A Birthday Wish


Madeline Claire. 

Two years ago today you made your debut into this world, and just over a year ago you departed it. In my mind there is this never ending tennis match between the few months of memories that I was allowed and the future that I had envisioned.

And as we have been approaching this significant milestone, never have I been in such distress. This is something l don’t say lightly as the past thirteen and a half months have been severe and arduous. But as the light and heat from the “bonfire” of our life’s devastation slowly burns out it has somehow brought me a little clarity. The cold and the darkness have settled around me like a blanket and the emotions flood my heart almost as fast as they spill out. In the middle of it all I know that I still love you.

I have sat here night after night trying to give an account of my feelings for you, but I can’t. It is like the pain is so intense and overwhelming that it has knocked the wind out of my words. Everything I try to write down to sum up how much I miss you and love you falls flat. It screams, “This is not worthy enough to occupy the space on the screen!” It taunts, “How foolish are you to think that you could do it justice.” It mocks, “Now you will never be able to prove how much you love her!”

I’m not sure why I feel like I have to justify how I feel about you. Maybe to clarify why the tears come so easy, explain the simultaneous joy and heartbreak that little girls bring, or understand the fear of never being able to move through this loss. Though mostly I think it is just because you didn’t get to live long enough to witness the depths of my love for you.

For all of my children that was my number one priority; even for the babies that we chose to care for while the grown ups in their lives were getting their shit together. I desperately wanted you to be confident in the security of my love. To live knowing it was impossible to be separated from that love. There was nothing that you could have done to change those facts and nothing I wouldn’t have done to make sure that you believed it.

In the wee hours of this morning I quietly snuck into your room and curled up on the rocking chair. Holding on to your blanket I wept as I sang your song. I am broken and I won’t ever be whole this side of eternity, but I love you Madeline, and I always will…

“… Who told you so dilly, dilly, who told you so?

‘Twas my own heart dilly, dilly, that told me so…”

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5 thoughts on “A Birthday Wish

  1. God Himself creates the unspeakable love parents have for their children, as well as the peaceful stability children experience in the knowledge of that love. Given that Madeline now knows and understands more of God’s love than we can here on earth, I wonder if it’s safe to say she darned near HAS to know right into the core of her soul how much you love her. My heart is broken and aching for yours today, Leanne. I wish there was more… 💜

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  2. Thank you for leaving your heart out and open for us to see.
    Somehow no matter how long you got to or didn’t get to hold on to your little one there is such peace in know He is holding them.
    I would imagine myself curling up in God’s lap and ask him to hold me and my little girl together.
    Somehow it brought me peace and comfort.
    Praying you fine a new measure of grace for today.

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  3. Tears. I would never even attempt to find words to comfort you. But you reminded me of this verse, “For now we see only a reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.” I wonder if your little darling now understands love even better than we earthlings do. She must know that your mother love– the most perfect, most unselfish earthly love– was given to her to exemplify God’s unconditional love. “Where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.” What a treasure you have in Heaven awaiting you!

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