Thursday, 12 June 2014

Whats Most Important In Your Life?

Well, like usual its been awhile since my last post. I often get the question “So, any news about adoption?” the answer to that would be no. As I’ve mentioned before we’ll get a call when a mom has picked us, and we won’t hear anything until then or if it gets to the point where we’ve been available for a year and still haven't been picked then we’ll have to re-new some paper work and pay more fees but that's about it.

Since my last post, not a whole lot has changed in our lives. We are just trying our very best to enjoy this time in our lives, even if for the most part we wish our lives were different. For now, I'm enjoying that we can do whatever we want with out children holding us back, and sleep! I know one of these days sleep will be hard to find! We were very lucky to invite another niece into our family, so that is so exciting but also kinda hard because this is a member of the family that will never meet Deklyn here on earth. I know she will know who Deklyn is and that makes me happy, but it still hurts to know they won’t grow up and play together.

Every single morning I have to make a choice, I  have to choose if I will let my past make me upset that day or I can choose to think about all the wonderful things in my life and choose to be happy. I don’t always make the choice I should, actually often I don’t.
There are a few things that I think about to try and keep my attitude in the right place, and maybe you’ll find that these will help you too:

1) Even though my life may not be exactly the way I would want it, I still have so much to be happy about.

2) When I choose to forget about myself and my problems and focus on others and helping others I find I just feel so much better and often the things that I was upset about don’t seem so big anymore.

3) Everyone goes through bad times in their life, I once heard someone say “If you haven’t ran into hard times yet just live a little longer” and I think that so true. But it helps to know that I am not the only one struggling and we are just so lucky to have such an amazing God that cares so much for us and is with us every single step of the way.

And here is the big one, at least for me!

4) What really is important? Let that sink in… Really…. Deep inside your heart, what is most important to you?  For me this can change from day to day… but I try my best to make God the most important thing in my life. So what would my life look like if God is the most important thing? The way I look at it is this, when I get to heaven will God ask me “How many kids did you have?” or “Did you get everything you wanted on earth?” I really don’t think any of those things will matter at all when we get to heaven. But I will have to be accountable for what I did while I was here, and I hope with all that I am that I get to hear “Well Done”. So to accomplish that I need to listen to God, obey him and love others with all that I am. Its not easy, but day by day I am trying my best to live in a way that is most pleasing to God and maybe one of these days we will be blessed with another child, but I am trying my best not to focus on that but focus on God and what I can do for him during this short time that I am here.



I hope this short post has encouraged and challenged you in some way!
Thank you to all of you have continued to pray for us and support us. It means so much!

Monday, 21 April 2014

Its Been A While....

Well its been a while since I posted anything here! I really haven't had much of any significance to say other than I miss my baby boy which goes with out saying I think. I know I could easily use my blog as a place to vent and I'd be lying if I said I haven't used it for that before but I really want to try to use my blog as a place for encouraging others and not just a place to show case how sad it can be to have lost a child.



This past week Sheridan and I went on a last minute trip Mexico and just had such a great time! Of course there were some tough parts, I can't help but feel sad when I see other parents playing with their kids in the water.. I can just see Sheridan playing with Deklyn in the sand or in the ocean but I have to remind myself we will have eternity with him in heaven. I also have to remind myself if he was still with us we wouldn't be able to do things like this, although I would much rather have him with me. But we just love traveling together and I love how through everything we've been through we love each other even more and I know that it could have easily gone the other way. We've worked very hard to keep our relationship moving in the right direction and I'm so proud of how we've handled all this together.



Something I've really struggled with lately is being a parent to a dead child. I am still a mom, even though Deklyn is not here with me but I struggle with not being able to do things for him... going into Target, I am drawn to the little boys clothes... I possibly even pick up a few and want to buy them so badly, but why? He no longer needs me to buy him clothes. I see cute little stuffed animals and so badly want to buy them for him, but for what? to stick it in his crib along with all the other toys he will no longer play with? All these things may seem kinda small things to be upset about... but for me, its very very hard. While in Mexico I found the cutest little stuffed animal, I told Sheridan "I would have bought that for Deklyn" I could not take my eyes off it, I could not tell my mind to stop thinking about it...  all I wanted was to buy it for him. I told Sheridan how badly I wish I could get that for him, Sheridan told me if it would help me I could buy it. But I knew it wouldn't. Bringing it home to empty crib would just make it worse. I don't know why I'm writing this right now, but hopefully someone else who is going through this knows that they are not alone in these feelings. Everything about losing a child is tough, but I'm glad that I can use my situation to help others.

