A Mother’s Prayer

Posted on | September 21, 2011 | 39 Comments

This morning marked the first time in a long time that I cried on the way to work.  But this morning was different… I didn’t cry for the loss of my marriage or my husband, I cried for a mother’s loss.  I cried for a mother I do not even know. A mother who faced this day without her son.  Here in my town, a friend of a friend went to the grocery store yesterday with her four month old son.  She did her grocery shopping.  She probably made small talk with the baby and small talk with the people she passed in the aisles.  She checked out and paid and probably smiled as she said “yes” when the lady bagging the groceries asked if she’d like assistance to her car. And then on the way to her car, the grocery cart hit a speed bump and the entire cart flipped over.  The carseat carrying her tiny son was jostled onto the ground. The side of his precious head hit the concrete.

There was bleeding on the brain.

They tried to save him.

He passed away just a few short hours later.

This is my prayer.

My child is my love, my life, and my world.

I look into his eyes and I see the future of my heart, the wealth of knowledge he will collect, the people he will know and love and create.

When I hold him close, I can breathe in the scent of his tomorrow intermingled in the soft sweetness of his today.

Please, please, let that tomorrow come.

When I lose my patience, when I struggle to find the right way to talk to my ever-growing, ever-learning son, remind me that this is his today and there may be no tomorrow.  Remind me to take that extra minute to sit on the floor and crash towers with him.  Remind me that the laundry is not nearly as important as the curve of his face in the moonlight.

Please, Please, let there be a tomorrow.

When I am tired from a long day of work and the last thing I want to do is watch the same episode of the same television show again and again, remind me that the day will hopefully come when he will disappear to his room after school.  Remind me that my time as his hero is oh-so-limited.  Remind me that the words I say and the eyes I secretly roll may be the last words and the last actions I can remember having with him.

Please, Please, let there be many more days to come.

At the end of the day, when he looks up at me with those big blue eyes and asks me to lay down with him for just one more minute, Let me lay down my burden and my wants and cares and snuggle that child.  Because I do not know what the next day brings, I do not know what will come… I do not know how I would long for those moments were they ever stripped away.

Please,  let him grow and learn and smile.  Let him become the man he is to become.  Let him have years of life, stretching out beyond the horizon, beyond my imagination, beyond what I could ever even hope for him.  Let his life be a tapestry of faces and places that he meets and knows and loves.  Let him face his last days with the age and wisdom of a very, very, very old man.

And above all else… let me go first.

Because I can not imagine a world without his face, because that is the “natural” order, because although I do not like the thought of his suffering at the loss of me, I can not bear the thought of the loss of him.

Keep him safe.  Keep him here.

Give me, always, one more day to hug  my child.


39 Responses to “A Mother’s Prayer”

  1. Jana Anthoine
    September 21st, 2011 @ 12:16 pm

    Beautiful. This is such a heartbreaking story that took my breath away when I heard it.

    I pray along with you… for parents to always go first. It’s not possible for me now (though I can go before H) and it’s not for V. But for those who have never had this heartbreak, I pray with every ounce of my being that it NEVER EVER HAPPENS. My heart is broken for V and her family and everyone who knows them and has been touched by this sweet boy’s short life.

  2. R's Mom
    September 21st, 2011 @ 12:20 pm

    O my god. That poor mom. Tears are rolling down my face. And I offer up the same prayer…for me and for you and for every other mom out there. I just can’t imagine what that mom is going through, but just the thought breaks my heart.

  3. molly
    September 21st, 2011 @ 12:43 pm

    The world is just so unfair sometimes. I think the reason I get so sad is because I can’t help fix other people’s pain. Because I so want to. I so want to 🙁

  4. Anonymous
    September 21st, 2011 @ 1:03 pm

    Yes. I want to get my fingers down in the dirt of it and make it better… and there’s no way to make it better. So it just hurts.

  5. arms wide open
    September 21st, 2011 @ 12:45 pm

    i have goosebumps all over. a nightmare. may someone, something, somewhere be of comfort to this mother.

  6. Jana Anthoine
    September 21st, 2011 @ 12:51 pm

    I’m going to also offer my prayers to the employee who was taking the groceries out to the car. My heart hurts thinking about how he feels, not that it’s anything like what the family is feeling, but he will probably never get the image out of his head and the hurt out of his heart even though it was a terrible accident. Sad all the way around.

