never really ends. The hope and desire that healing will come eventually is an intense and persistent one for grieving parents.

The child who died is considered a gift to the parents and family, and they are forced to give up that gift. Yet, as parents, they also strive to let their child's life, no matter how short, be seen as a gift to others. These parents seek to find ways to continue to love, honor, and value the lives of their children and continue to make the child's presence known and felt in the lives of family and friends. Bereaved parents often try to live their lives more fully and generously because of this painful experience.

To those outside the family, the composition of the family may seem to change when a child dies. A sibling may become an only child; a younger child may become the oldest or the only child; the middle child may no longer have that title; or the parents may never be able to, or perhaps may choose not to, have another child. Nonetheless, the birth order of the child who died is fixed permanently in the minds and hearts of the parents. Nothing can change the fact that this child is considered a part of the family forever, and the void in the family constellation created by the child's death also remains forever.

All newly bereaved parents must find ways to get through, not over, their grief-to go on with their lives. Each is forced to continue life's journey in an individual manner

• Typical parental reactions to a child's death often involve emotional and physical symptoms such as inability to sleep or a desire to sleep all the time, mood swings, exhaustion, extreme anxiety, headaches, or inability to concentrate. Grieving parents experience emotional and physical peaks and valleys. They may think life finally seems on an even keel and that they are learning to cope when periods of intense sadness overwhelm them, perhaps with even more force. (Experiencing any or all of these reactions does not mean permanent loss of control or inability to recover and are usually part of the grief process.)

• Each bereaved parent must be allowed to mourn in his/her own way and time frame. Each person's grief is unique, even that of family members facing the same loss. Bereaved parents shouldn't expect or try to follow a specific or prescribed pattern for grief or worry if they seem out of synchrony with their partner or other grieving parents.

• Bereaved parents need to know that others may minimize or misunderstand their grief. Many don't understand the power, depth, intensity, or duration of parental grief, especially after the death of a very young child. In some instances, bereaved parents are even ignored because some individuals are not able to deal with the tragedy. They find the thought of a child's death too hard, too Inexplicable, or too threatening. Many simply don't know what to say or do and so don't say or do anything.

Most grieving parents also experience considerable pain on special occasions, such as birthdays, holidays, or the anniversary of the child's death. Parents will need to find ways to cope with these events and should do what feels right for them, not what others think they should do.

Grief is the natural response to any loss. Parents need to be reminded how important it is to process all feelings, thoughts, and emotions in resolving grief. Bereaved parents must look within and be prepared to deal with the past and present. They need to talk about their loss, and the loss must be acknowledged by others. They need to tell others about what happened to their child; they need to talk out and through their thoughts and feelings from the heart, not just from the head. Healing for bereaved parents can begin to occur by acknowledging and sharing their grief.

• Probably the most important step for parents in their grief journey is to allow themselves to heal. Parents need to come to understand that healing doesn't mean forgetting. They need to be good to themselves and absolve themselves from guilt. They should not be afraid to let grief loosen its grip on them when the time comes. Easing away from intense grief may sometimes cause pain, fear, and guilt for a while, but eventually, it usually allows parents to come to a new and more peaceful place in their journey. Allowing grief's place to become a lesser one does not mean abandoning the child who died.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Let Your Light Shine

“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.”----from A Return to Love, by Marianne Williamson.

I just love this quote…doesn’t it just speak to you???
I found it yesterday on an posting from someone who works for the same employer as I do and felt compelled to share it.
I find that so often people do not let their talents shine out or if they do they feel self conscious or sometimes, depending on the talent, ridiculed. This is not what God wanted for us.
It matters not what your talent is but I think this quote spoke to me most about the talents that others share to involve opening up their hearts, their inner most self. Sometimes being open and honest is the hardest talent of all to share. And in sharing your talent for telling your story, opening yourself up, listening to others, giving advice based on your journey....you are liberating yourself and helping your journey go forward while at the same time, liberating others!
The same goes for sharing any talent.
So sing to the mountains, dance, paint, run, build, help, share….let your talents show. Praise God for the gifts that are in you!!!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Mixed Blessings #2

