Tuesday, October 29, 2013


I'm in a weird stage... a weird phase of grief that I don't think I've hit before.

I'm so mad and so bitter that Jovi died. I'm so mad this is my life. I'm so mad that for the rest of my life I get to live missing someone I love so much for FOREVER. There is something about the second year... the seconds of everything... that is so hard. Dare I say harder than the first?! Maybe not harder... but different and harder in its own way. It's so final. So for sure. The reality of our situation has really sunk in. Last year, I think the shock is what got me through all the firsts. The sheer shock of losing my baby made me make it through. The shock has worn off and the reality is now here. Jovi's not coming back. She's gone for the rest of this life. And it sucks. It sucks more than I could describe. I lived all last year knowing she was gone and not coming back, but there is something about hitting the second year that makes it that much more cemented and that much more real.

I used to "look forward" to buying things for Jovi's grave and going to visit. Decorating for each upcoming holiday and visiting on every single holiday or special day or just random occasion. I don't look forward to it now. I hate it. I hate that I have to decorate a grave for Halloween. I hate that I have to go look for decor to take to where my daughter is buried. I hate that I have to do it at all. So, it's been a long time since I've been there. We went recently and it felt okay. Better than I had anticipated. But, I left again... feeling so frustrated with it all. So, so sad.

I used to think an answer to SIDS or why Jovi died would bring her back. As if a diagnosis could change time and I could go back and save her. It's weird because I knew this couldn't happen. Six months ago, I knew an answer couldn't save her... but, I lived in some dream fantasy where I thought, subconsciously, it could. Sort of like the entire first month she was gone, I thought that someone would just show up with her on the porch apologizing that they made a mistake. I, of course, want an answer to SIDS. Want someone to fix this problem so another family/baby can be saved, but it'll bring it's own set of issues, too. Why couldn't it have happened earlier and my baby could have been saved?

I just find myself more mad than I've ever been before. And I just don't get it. For the life of me, I don't get how she was just here one minute then gone the next. What the hell? It still doesn't make sense and there are days I'm just so mad. How can this happen? I think Lila has made that harder. Because I hold her and think in two hours, she could be just be gone... never coming back. Really? How??? Jovi's little body failed her. It just stopped working. Her heart just stopped beating and she just stopped breathing... why? And how was she just gone? In an instant. No warning. No nothing.

Jovi, I find myself wanting to be able to explain to you how much you are missed. And I can't. I can't even come up with words that could explain it. I know you know. I know you know how much I miss you.... how much I love you... and how much I think about you all day even though I don't visit you as much as I used to. I know you know you are loved. I miss you... I'd do anything to have you here now. I love you, sunshine, to Heaven and back.

"Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things and endures all things."
1 Corinthians 13:7

Thursday, October 17, 2013

J is for Jovi

Jovi girl-

We talk about you so often in this house. We have pictures of you all over the house. I love to look at your face and sometimes stop and kiss you goodnight after I tuck your brother in... there is a picture of you right outside his room. It's perfect. The other day, we had a friend over with a baby who was all over some "block" pictures we have of you. The pictures are mod podged onto wood, so they aren't easily broken by any means. The little boy was playing with the block pictures of you... your brother came and took them away and placed them on the counter. Right after the little guy left, he took them down and put them back in their place. He looked longingly at the pictures and said he missed you so much... and then quietly, sadly added, "I wish Jovi didn't have to die". Ugh. Me too, buddy. I can't tell you how often I wish my life was different or how often I wish.... I crave.... I long for you back in our house... back in my arms. Back to bug your brother and steal his toys. Back so we could all touch your sweet face, snuggle you, kiss YOU goodnight and not pictures or look at pictures dreaming of what my life could be... or what your life could have been. And it isn't just me. It's your daddy... your nana... your papa... your grandma... your grandpa... your cousins... aunts... uncles... and very much your four year old brother. He stayed with Grandma tonight for a bit at Auntie Jo's house. He was at Auntie Jo's when we picked him up after you passed away. His first question when we picked him up was "Where is baby Jovi?". The question and the innocence of his voice still haunts me to this day. When we picked him up tonight, he immediately asked where Lila was... I wonder if he's afraid. Afraid she will just someday leave like you did. I can't tell you how much we all miss you. I can't say enough how much we wish you could have stayed.  

