How does one even begin to address the gift of you? That’s like asking what is it about the ethereal brilliance of a thousand trillion stars beckoning at night from their blanket of blackest velvet that makes us stare. What is it in the innocent smile of a child that makes us smile? Why does the scent of fresh cut grass make us breathe a little deeper and think of our childhood? Why does the crackle of a fire on a cold and blustery night fill us with a sense of peace? Why does the magic of a rainbow and the promise of what is at the end captivate us so? And why do the first wet, feathery touches of perfect little snowflakes upon our cheeks at winter so often make us smile, turning up our faces as we stick out our tongues for the hope of more?
Raelyn, I can't think of you and not feel the heart ache for all that we will miss. Even now, I have only but to close my eyes to see the impish smile of the toothless grin you would have had as a baby. I shed a tear and can hear the echo of your laughter in the image of a young girl, gleefully running down the hallway from your Daddy at bedtime, watching you pretending to be some princess in your pajamas, directing Selah to do your bidding. I think of the Christmases and Thanksgivings we will miss. I think of all the birthdays where we will never get to see you hold your breath to blow out the candles as you make a wish. We won't ever get to see you dressed as a princess, fairy, or some heroine at Halloween nor will we ever get the chance to cheer you on in your endeavors at school as we might have liked. Never will we have the chance to kiss the tears from your cheek and gently place a Band-Aid upon your wounded knee. But always, dear Raelyn, always you will be loved, and always you will be missed.
I shall miss the warmth and joy of walking hand in hand with you. I will miss those first teetering steps, those first babbles and wonderful coos. I shall miss all those wonderful little hugs and kisses. I shall miss all the "Mama's" and "Daddy's" I will never hear uttered from your lips. I shall miss the joy your father would have had in teaching you all about sports, and games, and life. I shall miss helping you choose your school clothes, your prom dress, and your wedding dress. I shall miss seeing you grow up and yes, I shall even miss you fighting with your future siblings. I shall miss the rambunctious child you surely would have been. I will miss the beautiful woman I know you would have become.
I know to ask why is a difficult question and I know it is not one I should really ask. But being human, it is one that comes to mind nonetheless. The truth is I don't know why and I honestly don't think anyone else really knows and so we have to console ourselves the best we can. I do know there is a greater plan in this life, one greater than we could ever hope to comprehend, and sometimes things happen we can't explain; things sometimes happen differently than we would have wanted. But God knows the plan and holds us all in the palm of his hand. He will love us and protect us, even in the things we do not yet understand. I know without a doubt that you are in a better place, and though I will miss so very much every thing you could have ever been, and done, and seen, I know you are safe and happy. I know the Lord will hold you close and protect you. I know He will let you know how very much we love you and how much we wanted you here with us. But you are at His side now, and so hand in hand with Him you shall walk, within His protection and love you will always live. Instead of a mother's hands to hold and guide you, you shall have so much more. You are blessed with the hands of the Lord to catch you when you fall, and a million angels to be there at your every call.
You will always be in our hearts and minds, dear Raelyn. In every sunrise I shall see the warmth of your smile. In every sunset I will see the majesty of the gift of your short presence in our lives has provided. With every twinkle of the stars in the endless night, I shall know you are watching over us. I will know the whisper of your voice in the wind and be content for I know you are safe and happy. Raelyn, there is so much I would have liked to have shown you, so many things I would have liked to have said, but for now those things must wait. In the meantime, rest well my daughter and be at peace. Dwell in the assurance that you are loved and missed. You may be gone from our lives, but you will never be forgotten, the light of your love and precious life will always live within us and glow ever steady until we shall meet again. I thank God each day for the gift of you and feel so very blessed and privileged to have had the chance to have you in our lives, no matter however brief that time may have been. Motherhood begins with an idea and you were my beginning. I'll always be your Mama, first and foremost.
My beautiful daughter,
I love you.