It was three years ago today that we welcomed Emma Anne into our lives. Yesterday I remembered my labor, long and hard, and the way that God came alongside me to give me strength. Emma’s labor has been my longest so far, but also the most spiritual. It was then that God began to make clear to me how much he was there for us, without us really realizing how much we would need it.
I remember her birth, the lifeless body that was nevertheless still filled with life. I remember how tiny she seemed, that her hair was wavy, and that she was more worn out than I was from the labor. I remember my joy at being able to hold her in my arms. It would be later that there would be worry and frustration over her health, but for that day her life seemed full of hope and promise just like any little baby.
When I try to imagine her here with us now I have a very fuzzy picture. You see, I don’t know what she would have been like, whether she would have learned to walk, to talk, to eat. I don’t know how our family would be with the busyness of caring for her needs above all else. But when I imagine her happy and healthy and playing in heaven, then I feel like the picture clears. That was her future all along. That is where she belongs.
“Each heart knows its own bitterness, and no one else can share its joy.” Proverbs 14:10
“Even in laughter the heart may ache, and joy may end in grief.” Proverbs 14:13
“Weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.” Psalm 30:5b
“You have turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing to you and not be silent, O LORD my God, I will give you thanks forever.” Psalm 30:11-12