After the postings I've written over the last few days I wanted to follow up with the other side of the mixed blessings that twin loss gives us. There are sad days for certain but there are so many more happy days, so many days filled with joy, love and peace.
I found a book online that I am working at reading...I've never done this before, read a book online and it's an interesting process. The book is called Awakening from Grief by John E. Welshons.
Admittedly, I haven't made it past the first chapter yet but I wanted to share a few things that I have read so far....

When death comes into our lives we feel devastated. We feel confused. We feel numb. We get angry. Our hearts ache. We feel hopeless.
The healing of these painful emotions comes through rediscovering the love, peace and joy that comes within us – eternally. We can never lose them. No matter how sad, depressed, disappointed, angry or hopeless we feel at the moment, we can never lose love, peace and joy; because love, peace and joy are the essence of who we are. In truth, we are beings of light and what we need when there is darkness in our lives is more light.

When love is the chosen remedy, there is no hurt, no wound, no sadness that cannot be healed.

If we can look at the losses in our lives a little differently, if we can change our perspectives just slightly, we may see that within this experience lie the seeds of a new beginning, a new life, of a deeper experience of love and fulfillment than we ever imagined possible.

I look forward to finding this joy and seeing our loss from this perspective. I am already pretty certain of some seeds that have been planted by Cole and I know, for certain, that my life is so much fuller with him in it in whatever presence he is than it ever would have been without him.

I also found this picture and caption online today....

One becomes two for the sole purpose of becoming one again.

I wonder if all identical twins are like this apple or just those where one twin lives on earth and one in Heaven. Someone once told me that she had it explained to her by a psychologist dealing in the loss of an identical twin that God only created one egg in these type of twins. That egg chose to split but it was always, in his mind, only one egg. Sometimes those two halfs of one whole an live together on earth and be visible by all but other times they need to be put back together again and live as just one person.
Perhaps our twins are just like this apple.... they became two for a short time just so to complete part of a journey but their sole purpose was always to be one again.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Mixed Blessings - Part 1

mixed blessing

something that, although generally favorable or advantageous, has one or more unfavorable or disadvantageous features.

I wrote this post last week and then forgot to post it.... I think it's fitting today given how I was feeling yesterday and really, how I've been feeling in general lately. I am feeling better today, more at peace and definitely less sad. Anyway...

Recently I was reading a blog entry of another TTTS mom who also lost one of her sons. She was writing about ‘how one person can feel so mercifully blessed and so totally gypped all at the same time?’. It was like she was inside my head... hearing the thoughts that I try not to speak because some may seem to think that makes me ungrateful. Okay, maybe that is what I think people think but I know from the responses I get when I say things like this that people do really think I am not counting my blessings.
Trust me, I count them.. all the time. I know that I am so very lucky to have the great family I have, the house I have (heck even the debt I have as it means that some bank thinks I am trustworthy enough to loan money too). I know that for so many reasons Cameron should not have survived as well as he did, or really, even at all. I know this because Dr. Ryan told us, I know this because so very few babes survive what he did with no negative outcome, I know this because the stats on babes remaining in utero after a mothers’s water breaks are so very low.
So tell me why I can’t be happy ALL the time. Why do I have to feel so cheated, so gypped? It really sucks to feel this way. And why, after all this time, don’t I feel better about the whole thing, why am I dreading this lead up to Cole’s angelversary so much. Like Megan, I thought I was doing so much better than last year but time will really tell.
I recently read an article about a woman in the UK who lost one of her twins, actually she had to choose to end the life of one twin as there were so many complications involved for him. She wrote about how hard it is and I found myself really connecting to this article and although it’s long, I decided to cut and paste some of it for you to read... for you information, to let you other twin mom’s raising a lone twin that we are not alone in these feelings and for those who, thankfully, haven’t been in our shoes, understand a bit more... and maybe see that I am not alone in how I think too.

