Tuesday, September 29, 2009

A Tribute to Jordan August 21,2009

This was written by a great aunt of a child who also passed away in the same way that Jordan did. I found it on a website for grieving parents and I made changes to adapt it to fit Jordan because I thought it was so beautiful. The boy was named Jared and SIDS hit their family at the same age as my baby Jordan.

Look beside you Jesus,
there's someone at your side,
a sweet smiling little girl,
who needs you as her guide.

You'll know she's Jordan if her smile could melt a heart of stone,
She needs you,
She has never,
In her short life been alone.

If there's a puppy's soul up there,
Please bring the two together,
For kids and dogs do love to romp,
Through fields of sun and heather.

Please kiss her silky cheek at night,
and give her joy and peace,
The glow she brought our souls and hearts will never ever cease.

"Those we have held in our arms for a little while, will remain in our hearts forever."

One Month has passed.

I can not believe that it has been a month since my little girl left us to be in Heaven. Some days are still better than others. I still cry when I am in the car alone. I have made the investment in a good water proof mascara. Cover Girl seems to hold up the best for anyone who is interested. I listen to KSBJ, our local Christian radio station A LOT these days. I find a lot of comfort in the music. Fortunately for me, work has kept me very busy, and right now busy is good. The negative part is that my job is taking away from family things that I need to take care of. I have several items of dishes and Tupperware to return to my very sweet friends and neighbors who have helped get us through the rough days. I feel bad that it is taking me this long. We really are blessed to be part of such a great neighborhood of people who banded together to do things for us. The prayers have been tremendous. I really have to believe they are the reason that we have been able to have some sense of normalcy in our life. The prayers have really helped. I am still getting cards in the mail and Facebook messages from friends who are still thinking about us. Keep them coming, we still need them.

I really miss her. I think that at times it does get to me. I try not to get short with my family, but it happens. I just get down and think that life is just not fair. I know that this is all part of the grieving process. We learned from a pastor who came over to visit that there are 5 stages of grief. I think at times that I vary between all of these stages throughout the course one single day. Driving in my car alone is not very good for my mood. That is where listening to KSBJ comes in handy. There are days that seem like she was never part of our life. And then I think that I want to make sure that a day doesn't goes by that I do not think about her. It is hard to admit but life does go on even though our loved ones have left us. For me I still have moments when the loss of my mom 6 years ago still seems so hard. Now I just have to believe that she is in Heaven holding her granddaughter. That helps give me strength.

We are still talking about our "stories" in church. I really do not know when the road I am on is going to take the next turn. Even though you are still in the middle of a tragedy, people close to you still have potential life changing things come up. Life does go on around you and sometimes we still do not know why. What is the next chapter in "my" story? I still feel that a big part of me is to be a mom and to raise good Christian children who will have a positive impact on the world. We pray that God will help us with that. Having a third child would be a wonderful blessing to our life. Chase will be a great big brother. He only had a short opportunity to get started in this role.

We have been very busy working on the BBQ Benefit to honor baby Jordan. We have some big plans for this event to help raise money to contribute to SIDS research. It will get bigger as the years go on. We want to do something every year to celebrate her life and to help families be able to avoid this pain. The planning for this year is going well. We are going to have FABULOUS BBQ plates for purchase, along with a washer toss tournament to participate in and a Silent Auction with a lot of great items to bid on. If you are in the Houston area on October 17th, we would welcome any visitors to the event. Randy and I will have name tags on with her picture. So many people have offered their time and money to help this event kick off. We feel very blessed. Pray for a sunny day and lots of visitors.

I promise to followers to post more often. I am searching for articles from SIDS to post as well and hopefully have this site as an informational source for parents too. Thanks for reading and God Bless You.....

