"Everything that happens in this world happens at the time God chooses. He sets the time for birth and time for death, the time for planting and the time for pulling up, the time for killing and the time for healing, the time for tearing down and the time for building. He sets the time for sorrow and the time for joy, the time for mourning and the time for dancing...What do we gain from all our work? I know the heavy burdens that God has laid on us. He has set the time for everything. He has given us the desire to know the future, but never gives us the satisfaction of fully understanding what he does." Ecclesiastes 3:1-4, 9-11.
This last week I began my purge of girl stuff. Amelia is 7 now and God has blessed us with 2 wonderful little boys in the last 2 years. I had been keeping all our kids clothes in case we had anymore children but with the birth of Vincent, our 4th child, this last March 9, our family feels complete (well almost). Therefore I am ready to start letting go of all the bins I have stored in the kids closets...there is a time for everything. My 14 year old niece is staying with us for a couple of weeks as my older sister is traveling for an exchange program she runs. She was so kind as to help me get all Amelia's clothes down and sort through everything. We started with her 18-24, 2t sizes. As we were pulling her clothes out and looking them over, we started to come across the dresses she wore to Wayland's funeral and visitation. Wow. A flood of memories and emotions filled my mind. I could see Amelia walking around the funeral home (she was 2 at the time). And I could hear her cries for her older brother as we processed out of the church walking behind Wayland's casket. She screamed, "Wa, Wa" (what she called Wayland at the time) and held out her hands for him. Something hit her at that moment, that her older brother was leaving forever. It was heart wrenching! As I experienced all of these memories and so much more, there were some outfits that I just couldn't part with, but most of the clothes we sent along to be donated or sold at a consignment sale. And as I worked through organizing and parting with Amelia's things, I was reminded of the above scripture passage from Ecclesiastes, "Everything that happens in this world happens at the time God chooses." Maybe I'll never be able to part with some items from our past and I'll hang on to them forever or maybe someday I'll feel ready to give them away. Right now it just doesn't feel like the right time.
Today is 5 years since we lost Wayland to DIPG. He's been gone now longer than he lived, which feels absolutely impossible. These last years have been a time for death, for birth, sorrow and joy, for mourning and (a little) dancing...I feel as I have lost much of my ability to be care free with the loss of Wayland but looking back I can see all of the seasons of life I have experienced so far. Our life is making way for a new season as I chase around 2 little boys and try to keep up with Amelia's big spirited ideas. I wish so badly that Wayland was still a tangible part of it, he will always be a part of it of course, but we miss his physical presence as have welcomed new members to our family. He would be almost 10 years old and I could just see him playing with his younger brothers and him and Amelia having a ball at the pool this summer and chasing around with friends in the neighborhood. That is the part I will never understand but I guess and I can work on coming to peace with it as I take a moment to just breathe and remember Wayland today. Wayland's season was short, but how can we remember him and let his spirit fill our lives today and everyday? I have placed a candle in the spot in our house where his spirit left this world. I look at it and remember all the pain of his last days and nights. It moves me to put life in perspective and to fill his younger sister and brothers with stories and memories of what a wonderful older brother they have looking out for them in heaven.
I love you and miss you so dearly Wayland, but "I carry with me into the world," always.