the wind has been blowing outside these windows,
the leaves are beginning to fall.
this small baby inside of me is tumbling in my dark
you are moving in the presence of God.
i woke up this morning at 4:30, unable to go back to sleep. i fleetingly thought of you and your habit, the one that found you up and out the door at 4 am to run, no matter the weather that would blow in.
i thought of that cold february morning when the phone rang in the dark, the snow was blowing outside our window then. i remember the sound of tony's voice as he listened to his mama. how we heard that your heart had rebelled and you had crawled on your hands and knees on the ice and snow to make it home. how you fought to live...
we had 10 more months with you.
the last time i had a baby in my belly, the last time i laid down and saw those tiny fingers and toes and spine up on that screen, tony was with you.
you were here.
and i wonder if that's why, when the appointment was all done and he held me in the quiet of that park, if that's why the tears came.
because last time, when your son shared with you that he was going to have a son of his own, you raised your fist and said triumphantly, yes! boys are ahead, 6 to 4!
you were here to hear the news.
the last time i carried a child in my belly, that child was held in your arms.
all my babies have known you,
they've heard your voice,
they have fallen asleep against you.
this is the first of my four that will never know you.
but i want you to know.
i want you to know that this little one growing in the dark is a sweet baby girl who wiggles and wriggles and is already making us laugh with her stubborn streak that i'm sure you would be proud of.
she may never meet you here on earth's soil, but she will know of you. she will hear of your love for Jesus and how you allowed Him to change you into a man of humility and grace.
and someday she will hear of your struggle, how you gave up at the very end...but even in that, dad, even in that there is hope.
it took tragedy to shake us out of our complacency and He promises that He takes the ugly of our lives and turns into beauty.
we can trust that.
and we will teach each of our children, your grandchildren that they can trust Him for that too.
but more than anything, i just wanted to let you know that you are going to be a grandpa again...
and i'm trusting that Jesus will let you know that the girls are catching up...
i love you, dad.
and i miss you...
1511. wide awake at 4:30am
1512. quiet hours before the day starts
1513. moments with Jesus
1514. that she is a girl
1515. watching her wiggle
1516. tony's grace
1517. tears in the park
1518. that he is home for the day
1519. the community of sweet friends we found and still have even though he's moved onto a different job