George Charles Garman 09/09/09 to 01/29/10

January 29, 2010 our world was turned upside down when our 4 month old little boy earned his wings after a battle with Mitochondrial Disease and awoke in the Lords loving arms.

"Life can not be measured by the number of breaths you take, but by the moments that take your breath away."

George's Guardian's of Grace Projects

Stocking project is now in full force collecting donations. We have a list of the items we can use. You can also choose to sponsor a stocking in memory or honor of someone else. We will include a paragraph or two in the cards we place in the stockings to let the recipient know about the person that means so much to you. Our paypal account is posted on this page and ready to take donations. Email us for a list of items needed or with any questions or information you would like included on a sponsored stocking/donation.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Hard Days

The past few days have been very difficult days for me. I could not even bring myself to write. By the end of the day I was just so exhausted in so many ways. It has been so hard to see Gabrielle outlive her brother and surpass him in so many ways. This was truly something I never thought that I would feel and have been taken back so much by it all. Don't get me wrong, I am happy she is doing this and thank God every single day for each day I have with her.

Sunday, was the day she became as old as George was the day he died. Ironically, it was also my nieces baptism and I found some irony as I sat there in the church watching her being baptized and holding my daughter knowing at her age I was holding her brother in my arms lifeless as a stranger baptized his body. My niece is also born just a few days after George was a year later so watching her often times is like knowing what I missed with him. My biggest regret was not having him baptized before he died and that I had planned to do it in the spring but he just never made it. Part of me felt like it was some cruel joke that God was playing on me even though I was so happy for my sister and my niece. I HATE all these damn mixed emotions and how unpredictable they are. It took everything I had to just not loose it. Gabrielle was fussy so Hugh had taken her to the back since I was asked to read during the service. In some deep part of me I was so thankful that Hugh had her because I don't really know if I would have been able to handle it. He doesn't think deeply into things like I do so these subtle things are things he often times doesn't dwell on like I do.

The service ended and family and friends gathered to celebrate my niece becoming a child of God. All of it just seemed so surreal to me for some strange reason. It was another one of those moments where the world around me kept spinning and in my mind I was in slow motion. I had to gather myself so that I did not interrupt things so I walked to the far side of the church where there was a kneeler and candles. By that point I had Gabrielle back in my arms and I just felt sudden rush of mixed emotions as I knelt down and just prayed to God. I thanked him for the gifts of my children and asked him for the strength to carry on each day without my son here. My heart was so broken and I just felt so very lost inside of my own head although I have become great at the pretend face. For a few moments I was there taking it in and gathering myself as I held my little girl begging God to keep her safe and all my other children safe telling him that I could not do this ever again and just begging for his mercy where that was concerned and how I didn't want anyone I love or know to ever have to live this sort of pain.

We left the party after early since it was way to much for the kids and Gabrielle since it was at a restaurant. Tears streamed silently from my eyes on the way home. Hugh and I went home where we spent time with Michael and Gabrielle and got them all ready for bed once Josh and Richard returned home(they stayed with my mom at the party). Once all the boys were in bed Hugh and I sat on the floor with Gabrielle talking about George and crying and remembering our sweet little monkey. Among all the pain and sadness we were feeling right there in those moments, Gabrielle finally rolled over!!!

At that moment we were so excited among all that pain. Those are the moments you really know that God is present and heard my prayers. This is a huge milestone for me to have the kids meet. Joshua did not meet that milestone until he was 10 months old and at the same age that George was when he died, Joshua had his first seizure. Michael had no trouble meeting that milestone and in some weird way when George rolled over when he was suppose to I had some false sense of security. I was so caught off guard when he died a few short weeks after he rolled over for the first time. Gabrielle was starting to scare me and make me hold my breath since she didn't roll yet even though I knew she was capable of it but just put her head down and cried herself to sleep whenever she did tummy time. I was so worried about her especially when that day came up and she still hadn't rolled. That small little milestone made me realize that even though I don't have it all together sometimes that God does so it is ok when I don't. It is such a hard thing to let yourself do when you are a perfectionist and a person who tries to keep it all together all the time.

There is another mom who's son's story was very much like George's but he happened to be fortunate enough to be put on a monitor and is still alive. His heart did stop but because they were prepared he is alive today but docs told her it would have been considered SIDS had he actually died. We have found this friendship with one another. I had posted on facebook a while ago about how much my arms ache to hold my son again. She happens to sew and offered to sew me a monkey and weight it down with sand to be the weight he was when he died. At first I was kind of hesitant but then I thought about it and it will be so wonderful to have the monkey to hold on days like I had Sunday. He is complete and she is mailing him out. Ironically George weighed 13lbs 13ozs when he died...what an odd combination of numbers especially since he was born 09/09/09. I'm going to post a picture of my George that is making his way to my arms and comfort me when I cannot hold my son and have a heavy heart.

Yesterday and today were not as bad as Sunday of course but every single time I look at Gabrielle all I can think is how she outlived him. Everything from now on is new and I have nothing to compare it to. That is good but also weighs down my heart thinking of all the things he never had a chance to do in life. Many mom's happen to do this so I know I am not alone in this but I do have to say it seems like a very lonely thing when you are going through it. Please keep me in your prayers always and also my family since we all have our moments at different times and always will. Grief never goes away, it just changes with time. Counseling can't take away normal feelings and I keep this page just so that people realize this and know that this is a lifelong thing and it never goes away. I hope that someone else will benefit from this because I know how hard it has been for me since many people feel so inadequate to deal with a situation like this so they avoid it all together.

If you know someone who has lost a core member of their family...child, sibling, mother, father, etc. Reach out to them every now and then especially on days like Mother's Day or Father's Day or just any day of the week. Do not judge them for you don't know what it is like to walk in their shoes. They are shoes they cannot take off and are a size too small so keep that in mind as you think they should have moved on with life. Instead of suggesting counseling give them a shoulder to cry on or a listening ear often times that helps them more than any amount of counseling ever will. Share their memories of their loved one even years later. Remember tears are not always bad and often times God's gift to us and help us to heal. Just love them for who they are not who you think they should be. To those of you walking this path, my heart goes out to you and I walk hand in hand with you and hope you find comfort knowing that you are not alone, especially on the "hard days"

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Video Tributes/Celebration of Life Footage

Here is a link to a video tribute that was made by Richard's dad in memory of George. Get out your tissues!!/video/video.php?v=1360981185308&ref=mf

We Finally have footage from the service up and running:!/video/video.php?v=1368692138077&ref=mf!/video/video.php?v=1368733099101!/video/video.php?v=1368770540037

It is in 4 sections running about 17 mins each. If you were unable to attend, you can now see what you missed. We were so blessed to have everyone there with us in person and in spirit!

Me With My Prince Charming In Front of the Castle

Me With My Prince Charming In Front of the Castle