Holidays are always tough. I can just imagine bringing Deklyn to gatherings and how fun it would be. Seeing him get gifts and playing with his cousins. But I try my best just to remember where he is right now is way better than anything he could experience here, and although I'm sad for myself and my family I couldn't be more happy for him. I am so incredibly grateful for all that Jesus has done for us, with out him I wouldn't have the hope of being with Deklyn again and with out that I know for a fact I would not be doing well at all. This Easter Sheridan and I went to Deklyn's grave and found a few things left for him there, I don't know if anyone could ever understand how happy & sad this is all at once... I'm so incredibly happy and grateful that Deklyn is still remembered, thought of and even given gifts even though he is no longer here. But sad that they are left at his grave rather than being played with. We are so lucky to have family that care so much, and even the little things that they do for us and Deklyn can make my day, week & month (so don't stop haha!).


Since the end of January, Sheridan and I completed the adoption process so we are currently available to be picked as adoptive parents. How it works now, is a girl who is pregnant would go to our adoption agency and she gets to pick from a bunch of files who she would like to be the adoptive parents of her child. Here is where you can help us, if you know someone who is pregnant and is considering adoption you can tell her about us and if she really likes us and would consider us as adoptive parents we can go to our agency to tell them we've found someone who wants us to have their child which means we would skip the waiting for a phone call to be told we have been picked. I personally can not wait to have another baby, being a mom has always been all I've wanted to be and not being able to act like one has been really hard for me. 

Thank you all so much for your support! If you know of anyone who is pregnant and looking into adoption seriously, feel free to put them in contact with us or they can go to Adoption Options in Winnipeg and say that they want to see our file. Thank you for the continued prayers, love and support we so appreciate it!




Tuesday, 4 March 2014

1 Year

Yesterday marked 1 year since Deklyn's celebration of life, February 28th marked 1 year since Deklyn passed away. At the time, I thought that those moments were the hardest in my life but if I'm completely honest there have been days since he passed away that have been much harder then those days. You'd think that as you come to a year, the hurt should be a little less... sometimes it is, sometimes its not. Its hard to explain the feelings around losing your child. As I thought about February 28th coming up... I really didn't expect it to be a very hard day.. we miss Deklyn all the time.. that day wouldn't really be any different. February 27th, I was in the car by myself and suddenly I was just incredibly sad that Deklyn wasn't in the back in a car seat... it just hit me out of no where... I was trying not to cry but I honestly couldn't stop the tears from coming. That's when I began to think the next day might be harder then I thought... but it really was ok.. I missed him, and it made me sad that that day marked a year since we had seen him alive.. but we kept busy and that made it easier. I honestly hadn't cried at all, until we came home from supper with Sheridan's siblings and the driveway was lined with colorful jars, and lights in them.


A huge thank you to my mom and mom in-law for organizing this! Each jar contained a note from someone. It was almost like after the funeral all over again, in a good way! We sat at our table taking turns reading the notes and reading how Deklyn and we have affected people in such a good way just made me feel so good. Although we'd been told these things before it just never hurts to hear it again and by so many people. Thank you to everyone who was a part of this, or to anyone who sent me texts and e-mails that day. Its always nice to know that we are being thought of and that people are praying for us. I try very hard to make sure people in my family still feel like Deklyn is a part of their lives in the best way I know how.. so for this to be done for us meant a lot to me... I'd been feeling like I was running dry, giving so much of myself and trying to make others happy and this definitely made me feel so much better.


I'm going to leave you with a post that I didn't write. a friend of mine passed this along and it really helped me see things from a better perspective. You can find that post here. Everyone who has asked the question "Why me?" should read this... it really helped me to see again what really matters. It doesn't matter whats going on with everyone else, we are called to follow Jesus. I hope you find it as encouraging a I did.



