Golden moons glow around her pupils, eyes that saw a world turn dim and hopeless.  Her smile, unreserved, flashes and my own muscles relax.  She's quiet, but when I lean in close -when I listen with the ear of my heart- the message resounds, deeper than words.   

I want more than anything to know her, to understand all of who she would have been, to crawl under her flesh and feel her heart beating in my own chest, to invite her thoughts to run through my mind.  Living where goodbyes loom, I'm still conjugating her fate in the conditional tense – if she lived, if she grew up, grew breasts, grew her own family, if she trudged off toward her own horizon.  If.

No one suggests it's our fault, but our inability to stop it feels like our chief failure as parents.

The history of family is encoded and inscribed in her little frame though, giving all of her parts voice to speak.  And even the smallest chat the language of love.  Unconditional.



Poppy John said...

Jenni Baby,
In the picture, did you notice that a beam of light is coming through the window and shining upon Celia's face? Just like your post...unconditionally enlightening.


Christy said...

One day we will hear from them and know them in ways we never thought possible. Until that day, all she has ever known is your love...how wonderful.

Anonymous said...

Your words are always so beautiful...and could only come from a perfectly beautiful heart.

Debi said...

You and Andy are amazing parents with such tender hearts toward your children.
Praying for your strength for each day and ears and a heart that hear and understand sweet Celia. She is truly blessed to have you as her parents.
Love and hugs and prayers,

Ninja Cate said...

I love you and your family more than I ever knew it possible to know and fall in love with you, your husband, and your amazing children from afar. I'm sure you hear it all the time, but I want for you to know that for me, for Zoey (we have pictures of Celia and Tucker on our fridge and she points to them every day and says "Celia and Tucker!!" with the pronunciation of a two year old and the excitement of the same) for every friend and every family member I have crossed paths with, Celia's legacy grows exponentially. I hesitate to say such things, because I do not want to give the impression that Tucker has a tough act to follow-he will be his amazing self, just as she will ALWAYS be. She is a part of our daily routine-albeit a miniscule one when compared to yours-but a very, very important part none the less. Those smiles I've seen on your more recent posts give me goose bumps and tickle my soul berry :) She will be eternal in our lives, my children's lives, and the lives of many, many to come. My, what astounding things she is just by BEING. She must be something incredible... she is... and we celebrate her and tip our hats to you for your strength. Much heart hugs and love... Cate and Zoey Rosie :)

PS-Not sure if I already passed on this song to you, but just in case I didn't, I hope you can find time to listen to "I Will Carry You (Audrey's Song)" by Selah. It's amazing and moving and will forever remind me of your red-headed angel-baby