Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Matthias' Photo Montage

I've been working on this for a while and just wanted to share it now. I'm hoping to make one for each of the kids' first year. (Already did for Moses but I'm having some trouble uploading it). Anyway, it was good to go through all these photos again and remember those brief 36 hours we had with Matthias outside the womb, and to remember all the friends and family who surrounded us in that time and who also loved him.

I love that Matthias' voice is ringing out clearly right now before Jesus.

"People and realms of every tongue
Dwell on His love with sweetest song;
And infant voices shall proclaim
Their early blessings on His Name."


grandmaonthefarm said...

thank you my dear daughter for this sweet gift - i have been thinking again how Christ met us there - there is no grief that He is not holding, deeply. "I fill up in my flesh what is still lacking in regard to Christ's afflictions, for the sake of his body...." may He continue to hold this grief with you, today and all the days of your life. love, mom

tiffany said...

thanks for sharing this, melissa. once again i'm crying. i think the reason this affects me so much is it is much like my family. grace and jeneva were about the same age with their little brothers came along. i can't imagine jeneva losing her's. how did you shepherd grace's heart after matthias died? i realize there's no short answer to that question, i don't expect you to answer it here. :) i just wonder. maybe you've blogged about that before. i loved seeing pastor sherard there and your family and friends. this will always be a good memory of his short life here on earth.

e&e said...

Tears are falling here for Matthias again. That is a beautiful montage. I remember playing that song over and over after hearing of Matthias' death. He's who I still think of when I hear it, and now it will be even more so. Thank you thank you for sharing this. Amazing.

melissa said...

Thank you, Mom. :)

Tiffany, your question does require a longer answer than I can give here, but a couple things: One of the most difficult aspects of losing Matthias was going through that grieving myself and also having to help Grace through it. She is a most perceptive child and although we stressed over and over that it was okay to be sad and cry, it was distressing for her to see me so sad. But I couldn't ever hide the fact that I was sad from her, as I wanted to do sometimes to save her the grief of seeing Mama sad. We as a family grieved together a lot, but sometimes when she was happy and coming skipping into the kitchen and I was crying over a sinkful of dishes, I wanted to hide my sadness from her just so she could continue to be happy for a while. But she has always been too perceptive for me to do that. And I know my grief added to her grief, and that was so hard.

One aspect that was easier was Grace's child-like acceptance of certain things that I myself struggled like crazy over, like God being in control of Matthias' life and death, but also loving us. She never said, "How can that be?" I was struggling with the fact that God taking Matthias didn't feel like love at all, so is He really loving in His sovereignty? But Grace so simply and in such child-like faith would say, I know God took Matthias to be with Him and I know He loves us and He loves Matthias, even though it's sad too. She could embrace that paradox easier than I could.

One thing we were very very aware of was being open about Matthias and talking about him a lot and having pictures of him around the house and not trying to "not talk about it because it's too sad." There was freedom for all of us to mention his name, to be sad about him at any given time, to be able to cry, and to just talk through everything. It is hard to shepherd a child through grief like that when you're also wading through such deep sadness. You want to protect them from your own grief and "be strong" for them. But sometimes the best I could do was just to be truthful about how sad I was and to let her be sad with me.

There's so much more I could say, but it will have to wait until we can talk in person. :)

Elisa, I think this song came out about the time Matthias died? My cousin who had also lost a baby sent me the CD within a couple days of Matthias' death, and I too listened to it over and over. Hearing it will always bring back memories of those first days and weeks after his death. I remember a couple months after he died, being in the grocery store and it came on over the speakers and I just lost it right there in Rainbow. It doesn't have that strong of an effect on me now, ususally, but is still definitely wrapped up in my experience of Matthias' death. The concept of being "held" means so much to me.

Yvette said...

Thank you for sharing. I remember the prayer request going out for your family, and I'm crying all over again. Blessings to you.

e&e said...

Last night Eric and I read through Matthias' story and watched the photo show together. We both cried and were amazed at what God has done through that little one's life. Eric was most touched by the photos of Grace holding her little brother. Thanks for writing about how you all grieved as a family. I can't even imagine.

Thanks again for sharing.

Lorrie Morgan said...

Missy, what a beautiful tribute to Matthias' time on this earth. I will share this montage with Scott, as well. Have a blessed Christmas! Oh...while I'm here, I have been meaning to ask how you like Math-u-See. Just got the demo DVD and am considering using it with the boys. Let me know how it is working for you and Grace, OK?