Yesterday was a hard day for us. It marked 2 years since our Evie went to heaven from inside my womb.
It's a difficult day for me because I still remember clearly those last movements up high in my tummy. I remember thinking to myself that they were significant - that I would be wise to take notice and appreciate them. I am so glad that I did. I'm grateful to have these memories - so grateful to the Lord for every memory I have of our Evie girl. And yet, having such clear memories of that day is also difficult. I know what time it was and where I was, and how my afternoon and evening proceeded from there.
As the clock counts the hours and minutes of the day I can't help but recall what I was doing at this time two years ago... planting flowers, cleaning the porch fan, playing with Oliver in the yard, sitting at the computer while Oliver rested...
And then she said goodbye.
And all the moments after that... worrying and waiting for another movement, making phone calls, telling Ryan what I thought had happened, and heading to Nashville to confirm our fear.
April 7th is a hard day to relive. Harder in many ways than the 9th -the day we finally said hello and goodbye to Evie. It's complicated that it's a three-day anniversary, but they are all a part of the story God wrote for her and we grieve and are comforted each day differently as we remember what the Lord has done. His timing is perfect and his ways are perfect.
Yesterday was no exception to this.
As I was missing my Evie girl yesterday afternoon, the UPS man arrived at our door with a package. And it was filled with something amazingly beautiful...
And I was reminded of His great goodness.
It's been two long years since our Evie left this earth. Two years of breathing in and out and putting one foot in front of the other. Two years of God's faithfulness to our family. And two years of His comfort in our pain.
And on the day we grieve the Earthly loss of our baby girl, we received an announcement at our door, reminding us of God's faithfulness, great love for us, and continued blessing on our family.
(Well, really two announcements, because I'm terrible at making decisions
when there are so many lovely choices...)
Holding these cards in my hands, yesterday of all days, announcing the birth and life of a healthy daughter was a tangible reminder that our God is a good and loving God. And, He is the same good and loving God this week as we was two years ago at this same time. He has not changed.
"Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows."
In the early weeks and months of my pregnancy with Hazel I battled a great deal with fear and worry. A dear friend encouraged me to surround myself with God's promises and I took that exhortation quite literally. I claimed scriptures, printing them and posting them in prominent places in my home. I had Psalms on the refrigerator, hymns by my sink in the bathroom, and this passage from Psalm 27 on my dresser:
"I am still confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the LORD
in the land of the living.
Wait for the LORD;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the LORD."
And now, two years after we said goodbye to our precious Evie Grace, and in the meantime consecrated two more precious tiny babes to our Father, we are reminded of His great love for us. Not to replace Evie Grace or to fulfill our desire for her (for that desire will never be fully satisfied on Earth), but to fulfill our desire for more children - and for a daughter to care for on this Earth. Our desire for our Hazel - she is here!
Isn't it amazing the way the Lord works? Sometimes in very subtle, almost indiscernible ways, and sometimes, by sending a man in brown to your doorstep with an in-our-face reminder of what God has done and is doing in our lives.
And today, as our family reflects on God's constant presence and work in our lives, I am reminded of the verse He gave me that first time I visited Evie's grave site, and I claim it once again:
"The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me;
your steadfast love, O LORD, endures forever.
Do not forsake the work of your hands."
He was not finished with us in Evie's death, and He is not finished with us in Hazel's life. He will continue to fulfill His purpose for me.
On a much lighter note, I'd like to express a huge and sincere thanks to Tiny Prints for printing those absolutely fabulous birth announcements that were such an encouragement to me yesterday. We are so pleased. So many gorgeous choices, it took me forever to decide (hence only being able to narrow it down to 2 styles...)
Not only do they have great designs and gorgeous finished products, they also have a neat option for busy families. Get this: You can upload your address book to their website, place your order, and they will address AND ship your cards directly to everyone in your address book for you! Seriously.