I am a Sweetheart to One and a Mommy to Four Loveable Babes, one of which is smiling down on us from Heaven. I am learning to dance in the rain. Come with me on my journey as I make the most out of Life's mud puddles.

Put on your rain boots. Great adventure lies ahead.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Doors and Windows

This weekend, our family went to a local eating establishment for dinner. While sitting fireside, eating chicken pot pies and salads, a little family was seated next to us. It wasn't long before the youngest member of their party drew our attention. With a headful of platinum blond hair and big blue eyes, their petite built son strongly resembled Bennett. As he waddled around our table in the dining room, our family's attention was riveted on him. Ashton was the first to personally engage the boy, jumping down from his chair and talking to him, just like he spoke with Bennett. I looked at David and David looked away. I knew what was happening. I wasn't surprised to see his eyes glistening with tears when I finally caught his glance.

The engagement continued through our meal. As we were finishing our dessert (double cream lemon pie . . . delish), I noticed that the mother was intently watching our family's interaction with her son. Not wanting her to get the wrong impression, I turned around and asked the age of her son. "Eighteen months," she responded. I could of guessed that. Our Bennett was small for his age and he was 19.5 months when he was called Home.

I continued. "He's just adorable. Our family has been quite taken with your son because our youngest - about his age - passed away in January. We have been watching him because he reminds us so much of our Bennett and we miss him so. Thanks for sharing him for a few minutes."

I smiled at her warmly and then turned to address the waitress that had brought our check. As we were waiting, the family packed up and started to leave. The mother stopped by our table. "Thank you so much for sharing your story with us. Sometimes you don't realize what you have. Things get so crazy and you just get so overwhelmed. But it's nice to be reminded of your blessings."

I responded with a smile and "Be sure to hold him close tonight. We miss that so much."

Some might find our fleeting yet personal interaction odd. And yet, it didn't feel so at all. In fact, as we have become "acquainted with grief", these interactions have become a common occurrence. It has been said that when God closes a door, somewhere He opens a window. Well, when Bennett's life on Earth suddenly ended, a door was closed. A huge, heavy, heartbreaking door. One we were not ready shut. And yet - in His infinite wisdom - our Loving Heavenly Father has seen fit to open so many windows. We have had so many interactions with people around the world. From Australia to Dubai, Taiwan to Calgary and from New York to San Francisco. Though oceans, borders and land divide us, the human experience of Heartache, Grief and Loss are the same. Indeed, we are One.

There is much choice involved with Grief. And while there may be fleeting moments of complex feelings, the overall experience is up to you. You decide what the take away will be and what you will become because of it.

"As for me and my house", We have decided that we will not be bitter. We have decided that we will not be angry. And We have decided that we will not be resentful. Most of our friends and family will not be asked to walk this path and for that we are grateful. We would not wish this upon anyone. But they will be called to walk paths that we will not walk. Both seen and unseen. We cannot compare and we cannot judge. God knows all. And we will experience the things we need to experience to become who God knows we can be. It is our choice - however - to choose this path. To seek to understand and learn or decide to be angry. To choose healing over resentment. And to choose Light over Darkness.

We WILL Love. We WILL Laugh. We WILL have Hope. We WILL remain strong in our Faith. And we WILL be grateful for ALL things . . . both good AND growing.

Doors and Windows. Windows and Doors. What you become from your experiences is entirely up to you. So we are looking for windows.


  1. Oh, I love this today. You are so right. We get to choose our own attitude. We can't choose the things that happen to us or our family, but we can choose how we deal with it, what we do with it, and how we treat those around us because of it. Your little family is amazing.

  2. What a beautiful post. I think it is great that you shared your story with the family, it seemed to mean a lot to the mother. What a lovely idea to share your journey with others through this blog. Amy is lucky to have a friend like you;)

  3. Very wise and touching words, thank you for sharing, I think we all at some point are looking for windows.

  4. Love this post Amanda. It is so true. Life can be so hard and very painful at times... knowing and trusting that all these things shall give us experience and be for our good, make it bearable. Thank you for sharing your beautiful testimony with the world and me personally!

  5. Loved this post...thanks for sharing.

  6. Beautiful Amanda....just beautiful. Thank you.

  7. You get my crying every time I read.

    There IS so much choice in grief. I am going to use that in therapy. (I'll credit "my wise friend").

  8. Thank you for your wisdom and your strength, Amanda. I am touched by your words and look forward to every post...

  9. "There is much choice involved with Grief. And while there may be fleeting moments of complex feelings, the overall experience is up to you. You decide what the take away will be and what you will become because of it."--- so true. I think I will print this out & frame it as a reminder!!

  10. I hope you print this all in a book someday! So many need to hear these words...Glad I did today!
    Love Jenny B.

  11. I have never met you, and stumbled on to your blog through a link someone else posted. I am humbled by your wisdom and strength in adversity. Much of what you have to say touches my heart and renews my perspective. I have a daughter the same age as your son Bennett, and I admit that sometimes I get caught up in the little things...too often, I'm caught up in the little things. Thank you so much for being willing to share your journey. You and your family are in my prayers.

  12. You don't know me, but my heart aches for you and your family. A friend wrote a blog post about your tragic loss and I have been following your blog. I sob with every post, but I keep coming back. I feel your strength, your hope, your faith, your love. After I read something you have written I am inspired to be a better wife, a better mom, a better person. I hug my children a little tighter, use a softer tone, and make time to actually "be" with them. This might seem a little strange, as I don't know you, but I often find myself praying for your sweet family.


Thank you for being a part of my journey. I appreciate your supportive and healing comments. Here's to a Promise of Sunshine!