Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I Hope You Know

I hope you know how much we love you. How much we loved listening to Twinkle Twinkle with you. How much we loved holding your little fingers and kissing your little toes. I hope you know how much we loved rubbing your blond head and putting pink bows in your hair. I hope you know how much mommy loved to hold you and listen to you purr like a kitty. I hope you know how much you melted your daddy's heart when you would stare up at him as he talked to you about the Twins. I hope you know how much we loved sitting by your side just listening to the noises of the hospital together as a family. I hope you know how much we loved reading to you, taking your pictures, and just being with you. I just hope you know.

I hope you know that we are working to help your friends in the NICU so that they can have a more comfortable stay. I hope you know that everything we do, you are always in the back of our minds. I hope you know that not a day goes by that we don't think about you. I hope you know that we are forever grateful that you changed our lives. I hope you know that even though we smile today, we still have the pain of missing you like crazy. I hope you know that we will never forget you and that we will always be telling your story. I hope you know that we will always be Ella's mommy and daddy. I just hope you know how much we love you baby girl.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Daddy's Little Girl

When I married Ryan, I knew he was the best man I could be with for the rest of my life. 

When I found out I was pregnant, I knew he was going to take care of  his family for the rest of our life. 

When Ella was born, I knew he was wrapped around this little girl's finger for the rest of his life.

When Ella left us, I knew he was going to continue to be the best daddy and never let her life be forgotten.

Ella and Ryan have a bond that only a father and daughter can have.  When he looks at me, I see a little bit of her in his eyes.  She will always be part of him, and he will always be a part of her. Happy Father's Day to the best man who takes care of his family, has a little girl wrapped around his finger and will never let her memory be forgotten.  Ella and I love you and always will.

A Minneapolis band called Rocket Club released a video for their recent hit One More Day, a song written by Mark Lacek, the founder of Faith's Lodge.  Our little girl's picture is in the video and we watched it together on June 16th, but I think it is fitting for today, Father's Day. 

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

My Heart

One year ago today my heart broke.  It broke into a million little pieces and I didn't know what I was going to do, how I was going to live without her, and how I was ever going to put my broken heart back together.  My heart was so heavy with pain it was hard to imagine it ever being the same.

But, ever since that day, June 16, 2009, I have been desperately trying to pick up the pieces. Trying to put my heart together again and to find some way to fill that aching hole.  Desperately trying to hold on, desperately trying to find the broken pieces to my heart.

Now it is already 365 days later, my heart still heavy with pain but also heavy with love  It is slowly rebuilding, but will always be missing a piece .  That piece a little girl is holding in heaven, piece of my heart will always be in heaven. And the hole I will never be able to fill is reserved for that sweet little angel.

How very softly you tiptoed into my world.

Almost silently you stayed,

but what an imprint your footsteps

have left upon my heart

A heart of gold stopped beating

My baby girl's eyes at rest

God broke our hearts to prove,

He only takes the best.

God knew she had to leave us,

but she did not go alone.

For part of us went with her,

the day He took her home.

To some she is forgotten,

to others...just the past,

but to us who loved and lost her

memories will always last.

By Dorothy Ferguson

So today, we wear pink to honor our little girl's life and to love and remember that piece of our heart that lives in heaven.  That piece of our heart that flew to heaven on June 16th.

Ella, we love you and miss you everyday.  We will never forget you and you will always have a place in our hearts.  You will always be our little girl.  Happy Angelversary!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Ella's Story

The day Ella left us is coming up this week. It is a day I have been dreading to think about. Over the last week I keep playing back that last day, that last hour, those final minutes. I sort of feel like I keep reading a sad chapter in a book over and over and I can't stop for fear I might miss something or I will forget every little detail. It was a year ago on Wednesday, but it just seems like it was yesterday. Sometimes I can't believe how fast this year has gone by and yet other times it seems like the past year has been an eternity.

I can still clearly remember the faces of the nurses standing in her room, their eyes filled with tears, the phone call from Ryan that was full of fear, and the feeling that my heart just fell out of my chest. I can still remember thinking I couldn’t breathe, looking up and seeing the red line flat on the monitor, listening to how quiet and peaceful the room suddenly was. I remember telling my dad what happened, holding Ryan as he was shaking, looking down at our baby in my arms for the first time with no tubes, no lines, no machines. These are the memories that bring back so much pain. But they are still part of Ella's story, still part of her life with us.

In all of the sadness that happened on June 16th, we realized how lucky we were to have had Ella in our lives, even if just for a moment. We were there when she got her wings to fly to heaven, we were there holding her as a family one last time as her little heart stopped, and we were there to say goodbye and kiss our beautiful baby. This is not the end of our little girl's story and we promised her that she would not be forgotten. And Ella's Halo is helping us keep that promise to our daughter.

Together we were there when she came into this world and together we were there when she left this world. We are so blessed to have known our little girl and see her become our sweet angel. We can cry that she died or smile because she lived, and on June 16th I know we will do both while keeping her story alive.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Faith's Lodge 2010

There is a place,

out in the woods,

where hope grows,

friendships are formed,

love is renewed,

peace is reflected,

faith is inpiring,

and angels are remembered.

This place is Faith's Lodge.  We were lucky enough to get to spend another weekend in the woods, spending it with our support group, filming so others can see the healing experience families have at this beautiful retreat. It was a wonderful weekend with friends, each other and remembering our sweet angel.

Please check out Faith's Lodge website at http://www.faithslodge.org/ to learn more.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Bowling Recap

We are still so amazed at how much support we received at our first event, Ella's Halo Bowling for Babies!  We can't wait to start giving back to the NICUs and helping babies. We have already started talking to the hospitals about different items they want and can't wait to go shopping and give them items off of their wish lists! 

We are still getting donations in and we are creeping up to $8,000 that we have raised for the Minneapolis-St. Paul NICUs!  We had over 150 bowlers on May 15th and 40 others who came out to support us but didn't bowl.  There were tons of raffle prizes ranging from gift cards, custom bowling balls, weekend getaways and jewelry.  It was a weekend full of fun, friends, and family.

We can't wait for next year when we get to do this all over again and Bowl for Babies!