Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Is It Well With My Soul?

Last year was understandable. It made sense that only a few months after losing Landyn and just beginning to deal with pregnancy hormones that I would deal with depression. This year, it caught me off guard. It was disappointing and frustrating. I found it interesting that the time frame was very similar to last year. I suspect that the cold and shorter days have something to do with it.  I am thankful that this time it isn't as intense. I seem to be able to function normally for the most part.  Mostly, I just feel....empty.  I don't feel like doing much and can't seem to gather excitement over anything.  I feel as if I simply exist, and not much more. 

I had no interest in Christmas. I nearly dreaded the whole season and everything that goes with it. I really had to talk myself into even faking it. Do you have any idea how hard it is to enter into a season that is filled with family traditions and be reminded over and over that my whole family is not participating?  I had to remember that decorations, a tree, presents, and special food is not what Christmas is truly about and if I just don't feel into it then that's ok.  Not only is it hard to have someone missing, but our family has two birthdays close to Christmas and when I became pregnant I had made special notice that Landyn would be joining them. When I shop for Christmas, I also shop for those birthdays.  Of course, we included her in the only ways we could. A trip was made to the cemetery to put up her little tree there and her tree at home, with her special ornaments (along with the one purchased this year,) was lit in pretty white lights. It's nice, but it isn't enough. This year would have been her 1st Christmas. 
The moment the lightning tore through my heart. There should be 6.


There is a part of me that hates these things we do for her. It's pretty, but it's not her.

A special kind of Christmas gift, Landyn was included on a card we received. How good to see her name with all of ours, right where she belongs.
After Christmas my mind began to focus on her due date. Last year I expected it to be hard. This year I knew I would think about the day, but I was surprised by how difficult it was for me.  Not only was January 12 her due date, but this year would have been her 1st birthday. Instead of planning a day filled with pictures, cake, and a favorite dinner; I spent the day feeling alone. I really don't expect people to remember something like that, but it hurts when the day comes and goes and not a single soul acknowledges it. January 12, was a Sunday. We went to church, they played the song "It Is Well with My Soul".  I had claimed this song early on and often hummed it to myself. Maybe it was an effort to make myself feel how I knew I was "supposed" to feel.  I wondered occasionally how I would react the first time we sang it in church.  Before the music even started I knew what song was coming. I knew instantly I would not be able to sing a word.  My stomach immediately felt sick, my legs wobbled, and my whole body shook. It was an amazing effort to keep myself together. I knew a tear or two would probably not be noticed, and if it was it would be understood, but this was different.  I knew if I even let myself crack a little I would start something I couldn't stop. I would curl up on the pew and sob in a way that would attract attention I couldn't deal with.  Don't misunderstand, my inability to sing was not from bitterness, it was from knowing deep down in my soul that no matter how the day to day wrestling goes with missing her, I really do want it to be ok with me.  I can't say this path that has been set before me is where I want to be, I can't say I am ok with this, I can't say I trust at all times. Sometimes I feel myself fighting this for all I'm worth...and that doesn't make sense, because it changes nothing.  But, I try. And I think that is all that I can do for now, and so, it has to be enough.

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul. 
Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.

My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

But, Lord, ’tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,
The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul!

And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul


  1. I found your website from the link-up on raisinghomemakers.com. I really like your post! If I changed the names, it would seem almost like I had written the post myself. We had a daughter pass away six and a half years ago - she was full-term, lived for just over an hour, and died in my arms. I experienced all the same feelings you wrote about. There were times I wanted to stop in the middle of the grocery store and scream, "Hey, everybody! Do you have any idea what has happened to me?" Life does go on, and I am glad you have other children. My girls kept me going on the days when I just wanted to stay in bed. If you need someone to "talk" to who has been there, I would love to hear from you homemakinghearts@gmail.com! I would also recommend the book, "A Steadfast Heart" by Elyse Fitzpatrick - it was a great encouragement to me; I hope it will be to you as well!


    1. Thank you for sharing your daughter and the kind words!