Faith through tears and brokenness
Tomorrow marks ten years that we found out our daughter's heart had stopped. Friday, New Years Eve, is her birthday.
We tried to connect with the modern evangelical church after her stillbirth, but I sat alone for weeks on end, tearful and crying, feeling like an outcast. I hadn't been well connected to the church prior to her death, but it was in the community that I grew up in and I knew a lot of attendees and leaders. That didn't matter. It felt like my tears and brokenness were too much, and I never felt their support.
I eventually stopped trying to attend and we walked away from church for several years. We started attending an Episcopal church about 2 years ago. They are wildly accepting and have never made me feel "less than" for walking away or doubting. It always left like Jesus was good, but the church left a bad taste in my mouth.
The time we spent with Norah in the hospital was peaceful. I had never felt the peace that passes understanding like I did in that room.
I felt drawn to the church afterwards, but I couldn't stay, not after they didn't show up for me (by simply acknowledging me and my pain).
Norah's name means light and honor. I've found other ways to honor her and share our light, but I struggle still with the people that find it easy to cling to their faith in the days after their losses. I wanted to but couldn't.
Now, my faith doesn't fit in a box. Most days there are more questions than answers, but the faith remains, that there is something good about loving like Jesus.
The first few years are really hard. Ten months is equally a lifetime and a moment, although ten years feels that way too.
Things feel more bittersweet now in comparison to the earlier years. I think we will always long for the 'what could have been' moments that we will not have answers for on this side of heaven. I am thankful for the 38 weeks we had with her.
Click here to read more of our blogs about stillbirth and baby loss. This blog was written by Cori McKenzie in Indiana. Cori and her husband, Tim, have been married since 2004. Together they have three children - Clarie, June and Norah Lynn.