About Me

South Africa
My husband, Brett and I live in beautiful South Africa and have been blessed with the most precious family. We have 2 very beautiful and brave daughters, Tianna and Angelee and a very precious little boy called Zac who touched our hearts forever in his 1 day here on earth. We never would have imagined that we would have to live this side of Heaven without our sweet boy who was born with half a heart, but every day Jesus carries us through and is teaching us more than ever how to live, laugh and love fully. A year and a half later, our faithful Great Restorer graciously blessed us once again with another son ... our beloved Gabriel ... a ray of sunshine in all our lives! This blog has been a place where I have been able to journal my journey through loss, hope and choosing to live a life rich in love.

Blog Archive

01 December 2011

My Heart about this Blog and some Crafty Fun

Over the last few months, all my posts have been about anticipating meeting my precious baby boy and then my journey of negotiating grief. As I was seeking God's wisdom with regards to the purpose of this blog, I have been met with a strong conviction to keep blogging my walk at this time. For the time being I sense His heart is for me to share openly and honestly about the experience of outliving a child, as sadly, it is something that many others have and will also go through. My prayer is that this will be a place of encouragement for anyone hurting. While I do not have all of the answers, I do believe that even in the midst of "walking through the fire", so to speak, we are called to testify and that is my greatest hearts desire. To testify to the love and person of Jesus Christ, because it is Him alone who has given us as a family the ability to endure and find "heart peace" in the storm of loss and pain because of His priceless gift of Salvation which guarantees our forever with Him.
I count myself so privileged to be written messages from so many amazing women who have also walked or are walking this path. It is such a gift to have a person share such a sacred part of their walk through life with me. I find it so healing to hear how others are walking ahead of me or alongside me. Because death is so foreign to us, most of us do not know how we are supposed to grieve or what the new "normal" is meant to look or feel like. It is also so painful to those closest to us who see our pain but cannot fix it for us. We see it written all over people's faces ... the desire to comfort but not quite knowing what to say. Some jump straight in and share everything in their hearts. Others say nothing, probably trying to spare any pain. Sometimes that's ok as you don't want everyone being weird around you and feeling like you are the constant party pooper in the room, but sometimes it also hurts. I guess the environment you are in at the time dictates what would be appropriate.
The first few weeks of having to be around lots of people was so hard for me. The feeling of being watched so closely made me want to run a mile and hide until I could wake up from what felt like a surreal nightmare. Still now when a baby is in the same room as me, I can feel sad or curious eyes on me. I find that so hard! I just want to blend in like I did before. It is that little reminder that shouts out "it's different now".
  One aspect of having a child pass on before you, is having to move forward without feeling like you are able to talk about them as much as you would like to. It's not that anyone tells you not to, it's rather this unspoken thought you wrestle, not knowing how you will make those around you feel. It catches me so often! A friendly stranger or familiar face from a coffee shop I frequent will ask me how many children I have. I never know how much to say. As soon as I tell them I have 3 children, they ask how old they are and then somehow all the rest follows while I try talk past the lump in my throat. On the one hand it is so awkward to see their shock and sadness, but on the other hand, the proud mommy in me wants the world to know that I am a mommy to 3 amazing children ... 2 daughters and a son. My heart wants the world to know that I am mommy to a little boy too even if they can't meet him. This happened so much when I first got back from Cape Town and I would brave a coffee shop (woops - I think you are beginning to see how much time I spend in coffee shops ;0). The attendants who recognized me would come rushing over to find out where my baby was. Then my tears would choke me completely and just pour down my cheeks. It felt like everywhere I went I had to tell everyone. I never thought I could cry so much. I remember being in a pharmacy having my caeser cut checked because it got inflamed. The lady asked me how my baby was to which I broke down and just ran out of that pharmacy. Poor lady probably felt awful. Thank goodness my bestie was with me. She got my tablets so I could escape to the car. Now I want to speak about my boy, but wrestle with how that will make those around me feel. I don't want everyone to be sad around me, I just want to acknowledge how much I love my boy even though I only got to know him for such a short time.   
These are some of the reasons why I want to blog through this journey. I'm trusting that as the Lord leads me through the highs and lows of my journey, that by being honest about where I am at, others might find encouragement and strength in their journey to know that they are not alone in this sea of negotiating so many new emotions and questions. It's so weird ... sometimes I cannot really talk about how I'm doing, but the words all pour out when I sit down to blog. So in taking this route, I sense this is an avenue that my Jesus is bringing healing to me.
For those of you who have followed my blog prior to all the heartache of this year - thank you for sticking with me through all the "grief" blogs. I promise you that this is not going to turn into a sad, depressing blog ;0) That's the joy of walking this road with God. He gives us renewed joy even in pain. And laugh we shall continue to do dear friends.
So to end on a COMPLETELY different note ... here are some pic's of the teachers pressies I made today. (Excuse my random wanderings today ... I'm jumping all over the place).

