The Day Before

August 25, 2014

Today has been a really terrible day so far.

And it’s only noon here as I write this.

I expected tomorrow to be. The day Kaden died. Really though, I find myself dreading birthdays more than – death days? What on earth do we call these days? Anniversary seems to give it the air of something celebrated. Birthdays are hard – and as my wise friend Emily told me, “It’s because that’s a day when you’re supposed to be happy, but you can’t be.”

Tomorrow is a day I’m supposed to be sad.

There are moments when the reality of this hits me. I’ve written this before, but it bears repeating. Most of my days are ok. I’m sad, but I’m not unhappy. But on days like this, it hits me that Kaden was:

  • real
  • alive
  • my son
  • Bella’s brother
  • Sam’s little boy
  • our families’ grandchild and nephew

And suddenly it’s too much to comprehend. He’s no longer a name or an event or an “in memory of”. He’s my little, tiny, 7lb 6 oz son who made noises and looked at me and turned his head towards our voices and had a whirl of hair in the back like Bella did. He had a crib that still sits in the guest room, clothes that are packed away with tags on. He was so perfect, so wonderful, so wanted and loved.

We are going to live with this forever. Preston, Julian, Kaden. I will never get over this. I will be an old woman and I will still long for them and what was supposed to have been with their little lives. This isn’t me wanting more children or not appreciating Bella – this is a mama grieving for the little boys she wanted so much.

What happened? How did my life turn out like this and what is going on? I know that 2 1/2 years in a lifetime (and eternity) isn’t very long, but it was enough to alter everything in a way that can’t ever be fixed.

I cling to Jesus in these moments, even in a way that is resentful and angry like now. My mind screams at Him, “I TRUSTED you. I waited for you. I prayed, cried, begged, pleaded, had faith, even when he DIED I thought you’d do something. What happened? What is the point of all of these verses and prayers if you still let babies die over and over? What do you want?”

I don’t know. I believe there is a bigger picture – bigger than my grief or needs or even Kaden’s life. If I choose to hang onto my faith, (and it is a choice) then one day I will see these moments bear fruit in ways I never expected. Not in a way that makes this worth it, but in a way that gives all the pain and suffering a reason and purpose beyond my comprehension.

“Though he slay me, I will hope in him; yet I will argue my ways to his face.”

14 Comments

  • In Between the Piles

    August 26, 2014 at 7:05 pm

    I know that I've read that verse in Job (and that it's one of your tattoos), but I hadn't really contemplated the second half…it fits so much of what you've described about your faith walk over the last few years. My in-laws gave birth to a daughter in 1954 who only lived for 3 days. We visited her grave recently, and my father-in-law described that as being the saddest time in his life. I thought of you and all that you've experienced & the heaviness of it all. You are so right (although at times I'm sure you can say it to yourself over and over and it still doesn't help): "I believe there is a bigger picture – bigger than my grief or needs or even Kaden’s life. If I choose to hang onto my faith, (and it is a choice) then one day I will see these moments bear fruit in ways I never expected. Not in a way that makes this worth it, but in a way that gives all the pain and suffering a reason and purpose beyond my comprehension." Much much love & prayers.

  • Leslie

    August 26, 2014 at 11:53 am

    Thinking of you and your family today.

  • Heather Schauer

    August 26, 2014 at 11:35 am

    Sept 9th will be 5 months since my little Noa Ruth went to play with Jesus. She was a twin… her sister will be 7 months on Sept 8th. Celebration days and grieving days… sometimes my heart doesn't know the difference. And your words to God sound like they could have come straight from my journal this morning. I heard recently that those who have lost a child are part of a secret club no one really wants to be in… I'm sorry we're both in the club. But I find some strength that my crazy feelings are not all my own.

  • Erica Boyer

    August 26, 2014 at 4:45 am

    When my babies were sick in the NICU (and in moments of grief since then), I have wrestled with these thoughts. Wanting so badly to say, "You are still Good" but having so much anger and betrayal in my heart. But you're right…faith is a choice. Sending so much love your way!

  • Jess

    August 25, 2014 at 3:07 pm

    So much love to you all and I admire your strength in God through all of this. You inspire me.

