Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Pain beyond pain

Thank you. Each of you who shared Gwenyth with us, who loved her with us. Thank you to those who shared in the memorial service and joined us to celebrate her life.

We have been carried and lifted up and loved by so, so many people - from those we know deeply and daily, to those we've recently become aquatinted with, to our church family, co-workers, to people from the past but close in heart, to people we don't even know. Pain, sorrow and horrible things are strong but love is by far, more present and more powerful. God has been glorified and revealed in this amazing show of love - we have been so blessed to witness that - and Gwen in her tiny little life touched so many - that I know it is my duty to honor that by saying, I do believe there is Hope - even as I myself, am going to be struggling for a long, long time to make peace - I couldn't do this if there wasn't.

I cannot let my Gwen down by giving into despair, to the grief and the unbelievable guilt I carry. I will work towards that Hope, I will keep looking for God, I will do it for Gwen because her little life amazed me in how many people told me they followed her story and were moved by her story. It is HER story, it is not mine. She ministers to me.

I'll be posting words from her service in the weeks to come. I'll be sharing as we hear what the doctors learn - as we are totally in the dark as to what went wrong. I took her to the pediatrician on Friday for a few small things we noticed and were concerned about. We went to our local hospital for a lung x-ray, an EKG and a little fluids. She worsened through the day, but we still never thought she was on the path she was one. She took a dramatic turn and never made it on the helicopter to UVA. We were packing for an expected few days in Charlottesville, about an hours drive (we were not allowed on the helicopter) when we got the call to go back to her, that her heart had stopped and the docs were trying to start her heart again.

I noticed something just now that struck me - which is really what I came here to note - so I thought I'd share it. Her Aunt that died, also shared the same middle name, "Graham." I never noticed that until just now. I've known her since I first dated Myers in 1997. I've been reading the articles in the paper about her accident. And I never noticed until this morning her middle name was the same as my daughter. Had I known, I would have told her in life, how wonderful and appropriate it was - that "Graham" not only honored one family member we loved, Myers' Aunt, but another in our own generation, her, sweet Marie - I would have loved to tell her that it had meaning to me that they shared a name, as I loved and adored Marie's heart and spirit and the way she could made me laugh and laugh about silly things. I simply loved her laugh and can hear it so well in my head. I loved, loved, loved Marie.

I'm noticing her not being around as all the family is gathered for Gwenyth. I notice it so much that she is not here to grieve with us. But, I did have a strong sense that she was holding Gwenyth for me during the service, just as someone would hold the baby while I needed to be doing something - she was holding Gwenyth as I had to be at a funeral. I will be holding that vision in my heart - and take comfort in that. If anyone needed to be held day and night, it was my Gwen - I like to think she has her loving, sweet Aunt taking that on for me - that in some way that would be like her holding her here - they are connected where they now dwell.

The pain of the loss of Gwenyth is going to take a long time until I am more used to it - I know it will never go away - and I can't wish it away because I'd have to let go of every memory I have.
But it is pain beyond pain.


  1. Oh Laura. My heart aches for you and your family, and I know that it's only a small fraction of the pain you're going through. It was comforting to see you yesterday - to see you and Myers mourn together but also celebrate sweet Gwen's life together. I feel so privileged and blessed to have been able to meet her. We are praying for you and trusting the Lord to carry you and care for you through the pain - He is with you always.

  2. I love you Laura and Myers. Thanks for writing...it means a lot.
    Jessie and Zeke

  3. Laura,
    There are no words to describe how my heart aches for you guys and how I wish I could be there to help you or at least give you a hug. I know we did not know eachother long however I will always hold your family close to my heart and feel bonded by our heart babies. Gweneth was so lucky to have such amazing parents. You are and AMAZING mother and although I am sick about you having lost Marie as well, I am also glad she is able to take care of Gweneth until you can again. Take comfort in that if you can and know that so many people love you guys and are praying for you.

  4. I too, noticed that Marie and Gwenyth shared the same middle name when I saw a write up about Marie in the on line version of the Chattanooga newspaper. How special!

    Laura, I just want to thank you for sharing your heart with us. Not only does it help you grieve, but it helps us, as friends and family, to walk beside you through this deep dark valley. It helps us to know how to reach out to you.

    One thing that struck me in your post above is how you mentioned feeling some "guilt". I know that it is incredibly difficult, but in Phillippians, God calls us to focus on what is true, what is right, what is pure, what is lovely...and guilt is not something that is true, right, pure, or lovely. You did the best with what you knew. You did the best that you could in those moments. God had a plan and as much as we detest not having Baby Gwenyth in our lives here on earth, He had a higher calling for her. Her life has blessed so many people - just look at how packed that chapel was!

    Know that you are loved. Please continue to share your thoughts and feelings, so we know how to encourage and help. We love you guys!


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