If you have lost a child due to stillbirth, miscarriage, preterm delivery, illness, or SIDS, you know life changes forever after that. You see the world through a different lens and you can never go back to seeing the world as you did before the loss. The rose-colored glasses come off and you see the world with much more clarity. You feel more deeply, love harder, listen more intently, and soak up every good moment life has to offer because you know it could all be snatched away in a moment. Without any warning.
I had one of those moments last night when my 19-year-old daughter looked up in the sky as we headed out to dinner and said, "I see the big dipper!" I tilted my head up toward the sky to get a view of what she saw. I'm still not quite sure if I saw it, but what I did was soak in the moment. The twinkle of the stars in the midnight blue sky. The crispness of the night air. I took in a deep breath and thanked God for that moment where I felt connected to life. No longer do I take a walk in the grass barefoot for granted. I cherish each tiny moment that I did not acknowledge prior to losing Riley Elizabeth because I assumed another moment would come along.
What are those little moments I'm talking about? A sunset. A drive along the coast gazing at the water. A belly laugh with your girlfriends. The crayon-colored picture your pre-schooler brings home. The way a warm cup of coffee feels in your hands. The fuzzy socks your husband puts in your Christmas stocking. The feel of rain when it falls on your face. You know...the little moments that you took for granted before your loss.
Remember to never forget to take in the little moments of joy that still peek through, even on the darkest days.