Monday, December 30, 2013

Stop The Clock...

Exactly one month ago today, I gave birth to Hope.  How can that be?
We celebrate a lot around here, and monthly celebrations until the age of two are part of the deal if you're born a Leong.  Brian and I kicked it off by giving Hope a bath - something she really loves.
He was so sweet and tender with her - talking to her softly as he poured the warm water onto her body.
Hope has changed so much over the last week.  She's looking for me more when I'm holding her or nursing her.  And there are moments when I feel like she's on the verge of a smile - a real, deliberate one.  But it's too soon for that.  I do like to think that her dreamy, sleepy smiles are the times that she sees her brother in Heaven.  Whether that's true or not, the imagery warms my heart.  

We are getting better and better at nursing and I'm finding ways to manage my oversupply so it doesn't affect her as much.  I've had lots of suggestions to pump a little out before I begin.  I did that with Brian when he was an infant and that definitely helped.  But this time it won't, I'm afraid.  She could be ten minutes into a nursing session and suddenly swallow too much.  It's hard to predict when she'll be affected!  I'm starting to master nursing her as she lays on top of me - so she's drinking UP.  That definitely seems to help.  Now, if I can just help her to stop spitting up so much!  That girl requires more wardrobe changes than an awards show host!!  

Brian and I had a fun time taking Hope's one month photos today.  Hope you enjoy them!
I wish I could stop the clock.  As Hope turns one month - and we are looking into the New year - I feel as if we leave Gavin further and further behind.  We are coming up on nine months from his death.  That seems impossible.  It seems like yesterday I was taking monthly photos of him.  

During Hope's four week photo shoot on Saturday, I took the last photo on my 16GB memory card and my heart sank.  I knew it was time to empty the card.  All of my photos are on my laptop - on our home computer - and backed up twice.  Yet for some reason, I always find it hard to erase my memory card.  This time - it was even harder.  When I emptied the card, I knew I would no longer have photos of Gavin on there.  There are no more photos to be taken of him.  His photos are stored and easily accessible - but something about the finality of "no more photos" sent me into an emotional tailspin.

But then - I started to fill my card again today.  
With Hope.
Life is so unpredictable.


  1. You are awesome! I love your positive messages of love, your real expressions of life..... The fact that you face each day with such honesty is grand! You & your family are beautiful!

  2. Your posts are amazing Kate. Your love for your children is honestly so heart warming and beautiful. Hope, Brian and Gavin are very lucky to have you as their mommy

  3. I've been reading your blog for some time and always mean to comment... So much of what you write rings true with me. We lost of our nine month old Ellie, in Oct 2010, suddenly to a bacterial bloodstream infection... I remember the moment that I looked down at my camera and realized our SD card was full. I knew instantly what it meant. I went back and deleted pics of misc things to get me through the day, and then we just bought a new SD card. I couldn't delete her pictures. Occasionally I take pics of her pictures just so I have some of her on my camera...
    I also remember New Year's Eve 2010. I hated it. Ellie was born in 2010 and never lived a day outside that year. I hated leaving it behind. I still hate moving further away from her each year. Grief really leaches into every aspect of life doesn't it?
    I'm so glad you chose to share so many pictures of Gavin's wonderful life. I enjoyed getting the opportunity to learn about him and see what a great boy he is. I did that on my blog and it was so healing for me to review her life and realize that even though it was too short- her life did matter and did leave a lasting impact. I hope it has been equally as healing for you!
    I think of you and your family often and like to think that Gavin is being a big brother to our Ellie until her family is with her again.

  4. The last picture is my favorite! Absolutely priceless!

  5. Brian is just a wonderful big brother!!! The older Hope gets the more she will adore him!

  6. I thought I was the only one who had an issue deleting pictures. I have around 10 memory cards full of pictures of my son, like you they are saved on our computer, on Cd's, and on an online storage site but I just cannot delete them from the memory cards. My husband just shrugs and says OK when I tell him we need another card. I love that he is so understanding. You are a stronger woman than I am.

  7. That second to last picture of her is like, "HEY MOM! Check me out...HELLLLOOOOO!!!" At least that's the same expression I get from my 6 year old when he says those words. Too cute. You are so blessed!

  8. Just commenting on the nursing issue..... I also have an over abundance of milk - I think I could easily nurse triplets with no problem. One thing that a lactation consultant recommended to me when mine were little was to just nurse them on one side at a time. It's better to fully empty one breast each time, so they get the hind milk, then to try and nurse on both sides. That worked for us until they got to be about 3 months old and started being able to eat more and nurse longer without getting too full (and spitting up!). I still had plenty of milk and of the 2nd side got too engorged in the beginning, I would just pump a little out from that side as I was nursing or right after, just for relief.

  9. Hi there! I've been reading your blog for a month now and I always think of things to say but fail to comment. First of all you are a beautiful family! I love how Hope is always yawning in're keeping her up aren't you? LOL I had another blog friend who lost her little one at a young age and she posted a comment that I felt rang so true. She said, "Every day I've lived is one more day closer to seeing you again." I thought that was such an amazing perspective to take as I can't possibly imagine losing one of my children. However, I also have such a strong faith, as you do, and I try so hard to keep myself focused on the promises God has in store for me. It's so hard when things hit rock bottom, but it does help. You have an amazing perspective on life as well and I truly admire your strength and continued faith and hope. Another thing I thought you may like to think of is something my bible study leader always used to say. When we spoke of the mysteries of life and the questions that go unanswered at this time, she would say, "When we get to Heaven you'll find me in the movie room with a big bowl of popcorn. I'm planning on asking Jesus to play back all those moments in time from His point of view so I can have a better understanding of His ways!" I thought that was so funny....I like to imagine your little Gavin with his sister Darcy, sharing popcorn and learning all about life from God's perspective. What a beautiful film that must be!! The cool part is, Gavin and Darcy and others who have left us, don't have to be sad or miss us. They live in the most perfect place ever, where only beauty resides. I bet he and Darcy like to, RUN the streets of Heaven with great big smiles on their faces. So, as you head into the New Year, sweet one, try to think of being one day closer to seeing your aren't leaving them behind...they've just gone ahead before us! It won't be long before you can run in the streets of heaven with them!

    In Him, Julie


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