Is he your only child?’ An innocent enough question, but one that always makes me catch my breath. It may be that I’m at our local playgroup, drinking tea and chatting with another mum as our children play together. Do I simply say yes and feel I haven’t done justice to the truth, or do I explain the situation and risk opening up an emotional can of worms? The reality is that our two-year-old son Ezra is our only living child, but he is also a surviving twin. His brother Oscar died shortly before their birth.
When my husband Simon and I found out we were pregnant with non-identical twin boys following fertility treatment, we were ecstatic.But 20 weeks into the pregnancy, we discovered that Oscar had a severe brain condition which meant he was unlikely to survive long after birth, if he didn’t die in the womb. We were told his condition wasn’t caused by his being a twin, but was complicated by it – a singleton would probably have been terminated at 20 weeks and, although traumatic, his loss at that stage would have made it easier for us to mourn and try to move on.
I felt I’d failed them both before they’d even been born. I worried about Ezra’s lone-twin status because I feared it would affect him when he grew older and became aware that he’d had a twin. I worried that he’d feel lonely and bereft, knowing that he should have had a brother. I tried to do everything I could to collate information and joint experiences for him, such as playing the piano for them because I thought that hearing classical music in the womb would help them to feel calm and contented. I also kept a diary while they were still together inside me, telling them about places we’d been together. I wanted Ezra to know that good things happened in my pregnancy (I imagined him one day saying, ‘What did we do when I was in your tummy?’).
But whatever I did, it didn’t feel good enough, because I couldn’t give them a future together.
Oscar died on 10 August 2006 . As anticipated, the procedure led to my waters breaking and just hours later, at 30 weeks and six days, in the early hours of 11 August, our two sons were delivered by caesarean.
As I came round from the general anaesthetic, I was told that Ezra, tiny at three pounds, had been taken to the neonatal intensive care unit. The nurses brought me Oscar, wrapped in the quilt I’d made him, and we lay there together. For those first few hours, Simon and I both felt unexpectedly calm, as we sat in a room with Oscar and were able to marvel at how beautiful he was. Simon says it was like spending time with someone we felt we’d always known. We felt humbled by his presence.
Congratulations cards and gifts poured in for Ezra. Some people mentioned Oscar in Ezra’s birth cards or sent them one each, but most people didn’t mention him at all, no doubt unsure of what to say.
In the meantime, Simon organised both birth and death certificates, and made arrangements for Oscar’s funeral, as well as managing our house renovation and his new mobile-phone business.
People would tell me that I now had ‘twice the love’ for Ezra and that Oscar’s death was ‘for a reason’ or ‘meant to be’ . I now appreciate that they were making real efforts to soften the blow. To the outside world, perhaps it did seem as if I’d ‘won’, because I had at least come out of it with a baby, unlike a mother who has lost a singleton. But it was never ‘buy one, get one free’. We were expecting two babies and we ended up with one – we lost 50 per cent of our children when Oscar died.
Jeanne Kirkwood, my supportive listener at the Tamba bereavement support group, says: ‘When you lose a twin, whether before birth or after, there are terrible dichotomies between loving and grieving, all at the same time. Most people think that if you focus on the joy the grief will go away, but it doesn’t work like that.’
In her book Twins & Multiple Births, Dr Carol Cooper even says that the loss of a twin is ‘harder to bear’ than the loss of a singleton because of the need to care for the surviving twin and carry on with family life while your natural reaction is to mourn – something that has certainly rung true for us. In the weeks and months after the birth, I felt something was missing, that a part of me had died..
We often talk about Oscar and go to his grave. I frequently contemplate how we’ll tell Ezra about his brother, which we will as soon as he’s able to handle the information. I have to trust that we’ll know when the time is right.
When Ezra was about eight months old, I asked Jeanne Kirkwood, ‘Can you ever feel happy again after losing a twin?’ because I felt my joyful days had gone for good. Every good experience was tempered by memories of Oscar.
I remember people saying, ‘Aren’t you lucky you’ve lost all your baby weight,’ and I wanted to say, ‘I’d rather be fat and have them both here!’
‘You will be happy again,’ Jeanne told me. ‘You’ll still feel pain but as time goes by the pain will be surrounded by more joy.’ She also reiterated what other people had said, which was that Ezra would increasingly help us to heal. I remember saying, ‘I’m looking forward to that time because I can’t imagine it.’ Jeanne gave me hope and she turned out to be right. Ezra, who is now two, has been my salvation. He has been like a tornado, sucking me back into real life.
Living with a single twin is truly bittersweet, a constant reminder of what you’ve lost as well as what you’ve gained. When people ask if Ezra’s an only child, I generally tell them about Oscar because he is part of our collective reality.
When Ezra was recently seen by the paediatrician, I told him we felt very lucky because we have a child, and he answered, ‘Yes, but you’ve been very unlucky, too.’ We definitely feel both.
Perhaps that sums up twin loss best of all – good luck and bad luck, all in the same package. The trick is learning to live with the joy and the pain.

