This part of my world [writing] has been kept more to the pages of my journal lately. I haven’t wanted to openly/publicly express anything mainly because by talking about it … it solidifies even more the reality that we are living, and that is hard for me right now.
As some of you may or may not have known, I was pregnant with our fourth baby due to join us in July of this year. Even though it was a rough start, I was just starting to feel well as we entered into the new year. Spring, summer, fall … quite literally, life plans were made around this wee one arriving. I was passed the ‘early’ stages of pregnancy and was feeling pretty excited that I was already one-third of the way through pregnancy and in 6 months, would be meeting him/her. Mini conversations around Christmas were had with this baby growing inside me about how he/she would be with me next year, already 5 months old! To say we were overjoyed was an understatement.
Then, a few weeks ago happened.
January 22, 2017, my sweet baby boy, Elkan Matthew entered this world. I was around 15+ weeks pregnant but the doctors figured he had passed away around 13+ weeks. The crushing moments of finding out our baby had no heartbeat and then having to endure labor were only the first hits of pain. As we held our teeny tiny, perfect little boy in our hands, pangs of sadness/awestruck/disappointment/hurt/love/bewilderment and so much more brewed inside me. So many questions, so many feelings, so much hurt. The plans we had for him (though we didn’t know “he” was another boy!), the dreams we dreamed of him and the life we wanted for him were and are … gone. And yet, only because of God’s forever grace, we feel a hope and a reassurance – the reassurance that God is holding our baby. And even though my arms ache for him, we have a hope in our faith, knowing that one day we will be with Elkan in heaven.
We chose the name Elkan Matthew, like our other boys, not only for the sounds of the names but for the meanings and significances the names carry. In the past, we haven’t decided on a girl/boy name up until a month before the due date, but early in this pregnancy, we knew the name ‘Elkan’ would be part of this baby’s life – girl or boy. We knew God was doing a miracle creating this baby and we really felt that He would use this little life to bring creativity to others and would highlight His creation through our child’s life.
ELKAN: [pronounced: El-Kan] God creates; created by God/belonging to God
MATTHEW: gift from God
Our wonderful gift from God, though his life here with us what not nearly as long as we wanted it to be, was truly just that – a gift. And I believe that, though in some ways he will become like our family’s special secret, his life will always be present to us with his purpose and revelation … right down to the meaning of his name.
Previous to knowing Elkan would be born, we had planned a mini getaway to Palm Desert, CA for a week which ended up being days after he was born. During that week of renewal and rest, we were ignited again with some passions and ways that we want to be more creative in our lives. Our hearts have again become stirred to really live for what we feel our purposes are and we also have a sparked striving to live out our dreams and to not just think them. Amidst that time away, it’s become more apparent that Elkan’s gift of life to us, was and is a reminder for us to live our lives more creatively, enjoying all that God has created for our moments and breaths of life to hold … all with the understanding and the believing of His awesome promise that we belong to Him.
There are things in this life that I will never understand, especially why Elkan is not here with us today. But again and again I will hold onto hope. Hope for today. Hope for our eternal future. Hope for the redeeming of things that are incomprehensible in this life. Hope that the purposes I have been created for will be accomplished, be an inspiration, and seen through. Hope that God is carrying me through every happy/hard moment I live. The hope that you, the reader, would see and be reminded from Elkan’s life that there is a creative process in your life that God wants to be part of.
And for the hope … that day I get to see my baby boy again in heaven ❤️
“But God loves us deeply. He is full of mercy. So he gave us new life because of what Christ has done. He gave us life even when we were dead in sin. God’s grace has saved you. God raised us up with Christ. He has seated us with him in his heavenly kingdom. That’s because we belong to Christ Jesus.” – Ephesians 2:4-6