I'm really glad for today's topic, because 10 years ago was a bittersweet time for me. I read through my journal (I wrote a total of 3 entries in 2001--pretty typical, unfortunately). 10 years ago, I was still adjusting to our move across the country. I had 2 small children, and almost exactly a decade ago, we found out our next baby was going to be severely handicapped. The doctor's exact words were "And not in the cute, down-syndrome kind of way." Our baby had a hole in his brain called a dandywalker that would require shunts for drainage. I wrote "It's kind of like walking into your worst nightmare, and slowly figuring out it's not really a nightmare at all."
We were still adjusting to this shocking news when he died. We named him Benjamin. It was, quite possibly, the toughest time in my life so far, and yet my family has never felt so literally carried in our Heavenly Father's hands. I'm incredibly grateful for the knowledge that he'll be part of our family forever.
Here is the one journal entry from 2001 that doesn't deal directly with Benjamin, although you'll still feel reverberations:
Have you ever tried to be depressed with a four year old, a three year old, and a golden retriever puppy? I can't even curl into the fetal position or the dog will eat my hair, D will super-slam me and J will tickle me. I'm potty-training D, and so he was going around in one of my t-shirts and he crawled on the kitchen counter and peed everywhere. J just handed me $1.25 and said, "Here Mom. I'll give you sixty dollars and seventy two cents if you'll read us Christmas stories." I said, "You need to bribe your own mom into reading you stories?" and she said, "Of course." How can I be in a bad mood when my life is such a sitcom?