  7. Anonymous
    September 21st, 2011 @ 1:03 pm

    I know. I have been thinking about him, too.

  8. Anonymous
    September 21st, 2011 @ 3:36 pm

    Although I just received correction. It was a woman who pushed the cart out.

  9. Kristy
    September 21st, 2011 @ 1:08 pm

    Tears in my eyes as I type this. Bless that poor mom who has to face today without her baby. And – this truly is the prayer, whether ever spoken or not, of every mother. Very well said.

  10. Krista
    September 21st, 2011 @ 1:20 pm

    It’s taking everything I have not to run home and cuddle my kids. I’m printing your prayer and saying it every day. Every single day.
    I hope this mother finds some peace, some comfort. Something. But I can’t imagine how she will.

  11. mrshiggison
    September 21st, 2011 @ 1:29 pm

    Oh my heart. Oh my word.
    The things that change in a moment…my thoughts are with that poor, poor family.

  12. Lindsay
    September 21st, 2011 @ 1:40 pm

    Oh my gosh. I can’t imagine what she must be going through. How awful! I will say a prayer for this mother and familiy as well.

  13. Susan
    September 21st, 2011 @ 1:43 pm

    How heartbreaking. I can’t imagine what this poor family is going through right now. Despite all the bad things going on in my life at the moment, I’m going to be sure to treasure every moment I have with my children.

  14. Cookiecrums123
    September 21st, 2011 @ 2:52 pm

    as a mother, I can only imagine the pain she is feeling. We do have to remember that there is no guarantee for tomorrow. We need to concentrate on the good of life and live each day to its fullest. We all have crappy days or going through tough moments in our lives… but there’s always something good to focus on. Like you, I’m a mother. I’ve got 2 wonderful little boys that deserve the best I’ve got to give them. That’s why you might find my kitchen sink filled with dirty dishes at times…. or dog hair here and there on my hardwood floor…. somethings just need to be put off sometimes to concentrate on more important things. Like going outside and kicking the ball with my boys or building towers with blocks.

    I’ll def keep this family in my prayers!

  15. depot
    September 21st, 2011 @ 4:43 pm

    Thank you for remembering her here. When I got married in June, I teased her that I supposed childbirth was a somewhat acceptable excuse for not making it to my wedding. I told her that missing one party together would be worth it for us to have another beautiful child among us that we could watch grow up together.

    It’s hard to do anything today without crying. I’ve been buying presents for Ava, and as we get ready for my baby girl to have her 6th birthday party this weekend, all I can think of is my beautiful friend and her beautiful son, who never even got to have his first.

    I am wrecked.

  16. Anonymous
    September 21st, 2011 @ 4:45 pm

    Oh friend. I so ache for her and her husband and their sweet daughter, too. Come see me soon.

  17. depot
    September 23rd, 2011 @ 7:07 am

    It is now 3 am and the weight of Valli in my arms and the stabbing in my chest and the kick in the gut. They all still hurt too much to sleep.

    Sad. So much deep awful sadness today.

    Thank you for checking on me this morning. You’re a real friend, and I appreciate you so.

  18. N Merritt
    September 21st, 2011 @ 5:34 pm

    What a beautiful reminder to come from such a tragic situation. I grew up in Macon but do not know the family. I’m sad to admit that I have been rolling my eyes a lot lately during the craziness of our afternoons after school. You can bet that will change today. My prayers are with the family and those who love them.

  19. Kimberley
    September 21st, 2011 @ 7:13 pm

    Thank you for putting my daily prayer into actual words. It is beautifully written and exactly what I’ve wanted to pray so eloquently every day for the past 3 1/2 years.

    My prayers are with this family. I simply cannot imagine.

  20. Kimberley
    September 21st, 2011 @ 7:13 pm

    Thank you for putting my daily prayer into actual words. It is beautifully written and exactly what I’ve wanted to pray so eloquently every day for the past 3 1/2 years.

    My prayers are with this family. I simply cannot imagine.

  21. Mama T
    September 21st, 2011 @ 8:53 pm

    Tears for this mother. Tears for your beautifully written prayer. We never know what tomorrow will bring. God Bless this family.

