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

Saturday, April 19, 2014

He Is Risen! Easter thoughts and activities

"There would be no Christmas if there had not been Easter. The babe Jesus of Bethlehem would be but another baby without the redeeming Christ of Gethsemane and Calvary, and the triumphant fact of the Resurrection." -Gordon B. Hinckley

Easter 2013
This week has been emotional. I have tried to completely block out the thoughts of little girl’s Easter dresses. So, mostly my emotions have been of gratitude for my Savior. A kind of gratitude I have never felt. More than just a sincere thank you. Like soul-rejoicing praise and honor.
My testimony of the Savior and his purpose on earth have grown immeasurably. Because of the events of this week 2,000 years ago; I will have my daughter again. Because of His ultimate sacrifice He can empathize with me. Because of His pain I will never be alone. Because of His death and resurrection, Jane will live again.
I will have my daughter again!!! I can't say that enough or have too many exclamation points!
I have wanted Ethan and Nate to understand how relevant Easter is to our family now. I wanted this week to be more about Christ and less about chocolate bunnies and plastic eggs. I want them to know why we will see Jane again.
Here are a list of some things we did, if you want to try some in your home too. I would love to know if you do. I would love Jane to be used as a visual for your testimony or your children's testimony about this topic. I would love Jane Love to grow in your home! In fact, I am going so far as to start using a hash tag: #elizajanelove
Share your pictures of anything and everything you do, see or think about with Jane Love. It brings me comfort knowing she is still alive in your hearts and thoughts.
I asked a friend of mine what some of her Catholic traditions are this Holy Week and we have implemented some of them in our home.
-We read scriptures together every night, and these were the scriptures we read this week:
Palm Sunday: Mark 11:1-11.
Monday: Mark 11:15-18.
Tuesday: Mark 14:3-9.
Wednesday: Matthew 26:14-16.
Thursday: John 13:1-5.
Friday: Mark 15:21-39.
Saturday: Mark 15:42-47.
Sunday: Luke 24:1-9.
- She shared this link with me with great kid-friendly Easter activities and lessons:
- We were going to do a Passover dinner but that day ended up being a pretty bad one for me. I plan on doing it next year.
- The darling Activity Day girls in our ward Easter egg’d our house and put out 24 plastic eggs for us to find, they left 1 egg empty to represent Jesus’ empty tomb. I
Favorite Mormon Messages:
Because of Him (new this year, SO SO GOOD!):

Mormon Channel Bible Videos:
He is Risen (A 7 minute video, that is a synopsis of all the below videos):
Chronological videos of the Holy Week:
Jesus Warns Peter and Offers the Intecessory Prayer:
Jesus is tried by Caiaphas, Peter Denies Knowing Christ:

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

God Be With You Til We Meet Again

One of my biggest fears doing this blog (I am embarrassed to admit this because it seems selfish) is that everyone will assume that I must be doing okay because I occasionally post about the joy I feel by being Jane's mom and the perspective I see in some good moments. I am terrified of losing the shoulders to cry on when I need them. I am scared that the texts, private Facebook messages, phone calls, emails and letters will stop. I need them so much. They keep me from burrowing into myself. I am an extrovert, my cup is filled by people being around me and supporting me. I need the security of friends holding me tight, whether literally or figuratively. Even if you live 3,000 miles away (which a big chunk of my friends do) I feel wrapped in love and support from every loving outreach.
Today while listening to pandora the song God Be With You Til We Meet Again came on. It was a beautiful rendition by Paul Cardell that can be seen here. Of course this song brought me to tears since it is commonly used as a funeral song. I sat on the couch, got out my hymnbook and sang along in my head. I knew Jane was close to my heart.
This song took on a new perspective to me in that moment. It wasn't an assurance of where Jane is and who she is with, I already know the answer to that. It was a reminder from sweet Jane that God will be with ME until her and I meet again.
Until then, "With his sheep securely fold you."
I have been familiar with this song and the parable of Jesus being our Shepard and we are his sheep for decades. Yet, today it clicked. I love those ah-ha! moments. They are the perfect mix of "I can't believe I never put that together, duh!" and "I just put that together all by myself!"
The words 'thank you' feel so inadequate in expressing my gratitude to His 'sheep' that have reached out to support my family. The love we have been given is astounding. I have felt "securely folded" in the most loving embrace from everyone.
 I love that; securely folded. I imagine the warmest, tightest, safest, most loving and sympathetic hug.
Today, Jane reminded me how lucky I am to have all of you. And I can imagine how grateful she is that we are being taken care of in her absence.
Can you imagine how much brighter this world would be if we took advantage more often the moments to "securely fold" those around us? I promise you that there are dozens of people who would be lifted by a phone call, letter, text or Facebook message. There are people, like me, who need to feel supported.
Find them. Reach out to them. Love them.
And when you do, think of Jane and the Jane Love you are spreading.

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

The ups and downs of grief

It's crazy how fast grief can take over my emotions.

This last weekend I have had a lot of anxiety. It was leading up to the general women's conference for our church that was broadcast on Saturday. All females ages 8 and older were invited. I think I knew what to expect; lots of little girls, talks about daughters and girls singing sweet songs about Christ. It was a pretty rough meeting for me to sit through. I could have left, but I decided I needed to be there and let myself be sad. That may sound masochistic, but sometimes there is profound inner-reflection and focus during really sad moments. And I need them when they come. They are great teaching moments for myself.

Sunday was a good day. A great day actually. I felt so overwhelmed with how grateful I am for my life. That probably sounds strange, considering the last few months. But I have a lot. I have so many wonderful, compassionate friends. An amazing family. A near-perfect husband. And three beautiful children. One who already has achieved the highest glory there is. I just felt so grateful and blessed.
Then it seemed like a steady decline over the past two days until I reached tonight.

I know rock bottom, that was the first days after Jane died. This isn't rock bottom, but it isn't pretty either.

I haven't been able to pinpoint what it is that has been making me feel so sad and anxious. Then my sweet mom, who is a wonderful grandma, reminded me. Today would have been Jane's 18 month birthday. I had completely forgotten. No wonder its been a hard weekend. She should be saying her first words, walking, playing with her brothers and I should definitely not be having to relive images of seeing her lifeless body in the hospital.

Seriously. I don't even know what else to say. Who has to deal with that?! It is ludacris that I have seen my baby girls body with tubes and monitors and no life. It just plain ol' sucks.

I miss that princess' diva scream and perfect eyes.

Grief is such a rollercoaster. It is constant ups and downs. The highs are so overwhelmingly wonderful, but the lows are really low.

2 Nephi 2:11 "For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things. If not so..righteousness could not be brought to pass, neither wickedness, neither holiness nor misery, neither good not bad..."