Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Deal with turning 5...

It has been really difficult this fall thinking about Knox being five. Five is a big birthday for me; I think I probably say that about most birthdays, but here are some of my thoughts about what would be going on with a 5 year old in the house...

I'd be teaching him to read or maybe he'd already be reading...
He'd be playing soccer with his siblings(or maybe like Liz he'd feel blessed to sit on the sidelines and watch ;-))...
He'd be learning to ride a two-wheeler...
He'd be making his way through saxon math--doubles, +2's, doubles + 1's...
He'd be learning so many more things on his own and becoming more independent...

Those are things specific to being five, and then I wonder....

Would he still have his really blonde hair or would it be darker now?
Would the birthmark on his belly still be there or will it have faded like the Dr. said it would?
Would he still love to play with trains?
Would he patiently help Creed set of tracks and play with him for hours?
Would he be as crazy about baseball as Jack and Creed are right now?
What would be his favorite food?

I could keep on going...

Maybe it seems hard to imagine the hole when there are 5 other kids in the house, but it is a constant. One day last week the kids were out in the yard playing. The weather was beautiful and they were having a ball. The windows were open, and I could hear them laughing as they enjoyed their play. I just started crying. Jon hugged me and said, "It just seems like he should be out there with them playing doesn't it?" And it did. There are just times that I can almost see his missing silhouette just plain as day, and it is just incredibly painful. Matthew Knox, we miss you!!!

Here are a few pictures of him from the park that we go to when we celebrate his birthday.

Yesterday morning, the kids(minus Anne Michal who was babysitting) baked and decorated a cake for Knox. They also made signs and Elizabeth decorated the house with our birthday banner and paper chains and made up a special area to celebrate his life.

She arranged some pictures and scrapbooks on the piano.

Then she moved this little desk, hung some signs, laid out his big scrapbook and arranged his stuffed dogs(one had already made its way to a child's bed for the night when I took the picture.)

Then we carried out our usual of going to sonic, going to the park to play and release balloons, and then we took some balloons and a mum out to the cemetery and watered the peach tree.I realize these seem like the same pictures every year but there is comfort in tradition.

Creed eating his burger. He kept saying, "It good, Mama! It good!"

Jack and Creed playing on the playground. The more the day went on the dirtier and dirtier Creed got.

The cake. We lost part of the icing on the lid. It was chocolate with peanutbutter m&m's and sprinkles.

Digging into the cake "Knox style."

Creed was so dirty and covered with sand at this point that he had to have his own personal piece.

The balloon launch:

I love this one of Creed watching his balloon in the sky. I was afraid he'd cry because he had to let it go, but he thought it was fun.
Anne Michal holding the ones we were taking to the cemetery.

Leaving you with this poem Josh wrote; he seems to always know how we feel:

For Knox, on his 5th birthday

Tomorrow is a listless day,
A restless day,
Another day without you.

Tomorrow is your fifth year,
Our fourth year,
Another year without you.

Tomorrow is a day to weep,
A day to keep,
Another memory of you.

What of these days,
And of these years,
And of these tears?
What of tomorrows gone by,
Another day,
Another sigh?
What of the pain, and the grief,
What of our hope,
What of relief?

Creation groans, and with it we,
For the brokenness we see,
We feel, we know, we work against,
We fight, we claw, we raise defense,
We pause, reflect, remember too,
All our memories of you.

Some memories are wisps of want,
Imagined dreams, and faded streams of consciousness,
Like the one of your learning to ride a bike,
Or racing your brother in the yard,
Or holding your other brother in your arms.
Like the one of you helping mom to bake,
Or helping sisters with leaves to rake,
Or the one of you reading aloud to dad,
And others, which we might have had.
And all the tedious, glorious toils,
What for others is drudgery, would be our spoils,
Could we have but one more with you,
But there is nothing we can do,
To make such memories real and true.
Nor can the ones we would like to know,
Be as good as what we have to show,
For God has not stolen you away,
For you were His from the first day.
And He's with us while you are away,
For we, like you, are His too.

Not separate, though we are apart,
Not broken, though we are battered,
Not bitter, though we are cut,
But hopeful, joyful, expectant, full,
Of what times we have yet to see,
With you!--so many more than one,
When the counting of years is done.


greatishisfaithfulness said...

Thank you! Praying always...

Wanting What I Have said...

I...I don't know what to say. I weep every time I read about Knox, and I have April 23rd and his birthday on our calendar and I think of y'all every year. I have often wanted to comment and say something, just never knowing what to say and not wanting to say anything that would cause you any further pain or grief. My heart is so heavy for you and I am praying for all of you. We love y'all very much.

Christi said...

I think y'all have a beautiful tradition for his birthday and I can understand why 5 is a big one. We love you guys and are praying.

Joshua Butcher said...

We love you Jon, Rachel, Anne Michal, Lizzy, Jack, Emma, Creed--and are remembering Knox with you.

~Joshua, Hannah, Chi, & Jeremiah

Heather said...

Weeping with you, celebrating with you...missing you. Hugs and love...always.

Carla said...

I'm crying with you and praying for you.

Rachel said...

Yes, indeed, there IS comfort in tradition.

Hannah D A said...

I wept as I read this. Josh really knows how to capture it, doesn't he? Thank you Josh. My heart goes between celebration and grief as I remember Knox, wishing so badly he were here and that he and Asa could be playing soccer together, learning to read, playing at the park after co-op and following their brothers at Covenant Kids. He is never far from my thoughts. . .praying for y'all still.