Easter holds so many amazing memories. Our first three Easter's, like most of our holidays as a family of four, were spend at AI duPont Children's Hospital. I remember our first Easter with Gavin was a difficult time -- we had been in the hosptial for a few months. That hospital stay began with lots of fears as this was the first time the possibility of his death was discussed. He was an emaciated little boy weighing less than 10lbs at almost one year old -- his body was starving to death despite the TPN and tube feeds. Anyway, as is true with most of our family memories, amidst all the sad memories there are so many happy moments that stand out. I remember our Easter egg hunt in room 15 of 3E, we hid eggs all over the hospital room and I vividly remember an egg hidden behind the giant red biohazard bin-- telling the bitter story of our reality. I remember at that moment having the revelation that life will not stop -- despite my child's poor prognosis, even the posibility of death -- we will live -- Gavin will live life and our little girl will experience all the joy and laughter life has to offer.
I then think about the next Easter -- Gavin was fighting a serious fungal blood infection. I remember sitting by his crib watching the crib rails shake and his body was convulsing from the high fever and chills. I remember the moans that came from his broken, swollen tired body. I remember despite his critical state, his swollen hands reaching into his Easter basket looking for all the goodies the Easter bunny had brought. I remember Madison's beautiful white Easter dress -- she had no place to go but the lonely halls of the Hospital -- but we made it happen. Life was so worth living!
Then there was last year, which I now consider a precious gift from God. He gave us one Easter home as a family -- Easter memories outside those cold Hospital walls. Gavin wore his green vest, blue Babylegs and his black converse sneakers and of course his cool hat -- I remember it like it was yesterday.
Thank you Lord for that Easter at home.
This Easter as I stood by my little boy's grave I was filled with such a revelation of what Jesus did for us those two-thousand something years ago. Because of his death my little boy lives! I, as a mother can go to my child's grave in full confidence that my little boy is no longer buried beneath that ugly mound of dirt but rather his spirit was given a new body -- free of pain and suffering, and is resting in the arms of the Almighty God -- just waiting to be held in his mommie's arms again.
This Easter we continue to live life -- embracing the pain of Gavin's death, thanking God for the end to his suffering and remembering the beauty of his life. These photos were taken this week -- I could stare at these photos for ever. They show so much more than my sweet little girl -- I look at these photos and I can't help but see the beautiful grace of God, the possibility of real hope -- joy.