We missed our turn and pulled into the first driveway we could find. Farm. Those were the first words I saw on the sign. I could see the peonies just ahead on the right. I could see the tomatoes growing and a green house in the distance. There was a little shop just ahead with fruits and veggies for sale.
I kept driving, intrigued by this place. It seemed like a home away from home. Quiet. Undiscovered. I'm amazed when businesses can make you feel like you're the one who discovered them. This place is far from undiscovered, but it still feel like you're the only one who knows about it. I'm intrigued when a business can make you feel like you're their first customer.
The gave me a dozen peony stems as a gift and I cried, holding one of my favorite blooms and my sweet boy on my second Mother's day. Pink and white blooms filled our home for weeks and this farm has become a favorite place for our family to visit. Bring your stroller and they'll invite you to walk through their acres of farmland.
After we returned from Louisville, I was eager to tackle the bucket list we had made. A bucket list that would help us grieve the loss of one baby and still celebrate the life we had together. So I set out with Daniel one morning to visit the farm that had touched my heart earlier in the year.
Related: Victory Anastasia
Deep hope. Joy. I didn't know a season of grief and heartache could be mixed with joy until now. Before we lost our Victory Anastasia, I had only tasted pieces of joy in the middle of grief. I didn't set out on a journey of discovering joy with a shattered heart. I just wanted to fix my eyes on Jesus and put my hope in Him.
And I suppose that joy is a secondary consequence of hoping in Him.
One day He will raise to life the littles, lost. Death will be conquered. Tears, wiped away. Grief may not even exist in our memory.
I'm not thankful that we lost our baby and I don't think I will ever have to be thankful for that. I'm not thankful for the weeks she didn't spend with us. I'm not thankful for the nights we won't hold her and the life she won't have with us. Because I don't have to be thankful or rejoice that death is singing sin's song.
The joy that I have is wrapped up in hope. Because I'm thankful for her life. I'm thankful for every day we had her and for every moment that I put my hand on my belly and knew she was there. I'm thankful that, even though God knew this would end in heartbreak for us, He still chose to let us be part of her precious life. I'm thankful that He let us know her for a time that still feels too short.
I'm thankful we will see her in heaven and I'm thankful for the hope we have because Jesus defeated death for her. For us. One day after we have been separated by death, we will be brought into His Kingdom where death cannot tear and rip and steal away. I'm thankful she has a life there that she never had here.
To the one feeling like it should have never been like this, you're right. Children shouldn't be ripped from their mothers. Fathers shouldn't be ripped from their families. Grandchildren should know the ones who raised up their parents. This world wasn't created for brokenness and our hearts proclaim that truth in our devastation. And we are right to do so. Let no one shame you when you say that it shouldn't be like this.
Because that's why Jesus is coming back. To make it right again. Because sin destroyed everything except for Him. He defeated death, taking on the full weight of our accusations and our sin, to give us a life that death, grief, and sorrow can't touch.
It looks like we lost. It looks like Victory lost. But what Jesus has won can never be undone. It's through Jesus that our sweet Victory walked into victory. And it's through Jesus that death can't hold her now.
Daniel held my hand while we picked a small, white pumpkin for Victory. I put it on our front porch to sit with the other pumpkins, welcoming our friends and family into our home. Our family is smaller than it looks. We'll always miss the life here that we didn't share with her. And friends, that's sad.
But He is King and death is not.
Grief found joy and now they sing together.
Victory has victory.
And I'll never be able to stop sharing what Jesus has done for our family. Separated for a little while and then ushered into a life that holds forever.
Related - Passover Devotional