Tuesday, August 14, 2007

What is "normal" anyway?

Some more pictures of the teeny-tiny bundle of Caleb-ness...

This soother is actually really tiny :)

Auntie Jamie

Uncle Erik

We've taken some time to do some little dates with Micah this week. On Sunday afternoon Erik and I left Keziah at home while we went for a walk to find a good vantage point to watch the Snowbirds perform (it was the Abby Air Show this past weekend). Would you guess that the best view we found was at the Petro Canada on Old Yale & Townline!

Today Micah and I left Keziah with Grandma and we went on the first blackberry hunt of the summer. We had quite a bit of success and took a few pictures along the way.

The infamous "cheese" face:

Micah's face reminds me of an olympic swimmer in this picture...

Having fun with colour...

It's so hard to get kids to stand still for a good picture!

Life in our little household has a "normal" feeling this week since Erik has gone back to work. He finished his second day at his new job and says he really likes it even though it's very different than what he was doing. It's a much slower pace than before and Erik admits he'll miss being "in charge". But I think God had the perfect timing in providing something that was low-stress for Erik right now.

I admit it feels wrong to be doing normal things. And it feels even more wrong that I'm so glad to be doing normal things. I know for the sake of my kids (and therefore my sanity), that routine and normalcy is a positive and necessary thing. But, it still feels weird. It seems wrong that I can go grocery-shopping or to the park just like I did 4 weeks ago. Life has changed forever for our family, but yet is has to go on somehow. I don't think any of us are sure exactly how that's supposed to work...

Erik and I have been reflecting a lot on death and heaven. A couple of months ago I read the book Edge of Eternity by Randy Alcorn and was so moved by it that I told Erik he needed to read it, even though he's not a reader at all. But Erik started it and now, after Nathan's death, is even more motivated to finish it. Randy Alcorn has written several books and heaven is a consistent theme (and something he has obviously researched a lot). The perspective in this book was so amazing that I felt like I couldn't live life the same after reading it. I would definitely recommend it.

That's all for today. It's 9 pm and the house is finally quiet. It feels like we are starting at square one with some of Micah's sleeping issues, but I'll save that saga for another post...


Karen said...

"Normal" has taken on a different feel, for sure, but I'm glad things are fitting more into a routine for you guys. Great pictures of Micah-I'm sure he felt special from the extra attention you and Erik have been giving him. I hope sleep issues subside now that things aren't so busy. Good to hear that Erik's job is going well too. In hindsight, taking that particular job was a God-thing and I hope it continues to be a positive experience for Erik, even though it's different from what he was doing before. And, as always, what a sweet boy Caleb is. How are things going now that they are all home now? Blessings to all of you guys as you take one day at a time.

Leanne said...

Those are great 'colour' pictures...wow.
I'm also glad that you have some normal-ness back in your lives, even though navigating these new waters is probably scary.
And I remember how teeny that soother is...Lucas has the orange one (I think it's the next step up) from the NICU that he is now thoroughly attached to. I have to go back every few months to visit and beg for another one...he will NOT take a 'normal' one! Not quite sure how I'm going to convince him to give it up.

erin said...

I need a good book to read, I think i might go check to see if our church library has that one.
i really like the picture of Micah and how bright the colors are. The blue sky is so clear and looks great with his red shirt.
and I love the sunglasses. The kids recently all got swimming goggles and it cracks me up everytime they wear them (and they must wear them at every bath time now too!)
Caleb looks precious. I think it is very good and healthy to go onto normal schedule. You all know that is what Nate would want you to do.
I keep thinking of that Mercy me homesick song. I think the first time I heard it was in your car in BC and you told me it would be a great funeral tribute song. the song talks about how we know he is in a better place and we rejoice in that but it makes us only want to go to heaven more.
I also remember when reading Purpose drivin life how there was a chapter on how our life hasn't even really started yet. How we are just preparing ourselves for our real life in heaven.
You have to go on living, and preparing yourself for your real home someday. I know God intended us to enjoy our time here on earth. Plus, I think the kids need normal life back, they deserve that and you guys do too.
love you all

Anonymous said...

Erin, I am happy to hear that life is starting to seem more "normal". Isn't it weird that it seems when someone close passes away, everyone else's lives go back to normal, but yours feels like it will never be the same? I don't know if that really explains what I mean, but it's a weird feeling. We love you guys, and hope you continue to keep feeling better each day.