It is such a mixed blessing to be the mom of twins…one who survived and one who went to be with God. Learning to live with the pain and the joy is a balancing act but is one that I am trying to find my way to. Mixed blessings are something that, although generally favorable or advantageous, has one or more unfavorable or disadvantageous features. And no matter what slant you put on it, no matter what way you think of it, always and forever the lives of Cameron and Cole and twins like them will be one of mixed blessings.

After I wrote and copied the above post…but before I’d had a chance to post it here I went to church…with my kids at school. I went in with this feeling of anxiety, of anger, or bitterness almost. I know those feelings aren’t productive, I know that they drag me down. But they are part of me and of who I am sometimes. Regardless, I went feeling like that and came out feeling a sense of peace. I felt comforted, almost hugged during mass… and this is tells me that I am accepting my pain more and opening myself up to God more. My fellow TTTS mom reminded me in her blog though that sometimes I have to seek peace, especially when I am feeling the way I am lately but by doing so it means I need to open my heart deep enough to drive me to God's feet. It means I have to knowingly set aside the anxiety and anguish I feel that, despite how sad it makes me also provides me protection because in doing so I can make room for the most honest of pain and sorrow. If I can only open up my heart I can get to the other side and find peace, love and joy.

I thank her for reminding me just how damn hard this journey is at times and that sometimes it is just so much easier to be angry, bitter etc. Opening up that wound is so hard but it needs to be done to make room for the peace, the love, the joy. It will soon be the season to prepare the way for Jesus, for His birth, for the time of celebrating what a wonderful gift God gave each of us in the way of his son, Jesus. God lost his son too, He knows the pain. And I know He’ll help me with it. I know it will hurt before it heals, I know that it will be easier to not push myself to heal but I also know I can do this too.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

How Great Thou Art

Do you know this hymn...hopefully you can hear it playing on my playlist right now. It's one of those ones that around here seems to get played at funerals a lot...but also at joyful moments at church too. Unfortunately for me it's only the funeral thoughts it ever brings forth in my head despite the fact that I LOVE the message of it.

O Lord my God, When I in awesome wonder,
Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made;
I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder,
Thy power throughout the universe displayed.

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

When Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation,
And take me home, what joy shall fill my heart.
Then I shall bow, in humble adoration,
And then proclaim: "My God, how great Thou art!"

Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art.
Then sings my soul, My Saviour God, to Thee,
How great Thou art, How great Thou art!

