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.

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Magic Blanket

In the last 7 weeks since Bennett's death, our family has received SO MANY kind, generous and thoughtful gifts. In fact, David and I have decided that it will take us the rest of our lives to "pay it forward". And - somehow - we're okay with that. Frankly, I can think of no better way to spend the rest of my days.
One particularly tender gift arrived in the mail just this week. It was from a mother whom I've never met who lives in another state. She too lost a child suddenly (interestingly enough, close to Bennett's age) and had to walk her children through the grief of losing their sister while she and her spouse where grieving themselves. In the box, she sent the softest, most luxurious blanket you have ever felt. It. Is. Heaven. In her note, she shared that after her daughter's death, a friend had given her a similar blanket with the insight that it was a Magic Blanket. When you were sad, lonely, hurting or missing your loved one, you could wrap this warm, soft blanket around you and - somehow - it would help you feel all the love and warmth of the memories you shared. What a Gift.

Well, this package arrived on a particularly interesting day. A day after I came down with a head cold, my girls followed suit and we were all achy and congested together. Of course, when feeling under the weather, emotions are ultra close to the surface. So, soon after coming home from school, my six year old curled up on the couch and burst into a torrent of tears. She cried because her tummy hurt. She cried because she had a sore throat. She cried because it was raining and she cried because she was missing her little brother. And - in that moment when Mommy wasn't up to par herself - there, few feet away, was the sweet package that I had retrieved from the mail that afternoon. I grabbed the velvety soft blanket and wrapped up my crumbling little girl, testifying to her of its "magic powers" while praying that she would feel the comfort she needed to get through that tender moment. And do you know what? It worked. It didn't change our situation and it didn't bring back her little brother, but - somehow - she felt better.

I've been thinking about the "Magic Blanket" ever since and have been trying to identify what exactly it was that made my little girl feel better. And I think I know the answer.

Last August, our oldest daughter Emma was baptised into our church. At her baptism, my mother shared a story that she also shared at my baptism years ago. In that story, a mother explains to a little girl why the Holy Ghost is referred to as The Comforter. As an object lesson, she grabs a soft, fluffy comforter from the linen closet and wraps it around her daughter and has her describe what she feels. Warm, protected, soft, loved. All adjectives of Comfort. Then she related those feelings to those felt from the Holy Ghost, our Heavenly Father's messenger of Comfort and Peace. THAT is how He sends us His love and lets us know that He is aware of us, loves us and is there to comfort us in any way we stand in need.

Our "Magic Blanket" is a physical reminder of a spiritual Gift given to us by a tender and loving Heavenly Father. He knows of the gaping hole in our family. He sees our broken hearts. In fact, I think there have been many times where He has wept with us. And yet, AND YET He loves us enough to allow these things to happen so we can grow. Can you imagine that? For this mother who wants all-things happy and wonderful for her babies and cringes at their every pain, I cannot. But HE is all wise and all knowing. Omnicient. And HE has a plan for our family. And - despite the difficulty of this path we are on - THIS is part of His plan. And we have made the choice to trust Him. Knowing that - in the end - all will be made whole again.

We recently ordered Bennett's headstone and are finalizing the images and wording that will be engraved on his memorial. On the back, there will be the final verse to a song played angelically on the harp (by his Aunt Sharla) at his funeral:

Be Still My Soul:
The hour is hastening on
When we shall be
Forever with the Lord.
When disappointment, grief and fear are gone,
Sorrow forgot, Love's purest Joys restored.
Be Still, My Soul:
When change and tears are past,
All safe and blessed
We Shall Meet At Last.

I believe in every word of that verse. I know those promises are true. And I cling to every one. I WILL hold Bennett again. This grief and loss we feel will not last forever. And our family will once again be made whole.

But for now, my Magic Blanket will have to do.


  1. What a beautiful thing for you to share with us. I am glad that you've started this blog and will come back often to gain from your insight and motherly wisdom. I feel blessed to know you and pray that Heavenly Father will continue to hold you in the warmth of His arms.

  2. What a sweet and touching message Amanda... The Holy Spirit is such a comforter at times where you need Him most... You are in my thoughts...
    Elodie (David) Taylor

  3. Well, I write this through tears. You have a gift of expressing yourself so beautifully. I, too, have told the Comforter story many times and I'm glad you now have a Magic Blanket to be a material token of the peace that comes from the Holy Ghost. I love you.

  4. I think we need a post here! Absolutely beautiful story. You've done such a wonderful job on this blog and it will be inspirational and comforting to many. Thank you for having the strength even while grieving to share your thoughts and testimony.

  5. Amanda--You are truly a gift to many yourself. Your writing is beautiful and I believe you were born to be a light to others!

    What a wonderful gift from a beautiful family! Thanks for sharing your tender moments with the rest of us.

  6. Thank you for sharing Mandy! You write beautifully! Tears are streaming down my face because I too have a blanket. It is my baby blanket that I still keep by my bed (I'm 25 and in the last few years have stopped sleeping with it). Whenever I miss my dad, I hug that blanket with all my strength - I've done this for the last 20 years. Blankets do have magical powers. :)
    Not a day goes by that I don't think of you and your sweet son.
    Love you,
    Rachael (Harrison) White

  7. I can only imagine the deep love of our Heavenly Father for your family that you've been able to witness through sincere acts of kindness and concern for you heartbreaking loss. SO many love Bennett. And SO many love you Mand (and the rest of your fun gang). What a thoughtful gift! I'm so glad the magic blanket helped sweet Grace :) And the way you compared it to the Comforter was beautiful...such a tender mercy from the Lord. Stay strong sis. We love you. You guys are always in our prayers. *kjar bear hugs*

  8. Amanda--I love you with my whole heart. I think tomorrow I will take my kiddos and go buy a magic blanket to be a physical reminder of the comfort that is ours for the taking. Different reasons, but they need one...and I need one too.

  9. this made me cry, what an eye opening, beautiful beautiful story. i'm going to be sure to keep up with you. just you sharing this shows you're strong!

    much love and prayers.

  10. I'm so glad that the world now gets to enjoy your gift. I can't wait to follow you in this journey. What a special Bennett boy.


  11. This was beautiful. I love that you are sharing your heart this way.

  12. I am in awe of your strength and beauty. Thank you for blessing all the rest of us with your testimony and amazing gift of expressing yourself. This is a beautiful story. Love you.


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