Janelle said...

i can't get enough of pics of little Caleb!! :) i just marvel at what a miracle he is!!
how exciting for Micah to go on dates with you guys! i need to do that more with Kamryn! i've been thinking lots lately about how Kamryn will not remember anything that happened when she was 2, but that's no excuse for me to not make her days as exciting and "full" as i can. you & Erik are such great parents. i'm so proud of you guys.
as for "normal"...i prayed for you today while i was having a bubble bath (weird i know!! haha). and that was one of the things...that you would be able to return to a new kind of "normal". i can imagine how guilty you feel when you "go on" with life. i even felt guilty the last post i did on my blog - because it was about normal things, and a little complaining. i wasn't sure if i should do that while you are still experiencing so much grief. but, like you said - your lives have changed forever. but you still have to wake up every morning, you still have to take care of the kids, and you still have to pay your bills...and somewhere in there you have to LIVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST. not easy to do - but you're taking the baby steps, and that's awesome!!
i love you tons & am always here if you need to chat.

Yvonne&Eric said...

Hi Jamie,
Those pictures or Caleb are so precious. He is such a cutie.
I know that you might hear this lots but I just want to affirm that it's okay for you to do "normal" day-to-day stuff. You don't need to feel guilty about it. I'm sure it's hard but as someone else said - Nathan would want you to live on. I'm praying for you and thinking of you lots.
P.S. I would like to put together a little package for Doug and Elissa. Is there something specific they need right now? You can email me at ygronau@hotmail.com
Hope today is a good one.

Summer said...

I think that is great that you finally have some normal in your household!! Glad everything is going good for you guys!! The pictures of Micah are so adorable!! Little Caleb is a little cutie!!

Lorrie said...

Just wanted to say that those pictures are absolutely fantastic, you have a great gift there!
And as everyone above me has commented, getting back into a normal way of life is part of living, which is what we are here to do.....praying for you all.

Michelle said...

Wow Jamie, you take absolutely beautiful pictures..a true gift. I think it's good and healthy that you guys find a little sense of normality like you said. It will help in the healing. Thank you also for being so honest and open as you and Erik go through this difficult time. It helps in how to pray for you guys!!

Jon & Bonnie said...

Beautiful pictures Jamie. So thankful that you are finding your way into a new "normal"... I'll be praying that its as smooth a transition as possible. You are such a strong family and I admire that so much. I've taken so much encouragement from the way you've been holding tight to each other and to Jesus. May He continue to uphold you and bring you new moments of joy and peace each day.

Much love.

kelly said...

beautiful pictures of the kids, Jamie. as you adjust to this new normal, we pray that God's courage and peace will be the foundation of that normal.
love you!

Ej said...

I have been trying to leave a comment for the last few days but my computer is on the fritz it seems!

Anyway - Caleb looks so tiny! We're praying for them - as having a new baby seems like enough of a challenge without everything else.

While Micah may not understand fully or be able to communicate everything to you - kids pick up more than we know. Grief is a hard process when we're adults so I can't imagine trying to grasp it with a 2 year old brain. It sounds like you are doing a great job in helping him deal with everything.

Are you coming on Saturday? We hope to see you there.


gkder said...

Thanks for the beautiful pictures Jamie. The blue sky against Micah's red shirt is beautiful. I cannot believe how he has grown. We continue to pray for all of you. Love you mom

Sarah E. said...

good question, "what is normal?" I would like to read that book you mentioned too. Your pics of Micah "in color" are wonderful. Blessings to you and your family Jamie.

Trev & Rebekah said...

I love the picture of Micah with the blue sky.
I can't imagine how to live a normal life after the loss of a loved one who was so close. I pray that you will figure out what that means and looks like.
Looks like we might be dong Spring Adventure next year in Abbostford with MBMSI. Hope to catch up with you in person then.

Jon & Bonnie said...

Hey Jamie,
I forgot to mention a book you might like. If you enjoyed "Edge of Eternity," you should read "In Light of Eternity" by Randy Alcorn. I started reading just after Nate died and it has been incredible. I'm not quite finished it yet but it has given me such a renewed excitement and joy for heaven and the unbelievable place it will be. I've pictured Nate praising & walking with God a lot as I've read it and its brought a bit of comfort.
Just thought i'd let you know. Hope you're having a good day!

Nichole said...

Yes, "what is normal"??
Caleb is beautiful!
LOVE the Micah pictures. He is growing up so fast. When he talked to me on the phone last time, oh how it made me long to have you guys closer!!!