There is no footprint too small to leave an imprint on this world.

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Happy (almost) 5th Birthday Jane!

It's been a while since I've posted on here. I guess I haven't needed this release as much as I used to. I am so very blessed to be surrounded by people with big, compassionate hearts. I don't need this space as much anymore because I have people who ask me about Jane and let me talk about her.

My grief, however, will always be mine. Sometimes all I can do to get relief from my grief is to just dive into it head first. Grief can't be rerouted to a more convenient time. Grief isn't a race to get to the finish line, it's just part of who I am now. It's part of my everyday. I do dishes, help with homework, kiss my husband good morning and carry a heavy heart. Everyday. “Hi, I am Christy Clark. I am a wife, mom, Mormon, daughter of God and a grieving mother.”

Jane’s 5th birthday is next week and I'm starting to feel that anvil on my heart return. The knot in my stomach and cry in my throat. I wish so much we could be having a princess or shopkins or rainbow-unicorn-mermaid party. I wish I was buying a new dress to wear with matching boots. I wish I could braid her hair really cute and special for her big day when she is a whole hand old.
Instead I will slow down my pace, pray extra hard this week, attend the temple and try to feel her close to me. I will love her brothers and have more patience for them. I will share the gospel with anyone who is willing to listen because it is what brings me deep and meaningful peace. My faith is my comfort. Through my efforts of study and prayer, I have had beautiful and sacred experiences that I know were given to me by a loving Heavenly Father. These are the gifts I can give to my little Eliza Jane this year.

Happy Birthday baby girl!



Thursday, November 10, 2016

Jane's 3rd Angelversary

With Jane's 3rd Angelversary next week, November 16th, we will be doing our annual #ElizaJaneLove day of service. I am going to try and attach the printable card below for everyone to print off on their home printer, or again with the 4x6 option to print off at any photo center.

Make sure to share what you do on Facebook, Instagram or just email me privately and use the hashtag #elizajanelove so we can see her light and love spread and influence the world!

And a preemptive THANK YOU for doing this. When people ask, "What can I do?", "Let me know if I can do anything."
This is it!! You may not understand how huge it is to see Jane remembered in your life and the life of strangers. I know she will be nearby everyone who serves in her honor. THANK YOU!


Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Grief Armor


Jane’s 3rd Angelversary is next week, November 16th. I never know how this day will go. In the past,  I have ranged from feeling pure joy because of the love and peace I am given to utter despair and emptiness.

In the last couple days my grief has felt like a suit of armor weighing me down. I can still move, but it's slow and heavy. I feel like a weight is on my chest and shoulders making it harder to breathe. Everything takes 3 times longer to do. Think, eat, speak, move....everything. My head is foggier. My “grief armor” has got me down more than usual.

My grief armor is also my protector. The breastplate protects my heart from well meaning questions like, “How many kids do you have?”, “What are their ages?” “Just 3 boys? You gonna try for that girl?”

But I can take this armor off, sometimes I can choose when and where I want it on. Somedays it consumes me unwelcomingly. Most of my days are filled with real joy and happiness. But occasionally my grief armor puts its heavy self and my life, mind and heart and all I can do is let it protect me and wait it out. It may be for today, it may be all of November.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Two and half years closer....

I have recently noticed something strange about myself. When I read or hear stories of families that have lost a child- my first reaction is, “I could never imagine- how horrible for that family.” It takes about a second or two for my brain to click on and remember I am that mom, we are that family.

Over the last 2 ½ years we have learned to live with our heart in our hands and an angel in heaven. We never stop talking about her- Jane is never forgotten, ever! But sometimes my grief is.

And grief is such a beautiful gift. It's strong and can consume you in bitterness and sadness, but it also helps you remember and keeps you alive! It's this incredibly strong painful yet healing emotion.
I am torn in how I feel about slowly moving away from my grief. On the one hand- I recognize it is a blessing to not always hurt so much. But on the other hand- I miss not thinking of her every second of every day. I want to have her in my CONSTANT thoughts. She is probably in my hourly thoughts- but not every second anymore.

In the beginning days, weeks and months after Jane died every minute of everyday was gut-wrenching, heart-breaking, brain-searing, eye-watering and anxiety-inducing. And now I only have moments every week or so that feels like a sucker punch to the gut. It's just part of my life now and I have learned, for the most part, how to smile when I want to scream and how to laugh when I want to cry. 2 ½ years closer to eternity…..



Tuesday, September 22, 2015

My GIRL


I don't think it's any secret I like girly things. I like shoes, dresses, bows and braids. I legit own an adult sized Cinderella costume (long story). The day I found out I was having a girl I went straight to Baby Gap and bought a dress. And then matching shoes. And made a bow. I love girly things. 



