Guest Post by Hannah Rose Allen
The only motherhood I’ve ever known is mothering a grave. A legacy.
It makes me as a mom feel quite out of place, especially on Mother’s Day.
I hold my daughter in my heart, rather than my arms.
I have no other living children on earth with me to help ease the pain.
My “parenting decisions” are things like what sort of headstone will I pick out for Lily Katherine?
Do I want it flat or upright?
What do I want it to say?
What words do I want permanently etched in stone?
What story of her short, but precious life do I want to tell to the passersby at the cemetery where she’s buried?
What special things should I take to “her special spot” (where she’s buried) when I go up to visit this summer?
I have containers of clothes for a little girl that will never wear them.
Clothes that go up to about age two because my mom and I loved shopping for her. Now she’d already have outgrown those clothes.
But, there is no need to purchase more. Her “coming home from the hospital outfit” actually turned out to be her “going Home to Heaven outfit.”
Her true Home. Her forever Home.
I must imagine what my own child might be like.
How she might look.
Who she might have become in these past three years and one month.
What is it even like to look at your child in their eyes?
lue eyes. That’s what I truly believe she had. Blue eyes like her mama.
She looked just like a mini-me.
Oh, she was precious.
My daily reality consists of grief. Consists of loving a precious princess that I never got to know past 40 weeks 2 days.
Those were the most glorious months of my life.
Because they were spent with her.
Instead of thinking about what can I do for my daughter, I think of how I can honor her memory.
I think of how I can be a mom to her, without her here.
Instead of knowing the different stages of babyhood and toddlerhood, I know the different stages of grief.
I have to ask my mom how Lily might act now, at the age she’d be.
So often it feels like just a cycle of joy and sorrow.
Shedding tears of thankfulness and then tears of sadness.
How many tears can be cried for one life? I feel so often like I am simply repeating myself on my blog and this journey of grief.
How many different ways can I say, I miss her.
I miss who she would have become.
I miss who she might’ve been in the future.
How many different ways can I say, this is hard?
How many different ways can I say, I am thankful to be her mother still…