Have you ever noticed the men standing around the cemetery near the work van with a glass of iced tea and a shovel? That is one memory I have when we pulled away from the cemetery after we left Matthew there. They were standing beneath a shade tree waiting for us to pull away so they could cover my sweet son's body with dirt. Ugh. I still see it today. I still see those men, waiting. I knew what they were there to do, I knew what those shovels were going to be used for and to this day become sick at my stomach when I think about it.
So here we are, July 23, 2013 and that image is still here. Just as though it happened yesterday.
July 23, 2005, eight years ago today, we buried our son.
It was the first day I saw my son, held my son, and the last day I saw my son, held my son.
Doesn't seem right, does it?
Some would think that July 2, 2005, the day Matthew was born into this great big world and the day he left this great big world would have been the worst day of my life...
Sometimes I think it should have been too.
But, it wasn't.
July 23, 2005, was the WORST DAY OF MY LIFE.
|Somehow on the worst day of my life, this was one of the greatest moments of my life.|
When Matthew passed away, I was in and out of consciousness and on life support for the following four days, in the hospital for two weeks and completely unaware of the reality of what had happened to me or to my baby boy.
Three weeks to the very day he was born, I saw that reality in that little "white bed" surrounded by baby blue flowers and peace plants.
This was real. He was gone.
This was the worst day of my life.
I shudder to think about this day because of the sorrow that this day fills me with. But I also love to remember this day because this is the only day I held my little boy in my arms, the little boy I carried for nine months inside of me, this was the day. There is a beautiful agony in the midst of it all. I cannot forget that.
This was the day I survived without ever knowing I could or would.
This day, the worst day of my life, I survived.
I often think of life after losing Matthew and the hard, really difficult days, the ones that make you want to quit breathing, those days, and I think about July 23, 2005, the WORST DAY OF MY LIFE, and I think if I survived that, I can survive ANYTHING.
And I have survived an awful lot.
I found the following definition of survive and I though I would share it with you today:
sur·vived, sur·viv·ing, sur·vives
1. To remain alive or in existence.
2. To carry on despite hardships or trauma; persevere
3. To remain functional or usable:
Surviving isn't a life achievement for me, at least it won't be until I have left this earth for I will be on this road of survival until my very last breath. Survival is a choice I have to make every day of my life and will have to continue to make every day of my life. It is a continual process, one that I will grow old learning to do and one I will remain humble to not knowing how to do it all just right. Sometimes it is an epic failure. Sometimes a huge success. Both are okay. Learning process, continual, like I said.
I survive with my faith, with my family, friends and the wonderful support system that God has given to me and the hope that I have in my heart knowing I will be in heaven one day with Matthew!
With that, I am blessed. Richly blessed.
I am heartbroken, yes I am, for no mother should know what it feels like to touch the top of a little "white bed" adorned with flowers...no mother. No mother should see shovels like I did. No mother.
But it happens, it happened to me, and I know it has happened to many of you.
Today, I find great strength in being able to stand (or scream, or cry, or fall or whisper) and say I survived the WORST DAY OF MY LIFE!