Wednesday, 12 February 2014

Grief

Everyone handles grief differently, and I don't think there is a right or wrong way. I didn't know that grief would be the way that it is for me. When Deklyn died, I didn't know if I could ever be genuinely happy again. I thought how can I 'move on' without one of my children here with me? Its amazing the thoughts that run through your mind in those moments when I could hardly even say the word funeral and picking the color of his casket felt like torture.Although Deklyn was sick, his death still felt like a suprise. The night before he died, Sheridan and I were lucky enough to get to hold him. He had pretty bad de-saturations when being moved to our arms, these de-saturations would usually send doctors and nurses and RT's running to his side. But this time we just let him work though it on his own as we had already made the decision to let him go when he was ready, and when he came though it he was pretty calm and seemed happy to be in our arms. I cried looking at his puffy little body, wishing with all my heart that I could take every bit of his pain away. Sheridan and I prayed for him and knew that this wasn't over, Deklyn could still get his healing at any moment. We never stopped believing, even though he was so sick and we were so tired. I remember whispering in his ear numerous times how much I loved him and that he could go to be with Jesus whenever he wanted to, but I never stopped believing. When he died I felt completely numb, almost like the moment I was told there was something wrong with him, but a thousand times worse.

So how has grief affected me? Deklyn was the first person that I was really close to that passed away. I had never had to deal with this kind of grief before and I really didn't know how to handle it. I knew I didn't want to be mad at God, because I know this wasn't God's doing. But why? Why my son? Why couldn't he get better like the other kids with HPP like Gideon who is just doing amazingly well? I imagined them playing together and being just the best buddies because they have this strange thing in common. Why did this have to happen to my family? I was attacked by these questions, and I so easily could have let them take root in my heart and make me angry.

Sometimes these "why" questions cause me a lot of pain. Sometimes I let them get to me and they cause me to get very angry... but what I try to do is re-direct my thoughts. I can't change the fact that Deklyn died, I can't change the fact that the 14 months we had with him were spent in the hospital... but the time that we had really was amazing and I wouldn't trade it for anything! If I think about that, and how he is free from all pain, running and dancing... how can I be sad about that?? I'm so incredibly happy for Deklyn... but sad for us and for our families. We've got 1 niece and 1 nephew right now, and few more on the way and so many friends having babies this year which is so incredibly exciting but if I think about how Deklyn won't get to play with them here on earth, and how we're going to see more babies born healthy, its very easy to be jealous that we didn't get that experience with Deklyn it can make me very sad and a very unhappy person, but I have to make the choice to be happy. I feel upset that people just really don't understand what I've gone though... but at the same time I wouldn't wish what I've gone through upon anyone. I'm not saying I always make the right choice, but I try my best. I know that one day we will all be together in heaven forever, and that will be SO awesome. But for right now, we are just going to miss him and we just can't change that, but I can change my attitude. I'm only hurting myself by being upset.

I know so many people struggling with grief, and I don't have this all figured out not even close. But I know the way I'm handling grief has helped other so I thought I'd share it on here. I still have bad days, but they are fewer than they used to be and it is totally ok to have bad days, but I just can't let it consume by life. I don't know how long it will be till I see Deklyn again and I don't want to spend all that time being sad and angry. I'd rather take my experinces and reach out to others and show the love of God to others. Helping others has helped me more than you could imagine. Talking with other mom's who had lost children has also been very helpful, showing me that I'm not the only one dealing with this kind of loss. Its everywhere, and I'm actually lucky that I got 14 months with Deklyn, not everyone is that lucky.

I hope that what I've said here has helped at least one person. I would also like to ask if Sheridan, myself and our families could get some prayers this month. February 28th marks 1 year since Deklyn passed away and there are just so many memories that come with this month. Its pretty overwhelming thinking about all the things we had to talk about in his last month, we so appreciate your prayers!

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Monday, 23 December 2013

Deklyn's 2 Birthday Bash

Friday was our incredibly baby boys 2nd birthday, the day went much better than I expected. We had a big party with our family and some friends, we made lots of food and just enjoyed each others company. I had a really hard time deciding what to do for Deklyn... singing Happy Birthday seemed like it would be too hard, but in the end we decided on having a cake for him and Sheridan and myself sent away a lantern by his grave before the party. 


