These days have been hard.
These days have been hard.
There are moments that Joel and I miss Cora so much that we can hardly bear it. We have shed a lot of tears lately, so I needed something happy to write about today.
Shopping is happy right?
Actually even shopping is hard for me now. So, my happy thought today is my mom (and a little shopping too).
My mom is great.
“Great” is an understatement. We have always been close and I truely count her as one of my best friends. She is a rock. She spent hours at the hospital by Cora’s side. She held Cora’s hand and sang to her when I couldn’t handle watching anymore. She helped us make decisions after Cora went to be with Jesus when we could hardly even think. She has opened her home to us and hundreds of our friends and family. She has made more meals for us than I can even count. She has helped me clean my house numerous times these past few months when I couldn’t do it by myself. She is a shoulder to cry on. Not to mention she has sewed and sewed and sewed tons of dresses in Cora’s honor. Need I say more?
Yesterday was my mom’s birthday, so we decided to take a roadtrip.
Just the girls.
With our Starbucks in hand we headed to Lawrence. We had to stop there first because my sister couldn’t go on without her coffee. Our destination was Sarah’s Fabrics. We needed to stock up on fabric for our Cora dresses. We wanted to check out someplace new.
I love that flower pillow too.
When we were done at Sarah’s we of course had to stop by a few more stores. My best find of the day was this letter M. I loved it. My mom and sister assured me that it needed to come home with me. How could I resist?
Our last stop was TJ Maxx (actually it was Starbucks again). We are always on the lookout for a good deal and TJ Maxx is a family favorite.
Ok, I take that back. It is a favorite of us girls. Joel HATES TJ Maxx. It is on his list of stores that he will not go in with me. Right along with Hobby Lobby. He just doesn’t appreciate a good store when he sees one.
I do love a good yellow purse, but this one didn’t come home with us.
It was so nice to spend the day together. Thanks girls!
Happy Birthday Mom!!
Oh, I forgot to mention that my sister is pretty great too. I could go on and on about how much she means to me. But, since it was not her birthday I will save that for another post…
Honestly, I have been dreading Easter for weeks now. I knew I would miss Cora more than ever today. I knew it would make me sad to see all the other little girls in their pretty Easter dresses. I knew that I would wonder if Cora would have been toddling around looking for Easter eggs with her cousins. I knew that church would be hard. I knew that going to another family gathering without Cora would make my heart hurt.
Well here we are on Easter Sunday. My heart does hurt today and I miss my little girl. But I think that the days leading up to Easter were actually harder than today has been. We made it through another “first” without our Cora. One more little step.
I have been reading through a devotional book and was struck by something that I read recently. I thought about it again today as Joel and I were talking about how the meaning of Easter is so different for us this year:
“There is no tragedy in being ushered from this life to the next when that next life is spent in the presence of God. The only real tragedy is a life that ends without that hope. When a person rejects the free gift of eternal life God has offered through a relationship with his Son, that is a tragedy.”
Don’t get me wrong. That doesn’t make the pain go away. That doesn’t make me miss Cora any less. That doesn’t make me stop wondering why God chose this path for our family. But, this Easter I have a new perspective. This Easter I have a new reason to rejoice in a LIVING King.
Without Jesus’ death and resurrection I couldn’t have this HOPE–my faith would be useless. Jesus conquered death once and for all. He did that for you and me, even though we don’t deserve it. It is because of His resurrection that I know my Cora is in the presence of God. I can be confident, because I have trusted in Him, that one day I will meet my Savior and be with Cora again. I don’t know how Joel and I could keep moving forward without this HOPE.
Today, though my heart is heavy, I am rejoicing in the KING!
Today I am thankful that Jesus has RISEN and CONQUERED THE GRAVE.
Today I am thankful that I serve a LIVING God.
I pray that you too are living with this same HOPE. It would be such a great tragedy to reject this gift of eternal life that Christ so freely offers us.
Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. The death he died he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God.
It has been two months since our little Cora went to meet Jesus.
How could two months have gone by already? It seems like we just left the hospital. The things that happened in the hospital replay in my mind like it was just yesterday.
But, it seems like forever since I got to hold my baby. Forever since we were laughing and playing together. It is hard to even describe. Time is moving forward and yet the ache in our hearts is so intense and new. Somedays seem a little better, but some days it seems like the pain is getting worse.
I listened to the Watermark song that was sung at Cora’s celebration service several times today. The words are so true to how I am feeling. I miss Cora in EVERY way.
Miss you everyday
Miss you in every way
But we know there’s a day when we will hold you
We will hold you
You’ll kiss our tears away
When we’re home to stay
Can’t wait for the day when we will see you
We will see you
But baby let sweet Jesus hold you
’til mom and dad can hold you…
You’ll just have heaven before we do
You’ll just have heaven before we do
And today I am longing for that day when my tears will be wiped away.
A weekend away.
Focusing on us.
If you ever have a chance to attend FamilyLife‘s Weekend to Remember, you should. That is what Joel and I did this weekend. The speakers were so real and challenging. We had time to talk through some things that we normally wouldn’t take the time to talk about. We were challenged to make each other and our marriage a priority. We came away from the conference feeling more connected and united than we ever have before.
On Sunday we had a breakout session with women only.
“The fact that I am a woman does not make me a different kind of Christian, but the fact that I am a Christian does make me a different kind of a woman. For I have accepted God’s idea of me, and my whole life is an offering back to Him of all that I am, and all that He wants me to be.” -Elisabeth Elliot
I loved how the speaker reminded us to embrace how God designed us as women. She talked about how Biblical priorities are at the heart of becoming the wife and mother God intents us to be. I cried through the part of this session about our role as moms. It made me miss Cora SO much. I wished I could go home and apply all that I was learning about being a mom as I spent time with Cora. I cried a lot throughout the weekend, but I think that was good. I think I just needed to cry.
My favorite part was spending time with my hubby. I needed time to talk about things I was struggling with and how I was feeling as we move forward without Cora. He we such a good listener. I was able to better understand how he was feeling too. I am so thankful that God is allowing us to walk through this storm together.
We could see God working throughout the whole weekend. From allowing us to go in the first place at the last minute, to the speakers and people we met. Thank you Allen and Tammye for making it possible for us to go. And thank you to all our dear friends who helped pay for our expenses. We are so grateful.