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Monday, October 6, 2014

Dear Caroline, I Thought About You Today...

Dear Caroline,

     I thought about you today, just like I do every minute of every day. I thought about the things we might have been doing today. I am sure that I would have rushed home from work, just to be able to hold you in my arms. I am sure I would have hugged you so tightly, and kissed your little face all over. I am sure that I would have sang to you and talked to you as I cooked dinner, and I would have smiled as I watched you gaze around in interest. I would have snuggled you, fed you, changed you, read to you, and played with you, as we watched the sun slowly fade into the darkness. But tonight Caroline, I had no reason to rush home from work. There was no smile of greeting on your face to look forward to. There was no baby soft hair to stroke, and no giggle of excitement when you saw me coming. Instead there was a silent house. A quiet that reached to my very soul.
     My dear Caroline, it never goes away. There are the constant reminders of what could have been, that are only too quickly overshadowed by the never will be. So many of the joys that I looked forward to sharing with you, are now just painful reminders of what we will never have together. Those moments when we could have been bonding like a mother and child should, will never happen for us. The 35 beautiful weeks we shared together passed so quickly, and are now just memories. My sweet girl, I pray with all my heart that during those weeks you knew, you knew that I lived each moment to prove how much I loved you. I pray that you know how much I still love you. I love you with a depth that I can never describe in words. You are my baby, my beautiful daughter. You will always be my baby, my precious miracle from above. My hope dear Caroline is that you can remember the hundreds of times each day that I told you I loved you while you were still safe and growing inside. I love you my beautiful girl. I will always and forever love you with the deepest love, a love that has only grown stronger the longer we are apart.
     On Friday I went to visit your special place. It is so hard for me to call it your grave, because it just seems so cold and final. I find comfort in calling it your special place, because as difficult as it is to visit, I find such beauty in sitting there beside you. This time it was different when I went to visit you. The headstone that we created to mark where your body now lays was placed into the ground. There in shiny gold letters, I saw your name. Your beautiful name. Caroline Joy Mulder. I cried as I ran my fingers over the cold raised letters. I always imagined seeing your name on so many things, but never on a headstone. The pain filled my heart as reality set in. This will forever be the place where your body lays. No matter how much I scream for you to cry, or to wake up, your body will never be seen again on earth. Sometimes I panic, and I think that I hear you cry. Maybe I was wrong, and you really are okay. I wish that I could just rip away the dirt, so I can pull you back safely into my arms once again. Because I would do anything, absolutely anything, to see your little face once again. But that is not reality. Instead I walk back to my car, alone and empty handed. You are not crying out for me, it is only my mind playing tricks on my sad heart. I cannot just wish you back into existence, because this is the path that God has chosen for us.
     On my way home tonight, I thought about the song that we played at your memorial service three months ago. It is a song that has always been close to your mommy's heart, but never more real than now. In the song it says " But as the thunder rolls I barely hear Your whisper through the rain "I'm with you" and as Your mercy falls I raise my hands and praise the God who gives and takes away". Caroline, your mommy praised God from the moment I knew you were alive. I was so in awe at the miracle of your existence, and the gift that you were to me. I continued to praise God throughout each of those weeks, knowing you were being formed so fearfully and wonderfully. But then he chose to take you away, and after 19 short minutes, we had to say goodbye. It is so hard to accept that you are really gone. It is so hard to accept that we will never again see you here on this earth. I admit wholeheartedly that I do not understand why God chose to take you into heaven so soon. I may never understand why he took you away from a family who wanted you and loved you so deeply. But I do know that I will continue to praise your Maker. He is still my sovereign God, and he remains in control. There are so many times when I do not know if my foot will hit solid ground, or when the next wave will sweep me under once again. But I do know that God never lets me go. He holds your mommy close, and continues to whisper "I'm with you". Even though I am walking down the darkest journey of my life, I will lift my hands and praise the God who gives and who takes away.
     Caroline as the days pass I find that it does not get easier. The reality is that I miss you more today than I did one month ago. The longer that time moves forward, the deeper the ache grows inside of my heart. Running my fingers over the smooth lettering on your headstone made me realize how much I miss seeing your name. I do not receive mail with your name on it. I do not see your name in colorful bold lettering on a wall in your bedroom. I sadly do not have many opportunities to write out your name in my day to day life. Slowly I forgot how beautiful your name looks when it is written. But now I will have one place where it will always be visible. A very special place where I can go to talk to you, sing to you, remember you, pray, and cry. I hate that it has to be this way, but I would not trade those moments for the world. The moments when it is just you and me, feeling the wind blow through my hair, and seeing the fluffy clouds form above. Watching as the butterflies dance through the green grass from flower to flower. Those moments when I truly feel like you are sitting there next to me, leaning your head on my shoulder as I talk to you. Those moments when I can feel your hand grasp mine as I sing your favorite songs. Those moments when the tears fall down my face, and I am powerless to stop them from coming. Those moments when I feel my heart beating, not just for me, but for you as well. Those moments are powerful reminders of the love that I hold for you deep inside my heart. Those moments are powerful reminders of the beautiful memories that we were able to share together. Those moments are powerful reminders of a faithful God, who loves you dear Caroline more than your mommy could ever love you. Those moments are powerful reminders that God loves me, and comforts me in the times of deepest pain and sorrow. Those moments bring me to my knees in praise of a God who gives, and who takes away.

I love you my beautiful Caroline. Until we meet again...

                           Sending you all of my love,

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