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


The following post is copied from an email that a friend of mine that I work with. emailed to me. It really lifted my spirits so I thought I would share it on the blog to help out others. It is a good reminder of how God sees grief and that he is with us. I have saved these words to look back on every time I get sad. Which right now happens at some point every day. We are still taking it one day at a time. Some days are better than others. Monday was a tough day for me. I worked from home to take care of household duties. It was hard. Very hard. I needed to change the sheets in her room and I had a hard time not getting upset. I look around at all of the decorations that we worked so hard to put together. To give her a room fit for a princess. And now she won't be around to grow up in her room. I look at the the cute clothes that I will not get the opportunity to change her into. I miss my little girl.

Chase talked about her tonight. He said I was Jordan's mommy and then talked about the day that the EMS took her to the hospital. He said "those boys took her". Randy tried to explain that she is in Heaven with God. All Chase can understand is that she is gone. It is hard to really comprehend how much he knows and what I am fearful of what questioning him will bring out from his memory. I feel like at times I walk on egg shells around him. I don't want to be upset in front of him, but I don't want him to forget about her either. I just miss her.

It has been a month. I tried to contact the Medical Examiner's office to see what they have found out. I got nothing. They tell me it is still pending and that infant autopsy's take up to 3 months to get results back. The lady I spoke with at the ME's office told me that the babies take longer because of all of the Genetic testing that they do. That did not really make me feel better, but at least I got a hold of someone. We then received a message at the house from someone who gave us a direct phone number to call and check in. I guess we just wait. Time to head to bed. Please continue to read the entry below. If you have lost anyone close in your life, it may help. Thanks for all of the prayers, they are really helping.

"Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted." Matthew 5:4 (NKJ)
Grief is the price we pay for love! To love deeply is to grieve our losses deeply. Henri Nouwen writes: 'We wonder when grief hits hard, "Why did this happen? To remind us of the brevity and fragility of life? To deepen the faith of those who carry on?" It is hard to answer "Yes," when everything seems dark. The important thing to us at that moment is to be relieved of the pain. But when we move through adversity rather than avoid it, we greet it differently. We become willing to let it teach us. Like Joseph, we see how God can use it for some larger end. Ultimately, mourning means facing what wounds us, in the presence of the only One who can heal us!'
David writes: '. . . weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning' (Psalm 30:5). Morning always comes! Your grief will ease with time. Your willingness to embrace the pain rather than escape it, guarantees that. It is not that you will forget, it is that you will remember it differently; with more gratitude and less grief.
Your tomorrows are not in the hands of your employer, your banker, your stock broker, or even your family. No, they are in God's hands, and He will be there for you when every other support has gone. Has He not always protected, provided for, and comforted you? Times and seasons change, but not 'the God of all comfort.' He has promised never to leave you. So be encouraged, today He will be with you wherever you go!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

The weekend.

It is now Sunday night and my family is watching the Dallas Cowboys play in their new stadium. The Houston Texans pulled a win off today so my husband is a happier guy. We have had a very eventful weekend.

Saturday started with me going to work. I met a very sweet lady who is wanting to sell her home so that she can move closer to her son and grandchildren. I felt the need to hug this lady. She reminded me so much of my grandmother, only a little taller. And as she decides to put her home on the market that she has owned for 40 years she begins to tell me stories of her kids growing up. She used to wait to wave to her child's teacher from across the way and when the teacher waved back, she would allow her son to walk over to class. At the end of the day the teacher would wave back and her son would walk back home. That doesn't happen in today'a world. And there are kids and families out there who do not get to celebrate the first day of kindergarten. Unfortunately we are one of those families who will not get to see their daughter achieve that milestone. This sweet lady just made me smile as she was telling me stories. I think that I am lucky to at least have one happy little boy to celebrate life. We miss our little girl, and we pray that if it is God's will, we will be blessed with another one. We are putting our lives in his hands and letting him be the boss.
We ventured up to College Station to cheer on the Texas A&M Aggies play a football game. My nephew is starting for them this year so it was extra special to go to a game at a school where I graduated from and see a younger generation of my family play. My mom in Heaven would be so proud of him. I remember days when I was a kid and she would cheer so loud for the Aggies. Now I know where I get it from. In a lot of ways I am truly my mother's daughter. We had a minor mishap and Chase got separated from us, but some very nice police men found him. My heart sank for a few short minutes. It makes you realize how quick they can get away from you. Chase is on the right and Mitch is on the left. These 2 boys have so much fun together.