We had this very version played at Cole's memorial service and it broke my heart to hear it play. Today we sang it in the very church where we said our formal goodbyes to our sweet son and my heart is just breaking all over again today. Sometimes I wonder if I'll ever get past these moments that shatter me all over again. I'll be brutally honest right now, I am crying so hard I can hardly type. I likely shouldn't even post this but sometimes I just need to get it out. I HATE the lead up to the Dec. 13th... 23 months ago my heart broke, my world crashed around me and I know I'll never, ever be the same again. A new me was born that day and sometimes I miss that old me so damn much!!! I know the new me is a better person, I know that God gave me Cole and this journey for some amazing reasons...some of them have already been realized and I am filled with joy because of them. But I am, sometimes, filled with such a deep sense of sadness too.
I can't figure out why this song is so heartwrenching for me. Maybe for the brutal honesty of it. God is amazing, He is so very great. He has done so many amazing things and creating my sons was one of the best I can think of. My soul sings that He is so great...but my mind just can't always catch up I guess.
Sometimes is so hard to see and sing about how great God is. So many people question His reasons...myself included. And maybe that is the biggest reason why this song brings about such emotion for me... it reminds me that when life gives us our hardest challenges, our biggest crisis and we question our faith most, God has brought us to this point for a purpose, no matter how hard of a journey it is, and He'll see us through to the end.
I know that when Christ comes for me I will be ready, ready to go home, ready to be with God and most of all so very ready to meet my son again.
P.S. As I finished posting this I ended up chatting with this wonderful friend of mine... she's just who I needed to hear from today. She is Tara, the mom of twins Jack Lawrence and Noah COLE....the boys born on the one year anniversary of the day we welcomed Cameron and Cole into this great world that God has given us. The friend that God gave me who needed me and Cole as much as I needed her. She is the first person I could be friends with who has twins and I am so glad I have her in my life. Today she reminded me that moments like this and songs that evoke emotion like this one does are the hugs from Cole that he so wants me to have. Those moments don't just happen...they are the reminders that he is always with me... that he wants a hug from me. She has encouraged me to find a way to send my hugs to him...to find something that is my way to hug him... something to hug or hold when I need to hug him. Or when he sends me these signs that are his way of asking for a hug...when I am missing him the most is when he needs me the most. Thanks Tara!
BTW - Jack and Noah sent their 'auntie Jodie' a lovely charm for my birthday. It reads "Friends are kisses blown to us by angels". An angel brought us together and an angel reminds me each day How Great God is...

Thursday, November 4, 2010

A great quote from an amazing lady!

Wow, 2 days in a row!!! Just a short post today… I saw a few quotes and wanted to share. I’ve been reading a lot of other blogs lately and often see and comment on what I read. I hope that some of what I write about is as worthy to share as what I read and that my blog is worth following for some. I know lots of people read it...I marvel at the stats counter each time I look at it. Please feel free to comment on my posts now and again so I know that people can relate to what I write. If you follow my blog I’d love to know!

“I have been through a lot and I have suffered a great deal. But I have had lots of happy moments, as well. Every moment one lives is different from the other. The good, the bad, hardship, the joy, the tragedy, love, and happiness are all interwoven into one single, indescribable whole that is called life. You cannot separate the good from the bad. And perhaps there is no need to do so, either.” Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis

What an amazing woman she was. Someone that we could all learn from. To survive all that she did, to endure all that she did and not to let it consume her. She was so right…it is life. The sad times, hardships, losses, devastation and the happy, joyful, love filled moments…they all make us who we are. There is no way to separate the good and the bad, there is no need to. It makes you who you are, entwines all the things that make you who you are and calls itself life.
I think I’ve had a pretty good life so far. Sure it’s had it’s ups and downs, it’s joyful moments and it’s tragedies but it is what it is. It was given to me for a reason and is mine. I am sure there are many who think I dwell too often on the tragedies…but maybe that’s just part of who I am too. I don’t live in sorrow, I live in joy but with many reminders of how I came to be who I am.

This one is pretty unrelated but pretty sweet I think and reminds me of just how happy and blessed our angels are to be living in Heaven….

