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.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Aching Heart

All day today all I could think of was my little boy. My heart has been aching so badly for him today for some unknown reason. I think it is probably because Gabrielle is getting close to the age he was when he died. Part of me couldn't remember what he weighed exactly and if he was the same size as she is or not. I had to pull his autopsy report to remember exactly...I was pretty sure he was 13 lbs but couldn't remember the ozs. There again in black and white is the reminder that he is forever gone and he had weighed 13lbs could I ever forgotten that? Find any irony in that? I surely do!

Many of my memories have faded yet there are still a few I can vividly remember. I remember going into labor with him and Hugh walking in the door from Michael's sleep study exhausted. As I looked at his tired face I had to tell him I thought I was in labor. We were off to the hospital and I remember the ride there since it was my first ride that was more than a block long...I don't remember the whole thing but I remember a call from my mom as we were turning a bend. I remember the doctors faces in disbelief as they saw me in a bed at the hospital waiting for someone to come and check in on me. All three of them walked over to my bed and asked me what I was doing there...I just told them, "I told you he wasn't waiting!" He had to come on a day that I would remember after having so many big brothers. I always thought that the date 09/09/09 would be a date I would never forget little did I know how true that would be.

I remember the docs in the OR, and the anesthesia not taking and being in so much pain as they laid me down on the OR table and actually screaming. I remember Hugh coming in and taking pictures, and his first cry still rings in my head vividly, and our very first picture with him that a nurse took for us. Once I was back to my room, my mom had come up and I was so glad to have her there. They finally brought him to me and I will never forget holding him for the very first time and that bond I instantly had with him. My mom sat at my bedside and I handed him to her as tears welled up in her eyes and she said how he was named after her father and how great of a man he was going to be because of it. He never did get to find out if he was.

Richard came in and he was such a proud big brother, holding George like a pro! My brother and his GF came in and brought Michael and Josh with them. We pretended like George wasn't born yet. George was tucked on my belly with a light sheet over him. They were not fooled and the minute they realized something was up, they started to look for him and Josh pulled back the cover. I will never forget his face. I remember the family photo and the only picture I have of all my boys together. Most of the time following his days at home are all pretty fuzzy. I do remember the day he came home and how we went to my mom's right after we left and my aunt and cousin were there. There is one night early on that I had him with me downstairs and I just held him and cuddled him and thanked God for him.

I remember Christmas day. I remember taking him to my grandparents resting place to meet them not long before he died. The trip to Disney I don't forget and I actually remember quite a bit of that trip with him. He was such a trooper on that long drive! Ironically the boys remember a lot from that trip...I can't thank God enough for that time together as a family before he took him. It was like he gave us all our last moments with George and we didn't know it at the time but looking back now I know exactly what they were. Mine was the night before he died when I picked him up and played with him...a moment I will never forget and that I am so thankful for.

Ironically I can't get the days of his death and those following out of my mind. I was talking to Richard today after his counseling session and we talked about how things have become so fuzzy and you try as hard as you can to remember every single moment. One part of you feels guilty for not remembering every moment since there were only 4 months for you to remember. Each fleeting memory is like another piece of him you feel you have lost. It is often an odd feeling and not knowing what to do with those feelings sometimes is hard. I have found that talking about it does help and often times I find that Richard and I tend to talk to one another about those days without having to worry about upsetting someone and we can actually voice our individual pains to one another and it helps the other know they are not alone. At first I didn't think it was right to talk about it with Richard but I am finding it now that it is healing for him and for me in our own ways since we both viewed things from different perspectives.

All that said, life moves on without George in it here on Earth. Today the boys and I took full advantage of the beautiful weather. We all played tag out in front of my mom's house. The boys even invited the new neighbor(an older man) and had him acting like he was a child again. I took some pictures of Gabrielle and the boys outside. There were fleeting moments where I felt as if there should have been a little boy toddling around and felt him missing but then I thought about how he shines through their smiles and their laughs. These moments are what it is all about and no matter what happened to George and no matter what I can or can't remember of it, I at least know he knew nothing but happiness and love and in some ways I find comfort in that although I long to remember every blessed moment that I had with him. My arms but most of all my heart will always ache to hold him again...but it gives me something to look forward to rather than fear when God calls me home.

I also wanted to let those who read know that I have changed the settings so you can leave comments if you would like to. When I originally set this page up I had that option but someone had left an inappropriate comment and I shut it down since at the time there was no way for me to edit it and take it off. I didn't need the sort of comments left and will delete anything I deem inappropriate but if you feel compelled to write a message please feel free. Most people did not recognize the guestbook we had to the right side...I am going to leave it up since I often write messages to George in there when I miss him. Today I do have two was such an emotional day from start to finish!

Thankfully God Is in Charge

I can't tell you how very happy I am that God is in charge. Today I stood in the shower during my quiet time thinking of how I never would have been able to choose any of my children to return to heaven if given the option. After much thought I began to think of how grateful I am that God is in charge and not me. My boys are so close to one another and loosing one of their counterparts would have been even more devastating than loosing George.