We are now in the process of teaching my 2 1/2 year old what his mom and dad's names are. When they asked him he said "mommy" and "daddy". So he is now in training at the house.

We went to church this morning and as usual it seemed like Pastor Mark was speaking directly to me. I do not think that a Sunday goes by that I do not break down in tears when the music starts. It just really gets to me and I miss my little girl so much. I get teary eyed every time. Today's message was about your "story" and how your story changes when tragedy happens and what good comes from that. I sat there with tears in my eyes and thought about my story. Which is now the story of baby Jordan. She was here for such a short time and we are hoping that her "story" can reach tons of people. Pastor Mark talks straight to my heart when he talks about God taking people to heaven. He chuckled but said that maybe God likes that person who passed away better than us. They are the lucky ones, we are here to live our life and struggle daily with good and evil. She is the lucky one? I believe that, but it just tears at my heart when I think of her gone. Randy and I have work to do on our family "story". How will we be able to impact someone else's life for the good? We definitely have work to do. We are hoping to continue to help support SIDS research to help save babies. This cause will remain on our hearts and we want to do something every year to celebrate her little life and raise awareness and money for research. I need to continue to do something to help others. Even if that is continuing this blog so that it stays in the minds of others.

There are days that go by when I do not think about her every hour, there are still times that I feel guilty when she slips from my mind. I know that is not right and not fair on myself. She is in a better place. But I just REALLY, REALLY miss her. It has been 4 long weeks since she went to Heaven. There are times it still feels like just yesterday.

Randy's parents are coming to town for doctor's appointment tomorrow, so we will get to spend the evening as a family. Chase is excited to see his Poppy and Grandma. We just keep taking it one day at a time.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Just Another Day

Today seemed like just another day. There are times that I get so busy and I almost forget about her. That makes me feel sad. I know that I can not think about her all day, every day. There will always be something that jumps out to remind me of her. I had a client that I was showing homes to this afternoon and I saw the cutest room. My immediate thought was "this would be great for Jordan's room" then it hits me. She is not here. She will not get to see how pretty we decorated her room. Randy and I worked so hard to get all of the furniture to fit and the decorations perfect. We were going to use the bedding from when Chase was little to save money and really decorate her room when she got a little older. My mother-in-law bought us the cutest bedding set as a gift. It was pink and green with little red ladybugs. And it was perfect! She never even got to sleep on her lady bug sheets. I miss her SO MUCH!

Now we need to figure out a time to get the room back to a guest room. But I can't right now. I really do not even go in there. Sometimes there is comfort in the glider, but mostly I keep the door closed. I am scared of the emotions that the room will bring up. I can get through most of the day ok, but if I go in there the flood gates open up and I don't want Chase to see his mommy sad. I need to be strong for him. I know it is healthy to cry and get it out, but I prefer to do that in private.

We are having a special BBQ benefit tribute to Baby Jordan in front of the Cy-Fair Coldwell Banker office on Saturday, October 17th, 11 am-3 pm. It will be our opportunity to hopefully raise money to donate to SIDS research in her honor. We are praying for a large turnout. We will have BBQ plates, silent auction, music and friends. We want to do something every year to help keep her memory alive and the donations raised to help find a cause for this horrible problem.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Blessed Be Your Name

I wanted to add a link to You Tube for a song that has given me great comfort in the past few weeks. They play it a lot on our local Christian Radio station and our church COF. Sometimes when I feel like I am beginning to fall apart, this songs helps to lift me up. It was one of the songs that we had played at her funeral. Click on the link to hear the song. Blessed Be Your Name

Today was a tough day for me, I had some complications come up at work and I lost some Faith. I remember these same feelings when my mom passed away. The tears just come flowing and the world feels a little tighter around me today. But that all passed when I picked up Chase at his daycare and he came running to me. There is nothing quite like the sound of your kid yelling "MOM" in a happy way with their arms open wide and about to knock you down with their bear hug. That was a great ending to my day.

