To be clear, we were very honest and up front about the fact that the doctors believed she wouldn't be able to survive outside of my womb but at the same time the harshness and finality of death was something I wasn't ready to broach with him. Every night as Drew and I would tuck him in we would say prayers and all but beg God to spare her life...
When Sadie was born we immediately knew (from the lack of crying and her struggle to deep breath) that she wasn't going to make it very long so we got me covered up and brought him in. The joy he felt in his heart when he saw her couldn't be hidden; he was in love. His tone and touch seemed to soften naturally when he saw her, he knew she was fragile. He was able to hold her and take a few photos while enjoying the bliss of his new found brotherhood.
I will never forget the minute he looked up to me with Sadie in his arms and asked if she is going to get to come home with us... Drew and I both looked at each other with tear filled eyes and wondered how we would ever break this awful news to him. Drew paused a minute, took a deep breath and slowly said "Buddy, Sadie isn't doing so well, she is going to live with Jesus very soon so she won't be able to come home." What came next nearly killed me.... Grant let out a painfully long "NOOOOOO". It wasn't a "no" out of disrespect or disobedience, it was out of sheer hurt. His face began pouring tears. His little hands held on a little tighter to his sister knowing that she'd soon be taken away. My sister actually caught this moment on camera and as excruciating as they are to look at, they show his unconditional love for his baby sister.
Drew and I will both tell you, this was the hardest part.
What we are learning is that as time goes on, grief and pain doesn't lessen but you learn how to cope with it a little better.
Grant is learning how to cope with his loss just the same as Drew and I are. Things that trigger sadness to me aren't triggers for him. That's the thing about grief...It just hits you OUT OF NOWHERE and when you least expect it! We have pictures hanging in our home of the two of them and daily Grant will ask questions about Sadie or just in passing say that he misses her and wishes she was here. Unfortunately, not every day is that black and white. A few days ago he started crying for no reason and when I asked him what was wrong he yelled "SHE WAS MY SISTER!!! AND NOW SHE'S GONE!!!"
We both fell apart in the middle of the kitchen. Our shatter hearts clinging to each other for dear life.
I constantly ask God to protect his heart from hurt and not let this negatively affect his relationship with Jesus one day. Satan loves to torment me over that...he whispers lies like that to me all the time:
"how could he every trust God after what he's gone through...you teach him to ask God for what he needs/wants but all he see is God turn his back". James 4:7 says "Rebuke the devil and he will flee from you".
Let me just tell you...I do a LOT of rebuking! I refuse to believe satans lie that Grant will be emotionally traumatized by this and that it will make him never trust God...
I will stand on God's word believing that even though we are tested and refined by fire, by our faith, it will be turned to praise and glory to God. (1 Peter 1:7)
If you would, would you please join me in prayer for Grant's heart. I am believing God and knowing He has something big for Grant in his life. That even Grant will share Sadie's story one day to minister to circle of influence or even his children and grandchildren. Sadie's legacy and our ministry doesn't end with a grave.