You are my first thought in the morning and my last thought before I go to sleep. You haven't came to visit me in my dreams in so long. How I wish you'd come visit. I love to be able to wake up realizing I'd just spent what felt like hours with you...snuggling you... loving you... I never knew my heart could miss someone so much. I never knew what it was like to lose someone you loved. You and I had a special bond. One that was instant from the start. I loved you from the minute I saw you. You were easy (minus those scary barfs and weird breathing stuff you did). You didn't cry. You loved to snuggle. LOVED to snuggle. As a mommy of three, you are my only one who loved to snuggle and boy did I love those snuggles. I'm so thankful for every moment I stopped to just hold you. You slept in my bed. I'm so thankful for all those midnight sleeps together. Have I told you lately that I miss you? And that I wish you were here? Because that's basically all I can say. How I wish we had ended differently... how I wish you were still here... and how I miss you so much it hurts... every minute of every day. How not a second goes by that I don't wonder what you'd be doing... or how I am drawn to 18 month old girls wanting to creepily just hold them and hug them to allow me to just know what it would be like to have you here now. I want to read you "Rainbow Rob" and "B is for Bear". Remember, "J is for Juice..." I always want to cover that page with "J is for Jovi..." and plaster your face all over the page. I see you everywhere. 

I can't wait for the day I get to see you again. I long for that day... I think about our reunion often and what an amazing day it will be when I get to see your face... one I've missed so much. It's going to be an amazing day. I pray every night asking Jesus to give you kisses and snuggles and I hope you are receiving every single one. Your mommy hasn't forgotten you, baby. Not for a second.

I wish you were here. I miss you more than I could ever even say. I love you, Jovi, to Heaven and back.


Lots of Pictures

Team Jovi at the Run for the Angels
Can you say overwhelming AMAZING support?
To see my sweet girl's face on so many shirts was amazing. Heartbreaking. But, so sweet at the same time. You touched many, Jovi Sloan. 

Honoring Jovi on Infant Loss Remembrance Day... and remembering all her little Heaven friends.
Way too many candles to light...

Jovi in the Parents magazine.
My girl is a star.

Last Few Weeks

Mixed emotions here lately.

We had the local SIDS walk Sunday. It's amazing the amount of people that showed up to support my family... to honor Jovi. There was probably 75 people there to honor my little love. I was shocked and speechless by the love we were shown again. I am so blessed to have such wonderful friends and family. Two friends even put together Jovi shirts. It was overwhelming to see her face on countless people... Amazing and heartbreaking. It was another day of filled with shock, love, and feeling so blessed... but then wishing it wasn't me. Wishing it wasn't my baby... and wishing Jovi was here. It was another day filled with constant reminders that my daughter isn't here. Another day filled with wishing this wasn't my life and that I didn't have to do this. Such a mix of emotions.

Jovi's picture was featured in the Parents magazine in an article about SIDS. Just another wishing it wasn't her face there, but so neat to have her face out there. It was an article basically saying that if you do A, B, and C then your baby will survive. It's entire focus was the safe sleep campaign. It upset many SIDS moms and as I was reading it the first time, I got offensive, too. I did everything I could to keep my baby alive... but then I see pictures of friends babies sleeping on Facebook and realize the safe sleep message still needs to be spread. And, I understand the need for spreading the work to sleep your baby as safe as possible. It's very much needed.

We had to go through another Infant Loss Remembrance Day. Ugh. Another day where I just wish I didn't have to know what that day was or that it even existed much less having to light a candle to honor and remember my own baby. Is this real life?

I can't wait for Heaven. I know I freak people out when I say that. I know it makes people feel weird. But, who wouldn't want to live in paradise forever?! No tears, no sadness, no despair, no anxiety, no stress... just FOREVER with Jesus and those I love... and the precious baby I haven't seen in 15 months. That's what real life I want and that's what real life I can't wait to have... but I'll continue trying to bring Heaven here, too.

"Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,”for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes.There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
He said to me: “It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To the thirsty I will give water without cost from the spring of the water of life. Those who are victorious will inherit all this, and I will be their God and they will be my children." Revelations 21:1-7

Have I told you I can't wait for this?!