We are working on getting a Bar-B-Q fund raiser set up to raise donations and awareness for SIDS. I will post more when we get the actual details set up. We will be contributed in her name to SIDS Research to hopefully help them find the source of the problem so that a baby's life can be saved and a family can be spared this heartache that will always be with us.

I pray at night for God to give us strength to get through another day.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

3 weeks later..

I find it amazing on a daily basis that life does go on around you. We have 2 choices each day to get up and be part of the world or hold up and hide. Randy and I have chosen the first of these choices. Even though there are mornings that pulling back the covers and staying hidden would feel good at the time, but that is not good for either of us.

I can not believe that it is has been 3 weeks since we lost our little girl. The nightmare is official. I have woken up for 23 mornings and it is still a reality. So I guess acceptance is a necessary step. Every little girl I see starts to bring a tear to my eye. But I am not a blubbering mess so that is a step in the right direction. I keep waiting for everything to come crashing down but it hasn't yet. I need to remove her bassinet out of our room, but I just haven't. Denial is a happy place at times and I just feel comfort in having everything as it was. I am worried that when we move it Chase will be worried. I think I will move it to her room first and then we need to box up her things and move it all to the garage for now.

Chase seems to be doing so well for his 2 1/2 old little mind. He gets her photo album out and flips the pages and calls out what his baby sister is doing in the photo. I wince and wait for him to say something that will make me sad. But he doesn't. Looking at that book makes me cry every time, but for him he is fine. I guess God works in wonderful ways that we will not understand.

There are a lot of things that I still do not understand, and I do not think I ever will. We started in a small group bible study with some of our fellow church members. Good group of people, Randy and I are trying each day to get closer to God. At a time like this you can go either direction and we choose God!

I know in my heart that I will never know why? Not really anyway. But she is in the arms of my mom and I continue each day. I do have a sense of Hope in what God has in store for our family. We talked today in church about God being the boss of our life, and that is my mission every day. We are putting it in his hands to help us get through this.

We went to dinner to celebrate our anniversary. It was nice to get away and have a quiet dinner together. The first thing I wanted to look at was the wine list. We selected our little girls name after the first bottle of wine we drank together. Jordan. Yep, it is on the menu but I do not think that I can ever drink that wine again. It holds a different meaning for me. We have had that name picked out for years and I am so sad that I will not get to hear myself calling out that name to tell her dinner is ready, or that I love her in person. It is all in my prayers to God. I find that is the time I can talk to her. Kind of like I am speaking to her by way of God. I don't know if that is how it works, but I always add in a hello to my mom in Heaven at the end of my prayers. I figure that since she is up there with him, that the window of opportunity is open? Who knows. That works for me so now I end my prayers telling my mom to give her a kiss for me.

I miss my baby girl sooo much! But we just continue to take it day by day.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Happy Anniversary to The Connell's

Today is our 4 year wedding anniversary. If you look from the outside some may think there is not a lot to celebrate. We looked at today as a way of celebrating that we have each other and a happy little boy to watch grow up. We have to let life continue to happen. A friend sent me a note today telling me "Happy Anniversary" and saying that in a short 4 years we have been through a lot of tough events. The recent death of our little girl being the most traumatic. As hard as it is sometimes to get past another day, I could not imagine how I could get by without my husband. He is my rock and keeps me strong. We spent the evening eating KFC for dinner as a family, I worked late and need to go grocery shopping, so take out it was. Not a very romantic dinner, but I spent it with my boys. We are going to have a dinner out on Saturday when work does not call so early in the morning.

