This time last year we were in the midst of our darkest season. For this season, I am the most grateful.
This time last year, I dreaded the holidays. Adam would play Christmas music as we got ourselves ready in the morning. With tears rolling down my face, I requested he turn it off. The holidays were supposed to be different this year. I was absent of all holiday spirit, of all hope, of all joy, of any and all light.
We headed to the mountains as we always do for the Thanksgiving holiday. I found little to be thankful for other than my husband. Losing my grandmother that spring and then our butterfly just a few weeks prior left me feeling empty. I radiated low energy. I knew it, I hated it, yet I couldn't stop it.
In this season of darkness, I learned that expectation, rather than comparison, is the thief of joy. My mind was filled with "should have beens." I should have been 4 months pregnant. I should have been able to send out our adorable fall themed pregnancy announcements. I should have been "eating for two."
Sweet Adam, who also was deep in grief, put his heart and energy into me. I had absolutely nothing to offer in return other than our sob story and pain. Somehow, he managed to reach deep down inside of himself and did everything he could to bring even the softest smile to my face. Little did he know, the surprise he had up his sleeve would create the space for me to transition into a season of hope.
He had planned a visit to a local Christmas Tree farm so we could not only pick out a tree and bring a piece of Asheville home with us to Durham, but so that we could start a new family tradition. Headed back to the car after finding the one, we were greeted with the most beautiful, most full rainbow I had ever seen. It was in that moment I knew our daughter was there with us, not only watching over her parents, but letting us know that there was going to be beauty beyond this storm.
I held onto this rainbow and all it represented. It was my sign from the universe that I had sat in the dark long enough, it was time to begin my walk through and out of it.
One year later, looking back on it all, I am in the brightest of seasons. I am able to reflect on this journey in the dark and find so much gratitude for it all. I would never wish the trauma or pain we experienced upon anybody. However, had we not experienced our loss on October 30th, we wouldn't have our Hollis Beau - our rainbeau baby - conceived the end of January - a mere three months later.
At the time, the dark didn't make sense. It wasn't supposed to - does it ever? I reminded myself every day after seeing our rainbow on the Christmas Tree farm that eventually, this would all make sense. I knew one day I would not only be sitting in the light, but I'd be radiating enough light to provide hope and joy for others.
One day is today. And, for that, I am so very grateful.