We began the adoption process not too long after we lost our precious Abigail, and we rejoice in the blessing of the precious gift that God has given us! Annabelle was born on December 30, 2012. SO many emotions! It is crazy to experience such incredible joy and such deep sorrow at the same time. In the 11 weeks that we have had her, the Lord has healed me more than I have healed during this entire journey put together. We are so in love with this precious child, and we wish so bad that she and Abigail were going to get to grow up together and be best friends! So often I think about when we're in Heaven one day with both of our girls by our side worshiping Him together. And I can think of nothing better. I find that a common question that people ask is how I'm adjusting to having the new baby. I tell them that I really haven't had to adjust to having Annabelle. The adjustment continues in the new normal of living without my Abigail. I have been a mama for quite sometime without being able to actively play the role of mama, so having Annabelle just feels so natural and right.
Abigail's birthday was yesterday and it was so so hard. It is so hard to think about all that she would be doing right now and what she would look like. She was supposed to get to eat her first cake yesterday! It was so difficult to celebrate what was supposed to be such an exciting day, without her. I was supposed to be planning a big birthday party and buying her first birthday presents. To be honest, it was so depressing! I do have hope in our Savior though. It was not a sad day for Abigail, just for us. And I can make that sacrifice. I will be depressed so she can be happier than I could ever imagine. I told Luke yesterday that I really may not have survived the day if it hadn't been for the gift of sweet Annabelle. I constantly praise Him for her! We are so blessed to have such incredible family and friends. They have helped us celebrate her life and the love they have for her means so much to me. From cards, to a birthday cake, to flowers, to surprise balloons on the door, to sweet little books and a precious little Bible with her name on it, to a sign to put in the front yard every year in her honor. My parents bought her the sign and the birthday cake, and they let me design them. It helped to feel like I was getting to do something for her. We tried to release big pink sky lanterns in the cemetery last night for her birthday but it was too windy! Hopefully another day.
She has been with Jesus for one year today. I love that her birth and death are so close to Easter and I'm reminded daily what He has done for her! He has conquered death for her and words cannot describe how thankful I am for this incredible gift. It makes what He has done very real in my life! An almost tangible hope! I am so thankful for all the prayers of strength, comfort, and healing. They have helped me to get through. I think I will almost feel a sense of relief when this day is over. I will be glad to have survived these two difficult days. I am posting a few links that have meant a lot to me, and some pictures of her birthday celebration, and a few of Annabelle.
Here is a beautiful letter to the broken hearted believer: Letter to the Wounded
This beautiful poem expresses my heart so well!
And I feel like this bereaved mother read my mind: Before and After
My sister bought a sweet little book for Abigail called On The Night You Were Born. I wanted to quote a little bit of it in honor of Abigail's birthday:
"On the night you were born, the moon smiled with such wonder that the stars peeked in to see you and the night wind whispered, 'Life will never be the same.' Because there had never been anyone like you... ever in the world. So enchanted with you were the wind and the rain that they whispered the sound of your wonderful name. The sound of your name is a magical one. Let's say it out loud before we go on...
For never before in story or rhyme (not even once upon a time) has the world ever known a you, my friend, and it never will, not ever again... Heaven blew every trumpet and played every horn on the wonderful, marvelous night you were born."
Abigail's First Birthday: