Wednesday, September 2, 2009

And So It Begins.....

Did you know that having an epiphany can wear you slap out? I've had a few in my life, but this most recent one? H.U.G.E. I mean really huge. And, I'm tired now. Haven't even had the energy to tell my precious husband or SnarkyMama about it. Haven't had the energy to write about it, but it's coming...soon. I've heard people say maybe the reason for a tragedy or heartbreak is so that we can help others in their times of sorrow. I will never believe that. In fact, I don't find that the slightest bit comforting. What I do believe is that when you survive heartbreak you can choose to turn it around. You have the power to lift, comfort and guide others. Blessings and miracles will manifest themselves through others who have walked the path you face. There is an amazing woman I've met through blogging and she has taught me things I never knew about myself. I'll write about it when I can find the words and energy.

September is so predictable. Every year it begins, bringing along the familiar sounds and smells and cool air. All of which transport me right back to 1996. I haven't really "recycled" posts before, but today I make an exception. I wrote the following close to one year ago. It's true, some things never change.

~September 14, 2008
It's almost too much to process, the changing of seasons coupled with my oldest child's upcoming birth/death day (September 25). I walked outside this morning and felt the crisp fall air settling in on my world. In one moment I feel both freedom and suffocation. It is so strange, and no number of years will change that.

I wrote this poem a few years ago. It still holds true today.

I guess it always will.

How did I get here?
In this raging sea, and I can't swim.
Do I fight the suffocating darkness,
Or just let go?
I am alone now.

I am fighting to live, but only because everyone is calling my name.
I am growing tired, too tired to fight.
Darkness is my day,
Cold is my embrace.
I'm breathing, but I am not alive.

Outstretched hands all around me,
But none to pull me out.
I can't find the surface.
I give in to the pain,
Darkness is comfortable.

And yet, somewhere in my mind,
I know that my soul will never let me go.
My soul offers hope.
And with hope, a gentle voice whispers air into my lungs.
I have strength.
Strength to touch the One hand that can guide me to the surface.

I am free.
I am alive.
Light is my day.
Warmth is my embrace.


Lanie said...

That is beautiful Natalie. I do not know how it feels to lose a child, so I won't pretend to know what to say. My heart is with you and I will pray for you while you remember your little one. ~Lanie

jen said...

So much in common, you and I. September 10th is closer every day, and every year I think, "THIS will be the time that it's easy." And I haven't been right yet.
One of my idols (a lady in our stake whose wisdom and knowledge I completely admire) once said the following, "Hard isn't bad. It's just hard."
Sometimes I have to remember that.
Sorry it's so hard right now.
LOVE to you.

Emily said...

Yes- freedom and suffocation in the same moment. That is September.

Beautiful poem! Thanks for sharing!

I like when people reach back for posts they wrote a while ago. I usually don't have a chance to read all the history of a person's blog, so I'm glad you did that.

Sue said...


I only wish I were there to give 'em in person.

Beautiful poem. Just love it. And you.


Lindsay said...

This September is the strangest yet. Zoe was born on the 29th. She would be two this month.
I wish that we didn't have to lose our girls. I admire the way you are so honest about it.
love you,

Grace said...

Sweet poem. I get the pain involved with such a horrible anniversary, not from a child.. but a parent. It is hard... and your thoughts and memories can never be taken from you. Hold fast to those thoughts... it helps me on the harder days.

Shauna said...

love you!!

Jill said...

September 25th is my birthday

I am literally speechless.

caitsmom said...

Natalie, I had no idea (rather I didn't pay attention or process this when I first came to read your blogs--my bad as they say in my line of work) and yet I am not surprised that your daughter in heaven was born and died in September. And so, we share another sad detail--the season of colors changing marks the life and death of our children.

I came here today to thank you for the blessing of your letter to Caitlin that you left on my blog. Of all things that I wished to give my daughter is the kind of mother she deserved to have and your comment helped provide some evidence that I'm moving in the right direction. I don't know that I'll ever wash away the guilt of wishing Caitlin did not have DS. I know I loved her perfectly, but I was counting on her living to make sure that all she knew was love.

But, I have "hijacked" your post.

Your poem is beautiful. I'm glad you reposted. "I am breathing but I am not alive." This is another of what I call "and boths". I think the bereaved more than any other understands that we must live in both sides of the coin at the same time. Also, I wanted to say, how lovely your poem moves from the darkness to hope. A place I never thought we could get to. But we do, somehow. We do.

Peace, dear friend.


SnarkyMama said...

September...somehow it has become known to me as "Victoria's month."
As sad and hard as it was and is...I am so grateful she graced our lives...forever she will be our "One Precious Moment."

I love you...

McAtee Family said...

As always, I don't know what to say but that I love you!!

em said...

september, i love you. what a wonderful month to celebrate the life of a child, here or not:-)

Michelle said...

I can relate to this. Benjamin was my autumn baby. The trees were brilliant at his graveside service.
This is my second autumn change since he died, and it still hurts. I can see from your experience that it always will.
But at the same time, the pain brings him close to me again, and I am grateful for that.
I love that even though it makes me sad it also makes me remember him more clearly. I sometimes feel like if I could just reach through the layers of the years between autumns, I could have him with me again.
I'll be thinking of you and Victoria, especially on her birthday.

Gretchen said...

Natalie - I can very much relate to the crisp fall air as a precursor to my season of loss as well. I think I remember reading this poem of yours before.. and oh, so true, it is.

I am missing your sweet Victoria with you.

I am also anxious to hear about your recent epiphany. Isn't it amazing that these things can happen through blogging?

Lanie said...

I came back to read more comments on this and I am just crying. My heart aches and breaks for all of you sweet ladies...

Kelly @ The Beauty of Sufficient Grace said...

Thinking of you as the September winds blow in and the autumn surrounds us once more. Your words are so true. The number of years is irrelevant. The heart remembers...

Praying God's continued comfort and peace for you, my snarky friend...