Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Footprints on My Heart

Our son Gabriel was alive for only a few precious minutes after his birth.
But, I know he has left his footprint on the hearts of many.

Through his life & death, there were many people who left sweet footprints on my heart.

In memory of Gabriel's 6 year birth anniversary,
I want to publicly acknowledge some of these people.
(But I also want to say, if you are not mentioned right here, that does not at all mean I forgot you.
There were so many people who loved us so beautifully through our son's life & death.)

Rebecca Hughes
Rebecca gifted Scott & I with private birth classes.  
She loved us by giving us caring information, so we could go into our son's birth prepared.
She congratulated us in the birth of our son, before she offered sympathy for our lost.
She treated his life with dignity.

Alicia Gurnee
Alicia is a doula.  She was truly my caregiver/doula through my pregnancy with Gabriel.  
She was just "there" for me.  For whatever I needed.
She cared for me while I was on bedrest.
She took me to a scary appointment, when my family was all out of town.
She was a quiet comfort.
(btw, if you are wondering how to love someone who is grieving, 
I recommend this approach.)

Dr. Laura Diana
I am so grateful to have Dr. Diana as my OB.
I really believe she is a gift from God to me.
I had heard of her, "a nice OB in town."
I met her that night my water broke 
& we rushed to the hospital.
She was the OB on call.  
My OB was an hour away, at a different hospital.
She was so compassionate & loving toward our son
& toward Scott & I.
She has been my doctor ever since 
& has been there for each of our babies.
(Plus she is an adoptive mom.  
And she was just in Ethiopia on a missions trip last month.
And she brought me the book, 
There is No Me Without you the night Kendall was born.
And wondered out loud when I would ever get time to read it.
I haven't yet.  But I'm gonna.)

Nurses at Watsonville Hospital

Trish - my admittance nurse
We already knew Trish from church.  
She knew our story - Gabriel's story.
God gave us a wonderful gift 
to have Trish at the admittance desk that night.
We didn't have to tell the heartbreaking facts to the staff.
She did it for us.

Laura - my early labor nurse
Laura was so confident & upbeat.
She was what I needed.
I was nervous, unsure, sad…
She was a strength for us.
She told us she was blessed to be our nurse
& she imparted some of her confidence to us.

Heidi - my post delivery nurse
Heidi was tender & compassionate.
She gave us space & time to grieve with our son.
I don’t think I’ll forget her soft spoken kindnesses.
And, I won’t forget how she stood strong for us
when we were ready to give up Gabriel’s body.
She would not allow the nurse who came,
 to wheel him off in a cart, as she had intended.
Heidi firmly told that young lady to carry him.
Carry this sweet body in your arms.  Do not wheel him out of here.

These nurses were a gift to us. Each respectful, kind & strong women.

God gives tender mercies, even through the deep valleys of pain.
I am grateful. 


Nini said...

Thinking of you today. Praying for you and with you. Praising God for the gift of life and the time you had with Gabriel.

Krista said...

It is amazing what an impact a little life can have on us. I cry nearly every time I think about Gabriel. I am praying for you all today as you remember his life and his death. My first nephew, I will never forget you Gabriel!

I love you guys!

Brandi said...

Reading this today, I am honored to have stumbled (God's Direction) across your blog. I have been honored to read your thoughts before, but today, I am honored to have read something so tender to your heart. Each of these people were apart of something beautiful, the birth of your first child!! I am sure they will be touched by your tender words and thankfulness.

Brittany Martin said...

It's hard to believe that it's been 6 years! You and Scott were such an example of godly grief, I have been blessed by the many times I've used your example in my own life and the lives of others that I've shared your story with to encourage them.

Melissa Joy said...

Remembering your precious Gabriel with you today. Those little feet are so beautiful! I'd love to see your album again...

Nicola S. said...

OH Erin, know that you are in my prayers and thoughts as you remember your beautiful, precious little Gabriel. I look forward to the day when I will be able to meet him.
love you.

LindaFaye said...

I heard your story the first day we met. It impacted me that day how openly you shared with me, a stranger. I haven't shared such a loss, but am so glad that you've been super expressive here so I can learn how to relate to others who have suffered similar losses.

Jason said...

Beautiful post, Erin. What blessed people to have in your life during such a difficult time. I think its a joy to see, even in these times, how God blesses us and cares for us so tenderly.

We talked about Gabriel today. I've mentioned him to Ethan every year since he was about 2 - just letting him know why today is special and how my friend gave birth to her first boy the same year I had him. This year when we talked about it, it was like he got it. Somehow another year older its made more sense to him.
He got very teary and said "I bet it makes you thankful that you have me, huh Mommy?" Yes. It does. Very thankful. I wish I remembered this kind of thankful every day (even on the awful days) :)

We prayed for you guys today and prayed that God would overwhelm you with sweet memories and comfort you as you grieve.

Love you!

Nessa said...

Reading your story before I have been in awe of your grace and love. This thanking of those who lived tiny grains of it with you is so moving. Prayers for your continued healing and remembrance of Gabriel. God bless you and yours.

Erin said...

@Brandi. I am glad you did come this way! I get forward to getting to know you better. Thank you for your comment.
And thank you everyone for your kind comments! What a blessing.
Stef - I know that is you, and not Jason... Hearing Ethan's thoughts is precious to me. Our boys are so connected in my mind. I am sure you remember that Ethan was born on the day we found out that Gabriel would not live.