Saturday, June 21, 2008

A surprise from my son

**Note this was written on Saturday June 21, 2008 but all events occurred on Friday June 20th 2008.**

Our son Joey is four and will be turning five in August. He came up to me yesterday and really gave me a surprise that was much needed and his caring spirit warms my heart. I was on the computer writing an e-mail to Shauna (the girl who will be giving my blog a much needed makeover). I got out the scrapbook that I made that has a few pages filled out of Sam and Sydney’s pregnancy and birth. There are a few cherished ultrasounds, the obituary from the newspaper, and calendar pages that I added written events from the pregnancy on.

I opened the scrapbook looking for some quotes that I wanted Shauna to have in case she could use them for the makeover. Joey came over and crawled up onto my lap. He wanted to see what I was looking at and opened up the scrapbook. We went through the photos of the cemetery and I tried my best to answer his questions. He saw the headstone and was telling me that he wanted to see Samantha and Sydney and then he tried to act out lifting the headstone so he could see what was underneath it and see his sisters. When he talked about lifting the headstone out so he could get to what was underneath the ground I remembered thinking of a mother that I met at the Precious Parents meetings I attended. This mother asked us if we thought it was crazy or if we had ever thought of taking a spoon to the cemetery. She would take a spoon in her purse when she would go visit her child so if she felt like digging up the earth and digging out her child it would be less noticeable to people than using a shovel. When this lady told that story I chuckled to myself because the first time I had gone to the cemetery alone after the girls passed away I remember being there and thinking to myself I wish there was a way I could dig this all up and get my girls out and hold them one last time.

Although a few tears streamed down my face when I was talking with Joey, he was so caring and sweet and I thought how blessed am I to have this boy and have him be so kind and thoughtful when he was asking questions. It was a beautiful day yesterday and it was not too hot or humid. We had plans to go to the park when Jeff got home from work and maybe take a picnic to the park with us for dinner. Well we still did that, but our plans changed a bit when Joey decided that he wanted to go to the cemetery. He was pretty persistent that we go last night. Before Jeff got home from work I took the kids to the store so we could purchase some flowers and some helium balloons. The cemetery probably does not love the fact that I tie balloons onto the vase that holds the flowers, but I have done it ever since the headstone was put in and I plan on doing it still. We take things like large helium balloons of butterflies, ones that say I love you, I miss you, or ones that are holiday appropriate. I would love to take other things and decorate the outside of the headstone, but the cemetery does not allow it. That is why I know that they are not overjoyed by the balloons. I should add that we do not go to the cemetery often. It is not that I don’t like going it is more or less that it is not very close to our home or near any stores or activities that I go to or attend. We also have a garden in our backyard so it is easier for me to go outside my home and talk or be with the girls.

When we go to the store I told the kids that they could pick out the flowers that they wanted to leave for their sisters.

First let me give you a visual as you imagine us at the grocery store. I don’t know if your local grocery store has what I call the “car cart”, but I am not a big fan of this cart. This cart is an oversized grocery cart in the shape of a car to amuse kids at the grocery store.

It comes complete with graphics on the side of the cart as well as fake steering wheels and horns. Most of the time the horns are broken and do not toot. So having two kids the fighting then begins. I also do not like that this cart or contraption is so BIG that it feels like you are pushing an elephant down the aisles. I am constantly telling my kids oops sorry mommy is a bad driver as I bump into things on the shelves and they knock onto the floor as well as the fact that sometimes the car does not big enough to fit all the things that I need to buy. I do try my best to avoid this cart all costs, but my son spotted it on the way in and they were relentless that we take this cart.

The kids are in the “car cart” and I am doing my best to maneuver this beast to the flower spot of the store. Joey decides that he wants to take Samantha and Sydney red flowers and Gabrielle decides she wants pink. I started thinking about Gabrielle’s choice of pink. This is her favorite color and she wants pink anything; ice cream, shoes, clothes, and crayons. I began to wonder what Samantha and Sydney’s favorite colors would be and the sadness came over me that there is so much about these two peas in a pod that I will never know. I tried my best to hold it together and celebrate the fact that this was the first time Joey has taken an interest in his other two sisters. He knows the names Samantha and Sydney and he knows that he has two sisters in heaven, but that is about as far as it has gone. He does not talk about them nor does he tell family and friends about them. Joey also found a helium balloon on a plastic stick. This one was of the American flag. Sometimes when we are in the car we have games on finding certain things outside. Normally on the list is finding an American flag. He also knows that his Uncle David is in the military and that we are very supportive of our troops and mommy and daddy have an American flag at home outside that we treat with respect. Gabrielle chose a small balloon of Pooh and Piglet and then we got a large helium balloon of a dragon fly. We gathered our groceries and soon paid. On the way out the door the dragonfly balloon hit the side of the door and we were lucky that it stayed inside the store as it floated to the ceiling. This again goes back to my favorite cart and the fact that the car cart’s size caused me to bump into the door several times as I tried to steer it out into the parking lot. As we bumped into the door the balloon somehow came loose and floated up. The expression on Joey’s face as he watched this balloon float up was priceless. I am glad that the dragonfly was in reach of being rescued by another helium balloon with tape and a very, very, very long string of ribbon. I sometimes wonder if the other customers feel bad for the mommy that pushes around that oversized, enormous, elephant of a cart.
Once Jeff got home from work we ate some sandwiches and fruit and then gathered the four of us plus two dogs into the car and headed out. As normal when the Zapp family tries to do something as a family it can begin as a disaster. This time it began with Gabrielle crying and yelling at the top of her lungs as well as the sound of Joey rubbing his hands all over the dragon fly balloon and the horrible sound a balloon can make. We finally arrived at the cemetery after Joey asked us at least 8 times “how much longer until we are there?”

This was the first time that we went to the cemetery as a family and with the dogs. We had some cookies and talked to the girls as well as talking to Joey and answering his questions. One statement was that he wanted to go to where Samantha and Sydney were. NOT YET was all I was thinking. Not until I am gone am buried. Please God don’t ever let me go through that kind of pain of losing anymore kids. Especially the two that I have that I have so many memories and love tied to.

After the cemetery we went to the park as planned and it was a great family night and time that I enjoyed as a family. To be honest it was just what I needed to be with the ones I love and outside enjoying the beautiful day and the beauty of Kendall Lakes. You never know when your kids will surprise you and yesterday it was all because of my 4 year old little boy. I LOVE that boy to pieces and am so proud of him and his love for others and his sisters.










Jocasta said...

Looking forward to the blog makeover - I'm bound to be jealous and want to re-do mine!

I've managed to avoid those carts so far - not sure how really. Our ones are far smaller, are yellow and painted with the Wiggles. There is nothing stopping your children escaping and very little room for shopping and of course you have to pay for them!

Love the dog - very cute. It's wonderful you had a lovely day around visiting Samantha and Sydney

Good & Crazy said...

giving kisses to the sisters...

I hate those carts too. I'm glad you have two beautiful children to remind you to think like a kid every once in a while?

Rooney's Little Musings said...

I'm so happy for you and your family--it sounds like you really had some great family time.

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