Happy birthday, Hannah Grace
Today, you would have been nine years old- you would have had 3, 285 days on this earth. Instead, you had four years, nine months, and twenty-three days here with us. Before you were even a glimmer in my eye, God knew that those four years, nine months, and twenty-three days would be it. Your life as we know it. I wonder what God thought when he watched you arrive. Did he see big days that would come- the Christmases…birthdays…1st day of preschool? Or, did he see those small, tiny moments that parents want to hang on to forever- watching you blow a dandelion for the 1st time…the joy on your face as you splashed in the swimming pool…the way you would cross your eyes to be silly on purpose and make us laugh? At the moment of your birth, did he see you suffering from endless procedures…the effects of chemotherapy…you lying next to me as you left my arms to go to his?
I’m not sure about any of that; I just know in my heart that God indeed knew all those moments were coming. He knew how you were going to give us a run for our money with your stubbornness; he also knew how smart and funny you were going to be. He knew how you would suffer. Why didn’t God intervene and extend your days with us? That I will never know. But I do know that you are living a life- an eternal life- that I can’t really fathom. I can’t wait until the day when you meet me there and show me what it is you have been doing all these years. Or will it only seem like seconds to you since you’ve been in my arms? One day, I will be there with you, my warrior princess. I wonder what you would look like as a big nine-year old; during the same breath, I try to imagine what you look like in Heaven. Are you still a little girl dressed up in a princess gown? Will Momma and Daddy have the joy of watching you grow once we join you? Someday, sweet girl, we will be there.
We have done our very best to honor your life; one of the hardest things about losing a child is that you want to create a legacy since children haven’t had much of a chance to do that themselves. How quickly some forget. Precious Hannah, your legacy is real. You live on in the smattering of freckles on your brother’s face. You live on through the sister you never met who carries your middle name. You live on through those who remember you. You live on through people who have been helped because you lived. Your life mattered- and it still does.
Our strong Hannah Grace, I cannot imagine not having had the chance to be your mom; the pain and sadness we have lived through these last four years is completely worth the four we had with you. Completely.
We love you, Hannah, and we long for the day when you take us to Jesus so we can worship at his feet…with you…forever.