A dear friend came over this morning and told me that I needed to express some creativity and she patiently showed me how to make these sweet little lids. Don't look too closely ... this was my first attempt at learning how to sew!!! And a blanket stitch too!!! Super fancy for me ;0) hee hee. Thanks Di for making me do something fun.
Sending you all a great big hug from me today xoxo


Carol F said...

My Darling - Thank you for sharing your innermost thoughts - I ALWAYS love reading your blog - it helps me stay close to your heart even though we are 10,000 miles apart xx

I love your lids!! - There comes a day in every woman's life when she has to learn how to sew:) even & especially when it's by hand - these are always the best gifts, when they're made with love..

Now, the next step is your pastels!!

With love, ALWAYS,
Mom x

Denise Malafaia Cerqueira said...

Oi, Janine!
Hoje resolvi escrever em português. Até porque só consigo escrever em inglês, quando o texto é simples. Textos muito elaborado, eu preciso de um tradutor. Talvez, muitas vezes, você nem entendeu o que eu queria lhe dizer. Meu tradutor é sempre do google. Nem sempre os textos longos e elaborados ficam bem claros no google.
Quero que saiba do amor e consideração que tenho, eu e todas as mulheres filhas de Sara, que conheceram sua história de vida.
Vejo em você alguém forte em Cristo.
Continuo a orar pelo consolo do Espírito para vocês.
Nada como um dia de pois do outro. Hoje, eu entendo, a dor ainda é forte, mas ela vai passar. A alegria vai chegar plenamente, creia.
Tenho certeza, que vamos ler postagens cheia de frescor neste blog. Não só para quem estiver passando pelo vale, mas para todos que precisarem.
Profetizo que,não só no blog, mas por onde quer que forem serão instrumentos de Deus para abençoar muitas vidas.
Ah, gostei muito da arte que você conseguiu fazer. É isto ai, para aprender tem que fazer.
Beijos e paz no seu coração!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing all that Janine! I can relate to SO much of how you are feeling! I find it very awkward when people ask how many children I have - how much do I share?

I am a slo a creative person and I have made a special scrapbook for my babies, with all their scans, letters I wrote to them when I lost them and notes and pictures and verses from the memorial service that I had for them! I shed many tears while doing it but I enjoyed it. I sometimes just sit and page through it and remember it all - sometimes remembering the better times but other days I just let the tears flow.
I also made a scrapbook for a lady in our church who was from the Cong and lost her daughter 10 days after being born to a heart defect. I absolutely felt privileged to do it for her and I felt it rather therapeutic as well!

On my blog - a few entries ago, I posted a poem called Travellers. It is about how some people find themselves ona journey of grief, and that there are people around us going through the same thing some further on their journey and some just starting out but its such a beautiful analogy! Really spoke to my heart that day!

Thinking of you Janine and I love reading your blogs - no matter where you are or how you feel!


Anonymous said...

Wow, the sweetie bottles are beautiful - a lady with many talents ♥ Marietjie ♥

Susan said...

I appreciate your blog, especially your honesty. In fact, earlier this week I directed my reader to your blog as well as Niqui's. I hope they follow you as well, as I believe their hearts will be warmed by your sweet spirit.

Toyin O. said...

Prauing God will continue to give oil of Joy for mourning. I love the bottles, you are very creative.