Could Have Been

I feel the need to acknowledge today. Perhaps that is silly, because you never even experienced a February in your tiny existence. A due date is just an estimation, a prediction, a fullness of the time. We never got to reach that fullness, did we? You were smaller than I could imagine, and you disappeared so fast.

But February 15th is what could have been.

Today I would have been 40 weeks; full-term. Counting down the minutes until I got to hold you in my arms. I will never know why I lost you. I will probably never stop blaming myself in some way, feeling like I fell so far short of what you needed. I will never stop wondering who you would have been, who you are, my sweet Jude.

My praise.

Your name is so special, little one. Jude means praise. God gave you to us, even for so brief a time, because He knew I needed you. You are my reminder to praise God, in all circumstances. To glorify Him even when it hurts, even when I don’t understand.

Then Job arose and tore his robe and shaved his head, and he fell to the ground and worshiped. He said,
“Naked I came from my mother’s womb,
And naked I shall return there.
The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away.
Blessed be the name of the Lord.”
Through all this Job did not sin nor did he blame God.
-Job 1:20-22
(NASB, emphasis added)

That reaction always gets me. Job’s instinctive response to tremendous and devastating loss is worship? It is all too easy to question, to lash out in hurt, to wallow in the grief and confusion, but oh, how I want a heart this surrendered to the will of God. Whether You give, whether You take… You are blessed. You are good. It is all a gift; nothing can be taken for granted. And naked I shall return there.

And so, we named you Jude. My reminder to praise the Lord – when He gives and when He takes away.

It’s impossible not to in some way wish things could have been different. A selfish desire perhaps, but an honest one. Yet as much as it may have hurt to let you go so soon, it is comforting to know that you are forever safe. I need never fear for you.

Your mama loves you so much, and I can’t wait to finally meet you someday. To be able to look into your eyes, touch your skin, breathe in your scent, and know you are my child. What a wonderful day that will be.

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