Saturday, November 22, 2008

Remembrance

I had mentioned that others had suggested I make or purchase something in remembrance of this life we lost. I knew I wanted to do something, but had yet decided what that may be.

Yesterday I noticed a package on our front porch addressed to Darcy. I brought it into the house and just assumed it was text books from one of his online courses. When he got home from work last night I told him he had received a package and then went about doing my own thing.

A few moments later he came up to me and said "I won't be offended if you don't want this or would like to exchange it for something else, but I bought you something"...and it was this pewter Advent Wreath. I looked more closely and noticed it had scripture from Isaiah engraved all around it, and I immediately began to cry.

I have considered buying an advent wreath for a couple of years now. I did a little research on this subject and found that the word "Advent" comes from the Latin word that means "coming." Advent is a season of waiting, expecting and hoping. For hundreds of years Christians have used Advent wreaths to inspire their hopes for the coming of Christ. By lighting candles (beginning four Sundays prior to Christmas and ending on Christmas Eve) and reading scripture, we are reminded about the meaning of Christ's birth and become more excited about His coming in the past, in the future, and in our own lives.

In general, it is used to help prepare our hearts and minds for Christmas. It is a time to stir up our faith in the Lord and not lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas.


The engraving reads:

May the wreath and it's Light be a sign of Christ's
promise to bring us salvation,

The people who walked in the darkness have
seen a great Light,

Upon those who dwell in a land of gloom,
a Light has shown,

You have brought them abundant joy
and great rejoicing.
Isaiah 9:1-2


I am so thrilled with this gift. I do not think I could have picked a better, more appropriate remembrance. My heart has been touched by Darcy's thoughtfulness and love for me. This is something I can bring out each year and remember our baby in heaven- and it is pretty, practical, functional and most importantly, linked to joy and hope. What I also love about this Family Advent Wreath is that it can be used to start new traditions in our family. We do have an advent calendar (a dear handmade-by my mom-replica of the one I had growing up) in which the kids open up a new tiny ornament each day counting down the days till Christmas. Children have great expectations and hopes this time of year (my 3 year old can attest to that! EVERYTHING (did I say everything) she sees she wants! She says "Mommy, can I buy that on my Christmas List?" ....from toys, to Cocoa Puffs at the grocery store, to ovulation kits at the pharmacy...You name it, she wants to add it to her list. The funny thing is, I was the same way. According to my Mom, around age 3 I asked for a home pregnancy test for Christmas- of course not knowing what it was.) Anyways, children's "hopes" are usually associated with Christmas presents, Santa Claus, etc. The advent wreath doesn't discourage these hopes, but rather helps children to relate their hopes to biblical themes. As parents, we should be doing that anyway- I just love the idea of making this something we do together as a family- each night before dinner, and using it as a tool to read the Bible together, pray together, sing together, and further discuss the true meaning of Christmas.

The wreath came with purple and pink candles (there is really no set meaning for the candles except for the middle one that represents the birth of Jesus)...but I wanted all white candles. So today while the kids were at a birthday party, I ran to Walmart, bought a place mat, candles, and some berries/ivy to spruce up my wreath. This is very precious to me.

I must say that in many ways, Darcy completes me (since we married I always said he was the other half that makes me whole). I privately praised him for being strong and compassionate throughout this whole experience. It was emotional for him too (in a different way). He stepped up to the plate and took care of the house, took care of the kids- even when I wasn't emotionally "present." He gave me just the right amount of distance mixed with comfort and has held my hand through it all. I am very blessed to be married to my best friend. He "gets" me and I am glad to be "gotten."

6 comments:

  1. Love it. Way to go Darcy. I have been really wanting to celebrate Advent this year also. I need to go get our family a wreath.

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  2. Oh, my goodness. I can just see His spirit shining from the union of your souls. This is what God intended for us when he created marriage. Darcy's love and care for you - his pursuit of your heart, his action to usher in healing - is such a perfect reflection of the way Christ loves the church! What a beautiful testimony of of the way God truly creates beauty from Ashes.
    And what a perfect way to remember your precious child.

    I am praying that you know rest and peace this week.
    erica

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  3. That is beautiful Amanda. It is absolutely wonderful to see how God has been working in your heart and helping you to process the loss of this baby.

    I will continue to lift you up in prayer.

    Much love, Jessica

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  4. Beautifully said. Thanks for sharing this experience. I'm growing from it too. (And Good Job, Darcy!)

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