A month into this I'm feeling numb. The initial shock has worn off. Most people around us have returned to their normal world; and we struggle to figure out what this new normal looks like.
There is so much that has changed in our day to day lives. One of the hardest things is how "easy" the day to day operation of the household is. Fewer diapers. No middle of the night bottle. Less food to prepare. No diaper bag to get ready when we go down the hill. Less laundry to do. A single stroller to push on walks. Less mess in the house. A quicker bath in the evening. Less work. It's easy. And I hate it.
I miss the 3am cries. I miss the diaper changes. I miss how long it took us to get out the door to go down the hill. I miss how complicated getting her dressed was compared to her brother. I miss it all, and would take it all back in a heart beat.
To those reading this with young children, please don't miss the amazing moments God gives you with your children. They may seem burdensome. They may seem repetitive. They may even seem counter-productive. But those are moments to treasure, and you never get them back.
So here we are in the new normal. We didn't choose it, but we must head down this path. In the new normal I find a desperate need for God each and every day. I cling to His new mercies every morning. In the new normal I treasure even the mundane moments with my son. In the new normal I value my Godly wife and her unswerving commitment. I am emptied of so much of who I was a month ago.
Our prayer for ourselves this day is that we don't miss a single thing God is doing in our hearts. We don't want to look back in three years and realize we're still the same people. We want this to have transformed us to the innermost parts in such a way that God would truly glorify Himself through us and our family.
We value your prayers and are so thankful for those in our lives that are sticking with us for the long haul. While a month may seem like a long time, to us it's just the beginning of a long and hard journey. April did a great job in her blog post today of identifying many elements of our grief, and I'd encourage you to read it to understand how you can help stick with us through this.
As an endnote, for those of you who have been praying for Peter, he is doing so much better physically. His cough is almost completely gone, as well as the cold that accompanied it. He continues to ask to see pictures of "Sissy" and obviously misses her. We're happy for this, since we prayed from the beginning that he and Elyse would have a very special relationship. We are blessed that he treasures her, and pray that he would always treasure her memories in his heart.