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

Tuesday, September 22, 2015


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. 

Wednesday, March 18, 2015


After Jane passed, someone told me that they learned the best way to help someone grieving is to let them say the name of the one they lost. I have found this to be very true. Every opportunity I get to talk about Jane makes me smile. I feel happier and like 10 pounds of sadness was lifted from my shoulders. Others remembering her and saying her name has the same effect.

The further out we get in our grieving, the less and less I feel like I can talk about her. Like she is in past and it's too uncomfortable for others to bring her into the present. But she is MY present. She is my future. She is as much a part of my identity as my name is. Even more so actually, I can change my name. But I cannot ever change that Jane is my daughter.

Our mortal eyes may see this pregnant lady with two boys and think I am having my third child, but I am having my fourth. They may not see that I have already been blessed with a daughter, but I have. I have four kids; 3 sons and 1 daughter.

I am very fortunate to have many people in my life that let me talk about Jane in casual conversation. That when I talk about my children, or each pregnancy, each delivery, struggling with taking care of 3 kids, etc. they know that includes Jane. She is constantly on my mind and talking about her is just natural being her mom.

I have been more able to leave her out of our family count to passing strangers or in light-hearted conversations with people who don't know about her yet. It used to make me nauseous, my head spin and my skin would tingle when I was asked, "How many kids do you have?",
"Oh three boys! Maybe you will get a daughter next!",
 "So you just have the two?"

Whenever I am hit with those comments now (and yes it feels like a punch), I am able to just respond "yep" and leave it at that. With Jane in the forefront of my brain during the whole interaction. It is sometimes not worth the immensely awkward bomb of, "I have a daughter. She died a year ago."

Thank you for letting me talk about her. Thank you for letting me keep this blog going so I have a place to share her with everyone. Thank you for not making me move on because the death of a baby is just too hard to talk and hear about. Thank you for asking me questions about Jane.

Most especially, thank you for having moments of letting her touch your heart.  And when you feel appropriate sharing them with me. That is the greatest gift you can give me. Let her matter, let her change you for the better.

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

My Waiting Place

Last year I thought it would be the worst year of them all. Our wounds and pain were so raw and fresh and new. But there was a lot of learning, love and progression in that first year of losing Jane. Our lows were very low, but in contrast our highs were very high. 

I haven't written much on here lately because I haven't felt inspired by anything that I felt would be worthwhile. Like I said, last year we grew and learned a lot. I had a lot of things running through my brain all the time. 

I suppose it was naive to think last year was just one to get through and we would have made it through the worst of it all. 

Last year was trying to find our new normal. It was like trying to survive without a limb. It was a very difficult adjustment, but made easier through many inspiring tender mercies, many prayers in our behalf, many notes and texts and messages of love and concern.

This year is just as hard but in a different and unexpected way. I feel like I'm stuck in some painful waiting place. Just stagnant. Jane feels farther and farther in the past but also even further into our future. We are stuck somewhere in the middle waiting for her. Our wounds aren't as fresh but they are still there. Very much so. Our limb is still missing and we have learned to manage without it, but life is still painful and difficult. A part of me misses the pain, because at least I felt alive. And it was always followed by powerful moments of feeling Jane near. 
This murky waiting place is more numb. Less acute pain, but also less acute joy. 

I have noticed in the last few months I, again, am a person I don't recognize. This "waiting place" has left me unsure of who I am, what I am supposed to do and how to deal with this new me. Is it a phase that will get better with time or is my character different? These are the questions that take up most of my brain lately. How to find and force progression in myself and my life despite feeling stuck.

Navigating through grief is messy. There are so, so many levels of grief. Many twists, turns and backslides. It's hard to distinguish what is grief, what is depression, what is pregnancy, and what is just the dross of everyday life. This is my great battle right now. I suppose finding my "new normal" is going to take a lot longer than expected. 

I refuse to settle though. I refuse to believe this is how my life will be forever. I know better and I deserve better. One of my dearest friends shared with me how important remembering is. In these stagnant times of my life, I have a hard time seeing beyond a fog surrounding me. I can always remember who I was in the past. My experiences who made me who I am now. The powerful and sacred instances that my Savior and Heavenly Father were so close to my heart that I knew there was much more in this life yet to come. ""O, remember remember..."