Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Comfort Me with Cinnamon & God is Good

My hands hover above a tray of peach melba shortbread, sifting powdered sugar that falls like snow flurries over the browned almond top. And they gently lift the egg whites from the very bottom of the mixing bowl, willing the egg whites to rise and rise of their own accord. And my hands are cold as I pull the frozen strawberries from the sheet pan, after I quartered and cored them before freezing so that my family can eat in-season strawberries all year round. And I pat the biscuit dough into a neat fluffy pile before I smack it gently down with a rolling pin. A hundred memories of my hands in the kitchen, of cinnamon settling on my hair after I poured too much and a cloud of flour and sugar erupted from the mixing bowl. I don't want soup, and I don't want comfort food, but give me some butter and flour and I will comfort myself with baking.

These are things I thought about as I laid on the table this morning. This morning, the day after our baby died. No more little heartbeat, no more swimming bean. No more little green shoot, no more garden womb.

It wasn't me, it was her. A fluke. Something was just wrong with the baby, according to our doctor. She never would have lived. This is really personal to write about, but I will absolutely not have a secret baby. A baby whose name I never say, a baby who we don't talk about. I saw her heartbeat, she made me queasy for hours on end, and last week I went through two whole jars of Klaussen pickles (the cold kind), so I just can't roll over and pretend like I didn't grow a baby for the last 14 weeks, like I didn't dream about her and think about her and pray every night that God would put a hedge of protection around her. We named her. Her name was Violet. And there is an empty ivory-colored velvet baby snow-suit hanging in William's closet that I bought just for her. For my little winter baby who is not really ever coming. 

And even though I am so sad, and I just don't understand God's reasoning for giving me a baby that could only live a few short months, I know this much: God is good. And God is enough. Even when my baby's heart stops beating, He is still enough for me.


  1. I am so truly sorry. James knew about Violet weeks ago, so she will always be remembered. I love you.

  2. It means the world to other women to read your honesty, and to see your strength. Thank you for sharing your courage, mb. Praying for you and much love to you

  3. Oh Marybeth, I am so sorry for your loss. Sending you cosmic hugs and strength. The world makes so little sense sometimes. To find the beauty even in the sadness is one of the reasons you are such a special person.
    Lots of love.