Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Yesterday and Today

Yesterday one year ago we learned of Duncan's heart problem. We were told by the high risk OB, Dr. Fox, that not only would Duncan not live past the pregnancy, but that his passing in utero would likely endanger the life of "Baby B," Jackson. That evening, Scott and I crumbled. That was the evening it snowed and snowed and snowed - God knew I simply could NOT hold myself together at school the next day. So He obliged and sent inclimate weather. The messy roads and dangerous commute the following morning - one year ago today - also meant that we could slide right into Children's Hospital in the place of a cancelled appointment. We were called by The Heart Center at Children's at 7:45am, asking if we could get there by 8:30. We arrived, shower-less and teeth-not-brushed. After an hour long echo cariogram on my babies' hearts, I remember going to the restroom before the consultation with the cardiologist. I prayed in the bathroom, "If there is any way the news can be different, let that way happen, God.

Can you imagine how much I wanted to pounce on Dr Cua, our quirky, warm-natured little Asian cardiologist, and give him a smooch when he told us there was a way for Duncan to live? After all, it was the day before V-day - a smooch, a hug, and a massage, I would have offered if he hadn't needed to tend to his next appointment. We were so excited about the surgery intervention he described that we slid our VW all the way to Frisch's for a celebratory grease-filled lunch. I remember that day, one year ago, like it was one day ago. Our hope was restored, and our spirits were filled with possibility.

I retell this story because it helps me remember... it helps me to remember the extremes of emotions we went through in a 24 hour period of time. It helps me to know, after another 24 hour turn of events surrounding Oct. 26 - specifically leading up to the moment I swallowed the shattering reality that Duncan would die - that despite wherever I fall on the spectrum of pain. Or on the spectrum of hope. Or on the spectrum of circumstance... I am and always will be OK. Many of you know that this was the theme of our Christmas letter this year. And I cannot seem to get that message out of my head. I think it's there to stay, which isn't a half-bad thing. It is my interpretation of what faith is all about. Sometimes I think God is a manifestation of the reality that time marches on. For me, there's something so beautiful about the fact that it marches on in ways we cannot plan or control, making it very mystical, mysterious, and holy. And more importantly, BIGGER, GREATER, AND ALMIGHTIER (I know, it just fit written than way) THAN US.

On Monday we purchased Duncan's grave marker. We were told at the cemetery that it could be added whenever we wished. So now's the time. It will appropriately describe Duncan as "Our Little Warrior."

All of this makes this week an interesting one... especially given the snowy conditions. Brings a year ago's experiences that much closer to mind.

I journaled a lot in my "Duncan" journal today... it seems I have one for just about EVERY occasion. The neat-o pages have neat-o artwork and neat-o quotes splattered throughout. The two messages sent to me through that journal today were, "Honor yourself - just as you are" (LOVE this one - meditate on that sucker for a few minutes!) and "Why is not doing so hard?" (Wouldn't we all benefit from the exercise of staring in the mirror and repeating that a few times?).


devaneygirlstill said...

Oh Tricia, I am so moved by your post. Duncan was such a warrior, how fitting you put it on his marker.
Your faith inspires me, as I know it does others, but really makes me think in my convaluted mind that there truly is a God, there has to be to guide through all this.
I have said it once, I will say it again, your sweet Warrior, in his time here inspired and changed so many of us, and I know for sure, I am forever changed by him. My life, my heart, have been changed by your Son. And my goodness I know I am not alone.
Love and joy to you today, and everyday.

Tessa said...


I just have to say that I am so inspired by you and your words. Beth let me read your Christmas letter during a recent visit and I was blown away by how you were able to put your feelings into words and describe what you have been through and what you have learned in such a powerful way. I have never met you, but I wanted you to know that I stop by often and check to see how you are doing. I pray for your family often ... for God's peace and comfort to surround you and for his loving arms to hold you tight. Thanks for inviting us into your heart. Precious Duncan was so blessed to have you as his mommy.

Love, Tessa

Sherri said...

Wow...I wish I could say something else, but wow! When I read your blog it is like reading a great novel...I can picture what is going on, seeing you and scott in different situations. You are so blessed with how you can put feelings and thoughts into words so eliquently. I think of you, Scott and Jackson often and wish you nothing but joy, love and peace. And I agree with Emy, Duncan was lucky to have you as a mommy...and he has changed my life as well. take care!

Tiffany McCallen said...

What a beautiful story and a lovely way to remember (and celebrate!) the sweet soul of Duncan. I thank you so much for sharing and lifting and reflecting for us all some of the most difficult and fortifying moments of life. You & your family are always in my thoughts and prayers (and in my mental thank-you list)... Tiffany