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The Blessing of Caleb

This afternoon I read Adam Greenwood’s birthday tribute to his daughter, Betsey Pearl. When she was only three, Betsey died of cancer.

My own “baby,” Caleb, is also three right now. He is excited about Christmas, birthdays, gum, car rides, swimming, playgrounds, ice cream, friends, lightening, and “going to the beach on an airplane.” As we drove to Salt Lake yesterday for his cousin’s baptism, he squealed with delight at the cows, the trucks, two airplanes, a helicopter, a mountain, the windmills, a big sign, some trees, a row of bushes, a couple of churches, and a man with a baby. When Anna was immersed in the water by her dad, he gasped in awe. Everything is wondrous and amazing.

Right outside my office window, Caleb is running around the yard with his brother, Samson, who is six. It’s an unseasonably chilly afternoon for May, and the wind is howling. Each of them is holding a plastic grocery bag up as high as their arms will reach to catch the most wind. They are alternately calling out the wind-to-bag ratio to the other and calculating how much stronger the wind must be to propel them into the air.

Losing someone this innocent and precious and amazing is more than I can even imagine. More than I ever want to let creep into the corner of my thoughts. I don’t want to believe that such horrible things can really ever happen to anyone.

Caleb just came inside the house. “Mom, mom! Come with me,” he said, tugging on my little finger. “Come see me in the wind!”

How could I possibly stay inside?

{ 9 comments… add one }

  • CamBendy May 6, 2007, 9:32 pm

    Oh, get me the tissue!

  • Oregonian May 7, 2007, 2:46 pm

    When my kids get home, they’ll be wondering why I’m hugging them so tightly.

  • mlinford May 7, 2007, 5:33 pm

    This story is heartrending…was both times I read it (this year and last year). As I was reading with my daughter today, i found myself hoping that I could raise her to adulthood. It’s hard sometimes not to be afraid of the trials that could come. (e.g., we have two little ones in our ward right now battling cancer…ages 7 and 4. Ugh).

  • Oregonian May 7, 2007, 8:05 pm

    Just to be clear, Allison, it was your part of the article I was talking about. Or, at least the combination of the two.

  • Lewis_Family May 15, 2007, 11:05 pm

    What a horrible post. I can’t stop crying, life is so scary, and I know that are loved ones are never gone for good, we see them again, but the heart ache of losing them for awhile is horrible. It scares me so much, especially lately. We are trying to conceive, to have another precious angel running around, and my hubby is so excited to have maybe another little girl or a little boy this time, and I have lightly told him that it scares me to try to have another, and he says it is not that scary and how fun it will be, but really at night, I think of how scary it really is. And the fear doesn’t stop there, I fear for my daughter now, that the most random of cicumstances could end the joy she brings to our lives. I am scared for her to have to learn of life, all the evil in the world and all the trials she will have to endure, I want to protect from those. I don’t know how my mom was able to have eight, it is just so scary, which doesn’t feel like a strong enough word for the feeling it is to describe. I know I am rambling probably because I am blubbering, but seriously, that post was beautiful, the peace and strength to write such a tribute amazes me and I hope that if ever I or any of my loved ones had to endure such a trail that we too could be so strong.

  • Alison Moore Smith May 15, 2007, 11:29 pm

    Lewis, that’s the life of a mom. Incredible joy, incredible pain, and incredible fear, all rolled up in to a big, emotional ball. Yes, the fear multiplies as you have more to lose. But your life is also so much fuller than you ever imagined.

  • ChanJo May 16, 2007, 12:44 am

    Allison, what a sweet tribute to your Caleb. I hope he sees it when he’s older.

  • mlinford May 16, 2007, 1:49 am

    I think I have discovered a story that is worse than losing a child to death. Read this. Let’s all pray for this adoptive family, that their little child (who has been in their family since birth and is approaching age THREE) can stay with them, stay sealed to them!

  • SilverRain May 16, 2007, 7:24 am

    Lewis_Family – I’ll share a scripture that has comforted and helped me in times when I’m afraid for my daughter:

    For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7

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