October 18,2016 Another long night

My Love,

I had some nice things written down that I was going to share, but yesterday was some kind of awful and I feel compelled to share, or vent. I hope you don’t mind if it turns out to be more of the latter.  I suppose there is no rule saying these letters have to be chronological, I can always finish up what I had started later.

The only good thing about yesterday is that it is over. I didn’t start great, Mommy was feeling particularly discouraged. She’s always upset in the mornings, but some days are far worse than others.  I’ve learned to accept, and even expect that, but it doesn’t make it any less disheartening.  It wears on me, she knows that, but she must grieve as she must.

I made it out the door to work, but left my phone on the couch. That left me alone with my thoughts both to & from work. I’ve yet to turn the radio on when I’m alone in the car. All I can think about is riding around with you, flipping through the music stations, asking: “Keep it, Change it or Turn it up?”

Keep it! And Turn. It. Up!” you’d say with a lighthearted and playful attitude. You love music. Some of my fondest memories with you involve music…dancing, singing, loving life. How the tides have turned.

Work was uneventful, a decent distraction.

When I got home, I noticed our screened in area of the deck had been overtaken by ladybugs, stinkbugs and a handful of wasps. I got some spray to take out the wasps because we like to leave the door cracked for Bella…She likes sitting outside, often in your chair.  I thought you might like this picture…

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Anyways…I sprayed the wasps off the screen but Bella caught on and was going to try and pounce on one. Without hesitation I dashed over to grab her before she got a face full of angry wasp. She’s mostly blind, I’m not sure I’ve mentioned that to you yet…go figure, so I don’t even know if she knew what she was about to play with. Well, I got her in time, but managed to crack my foot on something. The chair I guess. Before I could put her down, I was grunting words I really try my best not to use anymore.

I sat on the couch with a bag of frozen cranberries resting on top of foot when this overwhelming sense of disappointment and shame overtook me. My head sunk lower and lower…my eyes began to swell. Why wasn’t I given an opportunity to give my life for yours?  I wouldn’t have hesitated.  I wouldn’t have hesitated!!!  Instead I had to be there, but not… there!   I’m not going to write about this again for fear it will drag me to a place I’ll never escape.

Somehow, I managed to pull myself up and out of that. I kind of zoned out the rest of the evening, but when it came time to go to sleep my mind wouldn’t turn off. 11 turned to 12, to 1.  By 1:30 or so, I was sitting on the couch in the dark. What to do…I pulled out my phone.

It may as well been a sword.

I wanted to see you. To remember… Picture after picture. Blow after blow I took.  I must have went through a hundred of them.

I went to videos after that.  I wanted to hear your voice. Every word, every smile dealt another blow.  I must have gone through twenty of them.

Why? I knew what I was in for. I couldn’t help it I guess. It had been too long… it HAS been too long…

So, there I lay. Out of breathe, my eyes on fire, my chest bruised, my in stomach twisted in knots.  It felt like someone had beaten me to within an inch of my life. I seriously doubted God’s love.  I felt abandoned. Alone. Confused.

I drifted off to sleep.

This morning, I sat downstairs, drank my coffee and before I knew it, I was writing this out. Now, I hope I don’t say anything to crazy, I did have a pretty rough night and three and a half hours of sleep doesn’t really make for clear thinking.  This is what I wrote…

I can’t help but feel, in some strange way, closer to God this morning. Like I have somehow shared in His pain. I mean that in the most reverent and respectful way. I’m not trying to appear “godly”, nor am I trying to compare myself to God.  I know where I stand there, and that is not at all.  But, shared, in the sense that I’m more respectful…more aware.  

I guess my point is, “…he gave…”

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” ( John 3:16 )

How many times have I spoken those words with blissful ignorance? Without regard to everything that went with along with the giving. Dare I say them now without reflecting on my own suffering and loss?

Strange how that was the first thing I thought about this morning.  Less than four hours ago I was doubting if God even loved me.

I believe Jesus wept with me last night. There was nothing to be done, no comfort that really could have been given in that moment.

I miss you Clara.