I kept pretty busy through out the day which really helped me not to get caught up in being sad that he wasn't here on his birthday. I have a few people that I want to say thank you to, first off to my sister in-law Brooklyn, thank you for coming over... I think I would have been pretty sad had I not had you there with me. Thank you to Brooklyn and Pam for making such an awesome cake, I'm sure Deklyn loved it! Thank you to my mom for the beautiful arrangement. Thank you to everyone who made it to the party, it made our day so much easier and it just helped us to see how many people love Deklyn and still think of him and us. Thank you to anyone who took the time to let me know they were thinking of me, either in person, text or e-mail. A huge thank you to my brother in-law Madison.. going to Deklyn's grave and seeing it shoveled so that we could see the stake meant more than I think anyone could imagine... Also thank you to Tim & Pam for bringing the balloon to his grave, and who ever wrote "I Love You Deklyn" in the snow by his grave... thank you. I honestly don't know what I would do for someone on the birthday of their child who has passed away.. a few people brought us gifts and each one of them will be treasured forever.. thank you to each one of you who brought us something.. each gift was so thoughtful and made us feel so loved.


















I felt I needed to have some kind of tradition for Deklyn's birthday that we can keep up with our future kids. I searched the internet to come up with ideas and couldn't find anything I really liked... in the end we decided to always send off a lantern for him, I wish we could do balloons but in the winter balloons won't lift. We also decided to use the money that we would normal spend on him for his birthday and give it to either a charity, a family in need, or use it just to do something nice for some one else. These things have really helped me to get through his birthday.

I am so incredibly grateful for the time I had with Deklyn... I am so happy that I got to experience one birthday with him... I feel so blessed that I got 2 Christmas's with him...  I really am so incredibly lucky. 

During this Christmas season, try to remember those around you. Its so easy to get caught up with your self and your family, but there are so many people hurting all around us. I encourage you to see what you can do for some one else this season, bring a smile to someone's face and make them feel loved and thought of. This goes for myself as well, its very easy for me to think only about myself and my family as this is our first Christmas with out our Deklyn, but we are not the only ones hurting and often it helps to heal our own hearts when we help others. 

I want to wish you all a very Merry Christmas, thank you so much for your support and encouragement this past year. We have felt so much love and support. We are hoping that next year we will be able to introduce you all to a new sibling for Deklyn, but we will see what 2014 brings for us. God is good all the time and we know that he is always for us. Thank you so much for your continued prayers and support!




Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Dear Deklyn

Deklyn,

I miss you so much, but I am so glad that you don't miss me. We are 1 month away from your 2nd birthday, I can only imagine what your birthday party is going to be like in heaven. I wish I could plan a party for you like I did last year, that was so much fun! Even though you were back in Intensive Care, we had such a great time. You got spoiled with so many presents and I'll never forget the amazing memories we made that day. We are going to have a party for you here, to celebrate you and your amazing life. Its hard to do these things with out you, but it would be even harder to not have a party at all. 

Daddy and I talk about you a lot. We joke that you have your own circus up in heaven, that you've got all these animals trained to do anything that you want. We talk about how you and Cash go for tractor rides and play together. We wonder what Uncle Grant has all shown you and we are sure he must be telling you stories about Daddy from when he was a little boy. We feel jealous that you've met daddy's sister, I'm sure she's being an amazing auntie to you and spoling you enough for all your auntie's left behind.

 I wonder how big you are now... I'm so sad that I don't get to see you grow. Sometimes I close my eyes and try to imagine you calling me, I can't wait to hear your beautiful voice when I get to heaven.When ever I sing, I feel you watching me. I think you like my singing and are proud of me when I praise God with my voice. I imagine you singing the words with me.

I try my best not to get sad when I see other kids with their mommys. I know I'm going to get to be with you soon, but its still hard for me. I tried my best to take care of you, I had so much fun being a mommy. Some times I find myself asking why... The other day I looked into your room and thought I really should clean it up a bit.. so I started taking things from the closet and re organizing.... and I came across some of your blankets. Your blankets were a big part of your life, clothes you didn't always get to wear and your toys didn't always get played with, but you were always on one of your blankets. I started to cry, and I got mad that I could wrap you up in one, that I couldn't see you smile when you looked at your favorite ones... But I remember, we were never promised an easy life. God never promised to rescue us from every horrible thing that happens to us here on earth. His promise is eternal life to those that follow him. I have held on to my faith like I never have before because of you Deklyn. You've made me a better person in every way possible and a better Christian. Heaven holds a whole new meaning when someone you love is there.

