Friday, April 22, 2011


My sweet Gabriel,

Today you would be three years old. Has it really been that long? Has it been that long since I held you in my arms and felt your warmth against me? Has it been that long since I saw your face, marveled at your head of thick black hair, and commented on your broad shoulders? Has it been that long since I felt you kicking and moving inside me, you had a bout of hiccups, or kept me awake at night?

In a way it feels like it's been an eternity, but some memories are so vivid, it seems like just yesterday you were still with us. I miss you so much, Sweet Boy. So much that those words frustrate me with their inadequacy and I long for something to say to you that's more powerful… some phrase that's never been used before to let you know how much I love you and miss you and long to hold you again. 

We're on vacation this week with your grandparents, aunt, uncle, and cousins, and it's always at these times, amidst the fun, laughter, and memories that I feel your absence the most. In one moment, I can be smiling and laughing and in the next, tear up with the thought of you. It's beautiful here in the mountains, and somehow it makes me feel closer to you… as if I could reach up and touch the sky and feel your fingertips reaching back. 

I wonder so many things about you. Would you have liked the animals at the Biltmore petting zoo? Would you be enthralled with trains like your little brother? Would you love to have stories read to you or be more of an action guy? What would your "funnies" be and what would I have gotten to write about you in "Slices of Life"? Would your eyes be green like Daddy's? Would you know how to carry a tune? Would you love music and dancing? Would you be starting to become a sports junky like your Dad?

Gabe, I long to know these parts of your personality. I long to see you smile and hear your giggle. In my own selfishness, I would give anything to have you back and to experience this life with you. To tuck you in at night with a song and to be able to wake you up in the morning with a hug and kiss. But this is all about me, sweet Gabriel. What I want and what I'm missing out on. But when I really think about you, where you are and who you're with, I am at peace and I feel true joy that you are in Heaven living in perfection. Something has happened to me over the past year. I don't really know how to explain it or what the turning point was, but most of the time, MOST of the time, when I think of you, it's with peace and happiness. I've started seeing this life for the vapor it truly is and can honestly rejoice that you had a much shorter race than those of us left behind, and you are glorifying our Abba in person. I can't wait for the day we can join you, but I know God has our days numbered and has a plan for our lives. In the meantime, I will tell Jonah about you and he will always know he has his big brother waiting for him in Heaven. Daddy and I will continue to love you, just as if you were still down here with us. We will always hold you close in our hearts, waiting for the day we see you again.  

Today we will celebrate you with balloons sent your way and cake. Some people may think we're not letting you go, but we don't do this to hold on to you, Precious One. It is our way to celebrate your life - the short one you had here but more importantly the beautiful one you have with Jesus now. It's our way to say "hello"  to you every year and to remind ourselves that soon we will see you again. In just a breath. In just a moment. We'll hold you in our arms, smell your head (mommies do that sort of thing, you know) and tell you how much we've missed you. And you'll show us the best spots in Heaven and introduce us to all the cool people you've met. 

I imagine those first moments of seeing you all the time. I want nothing more than to get to actively be your mommy, but I know you are loved and cared for infinitely more than I could ever imagine. It's Jesus who holds you now, and, as your Mommy, there's nothing more I could ask for. 

Jonah is what keeps us going, the light of our lives, the reason we can joyfully carry on. But you, my darling first born, are the reason I long for Heaven like never before. You are the reason I try over and over again to do better and be more. I want you to be proud, Gabe. I don't care about stars in my crown or sitting at a certain place in Heaven. The only things I care about are meeting Jesus, worshipping Abba, and the moment when you run into my arms. You are the reason my perspective is not on things of this world. I pray that Jonah will glorify the Father with his life, and I praise God that you have glorified him in your death. You've won the race, Sweet Gabriel. Now we just keep on chugging along, doing our best to love and serve others, to glorify our God and to honor your life.

Please hold on to that piece of my heart you carry. I'll be there soon enough.

Happy third birthday, Baby Gabe. Thank you for all of the GOOD you've brought into our lives.

All my love for Eternity,

Gabriel Matthew Williams
April 22, 2008
3:11 am
6 lbs 14 oz
20.5 inches

(Please, no comments. Blogger won't let me cut them off.)

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