Sunday, February 20, 2011

Loving on my Babies Today

[February 23, edit:  Today would have been Mattias' 2nd birthday.  Please join me in celebrating his life by taking a few moments to do something in his honor and then posting about it in the comment section.  His mother has already read this post and I will be sure to invite his family to read the additional comments.  Thank you all for taking a moment to bless this sweet family!]  

About a month ago I was introduced to Dana's Blog, "Roscommon Acres" by a lady in my Bible Study Group. 

Roscommon Acres is a blog about a family in Nebraska with 6 children.  They live in the country.  They have an orchard.  They have geese.  They garden.  She’s thinking about taking up beekeeping.  They homeschool.  And Dana writes about family life.  Her life is not so different from mine.

Except in December, a heartbreaking accident killed one of her babies.  He was 21 months old.

About the same age as one of my little Farmhands. 

The thing is, when you have healthy babies, you take it for granted that they will be here tomorrow.

And the day after that.

And all the days after that.

This mom was careful, but some things can’t be prevented.

If it had been my child instead of hers, what regrets would I have right now?

I would regret that the house wasn’t cleaner and at the same time I would regret that I spent so much time cleaning it. 

I would regret that I didn’t play more.

What would you regret?

I invite you to post in the comments section one thing that you will do with your children this week in honor of Dana’s son.  I would like to invite her to come read this post and our comments and know that her son has made a practical difference in our lives.  Now, if you will excuse me, I have some serious business to take care of down in the sandbox…

(Incidentally, this story is what inspired this week’s Motivated Moms Giveaway.)


  1. This week I have decided to let my son join me when cleaning. He has helped clean the chinchilla cage so far today. Although, sometimes I get caught up trying to get things done as quickly as possible this week I have decided quick isn't as important as the memories I make with my son and the time spent with him. I also have decided not to make him wait until I am done with whatever project I am on to play. My projects can wait rather than my child waiting.

  2. I will remember that the accident that rendered my daughter severely brain damaged could have taken her life instead. And now, we can all play together (albeit with adapted toys). So we will. And we will take video. And post on our own blog about how lucky we are.

  3. My kids aren't that little any more, but I know how much it still means to them when I tuck them in to bed at night, even though they are certainly capable of putting themselves to bed. I'm often glued to the computer, working at that hour, and just give them a quick kiss when they come to say goodnight. I'm going to get up from my chair each night and do this small thing for the both of them. Thank you for posting Mattias's story AlinaJoy. What a sad reminder to us all how truly fragile these precious lives are.

  4. Extra hugs. Extra kisses. And Extra Pillow Forts. And More hugs and kisses and fun. Who cares if the laundry piles up to the ceiling.

  5. As a mother who's daughter died from cancer at 2, you wouldn't care one single bit if your house was clean or not, what you care about is the moments, every single moment you spent with your child. The thing about this is can play the what would I feel game all you want, but you will never know the horror and pain unless you lived it and when you do, it's often rather hurtful to those of us living through it. So instead of the what if...the best thing you can do is appreciate the gifts you have and make the most of every single moment you have, because tomorrow is never promised...including for our children.

  6. Earth is a tough place to walk sometimes. We have such limited knowledge now. This family has been on my heart and in my prayers since first reading about the accident. It makes part of me numb with fear, but then I remember mine is not a spirit of fear, and I try to focus on right here and now. I focus on those precious moments, and even those hard, tiring, exhausting moments, that will one day be precious memories.
    I join you in celebrating Mattias' life today!

  7. Christy, you're 100% right. Those of us who have never lost a child cannot even begin to imagine the depths of this sort of devastation. There's no point in saying "we understand" because the simple truth is that we can't ever really understand. The "what if" question is not meant to delude us into a false sense of empathy. I use it as a tool of self-examination to see how I can be a better wife and mother. Making changes in my life in honor of Mattias is my small offering to his family so they know that Mattias touched me and made my life better. It is a pitiful offering, but it's all I know to do.
    **Gentle Hugs to you** I'm so sorry about your sweet little girl.

  8. What a sad situation. :(

    We also homeschool six kids and not day has gone by that I haven't worried about them. What I try to do is notice. Just notice what goes on. Notice when they need to talk. Stuff like that. Nothing profound.

  9. Today is my daughter's 1st birthday. Today she helped her older brother (3), sister (5) and I make a huge sheet fort in the living room. She delighted in running in and out of the tent and grinning at us. Tonight, thanks to your post about Mattias and his family, my husband will secure the 2- 8-foot-tall bookcases to the wall in my son's room. We have put off this task for a year, but no longer. Then I will hug my babies till they fall to sleep in my arms. Thinking of your family tonight.

  10. What a horrible tragedy! =( I cried for at least an hour after reading her posts, at the same time smothering my two kids with so many hugs & kisses they struggled to get loose. I was reminded once again how precious our time is, & how we choose to spend that time will one day be the source of fulfillment or regret. I chose today to play more with my kids, to not say "no" unless a safety issue was involved, to not utter one sharp word, to let them drag every toy into the living room, to play music & dance with them, to nap together while cuddling, & to consciously cherish all of it while also making a mental note to have more days just like it. Thank you for the reminder.

  11. Thanks for posting that, Jennifer. You have warmed my heart! I just want to make sure you understand Mattias is not my son. He is the son of Dana who writes the blog:

    I too have made some safety changes at our house. Tonight we are removing the sliding chain lock on the front door. The children aren't tall enough to open it if they ever had to let themselves out in case of an emergency. We are going to replace it with something that they can manage. I don't know why I didn't think about it before.