Deklyn, I am so very proud to be your mommy. Even though I am so sad that you are not here, especially for your birthday and Christmas... I am so glad I had you for the time that I did. You taught me so much and I hope I never forgot the lessons I've learned through you.

Some one that I meant through all this, and has also lost her own son said this and I think it is so perfect.
 In the worst of the storm, when I had all but given in, peace found me, the kind that passes all understanding, and it knew right where I was. It didn't change the circumstances, but it changed my heart, which changed it all.

I'll see you soon Buddy, I love you with all my heart.

Love, Your Mommy



Sunday, 13 October 2013

Deklyn's Fund & Adoption Update

I have some pretty awesome news! I want to say a HUGE thank you to everyone who has donated to the Deklyn Sawatzky Endowment Fund, we have reached our first initial goal of $10,000!! I can't believe it! In under 4 months we raised $10,000!  $10,000 was our first goal because after there is that amount in the fund the interest created goes towards research for Hypophosphatsia! We will obviously continue to raise money. I want them to have as much money as possible for research but now at least we have made it to the point where the fund is making a difference! I feel so proud to be able to carry on my son's name through this fund. Its one of the only things I have left that is a piece of my son that is active and it makes me so happy to be able to carry this out. My goal is to see no child die from HPP, I'm sure that one day I will be able to hear about a child who was just like Deklyn and hear how he's doing so amazing and getting to do all the things that Deklyn didn't get to do. That will probably make me sad that Deklyn didn't get that chance... but he got more then most of the children who came before him! Some HPP kids only had that moment in their parents arms right after they were born and some I'm sure are lost in miscarriage.


I want to ask for prayer as we continue down the road of adoption. Prayer for peace and patience for us and also prayer for our child and the birth mother of that child. We are excited and can't wait to have a baby in our home but at the same time try not to be too excited because we have no idea how long it could take or if we will ever be picked. It's a very helpless feeling. We love being parents, and we can't wait to be able to act like parents again. I'm excited for our families... although we will never forget Deklyn and he will be a very real part of our lives forever, I think us having a child through adoption will bring a lot of healing to our whole family especially on my side. Deklyn was the only grand baby and nephew, and there is a very obvious void when we get together where as on my husband's side there are 2 very crazy and lovable grand babies that I feel helps the void of Deklyn not being their become just a bit more bare-able. I know everyone misses him like crazy and that won't stop, but I know as more kids join the family and the date of his death moves further behind us it will become easier and their will be less hard days for everyone. Of course I don't want a child for the reason of helping everyone to heal from Deklyn's death, I want a child because I love being a parent and for the exact same reason we decided to start a family when we had Deklyn.

A few weekends ago we went to a mandatory weekend long seminar for perspective adopt parents. I'll be completely honest, when we started this whole adoption process I was very upset. For us, getting pregnant was easy and adoption looked so hard. I was mad that we had to make the responsible choice for our family and decide not to get pregnant because of the risk of having more children like Deklyn and not wanting to put a child or our families through that again. I kept thinking, even if we did have another child like Deklyn of course I would love him/her... I would do everything I did for Deklyn again in a heartbeat... but I know if we went through that again we would have a lot of guilt and it would be that much harder watching that baby experience the things Deklyn had to experience knowing that we could have prevented it. Everyone has their own reasons for why they decide to have kids or not when knowing the risks and for us right now even though for me it has been a very hard decision we know that this is the choice we want for our family. I know quite a few families who have decided to have kids knowing the risks and I am not trying to say that they shouldn't have done that. This is just want feels right for us. For me deciding to adopt was a bit of a grieving process and I can't really say I'm done grieving but I am a thousand times more excited about it now then I was when we first started discussing it. There are so many things you have to do when you decide to adopt and it feels unfair... and I guess in some ways it is, but I've totally gotten over it. This is the path our family is taking to have children in our home and that is just the way it is.. being upset isn't going to change it and I have seriously come to the point where I am just so excited about it and can't wait to hear that a birth mom has picked us to be her baby's parents!



Again I just want to thank all of you who have been supporting us with prayer and donating to Deklyn's Fund, it means so much to us! Thank you to all of you who continue to talk about Deklyn and tell us how much he has impacted you, it makes us so happy!

Thank you for your continued prayers and support! Sorry that I don't post to often anymore but I promise to keep you updated on Deklyn's Foundation and our whole adoption process.