Saturday, October 4, 2008

A Walk to Remember

Today I sent balloons up to heaven.
And just that one thing, letting go of a balloon filled with love and messages for Will...
was in some ways just as hard as letting him go the first time.



As I stood there in the freezing morning air with my mom, I held two balloons. One white for the first baby we would have had this April, and then a blue balloon for Will. And as his name was read aloud by the speaker and I let those balloons go...

I could only cry and pray,
Please God, don't have us add any more balloons to these two I am already holding.

As I watched my balloons float up into the sky (which 0f course was that perfect shade of blue) I became aware of just how many other little souls were up there with Will. And how many other people were taking this same heart-wrenching walk. Those hundreds of balloons, spots in the huge blue sky, is not an image I will soon forget. It was overwhelming and my pictures do not do it justice.

Some, like my mom and I, had fresh tears of a new loss.
Some cried as they held their young children or a new baby, remembering the one they had lost before...
and then there were others, much older, that were finally able to acknowledge their child after so many years of silence. One couple was there wearing a shirt from the first walk~22 years ago.
That is not something I can imagine just yet...although I know that I will think of and miss Will every single day for the rest of my life.

I know that I will be back here each year. It is something I will always do for Will and it is such a beautiful tribute to his short life. And as time progresses, there is hope that maybe one year I can return to that park and release those balloons with a son or daughter. And we can tell them all about their big brother and how he watches over us from heaven.

As I looked up at the sky, I pictured him, and gave thanks for our blessings. We got to meet him, hold him, and have hope that he would be healed.
And I am so grateful to release a balloon, and actually be able to picture exactly who I am doing it for.
But oh, how my heart still aches.
A baby represents so many things; dreams, possibilities, and hope for the future. That is why the loss of a child is so devastating...and these weeks without Will have pushed us further than we ever imagined...and our biggest battle has been not to lose hope...and to continue thanking God in all circumstances.
But today brought new meaning to...hope floats.
Because today it did.
And today I do give thanks for so many things...
including that I have a beautiful baby just waiting to jump into my arms the day I truly go home.
And I will get to hold his little hand...instead of the string attached to a small, blue balloon.

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