  22. Mama T
    September 21st, 2011 @ 8:53 pm

    Tears for this mother. Tears for your beautifully written prayer. We never know what tomorrow will bring. God Bless this family.

  23. Mama T
    September 21st, 2011 @ 8:53 pm

    Tears for this mother. Tears for your beautifully written prayer. We never know what tomorrow will bring. God Bless this family.

  24. Kpiccini
    September 21st, 2011 @ 9:10 pm

    Your prayer is a perfect one. My heart is so sad for this mother, for this family. I cannot image the devastation. I will hold my children and hug them tighter and forgive them and laugh with them and pray each day for more tomorrows.

    Thank you for reminding me.

  25. Nlhamon
    September 21st, 2011 @ 9:32 pm

    My heart breaks again reading your message. I was that mom on September 14th 2009 at 9am when I went to go check on my sleeping 19 month old little boy. The horror of my life began at that moment. When I noticed his little leg was a light shade of blue. My heart sunk and I dropped to my knees and begged God and tried to barter with him anything that came to mind including my own life. I hate knowing there are others in the club. The pain is to real everyday. Making decissions for other children is a whole new mess cause what if. The death of a child is the worst death ever. What odd never answered, why never answered, the begging with God still goes on. “please just let me dream about my angle tonight please bring him back just for a minute”. I pray for your friend.

  26. AW
    September 22nd, 2011 @ 3:37 am

    Unimaginable. I’m so sorry. Praying for you.

  27. beachmum
    September 21st, 2011 @ 11:31 pm

    my heart is breaking. beautiful post. You so eloquently wrote exactly what I pray, and think every time I see my son. I am so sorry for your friend’s loss.

  28. Kristinayellow
    September 22nd, 2011 @ 1:24 am

    There are no words-only love and prayers for that little boy and his family, for the grocery store worker, and for all the medical staff that worked so hard to help. So sad and so real–things can happen and even though we always assume bad stuff happens to “other people”, we are all “other people” to strangers. Sigh. So so sad.

  29. Iloveyoumorethancarrots.com
    September 22nd, 2011 @ 1:40 am

    I’ve come over to read from Megan and In This Wonderful Life.. As a mom to a beautiful 13 month old boy, this is my prayer every morning. It’s SO easy to get frustrated and raise my voice and roll my eyes.. Thank you for sharing this sweet mother’s heartache. And reminding me that tomorrow is not guaranteed. We will pray for this mother, her family and the days she must face without her son.. Just breaks this mama’s heart.. Beautifully written post!

  30. Justice Jonesie
    September 22nd, 2011 @ 2:09 am

    Wow, this is so sad. I pray that this mom finds strength and courage during her loss. So sad. Saying a prayer for my family- you never know what each day has in store.

  31. Anonymous
    September 22nd, 2011 @ 3:20 am

    Amen. Couldn’t even come close to saying it better.

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  34. Kathryn
    September 26th, 2011 @ 11:26 am

    I don’t want to cry right now but I’ll read the whole poem, later. I lost my son when he was 6 hrs old bc of a chromosome disorder so I know a little of what this mom is going through. My loss happened 15 and 1/2 yrs ago and I’ve learned that through losing Jacob, I’m able to help other moms with their losses. Her heart will physically ache for a while but the pain will ease. The first year will by far be the hardest but the pain will ease. She’ll have good years and bad years on the anniversary of his birthday and the day he passed away but the pain will ease- it will never go away, but it will lessen a little each year.

    My mom (before I was born) lost her son to a careless teen driver. What would have been my big brother was 8 and walking home from a friend’s house. That was over 45 years ago and the pain is still there but she can talk about Brian with a smile.

    My heart goes out to this mom and anyone who says anything negative about what happened to her will one day have to face God.

  35. Bibsey Mama
    September 27th, 2011 @ 5:38 am

    I saw this post via a tweet by Ella at Notes From Home. My heart breaks for this family as it does for a friend of mine who lost her baby girl to a terrible disease. This is a prayer for every parent.

  36. Crying...
    September 28th, 2011 @ 9:29 am

    You broke my heart twice – first with your story, and now with the sadness of this tragedy. I’m so sorry…

  37. mothering spirit
    September 28th, 2011 @ 11:39 pm

    So beautifully and achingly stated. Thank you for sharing this and the story of the family who must be so in need of many more of our prayers.

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