I spent the first part of today dealing with insurance companies. It was a weird morning to be talking to the billing department at the hospital she was born at to make sure they had the right healthcare information to file their claim and then sending over the insurance information to the company who sent us the first bill from the emergency room. You would think that they can do the math and look at the birth date, but both people asked for a phone number where they can call Jordan to ask questions. I reminded them that she was a baby, and is actually no longer with us. One person seemed confused, so I had to use the words "my daughter has passed away" That pretty much messed up my whole day. It set the tone and I had a hard time shaking it.

I open up a card that I received from a friend of mine from grade school back in San Antonio. It brought tears to my eyes to see that someone else has gone through the same thing, and that life does go on. I have not spoken with this friend in years, but we have reacquainted through facebook and she felt compelled to send me a note that she was praying for me. It is really amazing how many lives my little girl has touched in her short 9 week of life here on Earth. I am reading over the bible verses that she sent that helped them get through it. I fell so blessed and can honestly say that I think prayer is working! I have been able to be a functioning adult on most days. The cards,letters and books on grief have been very helpful.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

First bill from hospital came today.

The first bill from the hospital came today. I see the date 8/21/09 on it and I get upset. You would think that you should get some sort of grief discount when your baby doesn't make it, like a bereavement package. How can I have bills from her death when I am still dealing with hospital bills from her delivery? Sometimes life just isn't fair. I wouldn't mind paying bills everyday for the rest of my life if it would bring her back. But we all know that is not possible and she is in a better place. I just have to keep reminding myself of that. God doesn't give us challenges that we can not handle. I do find strength in those words.

I have found a great website that offers some help and support to those who have lost someone. Her whole funeral service was about hope and what happens if you lose it. Hope is all we have to live for. I think that if we are fortunate and if it is God's will for us to have another little girl, I would like to name her Hope. The quote below is about the point when you hit rock bottom. I am afraid that I have not gotten there yet, but there have been some better days. From what I have been told about grief there is a day that it all just hits you. I have not had that moment yet. I find comfort every morning when I wake up and know that my sweet baby girl is up in the arms of her Nana Pat. My mom has been there for 6 years and I miss her too! Every day.

The picture I just added to the blog was of my 2 kids the morning that Jordan passed away. They both looked so cute in green with their red hair. I felt compelled to take that photo that morning. Strange, but I guess that was God's work. I called my mom the night before she passed away just to say hi. I had just talked to her the day before that, but I felt the need to call her.

I still ask why...why have I lost the 2 females that are the biggest part of me? I just take it one day at a time.

Thanks to everyone who is reading and following me. It feels good to be able to tell our story. I guess you can call this my on line journal. Thanks from the bottom of my heart for the donations that we have received. Hopefully we can help raise some awareness to keep another mother from having to write the same words as myself. One baby saved.

"When you get to what seems like a hopeless place in your
life, hold on a minute longer. It is right at that point that the
tide is beginning to turn." --Clara Hinton (http://www.silentgrief.com/)

"God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore, we will not fear." --Psalm 46:1-

Monday, September 7, 2009

Weekend with Family.

The first full week back at work is complete. I tried to stay busy and actually had a great client to work with who helped keep my mind off of things. Chase did well at his new school. I am very fortunate that he is able to be in the same class with his little friend Abby. That really helps even at his age to know someone in the class. These 2 have practically grown up together. And it really helps me when I drop him off to know that there is someone there waiting for him. There were days this week that it still doesn't seem real and that Jordan is not gone and I should be driving to our original babysitter's house. My car wants to keep going too. That was our routine.

Saturday comes and we loaded up the car and headed to San Antonio to see family. My side of the family gets together every Sunday before Labor Day to visit and hang out. We spent the evening with Randy's parents and my Aunt Judy on Saturday. The ladies and I took Chase up to play putt putt golf and tried to avoid the rain. I think that everyone had fun.

It is ironic how a 2 year old can only see themselves at the age they are at now. There are several photos around my in-laws house of Chase when he was a baby. Each one he saw he said "there is baby Jordan" . That gets me teary eyed each time. Trying to explain to him the difference is not worth it. How I wish that we were all here to spend the time together.

