Thursday, October 29, 2009

Remembering Knox on his birthday

We kept up with our tradition of launching balloons, eating sonic for lunch or dinner(and regretting it), and eating cake Knox style.

The balloon gang. We learned a lesson last year: you can have too many balloons so we went to the party store and each person got a different color and then we got 3 more yellow ones.

We tried to go youngest to oldest but Creed not knowing anything about letting balloons go and everything about playgrounds and swings had a pretty one-track mind.

Jack went first instead.

Then Emma...

Lizzy....who finally solved the mystery of how she knew Knox's favorite color was green. She said that she asked him if his favorite color was green and he said, "yes." Simple as that.

Then Creed was ready to get into it.

Anne Michal...
Then they let the 3 yellow ones go together. I know I said it last year, but it is kind of difficult as you have that sense of letting go all over again, but the kids see it as a celebration so we do it anyway.

There they go.

Elizabeth made the cake all by herself and then spelled Knox in sprinkles. When did she get big enough to do that without my help. Well, I did get the pan out of the cupboard. ;)
Digging in...

The damage...

And then off to the playground to play.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Random Thoughts on Knox's 4th Birthday

Going into this, his 4th birthday, and our 3rd(gasp) without him seemed a bit different. Jon and I went to a respite retreat last weekend hosted by the author of this book and her husband:
This was one of the first books that someone gave me and I found it very comforting and reassuring to know that people had been through this and are doing more than just surviving. I was really nervous going in; I am not a particularly outgoing person especially around people I don't know, and I didn't know any of these people. I reminded myself that when Knox had his accident, I felt completely stripped, naked, and vulnerable. I felt pretty certain that those people who were coming knew what that felt like and I could be open with them.
They made it easy for us. Here we were in a group of people who knew just what we were going through. We were all living each other's nightmare. No one in the room had the "prize" that no one wanted for worst day ever. Being 2 1/2 years out from his accident, I sometimes wonder if people know how hard it still is. Yes, we live and love and laugh, but there are still times you want to curl up in a ball, pull the covers over your head, and never come out again or smash every breakable in the house into smithereens. There is still so much right there, under the surface. I didn't have to wonder if anyone there knew this because they live it even if it hasn't been 2 1/2 years for them or even if it has been longer.
It was kind of different to be with people that you could share your story and say anything with no judgement or no shock. We could all laugh and cry about the careless and insensitive things people have done or said because we have all had them. We faced different issues and same issues, and we could talk about any of them. We learned there is no right or wrong way to do many things, but the common theme was people holding onto faith and hope in the midst of their loss. That was beautiful.
Coming home, we were exhausted physically and emotionally. I was really too tired yesterday to even really talk about it though having lots of time to process it on the long drive home. Coming home was sweet though; hugging our kids and holding Creed. He was so pleased to see us. Jon made the comment this morning that we left Creed as a baby and came back to a little boy. We were only gone 6 days, but there really was a difference. He was saying a lot more words and doing new things. This has always been one of my favorite stages. I adore toddlers; they are so much fun even with all their messes!!! He is 17 months old and less than 2 weeks shy of the age Knoxie was when he had his accident. It reminds just all that we have missed with Knox and we can't help but wonder what he would be like at 4. It really isn't even something I can imagine or fathom.
I am grateful, beyond what I can express that we also have Creed. I remember thinking in those desperate days that all that had been taken from me; that we would never experience babyhood or toddlerhood again. That it had all been stripped away from us forever and before we were ready. And honestly, it was for Knox. We weren't ready to let him go. We loved him and enjoyed him and wanted to raise him to adulthood. Creed is a reminder that God still blesses us; that He is good; that we don't have to forfeit our hopes and dreams for our family because we lost Knox. He is a reminder along with our other children to keep living and worshipping. He doesn't and never could replace Knox, but we are ever grateful for him. He fills our arms; yet, they are still empty and we pray that he will know Knoxie through our memories.
A birthday can't go by that I don't post some favorite pictures:

Monday, October 26, 2009

Full of Personality

When he sees the camera aimed at him, he tries to smile but just squints instead.

His favorite thing to do is eat. "Eat" and "Drink" were some of his first words. Here he is trying to climb in his highchair. I need to get a video of his wild arm waving that he does when he wants more(while he still has a mouthful of course)

I tend to see the back of him a lot as he loves to run. If he thinks I am going to change his diaper or put him to bed he takes off running; yet, if I say, "Let's go to Creed's bed," he walks there himself!

I caught him raising his eyebrows. He is outside which is his favorite place to be. He is forever bringing us his shoes in hopes someone will take him outside.