We have received so much love and support the last few days it has been extremely overwhelming. One of our greatest supports was a new found dear friend Sarah. Sarah, you are amazing and I don’t think I would have gotten through this trial very successfully or sane without the love, support and help you have shown me and my family. Having gone through the experience a few months ago, your help and knowledge has made things SO much easier on me and you’ve really lightened my burden. One of the greatest piece of advice you gave me was, “don’t forget about Josh, you two are in this together.” And you are totally and completely right.
Much of the messages, notes, letters, helps and acts of kindness were geared towards myself. As the mother and carrier of baby Maria, it would seem natural and logical that it mainly was towards me. But Joshua, as the father of baby Maria, hurts just as much as I do. If you know my husband, you’d know his love for children, ESPECIALLY ours. He is probably the best dad out there. He loves our children with a fierce love. He is constantly playing with them (which causes some problems because they just don’t know how to take him seriously and he literally has the hardest time saying no (unless it’s McDonald’s)). He is so thoughtful of them and their needs. He seriously is the sweetest daddy ever.
But in all honesty, this trial hasn’t been easy for him. Loosing his baby girl, our sweet Maria, has literally left an emptiness in his heart that won’t be filled until we see her again. Even with the knowledge of the plan of salvation, the faith he has in our Savior, the love he has for the gospel and the work, not having her here to hold, love, and care for, is difficult. Trying to be strong yet I know he hurts inside.
I don’t write this to make him seem weak or to ask for sympathy for him, but I write it for others who may go through the same or similar trial. This is one we’re facing TOGETHER. Don’t forget about your spouse, your children, your parents, your family, who all share the same, yet different burden as you do. For our parents it’s been hard because they feel helpless watching their child struggle over the loss of their grandchild. Our children mourn over the loss of their sister while trying to understand mommy and daddy’s sorrow. Our family and friends mourn just thinking about the pain, the sorrow, the emptiness that most of them do not understand. Then there are those who have had similar trials that would never, EVER, wish anyone to struggle the same.
8 And it came to pass that he said unto them: Behold, here are the waters of Mormon (for thus were they called) and now, as ye are desirous to come into the fold of God, and to be called his people, and are willing to bear one another’s burdens, that they may be light;
9 Yea, and are willing to mourn with those that mourn; yea, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort, and to stand as witnesses of God at all times and in all things, and in all places that ye may be in, even until death, that ye may be redeemed of God, and be numbered with those of the first resurrection, that ye may have eternal life—
10 Now I say unto you, if this be the desire of your hearts, what have you against being baptized in the name of the Lord, as a witness before him that ye have entered into a covenant with him, that ye will serve him and keep his commandments, that he may pour out his Spirit more abundantly upon you?
Whatever trial you’re going through, whatever struggle you’re facing, whatever difficulty or road bump is blocking your way, it is not yours alone.
We’ve faced many struggles together, nearly getting divorced in 2011. But some how we managed to pull through and got sealed the following year. It was a hard time for me and my children, my family, my friends, they all saw it. They struggled with me yet I thought I had to bear that burden alone… This time, with the sweet reminder “don’t forget Josh”, I realize I’ve never had to struggle alone. Not only do I have my Saviors merciful love to rely on, my Father in heaven’s all knowing compassion, but the love and support of a sweet, nothing-short-of-amazing husband, beautiful and loving children, caring and concerned parents/in-laws, supportive and ROD siblings/cousins/friends and an amazing community full of people who understand and have been there or try to sympathize for my loss.
Whatever you’re going through, there are people who love you. Maybe not the same people that I have, maybe it may not seem that way or maybe it is a trial you might have to face “alone”. There is always a loving Savior and understanding God who will support, guide, strengthen and love you through it all. If you follow His example and let His will be done.
I’d like to say I’d change things if I could… But I’ve tried to do things my way and it didn’t work out quite so well. Actually, it turned out so bad that I’d take any trial The Lord would give me not to go through any of it again. This is a trial He chose for me and I thank Him daily for not letting me do it alone.
My sweet Joshua… The only person who annoys me more than my brother Fatso, simply because I love you so much it irritates me. Thank you for being my rock, my love, my strength, my friend, my shoulder to cry on and my partner in this trial and our lives together. This trial has really changed my perspective of life and of you. It has strengthened our bond as we’ve come to rely heavily on The Lord.
“Don’t forget josh”… Don’t forget those who are struggling with you. For they might need comfort too.
A Fathers Grief
It must be very difficult
To be a man in grief,
Since “men don’t cry”
and “men are strong”
No tears can bring relief.
It must be very difficult
To stand up to the test,
And field the calls and visitors
So she can get some rest.
They always ask if she’s all right
And what she’s going through.
But seldom take his hand and ask,
“My friend, but how are you?”
He hears her crying in the night
And thinks his heart will break.
He dries her tears and comforts her,
But “stays strong” for her sake.
It must be very difficult
To start each day anew.
And try to be so very brave-
He lost his baby too.
Thank you Tina for sharing this poem.
Thank you love for mourning with me, for struggling with me and for being strong when I’m not. I love you.