On Sunday we travel to my cousin's house just outside of San Antonio and had a great visit. Lots of hugs and prayers for us. I do feel at peace with where my little girl is at. The sadness is really for me, Randy and Chase. He was doing so well with her and he is just drawn to babies. My cousin has a little boy who is 7 months old and Chase immediately wanted to hold him. We sat out back on the lawn and I was holding the baby up so that he could stand and Chase was right there hugging him and trying to help. He is so good with little ones that it makes me cry to know that his opportunity to be a big brother was taken from him. He likes to try to make them laugh. That is part of life that he can not experience at the moment. We will see what the rest of life has in store for us and put it all in God's hands. If things are meant to be, he will help us make it happen.

Today we spent the morning running errands and trying to get caught back up with the yard work. Chase napped and Randy and I did some backyard garden therapy. It felt good to get out and do something with my hands. The sun felt great and for a short time it seemed as if everything was back to normal, I felt the need every once in a while to come in and check on the kids. But there is only one kid at home now. Everyday there are reminders of her here and the experiences that we will not get to share with her.

I got sad and actually felt bad for laughing and enjoying the afternoon with Chase and Randy swimming in the pool. I was thinking about how much fun the 2 of them would have had swimming in the pool together. And should we really be having fun? How long do you grieve and should we feel guilty? We do have a very happy little boy who really has no idea of what he has lost and he deserves to have his parents play with him.

We hold him and tell him everyday how much we love him. The evening finishes with a game of football in the back yard. My sweet family, Randy, Chase and me. I miss my little girl! Why did SIDS have to hit our family and what can we do to help prevent it from tearing up another family's hearts. What are the odds that if we are fortunate to have another precious angel that it would strike again? These are all things that I long to find out.

Friday, September 4, 2009

Back to work

It was time to get back to work and try to start life as a parent who lost a child. What will everyone say? No one really knows how to act around you and I wouldn't either. We are all doing OK and taking it one day at a time. It feels good to be back in the office and around people who care about you. Randy and I both work with a great group of folks and feel blessed.
The hard part is what do I say to someone who knew me pregnant and now asks "How is your little girl?" That is difficult, but all part of going through this cycle of life. How many others have similar pain in their own hearts that I do not even know. When we meet people we do not ask those deep down questions. I would like to know if I can help someone else share their own previous grief and add them to my prayers. We all have internal holes in our hearts and I do not think that the one in mine will ever really go away.

Being back at work feels good, most of the time. I have photos of Jordan up with her sweet little smile and find some comfort in those. I miss her dearly, but if I were to stay at home alone at this point in time, I would be a basket case. Getting back into a normal routine is good for us all. It keeps my mind occupied and I have clients to help.

I listed 2 homes in my neighborhood this week that belong to friends. It is sad to see good friends move away, but it is nice to know that they trust me with one of their largest asset and have confidence in my abilities. Real Estate can really keep you busy. I also have a buyer in town who I have been working with for a year and they have finally sold their home in New Mexico and are ready to buy here in Houston. Co-workers showed them houses while I was dealing with our loss and we finally got the opportunity to meet and tour homes together yesterday. Wrote a contract this evening on a home they love. That is a good feeling. I truly enjoy my job and helping people find their dream homes. There is some real satisfaction in finding them the right home. And for the past 2 days I have been able to keep my mind off of what has happened.

Tonight as I type thoughts of her are coming back and tears hit my cheeks. Chase asked me this evening "Jordan is not here?" Yes I tell him. "Where is she mom?" What a good sentence I should tell him, but it caught me so off guard that I tell him" she is in Heaven" OK was his response. Like that was the most normal place to be. Little kids mind's are amazing at times. Randy said that he talked his ear off today, I guess he finally does have part of his mother in him :)

Time for bed, we are heading to San Antonio to visit family for a reunion tomorrow. More tears I am sure, but it will be good to be around family.