Weeks and days go by now without our kids talking about Solveig. I'm sure that's a normal and healthy part of moving on in the grief process. But every now and then the kids will say something about her, or ask a question. We're more than willing to talk about Solveig, and we don't ever want her life and death to be a taboo subject in our home. It's fine if they bring it up, or if we occasionally decide to talk about her in front of them.
Today at the table, we were talking with the kids about how we prayed and asked God for them. Bug then said, "And after Buzzy, we prayed and asked God for another baby, and He gave us Solveig."
Wow...yes. He did. He sure did give us Solveig. And it's so sweet that her big sister still thinks about her. That warms my heart.
My response to Bug through the tears that started to warm my eyes was, "yes, and even though she is not with us on earth, we will ALWAYS think of her as a gift that God gave to us."
She was such a gift, truly. I'll always thank Him for her life, albeit such a brief one. And the fact is, we are so different because of her. We'll never be the same. She has changed us. Or shall I say, God has changed us. He has changed us through the experience of having her.
There have been so many experiences that we have had following Solveig's short life that we wouldn't have had otherwise which have impacted us greatly. We have met people that we would have perhaps not encountered in other circumstances. Our priorities for what is important in this life have changed. We value our living children that we have with a much deeper intensity. We value our other human relationships much more. And our faith in God has grown, as we've experienced His presence with us so closely through this time.
Shortly after we talked about God giving us Solveig, Buzz said, "we can open up that hole and dig up the grave." Oh...sting to my heart. Sweet boy...I think he just so wanted to make things better and to help right the wrong that has happened. My sweet boy wanted to get his sister back. I had to tell him, "honey, I'm so sorry, but remember that Solveig died. In the ground is her body, but her spirit left her body when she died. We believe that her spirit is with Jesus in Heaven." Big sister piped in and said, "I know that Solveig is playing with Briana in Heaven. They're probably dancing in the streets of gold!"
I just love it when Bug talks about Solveig in Heaven. I love the insights of children. And I love that she remembers Briana too. Briana is the little girl who is buried next to Solveig, and I've been getting to know her sweet mama H in the last few months. Our stories are somewhat similar, as Briana was also born still late term.
Here's a picture at the cemetery that we took on Mother's Day. We still don't have a marker for Solveig, but we hope to get one soon. For now, we have some flowers and it's nice to have something there. (Briana's grave is just a few feet to the right of our baby.)
I found the wreath at the craft store and added the pink ribbon - perfect for "craft challenged" me. (I dubbed myself with that nickname at MOPS one time! We have some awesome crafty ladies who lead us in fun crafts, but I often have to ask fifty five questions before I figure them out because of my craft challenged self! Love you crafty friends! Maybe when I'm in Heaven I won't be so craft challenged. :))
Maybe you can see where it looks like patchy grass underneath the heart wreath - that is the rectangular spot that was dug for our daughter, and just beneath it lies her body. The sweet guys who tend the cemetery voluntarily planted some grass seed there since we don't have a marker as of yet.
It's hard to get our kids to smile for the camera. But I loved that they were standing by the grave, and that Bug was trying to fix up the ribbon and make sure it was just so for her baby sister. They really seem to understand that it is important to their mama to spend time there.
As a family at our baby's grave. So glad that my parents were there with us to help take that picture.
There are some beautiful trees at the cemetery, and also some lovely little benches to sit on very close to Solveig's spot. We're looking forward to taking a picnic out there sometime soon and sitting under the pine tree by her grave.
More to the story will come soon. Thanks for staying tuned.