My dear Mary Lawrence
It has been nine weeks since I last gave you a bath, fed you dinner, or even picked you up to hug you. Those things I often took for granted I now miss so much. I wasn't there for your first day of school or your very first ballet class. (How I would give anything to see you and your little friends prancing around like little pink angels!) Nor was I able to rock you and sing "Fairest Lord Jesus" to you when you were sick a few weeks ago. So many precious moments I have missed out on, and so much time has passed that has threatened our once strong bond. And it makes me so sad.
Do you know that the two of us were inseparable before all of this happened? Your first year of life in Connecticut was so precious to me. I didn't have any family to help me, and your daddy had to work so much that it was often just the two of us. I had no idea how to be a mommy but had to quickly figure things out on my own. Looking back, I laugh at all the silly 'new mom' mistakes I made. Like the first time you sat up - I didn't think about the fact that you would probably get tired of sitting up and stupidly didn't put anything around you to protect you when you toppled back over. After a few minutes you went straight back and hit your head so hard on the floor. Luckily it was carpet! You cried, of course, but once I picked you up you were fine. It seemed no matter what I did or didn't do, you loved me just the same. Because I was your rock -the person that was always there for you no matter what.
I remember I would take you everywhere with me. We would take daily strolls into our little New England town. Everyone knew us because I had a blue stroller and a large white dog that was often mistaken for a horse. I'd take you to lunch and we'd people watch. I remember when you were fussy I'd take long drives through the rolling countryside and we'd look at all the beautiful estates nearby. Sometimes we'd take the train into the city and explore a little. Or we'd take Blue to the beach and get our feet wet.
We formed such a special bond that for a long time you didn't want anyone but me. Your daddy would try to hold you and make you happy but only I could. Thankfully you have grown out of the phase! Since I have been unable to help you over the past few months, your bond with him is even stronger. In fact, you even prefer him! It gives me such joy to see such a precious father/daughter bond between the two of you. He loves you more than anything, Mary Lawrence.
As for this current experience, I know people say that you are too young to remember. I pray that is true. But I see your face and I know that you are confused. You ask me all of the time, "Are you okay, Momma?" It breaks my heart. And I know it is going to be even harder this week when I go to the hospital. For two months you have consistently seen me on my bed. You may not always want to play with me, but you know you can always run into my bedroom whenever you want to see me. I worry what you will think when you no longer see me here. I am praying that you are not scared.
It is not fair to you that I am not able to be here for you during this time. But Mary Lawrence, your little sister needs me right now and she needs me to rest in the hospital so she can grow and thrive. I know that I am putting my life at risk by having this baby. But, Mary Lawrence, I would sacrifice my life for you just the same. That's how much I love you.
I have written many letters for you over the years that tell you how much I love you and what I desire for your life. But what I write today is so important and I never want it to get lost, so that's why I am posting it online. If for some reason I can't tell you myself, I am telling you today that I am doing this all for you! Although of course I want Maggie more than anything, even more I long so badly for you to have a sibling. I want you to have someone to run and play with when you are little, but also a sweet sister that will be there for you as a confidante and friend when you are going through the seasons of life. I know what it means to have that and I want you to have it, too. That is my prayer and my heart's desire and that's why I so gladly take on this risk.
For some reason God is allowing all of us to go through this trial right now. Even you. And He is asking us to put all of our trust in Him right now. I keep pleading with God that if he lets Maggie live, I promise to raise her to know and love Jesus. But every time I pray this, though, I am convicted that I already have a daughter that needs this heavenly direction just as much. So it is my hope that we are leading you to Him each day and each night. It is my prayer that through all of this tribulation you will learn that the Lord is your true rock, Mary Lawrence. Whenever you are scared or alone, for the rest of your life you can rest in the fact that Jesus is always with you and will never leave you or forsake you.
I love you always, my precious angel.