  • Jessica @ThankfulForThorns

    August 25, 2014 at 3:00 pm

    Dear friend, I know we’ve never met and you don’t have a clue who I am but I think of you and pray for you often. I have followed your blog and your story for several years now. I cried and prayed when your water broke with Preston and Julian. I prayed so hard for Kaden through your whole pregnancy and I sobbed when I heard he was sick. I still think of your family and your boys. And while I know this does not help your pain at all, I do want you to know that you helped me when we lost our Zoe. I went back to the beginning and night after night when I couldn’t sleep I would just read. I hate so much that you have had to go through so much pain and loss but I want to thank you for being a voice. For being honest in your pain. For breaking the silence. For letting other families know that you have felt the same pain they feel.

    And if I never meet you in person on earth, know that I look forward to hugging you in heaven (After your boys and the millions of others who will be in line of course.)
    But for now here is a virtual hug. Know that I’m praying for you today, tomorrow, and always.

  • Kimberly Gasper

    August 25, 2014 at 8:58 pm

    You are such a strong woman, Diana. I still keep you, Sam and Bella in my prayers. I can't even comprehend what you've gone through. Stay strong and God bless you.

  • LA Holman

    August 25, 2014 at 2:32 pm

    Oh please sweet friend don’t take this the wrong way. I thought of you as I listened to our sermon 2 weeks ago. I know you are women of unbelievable faith so maybe it will be helpful. If not it was only out of love I shared it and hope you see that. I continue to pray daily for you and probably always will. You are an amazing lady who has endured too much. I have no good words for you but a nod and a virtual hug. You deserve your feeling whatever they are.

    http://northpoint.org/messages/in-the-meantime/

  • Rebecca

    August 25, 2014 at 1:40 pm

    Thinking of you and your family. I was just reading a story the other day and they were remembering the loss of their son…in reference to the day he died they called it his “angelversary”.

  • Marcella Garner

    August 25, 2014 at 7:31 pm

    What a perfect verse for what you must be feeling. Praying for peace and healing for you! You have incredible strength!

  • Marcella Garner

    August 25, 2014 at 7:31 pm

    What a perfect verse for what you must be feeling. Praying for peace and healing for you! You have incredible strength!

  • melody

    August 25, 2014 at 1:11 pm

    my sweet Diana. I just love you so so very much. When I read your post today, I was reminded of my Nonna (my Italian grandmother). She is in her late 70s, and when she talks about the twins she lost at birth, she still tears up. She is one of the strongest people I have ever known. She brings encouragement and courage and hope to so many people, even though she would never admit it, or even if she doesn’t feel like it. You remind me alot of her. I wish there were more people like you two. I know there is nothing that can be said to help, but I just wanted you to know how much I deeply love you and your precious family and all 4 of your babies. Lots of hugs and kisses to you today (and tomorrow. and all the days). xo
    ~melody

  • Margie Zezatti Cuevas

    August 25, 2014 at 7:04 pm

    A friend told me once that cancer made her question her faith. I stupidly said that I would never lose my faith in God. Then I lost my brother to leukemia 4 months ago and I get what she meant. It wasn't about not believing in God, it was believing in those sayings about God's Plan. I cannot believe in that saying. The God I believe in, the one that I begged for my brother's life, would never want to see me hurt like this. Wouldn't want to see my mom and dad bawl over the loss of their youngest. At 34, he remains their baby boy. I wonder all the time, How did this happen? How did I get here? Why does so-and-so get to live? Why? Am I less blessed than those who made it? Those who didn't lose their brother in that room at MD Anderson? God didn't steal my brother from me, leukemia did. Leukemia robbed me of my brother. God, though, helped me not lose it when I had to pick out my brother's casket because our mom and dad were in shambles. God was there for me and I eulogized my brother. God was there when I walked my brother to the Gates, the furtherest I could go. Today, God and my brother are with me as I struggle to understand how I am supposed to carry on in a world where my beloved brother isn't here.

    I don't know why Kaden, Julian and Preston on gone. I don't understand. However, I am here, thinking of you, holding you and praying for you. XOXOXO

    1. Pol

      August 26, 2014 at 8:50 am

      Oh Margie, you have me weeping with you. My little brother (40 this year) is battling oral cancer. Since May he’s had 4 horrendous surgeries, and just finished a hellish 6 week block of radiotherapy and chemo. At the moment he can’t eat or talk. He is so strong – and tells me no matter what, God is still God. But it’s so very hard. All I can manage is to desperately cling to the promises of eternity. Live and prayers for you and your parents.

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