Perhaps they are not the stars, but rather openings in Heaven where the love of our lost ones pours through and shines down upon us to let us know they are happy. ~Author Unknown

May you gaze to Heaven tonight and see and feel the happiness shining through those holes knowing that you are loved and have the life that is yours.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Wounds and Scars

I’ve been struggling lately with my grief and with sadness. I know that, as the days draw closer and closer to Christmas, as we begin to make lists, shop, plan gatherings….all those things bring us closer and closer to December…a month that I think part of me will hate (oh how I dread using that word) forever.
I’ve been chatting with another TTTS mom a lot lately…well texting would be more like it. She is actually the first TTTS mom that I know I will meet…she lives an hour and a half from me, only 30 minutes from where I work. We had the same medical team, delivered at the same hospital and sadly, like me, she lost her angel before she was able to see his beautiful face.
In the course of our messages I have been sharing some things that have been shared with me and also about why I am feeling so sad lately.
The recent sadness seems to come from memories. I remembered on the weekend about the excitement of the Halloween when I was pregnant with Cole and Cameron. How I wasn’t ‘allowed’ to go with the boys to trick or treat…I handed out candy and then sat with the neighbor and chatted about twins and pregnancy…her daughter has identical twin daughters. I remember thinking about Halloween costumes in the future. I think the biggest thing is that about 2 years ago I finally started feeling excited and so content with what was going to be our ‘twin’ life. I came across my request for medical leave letter that I sent to my principal (a formality) the other day…another moment of heartache and reminders. Sometimes I wish I could turn my brain off, not think of those things, not make myself feel sad. But really, in all honesty, I love that I can, love that I have those memories, love that I find those reminders…they are all that I have of Cole….memories.
So in chatting with this new friend about our sons, especially those in Heaven, I have been talking about something that was once shared with me about grief and most especially about loss of a child.
Understand your loss is a huge wound right now but it will heal... it might be red and ugly and painful at first but over time it starts to fade and smooth out and become less painful but it leaves a scar that never goes away and forever changes you and it is up to you how it will change you. You will always be the mother of twins.
For me I have taken this to mean that my wound, now, has healed over a lot. It is still very visible but isn’t always so painful. I also know that sometimes it takes nothing more than a slight bump, scrap or twist and my scar opens up again….never to the open wound it once was but still to a weeping, painful and red sore. Thankfully it never takes as long to heal over again.
In looking online for the quote (which I actually found in a message my friend Tammy from Fetal Hope posted to another mom) I came across this…
In Revelation 12:11, John wrote, “They overcame him (Satan) by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of their testimony.” Our personal stories, like the blood of the Lamb, have incredible power.
Perhaps you’ve never thought of the wounds in your life as potential treasures. I encourage you to dig a little deeper, push aside the dirt, and discover the jewels that lie beneath the surface. Like sparkling diamonds, glistening rubies, and shimmering emeralds, our scars are beautiful to God. They help others see Jesus in us.
Scars? We’ve all got them. It’s how we view them that will change our hearts. It’s what we choose to do with them that can change the world.

And WOW…I just marveled at that. That by sharing my scar with others, by telling others about my journey with Cole and Cameron and how that has brought me closer to God, I can help overcome Satan, I can help to change the world for someone… I can make a difference in the world.
God does think this scar is beautiful, He knows what it has brought me…the pain, the heartache, the confusion, the sadness, the isolation….and the Hope, the Joy, the Peace, the knowledge, the acceptance, the compassion, the empathy and the Love. He knows that some days are hard, He knows that I don’t understand or always accept, He knows I get angry. But He also knows that if He brought me to it, He’ll bring me through it.
I think I most wanted to share this with you all, both those readers of my blog who’ve lost a child or children, a twin or twins and those who haven’t because for those that have, it’s a great analogy and may be something you very much identify with. But for those who haven’t been in my shoes, in our shoes, I hope that you can understand my scar, appreciate my scar and help me to bandage it up and care for it when it opens up occasionally….I’d really appreciate it!