Sunday, May 11, 2014

Baby Dedication

Hi Sweet Girl,

Today is Mother's Day.  Today is also your day - the 11th.  As always you are never far from my thoughts.

This morning was sweet. Mommy woke up to Layne softly calling from her bed, "Oh Mommy…Mr. Sunshine waked up!"  Daddy, being so sweet, offered to go and get Layne from her bed so I could sleep in. But, being Mother's Day, Mommy felt even more excited to see Layne first thing.

Today was Baby Dedication day at church.  For the past three years we had missed this day for one reason or another.  Usually it was because we were in Louisville visiting Mommy & Daddy's moms.  The two Mother's Days you were with us we missed the day because we attended church with your Donna Ma and Norm Pa.  After you passed, Mommy felt kind of sad that we were never able to have you dedicated.

Nonetheless, this was the first time since before you were born that Mommy and Daddy attended a Baby Dedication Ceremony.  Sweet were the little baby girls in their pretty dresses and the baby boy in his button down shirt. The four families that stood before our service to dedicate their babies were so happy.  I was happy for them too.

Throughout the ceremony, Mommy kept hearing the same phrases being restated:

"Children are a gift from God, and parents are the caretakers while they are here. As parents, we are given the responsibility to raise and guide them to know God until they are called home."

During the ceremony tears began to flow from Mommy's eyes.  It was like the floodgates had been opened and without warning.  Mommy was completely caught off guard.  Why was I sad all of a sudden?  Mommy's mind raced for answers.

Was it because you never had the chance to be dedicated?  Was it because Mommy and Daddy never had a chance to raise you in the ways of the Lord?  Was it because Mommy was happy - knowing in my heart that Layne has been dedicated already (even though it's not official) and a big reason has to do with you? Was it because all of the infants had siblings standing nearby or off stage?  Was Mommy so emotional for all the moms out there who were broken hearted by the idea that some of God's children are only on loan for a short time?  Or was it because Mommy knew your purpose had already been fulfilled?

As Mommy sat through the rest of the dedication ceremony and the Mother's Day service, I reflected on all these questions.  I realized the answer to all of Mommy's questions was yes.  Mommy was happy and sad for all these reasons.

Mommy didn't get to have you dedicated, but I never needed to.  I know you are safe in the arms of God.  Mommy didn't get a chance to raise you in the ways of the Lord because our time ran out, but now I get the chance to raise Layne to know Him and have you as a way to make it connect for her.  Mommy has come to realize that God's purpose for your life must have been fulfilled in that short time you were here.  I can think of hundreds of reasons why I need you here, but I am told that it's God's purpose that I need to trust.  Mommy is just a little selfish, I guess.

Mother's Day will always be bittersweet.  Sweet is the memory of Layne being born on Mother's Day just three years ago.  Her birth was the beginning of the rainbow after the storm.  What a rainbow of joy and light and healing she has been for all of us, too!  Bitter is the emptiness that still exists in Mommy's heart.  What would the joy be like if there were two of you to share this day with?

Loving and missing you this Mother's Day, my dear Kaden Layne…