Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Dear Samuel (from Christmas 2011)

Dear Samuel,

Your brothers are currently snuggled in their sleeping bags downstairs under the Christmas tree, and soon your daddy and I will be joining them.  Your baby sister is snug in her crib.  If you were here, I wonder where you'd be -- under the tree or tucked in your bed?

We have 6 stockings hung on the mantel, and your daddy keeps commenting on how that seems like a lot.  4 kids.  We have no idea what having four kids to care for is like, and when we see all those stockings we notice your absence a lot.

We miss you, Samuel.  Just yesterday Caleb told the check out lady at Publix about you, and he said, "We miss him a lot, but we have a lot of great memories of him."  I was so proud of Caleb for sharing that.  All of us miss you, sweet boy.

This year we used your Christmas money to help the Stanley family put together baskets for the families of CICU kids.  They put together 20 baskets for those there over Christmas.  We also wrote 20 notes and made some pretzel/hershey kiss/m&m snacks for the baskets.

Samuel, you continue to bless me so much.  Your life refines mine.  I can see so many "refreshing springs" and "pools of blessing" that have come from our Valley of Weeping.  You have made me a better woman, wife, and Momma.  I am so, so thankful for you.

Every week now I hear about a baby fighting for his or her life.  It's practically common place, but it hurts every time.  I remember the terror we experienced and the pain we felt, and I hurt for those walking through it now.  I pray for those families and children a whole lot, and I spend a fair amount of time writing them -- on their blogs, facebook, or emails.  I feel like God called me to love and encourage others who walk this path when He gave us you.  Though it's exhausting and stirs up pain, I am glad for the chance to bless others because of you.  It makes me feel like your life still matters, and I find comfort in that.

Your baby sister has been a huge healer for us.  She brings us incredible joy.  She's full of smiles, and no one can make her laugh like her brothers.  I bet you would be a pro at it.

This Christmas we're hosting Gab'm, Matthew, Ashley, Vivian, Colin, and June at our house.  I wonder how it will be to have Junie here.  I can't believe what you'd be up to at 28 months.  Oh, baby boy, how I love you and always will.  Thank you for changing our lives, for showing us Jesus in new ways, for continuing to grow our hearts and our dependence on God -- or at least our awareness of it.

Merry Christmas, sweet boy.  I know you're enjoying the celebration in Heaven.  I love you, Samuel Erik Apinis, and I always will.

Love, Momma

1 comment:

  1. First of all, Caleb is the most precious thing :-) And I know I already told you this (ad nauseum) but your gift for encouraging moms going through hard times is seriously a blessing to so many, I'm sure you will never truly know what a difference your beautiful words are making in people's lives :-)