The hardest reminders for me that my only GIRL is gone are the ridiculously adorable girl sections in every store. The darling bows, shoes and ruffles . I have to take the long way around Target and Old Navy to avoid the girl clothes sections. I want so so badly to dress up my baby girl, braid her hair and put a bow in that it physically hurts my heart just thinking about it. 

I realize these are vain and unimportant things, but they are what I miss about my Janey. 

I am so so blessed to still be able to kiss owies, sing songs to, read books with and snuggle my other children. And I cannot imagine my life without my 3 little boys and I love them fiercely. But amidst all the sword fights, poop jokes and wrestling- I wish their diva-princess, sweet and sassy little sister was around to pink things up a bit. 

Some days I want to spoil my nieces with dresses, bows and baby dolls. And sometimes (most times) the thought of my friends and family having their daughters and I don't have mine is too much and it makes me jealous and angry. Movies like the new Cinderella, Frozen and Sophia the First are cruel reminders of what I'm missing out on. I want MY GIRL! 


Almost two years later and I still grieve the unbought dresses and princess toys. I am still the mom who buried her only girl. 

Monday, July 13, 2015

See Ya Later's

For the last several months I have been mentioning to my close friends and family that I am having an irrationally difficult time with my little brother graduating from High School and leaving to serve a two year mission. 

I didn't understand my emotions and why they were so intense and mostly negative about Blake's growing up and moving on.
I finally realized what it is. Remember my post almost 1 year ago when my brother in law came home from his mission? And I didn't realize it- but that reunion felt like a small degree of what my reunion will be with Jane? Well, having to say another extended "see ya later" to Blake right now is bringing back those difficult feelings of unfamiliarity and loss. Albeit to a much smaller degree because I still get to see pictures, read updates and talk to Blake twice a year. Oh what I would give for an email update from Jane.
There are many similarities to these "see ya laters." I have to believe Jane was 'Called To Serve' just like Blake is. That she has a mission and purpose in her departure. I have to believe Jane is growing and becoming better and more mature from her experience just like I know Blake will. I am grateful for the spiritual example Jane and Blake are to myself and family. But it's still hard to let go. To not have these people we love available to talk to or text or be around whenever we want.

I have felt many times that the work Jane and Blake are involved in are the same. I know, know, Jane will be with Blake at times on his mission. She cares about Blake's missionary service just as much, if not more, than we do because I am sure she has a better understanding of it's importance. I hope that like I survived losing Jane and finding joy, I will be able to recognize the joy in losing Blake to our new Elder Wilcox.
"In light of what we know about our eternal destiny, is it any wonder that whenever we face the bitter endings of life, they seem unacceptable to us? There seems to be something inside of us that resists endings. Why is this? Because we are made of the stuff of eternity. We are eternal beings, children of the Almighty God, whose name is Endless13 and who promises eternal blessings without number. Endings are not our destiny."


Saturday, June 13, 2015

The Gift of Grief


Since having a baby our life has been so preoccupied with diapers, barf, crying, soothing and no sleep that thinking of Jane has no longer been at the front of my thoughts all day, every day. In fact sometimes at the end of the day I will realize I only thought of her once or twice that whole day. You would think that would be a good thing. That it means having a baby has been healing and we can move on.. But it has actually been a hard adjustment. 

Last night, while driving to Costco, a song came on and grief hit me hard. I pulled over and a good-long-ugly cry. It felt good to have her near me again. To know she is still there and to know that I can still mourn her absence. That's when I realized what a gift grief is. 

As I have said in past blog posts, thinking of her constantly keeps her alive in our hearts and minds. It means that she was here, real and tangible. Grieving over her being gone, while so difficult, meant she lived and we loved. 

That may sound strange, masochistic maybe, and it is a complicated feeling that I have struggled to understand within myself let alone explain it to others. There is a quote that I have heard many versions of but basically it says, "To grieve means there was love. The only way to not feel grief is to not have loved."
 
I didn't understand that quote quite like I do now. Grieving is our physical way of showing and feeling love for a person lost. It is our bodies intense reaction to the heart-and-soul breaking loss of a loved one. It is painful, physically painful. But that pain is proof of love. 

I miss the heartache. The constant thoughts of Jane, happy and sad. I miss feeling her loss. 

Maybe a new baby meant we can move on and be happy again. But I am not ready to move on. I want to have the baby in my arms and Jane in my mind. Maybe that's asking to have my cake and eat it too. I am sure that either way, grieving of happy, Jane is near. So maybe that means it's okay to move on.

 This is new territory and I don't really know what the best direction is. It is a difficult place to be- stuck feeling like I need to move on but not wanting to just yet.