Looking back on all the trials in my life I am now grateful for them all. They have made me the person I am. Without these things I would not be where I am. I'm thankful Hugh was laid off because he was here to spend time with George something I can not put a price tag on. I thank him for my first divorce for I will not be with Hugh and know the true love that we have for one another. The boys and their disease is a constant struggle but without it I never would be assertive and know as much as I do medically. I used to be so withdrawn and unconfident but now I am far from that. Every single trial has been something that has strengthened me and among all the bad, the good somehow outweighs the bad. In it all that is what I try to focus on, knowing how hard it was and how I questioned it all when it was happening but now understand. These are the things I try to keep in mind during difficult trials.

I am also grateful that he is our judge, and not others around us. Last night I stood there in utter disbelief as two of the people I consider close to me began to joke about people on welfare. We had been talking about the cat we just rescued and how the shelter makes sure they are spayed/neutered before they are sent home along with vaccines. With that one of them made a comment about how those on welfare should have to go through the same thing if they want services. I just stood there as they both started to laugh and joke while inside I was dying knowing right now we are on welfare getting assistance for food.

People in general do not realize how judgmental they can be even when they think they aren't. I would have to say that includes me, even though I try all the time to not be that way. Knowing how much it hurts to be judged by others, I don't want to inflict that sort of shame and upset onto someone else. I know that unless I have walked their shoes that I don't really get it. Yes there are people out there who take advantage of things like the welfare system but there are others who are out there working as hard as they can that are being judged just because they are in an unfortunate situation by no fault of their own.

My husband has always taken whatever job comes his way with no arguments(unless it had to do with heights because he is afraid of them, or something that would endanger his health.) Right now he is working as a tow truck driver. It doesn't seem like a glamorous job and by far it isn't but how many people are happy to see these people when they show up after their car has broken down? He has no holidays off and has to work a terrible shift for only $12 an hour. In the pouring rain and thunder, he is out there getting soaked to the bone just to make some sort of a living due to our economy. His life is put in danger as he stands on the side of a highway changing someones tire or putting their car on his bed. The truck he drives is a piece of junk where the emergency break has slipped several times and he has used his own body to stop the car from smashing into another vehicle. He gets no sick days and benefits are slim to none.

We have never been fortunate enough to have been in a position that we are well off or don't have to struggle. Life happens to us and always has. We have each worked hard and still only just have scraped by. In all of it though we have kept our heads high and pushed through the extremely tough stuff. Yes we have had to receive but we have also given in ways that we are capable of doing so. It may not be financially, but it is always from the heart and without strings attached. We will pitch in whenever needed and would give our very last penny to help someone else out in need.

It is the general narrow mindedness of people that make it hard for so many to pull themselves from these bad situations. They beat themselves up enough for everyone and agonize of their life circumstances, they don't need to be reminded on a constant basis. I am so glad that God sees us as we are and not for where we are in life. Where would we be if Mary and Joseph said that they weren't ready for a baby or that they were not financially stable or it just wasn't the right time. I am sure they carried their own set of ridicule as did many in the bible, as those around them did not understand God's calling in their lives. It is so very hard to hear judgment from those around us and yet keep pushing through it all to continue to what we were called to do. I do however know when I stand there on my judgment day that it will be God and not those here who will judge me and for that I am so grateful.

With Easter this week and it being holy week, I have done much thought about the true sacrifice of all those involved. It made me think of my relationship with God. Can I say that I love him unconditionally and that I love him as much as I do anyone else and more? For me that is such a hard answer because I love him in a different manner than anyone else. There are so many sides of him and his presence in my life that love like that is just so hard to fathom and wrap my head around. I'm so use to the love from Earth and all that comes with that and it is nothing like the love that we have for God or that he has for us. All in all I am so grateful that he is in charge and I am thankful that I am able to put my faith in him and I am so thankful for all he sees past in all of us as humans...his love is so sustaining when the rest of the world seems out of sink and unable to be understood.

Monday, April 18, 2011

To Hold You Again

What would I give to hold you again? No one could ever imagine what I would give to be able to hold you again in my arms. Every single time I think of it, I am brought back to that dream after you died. I know it was God's gift to me and allow me to have that moment with you even if it was only in a dream. It was so real, I wish I could have recorded it but in a way I did in my mind. Nothing could ever explain the feelings I had in that dream. I know you were really there tucked under my chin where you belong for a few more brief moments.

In some ways, my heart aches just to remember that dream and then part of me is so grateful for that moment in my dreams when I got to say my goodbye to you. I remember praying to God and asking him why he didn't allow me to say goodbye to you but I knew it just wasn't possible...there is no good way to loose your child but when you aren't prepared for it, there are definitely a certain longing that you are left with. I hold your sister and all I can think about is what it was like to hold you and how much I would give to do that again. That dream was God's way of letting me say goodbye to you and hold you one more time. As you were there in my arms, I knew you had died, and than God turned to me and after my time was over, I could have stayed there forever, he turned and took you and my dream was over.

Every part of me wants to hold you again...I miss you so much!

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