Monday, August 11, 2008

Living in the Past

I remember going to school the Monday after my dad died. I was 11 years old and in the fifth grade. I had my group of best friends - Kate, Amanda, Sarah, Soo, Valerie - we did everything together. I remember seeing their faces when I told them about my weekend and they all said the same thing. "You need to move on, get over it, it's in the past." As I got older I realized that they were young and didn't know any better, or at least that's what I thought.

Almost twenty years later I held my first daughter, not even three years old, in my arms as she took her last breath. At her funeral I saw people I hadn't seen for what seemed ever and I got the same sympathetic looks and although as adults these friends were more well versed, the thoughts were the same. "You need to move on, get over it, it's in the past." I couldn't believe that what I thought was simply eleven year old thinking and not knowing any better was the same thought process of my adult friends.

They're wrong.

I live in my past. I live in it every day. When I wake up in the morning and see my two children, I realize that one is missing. When people talk about their children who almost died or lived through terrible ordeals and how the power of prayer brought them back, I'm reminded that my prayers did not yield the same results. Every year when school starts I cry just a little as I picture what my daughter would have looked like going on the bus with her older brother.

You know what? It's ok. I love living in the past. I crave living in the past. Sophia Loren said, "I've never tried to block out the memories of the past, even though some are painful. I don't understand people who hide from their past. Everything you live through helps to make you the person you are now."

So my friends, live in the past with me for just a few moments and look at some pictures of my sweet Lily Katharine. She was born on March 19, 2002 and died January 3, 2005. She is my past and my more importantly she is my future. I will see her again. She is mine forever.




10 comments:

Rachel said...

I don't even know what to say other than how beautifully you've put this. We should never forget those who have shaped us and affected us so much. Your daughter is beautiful!!

Melinda said...

I'm so glad you've shared Lily with us, MaryBeth. She is beautiful!

I live in the past, wondering how things would be for me now had I made different decisions along the way.

Robinson's said...

That was beautiful!
To live in that past, the present, and the future that is what life is truly about.

joywinn said...

With tears in my eyes, I'm so grateful for you MaryBeth. I'm grateful for your insight,wisdom and caring heart and for helping me understand and put the most important things in life in the proper perspective. Lily is pure joy.

Reenie's World said...

I just love her! She is beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

kellyclay said...

MaryBeth, I just adore you, like you the past is very important to me it has made me who I am today. Thank so much for sharing Lily with us she is such a beautiful little girl.

Lors said...

Icouldn't agree with you more. I am sorry, that there were some people that didn't agree, I suppose that sometimes it takes going through these things to fully understand how important it is to hold on to our loved ones. And although we miss her, what a strength to know that you have a sweet little baby girl waiting for you, fully redeemed. What strength that brings as we try to rise about our challenges here so that you can be with her again. What a joy that day will be! You are such an amazing family!

*~The Collins'~* said...

Lily is sooooooo gorgeous MaryBeth. I have sweet memories of seeing her in your arms, a beautiful girl with a beautiful mom... and I look forward to the day when I can see you reunited with her once again. :)

Katie said...

She is perfect MaryBeth

Laura said...

Thanks so much for sharing of her! What a specail angel and so beautiful! Korey will never forget talking about her with you guys... I miss you woman!