That's what my baby's headstone says. It has finally arrived. It's here in time for her birthday. Not a gift I ever dreamed of giving her- especially not for her 5th birthday. She is supposed to order my headstone one day. Rather than the pool party she wanted, her sisters and I will be visiting her grave. Maybe we will buy her some sod instead of presents. Things are all turned on their head it seems. I find myself bargaining with God. Telling Him I will do anything if He would just undo this somehow... turn back the clock and let me make some different choices. Give her back to me. I know. It is absurd. As soon as the words leave my mouth, I know they are ridiculous.
Heaven. We wrote that she is in heaven. I read a beautiful children's book today that illustrates what scripture tells us about heaven. I want so desperately to believe. Is it really a real place? More real than this keyboard I am typing on and the screen you are looking at? More than just theology? Am I hoping for a fairytale? Is she physically there having fun and laughing? Heaven has to be real or none of the gospel is true and life is pretty much pointless. Our entire christian belief system, and in fact the world, hinges on the reality of heaven. For something that is so critically important to our existence, we certainly don't talk about it very much. I guess it's like that country song says, "Everybody wanna go to heaven, but nobody wanna go now!" Why is that if it's so wonderful? Why don't we know more about it... talk more about it... anticipate it?
I went somewhere briefly the night before Makiah died. I had already told her goodbye, but she came running out the door after me and clung to my legs. She made little whiny sounds like a puppy and did not want me to leave. She never wants me to leave. Not for work or church or even to take her to preschool. Her whole life she has clung to me and wanted badly to always be with Mommy. Is heaven so wonderful that she does not miss Mommy? Can she be happy for so long while we are apart? I know the answer is that God is enough. Jesus love is complete enough that she does not need me or miss me or cry for me. I know in my head that she has that now. One day I will, too. I suppose. But I feel like doubting Thomas. I just want to see with my real eyes and feel with my real hands. Can heaven really be real? Can He really be enough???