This morning I saw Thomas…

My bedroom door opened and Gemma-Rose appeared. Without a word she slipped under the quilt next to me and snuggled up close. Her deliciously cool skin touched mine as we lay in the warmth of the bed. I stroked her hair back off her forehead and I looked at her profile.  

And I saw Thomas.

There is something about Gemma-Rose’s nose and her upper lip and the distance in between. I saw the same profile when I held Thomas. When he was disconnected from all the tubes and wires of his life support system, that beautiful nose and upper lip and that distance in between appeared.

Imogen also has the same profile. For months after Thomas died, I’d gaze at my five year old daughter trying to recapture our son. I could no longer look upon our baby, so I looked at his sister instead. I looked and I remembered and I tried to hold onto the picture of his face.

And this morning I saw Thomas again.

Our children are never really gone. The experience is never truly over. God always has one more gift, one more surprise to bestow upon us, if we keep looking.

“It’s a pity we have to get up,” I said to Gemma-Rose. “I could stay snuggled up to you all day. I could hug you forever.”

“We don’t have to get up,” she replied. “We could stay here all day.”

I remember snuggling up to Thomas. I couldn’t hug him forever. Eventually I had to ring the bell for the nurse. I kissed him and laid him in her arms and said goodbye.

“We have to get up. We have jobs to do,” I said to Gemma-Rose.

“We could let the others do those,” she said with a cheeky grin.

“That would be lazy. No. Up you get.” I reluctantly disentangled myself from my daughter. Unfortunately, we can’t hug anyone forever. 

But we can love. We can love forever.

And we should stop and hug and savour the moment, as often as we can. For if we do, we might just observe a little gift from God.

This morning I hugged Gemma-Rose. This morning I saw Thomas.
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  1. *in tears*

    Beautiful Sue. ♥ ♥ ♥

  2. Beautiful, Sue...

    1. Ellen,

      Thank you for sharing my story, and for your comment.

      God bless!

  3. Today, through your amazingly poignant and beautifully written words, I saw Thomas too.......

    1. Nancy,

      You saw Thomas too? Your comment brought joy to my day. Thank you! And thank you for stopping by my blog today.

      God bless you.

  4. Sue, I love your outlook. A possibly painful reminder is considered a gift by you and that is just beautiful. How wonderful that you have the opportunity to not only see him but be with him again one day :)

    1. Kelly,

      I remember, in those early weeks after Thomas died, how I couldn't stop looking at Imogen. I just ached to see Thomas again, but of course I couldn't, so I looked at Imogen instead. And then yesterday I suddenly noticed Thomas in Gemma-Rose's face. I am grateful for the reminders. I don't want to forget even though the memories are painful.

      One day... yes, we will be together! That IS wonderful!

      Thank you for stopping by.

      God bless!

  5. Sue, this is breathtaking. Truly God touched you this you a glimpse of your precious Thomas. And you, without a doubt, are one who "loves forever."

    Thanks you for sharing your beautiful heart.

    1. Patricia,

      Thank you so much for your kind words. I've been thinking about love recently. I seem to have written a lot of stories about hugs and a mother's love. Love is so powerful. I am amazed by how much a person can love. Yes, I will love Thomas forever (and my other children). I am so glad I managed to give you a glimpse of my son.

      God bless you!

  6. Colleen Ann Thomson8 December 2012 at 23:51

    Sue, so beautiful. Yes, we can (and MUST!!!) love forever.
    God bless you:)
    Colleen from Pennsylvania, USA

    1. Colleen,

      Thank you! I am sure you understand about loving forever. I hope you felt God's love and peace on Christopher's birthday. I also hope your other sons enjoyed the celebration.

      God bless you and your family!

  7. I am left without words.
    Yes sometimes we catch a glance of an elder sibling, a well loverd aunt or granny in our children. It is a gift from God. A gift telling us that they have not left us, only gone ahead.
    And yet can the longing to be *there*, either in time or space nearly crush your heart.

    1. Uglemor,

      You said you are 'left without words', but your words are just perfect. You have expressed such a helpful thought so well. Yes, my heart does long to be with Thomas sometimes but at the same time he has not truly left us. One day we will be together again. Thank you!

      God bless.

  8. Oh wow. I see my baby boy too often. Your post has brought back tears.

    1. Lauren,

      Our sons are no longer physically with us, but I don't think they are truly gone from our lives. Maybe we cry when we see a reminder of them and it hurts. I imagine it is a lot more difficult for you than it was for me. We never brought Thomas home. I don't have clothes and toys and other things that belonged to him. I don't imagine him in our house because he was never here.

      Maybe there will come a day when you will treasure the reminders of your son, despite the pain. We wouldn't want to forget our children. I have nothing but sorrowful memories of Thomas, but I don't want to lose those memories, as they are all I have linking me to my son. Well almost all I have... I also treasure being able to catch a glimpse of my son's face in my daughter's. That was such a special moment the other day.

      Thank you for reading my story. I feel very sorry you are feeling so much pain. I will pray for you.


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