Friday, May 30, 2008

I carried him across the river


I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service (Romans 12:1).

Present your body as a living sacrifice. Sacrifice: the word comes from the Latin sancire, meaning to make sacred. That’s exactly what I was doing: offering my very flesh and blood to God, to meet his purposes, to fulfill the desires for children he had planted within me.

Yesterday's cover story in the Meridian Magazine is one of the most beautiful expressions of the significance of womanhood I have ever read. At first I avoided it because of the picture of a pregnant woman--I am ashamed to admit I still struggle with my feelings when I see pregnant women or new babies. But something told me it was okay; go ahead and read it. I'm so glad I did! This author writes powerfully about the inestimable value of the sacrifices we make to fulfill our part of Heavenly Father's plan, no matter what our situation in life.

I have always sensed a sacredness about our power to bring children into the world, despite the physical challenges. In past pregnancies I feared miscarriage so deeply, believing that then all the pain and discomfort already undergone would be wasted. During the experience of losing Benjamin at 38 weeks, I was taught by the Spirit that it was not a waste at all--that the physical trauma I went through to carry and deliver this precious baby, even though he never breathed outside the womb, was a small price to pay for the rich reward of now being mother to a celestial son!

Read the article here.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Tired of election polls? Here's something fresh. . .

I'm a little late with this, but I just wanted to give some closure to my coconut poll by writing a post about it. I have always been a coconut lover. Almond Joy is my FAVORITE!! YUMM!! But, strangely enough, I have married a man who detests coconut. Actually, it's not strange, it's self-interested, because now whenever we're with company and are served coconut, I get HIS, too! heehee

We have an ongoing debate about whether it's more abnormal to hate coconut or to like it. So I decided to use the scientific method and place a poll right here on my blog so that we'd be sure to get an accurate demographic cross-section of the American public opinion. :)

Thank you, coconut-lovers, for proving me absolutely normal in my affinity for the sweet white flaky stuff! A SOLID majority of 58% definitively stated that they are always happy to eat coconut. This is in distinct contrast to the 35% who never touch the stuff, and the 5% who will abide it when fresh.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

First Night of Fireflies

It's been very humid and hot today--definitely feels like summer. Tonight we saw the first fireflies this year!

Friday, May 23, 2008

A Special Visit

Last night I was able to attend a SHARE meeting again, finally, after missing the last two months's meetings. SHARE is a support group for parents who have lost babies at any stage of pregnancy. My angel nurse who attended Benjamin's birth and took care of us all that day is one of the nurses who leads the group, so I love getting to see her again. This time I was the only one in attendance and got all the attention to myself. :)

After we visited for a while, they offered to take me upstairs and let me get a picture of the room where we held Benjamin just after his birth. It was dreamlike to be there again. We followed my exact path from that morning, through the double doors just past the nurses' station, and then down the hall to Room 10. I could only peek in, since someone was in the room, but just seeing that room again brought powerfully vivid memories back to me, seeming to erase the 6 1/2 months that have passed since then.

They took me to the OR as well to see where he had been born, and she showed me the place where she had cleaned him and taken his first pictures. It was amazing to see it from a vertical standpoint--the room is quite a bit smaller than I had realized. To be there with my nurse, who had held my hands and coached me through the epidural, and who had held my baby's sweet face next to mine during the surgery so that I could enjoy him right away, and who remembered details of that day just as clearly as I do, was a precious experience. It was like a witness that it really happened.

Maybe it sounds odd that I would need an additional witness. After all, DC was there, too, and my mom and dad and several of my family. But somehow having my nurse remember it, too, as a more objective but still very tender-hearted testimony, filling in my memories with facts that I had missed at the time, really uplifted me and made me feel close to my absent son.

DSCF3954 DSCF3955

Thursday, May 22, 2008

I'm still here!

Sorry I've been absent so long! Our camera suffered a slow and painful death, being accidentally left outside during our last tornado warning / thunderstorm. It was dripping wet, and I thought I'd be brilliant and dry it out in a slightly warm oven. The next morning I pulled out my now warped camera and wanted to cry. It was Mother's Day morning. So I took pictures with my cell phone, but have still been unable to get the durn things off the phone and onto the computer, due to Verizon hassles. So then last Friday our new camera arrived from my sweet sister Becky (who gave me her old one), and then it was Fluffy's Birthday, and then this week has been crazy, and now you know why there have been no posts for a while. :)

I'll be back soon, I promise! Probably Saturday! I'm suffering withdrawal--this blog is like free therapy for me. :)

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Time to Visit Exacto's Blog!

Exacto has just posted two new entries on his blog . If you're one of his readers, it's a great time to visit. :)


Saturday, May 3, 2008

How thin the veil between the worlds
On the day of birth
And the day of death.

One moment your spirit resided
Within a sweet, perfect body
Cradled within mine.
The next it had fled
Back to where we all long to be.

A sacred gift it was
To be so close to Father in Heaven
As we welcomed you from His presence
And bid you farewell as you returned.

A holy privilege it is
To be your mother.
The only time you knew away from Him
Was the time you spent next to my heart.
~ written for Benjamin by his mother, Michelle Baker, on April 13, 2008

This morning Mom said goodbye before leaving for home, and said, "Happy 6-month birthday to Benjamin! I'm so glad he's in our family." I loved the feeling of celebration that we both felt. She also gave us a special gift, a Willow Tree sculpture of a couple holding a baby. (I'll post a picture when I get home).

I'm about to leave for the Provo Temple with sweet Mandy and Manda, and that will also be in honor of this day. Becky called and shared her love. She posted a beautiful tribute on her blog. I had been having a really hard time lately, but today I feel a lot of comfort, and actually joy again, similar to what I felt the day Benjamin was born.

Thank you, most beloved family and friends, for your unfailing concern and care for me. I feel so grateful to Heavenly Father for surrounding me with such love through you.

And to Benjamin,
I love you, my son. I miss you, but hope to feel you close today. I'm so grateful to have you!