Tuesday, June 30, 2015

June 2015 Cemetery Visit

Sometimes it just hits you when you least expect it . . .

I was in Utah to visit family and attend my 10 year high school reunion. My days were just as crazy there as they are at home. Two kids, taking naps all day (on opposite schedules right now), lots of feedings, diaper changes, mood swings (mostly the toddler, but sometimes mine too!). It was just all around usual day-to-day stuff, plus trying to cram in as many visits to friends that I could.

I finally got the kids and myself ready and packed in to the car and I knew that if I were to visit my friend we didn't have time to really stop and pick up flowers before and after the visit the kids would be fussy and needing to sleep so going to a store then wasn't really practical either.

I'll call a florist, I thought.

The most convenient florist I could think of was actually the one who had provided Luke's casket flowers. So I pulled over and parked in a neighborhood so I could look up the info on my phone and make the call before I got on the freeway to head south.

"Hi. I was wondering if I could place an order."

"What can we do for you?"

"Well, I just need some flowers to take to the cemetery today, if possible. Just something simple and I'd like to spend about $30. I don't have any particular preferences on flower types today, but it's for my son's grave so whatever you think would be nice for a baby boy."

And with that, emotion just weld up in my throat. Something about saying the words to a stranger "for my son's grave" just got to me. I can't tell you how many times I mention that fact that I have a son who died before birth, and it's just conversation. Just words and a story and I just tell it so matter-of-factly.

But that day . . . it was real and raw and it felt terribly heartbreaking as I spoke those words.

I felt so grateful for Main Street Floral in Spanish Fork. They created yet another perfect arrangement for me and were kind enough to bring it out to my car so I could pick it up without having to wake up my sleeping baby and take her in for the 60 seconds it was going to take to grab the flowers.


Being there I couldn't help thinking back to the days that I would come to Luke's grave with the numbness of empty arms aching to have my baby . . . to have another baby . . . to just be a mother. I longed for the day that I could be a mother. 

And here I am. 
In the throws of mothering young children. 
It's exhausting. 
It's hard. 
It's emotional for everyone involved.
Yet this is the life I longed for.
I wish I could say that it feels glorious, and even though I know this is the most glorious work God gives a person, being in the middle of it often feels muddled and messy. It is messy. Diapers. Broken glass. Food. Lots of food --on the floor, on the face, on my clothes, on their clothes, on their hands, on the furniture "come back here so I can wipe your hands off." Change the sheets. Catch the throw up. Wipe the bum. There is joy and laughter and satisfaction along the way, but it doesn't take away the the overwhelming work and the thoughts: Am I giving my children what they need? What would God have me do for them? When will I get a break? Does this ever get easier...probably not! Am I being to hard on them? Or is this the firmness that results in respect and discipline? Did he just remember to say please without being reminded. A victory! Am I teaching enough? Involving them enough? The list could go on forever. 
So here I am. In the midst of it all.
I feel joy that I have what I longed for and gratitude that I am in the throws of this crazy, messy life.
"Bring that flag back, it's not ours!"