I am so grateful to have finally received the blessing of my daughter’s birth. There is not a day that goes by that I am not thankful for the miracle I was given… to spend days on earth with a living breathing child… my heart just explodes thinking about it.
But some days, I start down a dangerous path when I allow my mind to starting thinking about all the children I’ve lost due to miscarriages…. the ones that will never take a breath on earth… the boys and girls that I didn’t get to birth before they were called to Heaven. I don’t like taking these walks… through memory lane because each loss was tragic and painful beyond anything I have experienced thus far in my life.
I’m only human, vulnerable and can’t help to wonder about them. Blonde hair or brown? Tall or short? Sweet, smart or both? I think about how old they would be now and how much Averey would have loved each one of them. I think about milestones with my girl and wonder about my others… skinny or chubby? Screamer or cryer? Picky eater or lover of all foods? And while I will spend the rest of my days here on earth thinking about the… I have found peace. These thoughts don’t destroy me anymore.
Last summer, when I was in bed two months healing from neck surgery, I decided I wanted to use this time of rest to spend time with God. I watched a lot of Daystar television and spent time soaking in the word, writing in my journal and reading books that I sensed God wanted me to pick up. Two of the books were in a very interesting order.
I first read Jack Hayford’s I’ll Hold You In Heaven and then William P. Young’s novel The Shack. Pastor Jack Hayford’s book inspired healing as it answered some longing questions I’d had on where were my children now? Would I ever see them again? He takes you through Bible verses to bring you answers and comfort. But it seemed like God knew I needed more. I am a visual person and have to see and feel it. So hence… The Shack!
I began to read it and instantly thought God must me kidding me – having me read a book about a murdered little girl. But I was faithful and kept reading. I soaked most pages with my tears and sometimes had to put it down for awhile, but the book blew me away. And soon in… I couldn’t wait to get through each chapter. Oh how I wished to be at that shack with the Holy Trinity!
When I reached the point where Mack is taken through his suffering and pain through a series of events that happen at or around the shack… I knew God had a big purpose in me reading this work at this exact time. Near the end, Mack goes to a waterfall where he gets to see his daughter playing in Heaven. As I read each word, I knew God was speaking to me. I knew He wanted me to see where my children were. He wanted me to have a visual… one of my children being alive! I could see them in my mind playing soccer with Jesus. I sensed Him telling me they were happy and proud of me, and now I could see they really were.
In my room, stuck in my bed on Hartford Road… I was in my shack! God met me exactly in the room where my worst nightmares surfaced. He hugged me through my darkest moments. The Holy Spirit showed up for me every time I cried to comfort me and give me strength. He whispered to me and guided me through my pain and grief. They loved me when I was weak and helped me garner to strength to seek answers. And when I was ready… Jesus showed me the truth, the way and my children… Jesus is standing in for me to raise my children. What a gift! What an honor! To know that He loves me enough to cherish these lost children until Scott and I can be with them again.
What a revelation! I was ready for answers and God showed up for me just like He did for Mack in the novel and like He will for you too! It was from this point on I no longer lamented on their birthdays, the months I conceived them, the months I lost them. I stopped needing to validate their existence on this earth because I know they exist! My waterfall experience showed me that where they are is amazing and beautiful. I don’t need to worry or feel sad for them. Where they are is with God! And God shared with me that they love me and look foward to the day that I will get to see my soccer team again. And when I get there… I want to be wearing a “team Slater” jersey!
It is my prayer that each one of them knows how much I love them. God… please let them know that I am their biggest fans… that I will make my very best effort to be the mom they deserved by parenting Averey the very best I can.
I will be cheering for them when they take the soccer field with Jesus. When I start to get sad… I think of them playing and it warms my heart. It’s impossible to be sad when you see them with Jesus. What a glorious image God gave me to take through my days… to erase the worst memories of my life. Each one of my children have touched my life in deep and significant ways. It is because of them that I have purpose and a passion in my life to help women. I promise to work tirelessly the rest of my life to show love to my lost children, and most importantly, to honor God.