Until that day…

Love,

Daddy

 

 

 

Clara Phillips Luke Phillips Katy Phillips
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8 thoughts on “October 18,2016 Another long night

  1. BarbaraH

    Luke, that was beautiful!! Have you ever thought about being an emotional speaker to help others? Your words are beautiful..the way you share your feelings and life with your beautiful Angel, Clara. I believe, you will always share your life with Clara and perhaps, your writings can be shared with others who are suffering as well. You have a way of healing and teaching. I wish you and Katy all the best. Clara will always be in your hearts, minds and will look after her precious little sister and Sissy…Much love to you both…xo

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  2. Beth

    Oh Luke my heart goes out to you, but…… you have to pull yourself together. God had given you another life that will join your family in a few months. God knows that you and Kathy loved and still love your Clara, so much he is blessing you with another little girl. It was a freak accident, why God picked Clara no one will know only he. You have to believe that she is happy and being loved by so many in a beautiful place. You have to stop beating yourself up for what happened and try very hard to move on for the sake of your new bundle of joy that will be arriving soon. I cannot imagine the pain you are in, but I do know parents who have lost children, my cousin was one, Todd was 2 when he died in an auto accident. Yes a freak accident, he would have been 25 this year. I worry about you and Katy and I do not even know you. I hope and pray everyday that you will find peace knowing Clara is safe and being loved. I hope you get some sleep tonight.

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    1. KP

      Beth,
      Please don’t tell him he “has” to do anything. Unless you have been through this you cannot and should not give advice. Please quit referring to the accident. You are clearly missing the point of the pain and devastation that come with child loss and it doesn’t just “go away” because another child is being brought into this world. There is no doubt this new life will help distract from the constant pain of Clara’s death and bring us joy. We will be the best parents to this child we can be. Do not hinder Luke from expressing the truth and magnitude of this loss by telling him to “pull himself together.” We pull ourselves together each day we get up, out of bed, off to work, off to counseling, off to support group, going to church, etc…Please think about this before making these types of comments again.

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  3. C

    I can’t imagine how raw you felt looking at all of those pics and videos but it was the first time you’ve let yourself see them…allow yourself the space to process it all. I still do believe that, in time, those same pics and videos will remind you of happy memories and the incredible love you shared with little Clara. Just think of how amazing it is that her entire life was surrounded by love and pure happiness…never hate or true sadness. What a better world this would be if that were true for all of us, right?!

    Thinking about you often…please give Katy my best and be sure to keep reminding her of the beautiful guardian angel looking over you both, Sissy and your newest little girl to be!

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  4. Melanie

    I cried quietly as I read this. And prayed after, as I do for you and Katy very often! Thank you for sharing. I can only imagine the pain you felt looking at the pictures and videos. But, I wonder if Jesus needed you to do that. Maybe it’s part of the healing process. I believe He was right there with you as you said. He is so capable and though we sometimes don’t understand why things happen the way they do…He knows and we have to trust Him. How amazing the revelation you felt thinking of how we read that verse and never realize the pain God felt when he gave His son. There’s a song on the radio that says “make me broken so I can be healed…Make me lonely, So I can be Yours, ‘Til I want no one, More than You, Lord, ‘Cause in the darkness, I know You will hold me, Make me lonely”. I believe that when you felt alone last night, He was there. I’m going through something right now that sometimes makes me doubt His plan for me and then later I realize He was right with me as I felt alone or worried. Thank you for continuing to share your story. Clara is beautiful, I love the pics you share of her. I will continue praying for peace and understanding. From every entry you’ve written (and I have read them all), your love for her was so evident. She never felt unloved for sure. Some people never have that in an entire lifetime. Your love for her proves that God blessed her with you and you with her 💛

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  5. Russ

    Hi Luke.

    Thanks for sharing your feelings so candidly and lucidly. Thanks, especially, for connecting to John 3.16. I am so humbled and blessed to read your posts. May God continue to bless, heal, and comfort you moment by moment. You, Katy, and family are in our daily thoughts and prayers.

    Blessings,

    Russ

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  6. Elaine

    I pray for you and Katy every day, sometimes more than once a day. After finishing my prayer for you I opened my email and read your latest post. My heart broke for you and when I saw the picture of Bella sitting in Clara’s chair I lost it!!! Keep crying out to God! Keep writing to Clara. I think it will help you to heal. I have a friend who lost a son this past February. I tell her about you I wish she would read what you have written because I think it will help her, but she isn’t ready.
    I’m praying for Katy. My heart breaks for her too. How is she feeling? Is she getting excited about the baby?

    Remember there are so many people praying for you. I am praying you find peace in the storm.
    God bless you!!!!

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  7. Elaine

    Praying for you and Katy every day. God bless both of you. Praying he will comfort you and bring you peace that passes all understanding. Praying you will feel his arms around you. I am thankful for the letters you write to Clara because I believe God will use them to comfort others.
    I really just want to stay I am thinking of you and praying always.💞

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