As Gracia's anniversary approached this year, I felt like the only one who remembered her. And for a second, I thought it would be easier for me to not remember too.
Women are a special breed. We are tender, we are emotional and we are brave. I was brave because I opened a wound that was closed three years ago. I went through Gracia's memory box and I read each and every card I was given. I studied her pictures. I counted her toes and put my wedding ring around her tiny ankle on her foot mold. I cried. I remembered what I wore the day we buried our daughter. What we ate. How I felt. I hummed the songs we sang.
I want to share my favorite memories surrounding Gracia's death.
My sister, Meredith, stepped in and took Keilah anytime I needed her to. And she wrote down things that Keilah said or did that she knew I would want to know about. She brought me a little lamb that we buried with Gracia. She wrote Ecclesiastes 11:5 on my belly the day I went in to deliver Gracia and she hosted a reception for us at her home after Gracia's funeral. I love you Mimi.
My Papi built Gracia's "treasure box" (her tiny casket). He used the metric system because she was his spanish grace. He used a jewelry box clasp to keep it closed. My Mom lined it with white satin and pearl trim. It was perfect.
Keilah was so little. She was 3 years old and had chubby cheeks and whispy fine hair. She said things that were wise beyond her years. God used her to help me heal.
Because of Gracia's death, I started Lullaby of Hope. A ministry for women who are journeying through infertility, miscarriage, stillbirth or infant loss. For three years, my team and I have been making baskets for these women. Her one death has allowed me to step into many women's lives when they are broken and to speak hope over them and point them to Jesus.
My sweet Gracia, I hope you hear the song that I sing to you and that you will sing it back to me.