If I have not explained who we are very well, I apologize. I have plans to fill the tabs on my blog with who we are, books I recommend, etc, and frankly, right now, I can’t even remember what I planned to even write on them. The skinny is that Dan is a veterinary student, and I work at a local optometrist doing billing and insurance. D is very driven, and he works very hard at his job, which is school right now. I am not a career person at all, and I would be totally fine if we went back to the days where women had babies at 18, made biscuits, and watered the flowers all day. A minor joke is that the degree that I received in college is most commonly known as the “MRS.” degree, and my high school year book plainly states that all my classmates thought that I would be the first one married with lots of children. Insert that I have tons of girlfriends who are career driven, and I totally support their goals, it’s just not me at all. All of this to say that, many days Dan leaves early, comes home, some days goes on a quick jog, briefs me on his day, showers, starts studying, eats a quick dinner, studies until bed time, and goes to sleep. Many weekends are spent studying long hours, and it makes our time together short. I am in full support of how hard he works, because I know it is what it takes, and it is for our family.
Needless to say, we enjoy pillow talk at night. Many nights we hop in bed, and it’s like, “oh hey, I love you, miss you, I’m so tired, but…”, and we think and talk. D and I are very close and always have been, and we share everything. One thing that we anticipated as being parents is bedtime with our Mary Anna. We spent a lot of time filling her library, and D spent countless hours reading all the books and carefully chose the ones that he put in our hospital bag. There was one entitled, “The Very Hairy Bear
” that we got on a trip a while back. It is a special book, because my nickname has always been Karebear, so we love things that have to do with bears. This book of course made the cut, so the night before Mary Anna went to heaven, Dan asked me if we could read her the first and last bed time story that we would ever read to her. Writing this makes me a little sick to my stomach, because that memory is one of the sweetest ones that we have, yet one of the hardest.
So Tuesday evening on July 16, we said goodnight to my parents, and we slowly made our way to our baby girl. We talked to her and told her how much we loved her, and spent a little time holding her finger and rubbing her head. Dan prayed over her and read scripture, and right before we went to sleep, he got out that sweet book. He read every page to her and showed her each picture, and at the end of the book it says something like this, “The very hairy bear puts his paw on his no hair nose and went to sleep.” So we all went to sleep.
The next day as Mary Anna was slowly leaving us, Dan felt her heartbeat slowing down, and once she was finally gone, he said to her, “The very hair bear puts his paw on his no hair nose and went to sleep.” She went to sleep. She went to be with Jesus.
Last night as we were going to sleep, we looked at our baby girl and talked all about her. Many nights I hear sweet Dan’s voice in my head saying that line, “The very hairy bear puts his paw on his no hair nose and went to sleep.” This book probably has no significance, and I’m pretty sure it has not won any awards, but it will always be special to us and our children. As I woke up this morning, I was thinking about my PawPaw and what was read at his funeral when I was in high school. The only really words that I remember was:
“Death has been swallowed up in victory.”
“Where, O death, is your victory?
Where, O death, is your sting?”
The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 15: 54b-57
And I think that even though our very hairy bear went to sleep that her death will not have victory over us. Jesus conquered sin and death, and we can actually look to Him with praise and glory in the midst of death. He has won the battle. For me. For Dan. For Mary Anna. For you.
In this way, love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment, because in this world we are like him. There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.
1 John 4:17-18
So when I get nauseous thinking about my little bear going to sleep. I will have no fear, because His love made her life and death complete. He is love. Perfect love.