Three years today. That’s when your tiny body was born, gently cushioned within the watery home which was to be yours for a few months more. Your profile in that sac, floating in clear waters, was so perfect. It was hard to believe that your body was lifeless. You were tiny, but you had cute little arms and legs, already had all your fingers and toes, two teeny ears, dark eyes, and your nose forming. Your spine was so clear through the translucent skin. Your mouth appeared to be smiling. We took so many pictures of you, like any doting parent, just so we could never forget that you were real. You were not a figment of our imagination.
You entered early in the morning after a day full of Easter activities. We had been anxiously anticipating your arrival after learning your heart was no longer beating 6 days before. Our family Easter pictures the day before included you within my womb, but you were really already in another home. It all felt surreal. We were heartbroken and utterly devastated. I can still feel the incredibly deep ache of those days and weeks to follow. Oh, it all felt so dark.
As I think of you, I wonder what those sweet little features would’ve grown into. Would those dark eyes be blue like your siblings? Would that nose look like mama’s or daddy’s? I felt like you were going to be another little boy, but were you really a girl? Were you the sister Abriella had been desiring? It was just a little too early to tell for sure. Would you start out blond and then end up dark headed like your sister and brothers? What would your cry sound like? What would your little voice have to say as you grew? What would your name be? We left your name as Tiny Joyner –that is what your siblings named you when they learned of you weeks before. I’ve often had thoughts of changing your name to something else, as your impact in our lives has never felt tiny at all! Oh, sweet baby, I know that God has the perfect name for you! What is it, dear one? I have had so many dreams and thoughts about you.
I don’t know these details about you, but your heavenly Father knows more about you than I could ever fathom. He knew all of your days before there were any. He knew you wouldn’t be with us long before you were with us at all. You have another sibling that also went to heaven ahead of you. I imagine you have met. Oh, I just wonder what it’s like in heaven! Is it just amazing?! I know it must be! While I miss you both, I know that you want for nothing. You lack nothing. This world was never meant to be your home. This world is not my home either, but I must pass through for a little while longer.
Sweet Tiny Joyner, today is a day that I will never forget. The ache that was once so heavy is lighter now. The Lord gave, and the Lord has taken away; Blessed be the name of the Lord.* These words used to sting so badly. The tears burned hot. Now, I can read them with more understanding. The tears now don’t fall like they once did. Your place in our family may not be evident to many, but it is precious to me. God used you in mighty ways to show us so much more about Himself. One day, I pray that I will get to see my Lord and Savior face to face. I want to see what you see. For you, I imagine today was as amazing as any day in heavenly eternity. It’s truly beyond my comprehension for now. One day, it will all be clear. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.**
I love you, sweet one! Three years closer.
*Job 1:21 **1 Corinthians 13:12