Peter and I have been so busy, trying to organise ourselves again after Germany.
We arrived home from Munich to a completely different set-up of life to when we left.
At first if felt as though we were going backwards, but then I realised that we were in fact, moving in the exact opposite direction.
Many of you might know that Peter and I are now living with my parents, so that Peter can finish the last year of his Bachelor's Degree. Just nine months, I keep repeating. Just nine months.
It's not bad though. It was a humbling experience for us both, admitting that we were struggling, physically and emotionally, and needed a little extra support for this final academic year. My parents were, of course, delighted to have us back for just a while. It was a tough decision to make, but I am enjoying being close to my Mum, having a little girly time every now and again, to just chat about worries and anxieties, and silly pointless things that women love to talk about. It is fab.
One of the best things about being back at my parents house is definitely having a piano again - and it's right it our room! I have played almost every day, and I am determined to improve in the short time we are here.
My sister gave birth to her beautiful baby boy - Ammon James Barker - what a fabulous name!
I won't deny that it was probably one of the hardest things I have had to face since Seth passed away, but it was also a feeling of overwhelming and immense joy, holding that beautiful new life in my arms. He was a whopping 9lb 6 (!!) at ten days late, has a perfect mop of dark brown hair on his little round head, big pudgy hands, long feet, and skin as soft as you'd imagine a cumulonimbus to be!
I held him close for the first time when he was 11 days old. I breathed in that perfect brand new baby scent, and felt all five fingers gently grip my thumb. I mourned for Seth as I took in all of his perfect newborn features, but rejoiced for my beautiful sister, and her precious gift from our Father in Heaven. He was the first baby I'd really held since I'd held my Seth, and I was so glad I had chosen to hold Ammon, my wonderful nephew.
I now hold Ammon at every blissful opportunity I get. Sometimes it's really hard, and I have to gently hand him over, and quietly go and wipe my tears. But sometimes it's easy, and peaceful, and I let the Spirit whisper words of comfort to me, telling me that my own son is safe and happy, and is working hard, and is waiting patiently for our own embrace, just as I am.
Peter has now started back at University after 13 months of working, and that feels a little like going backwards. I know how much he enjoyed working, as he was learning so many new things in real situations, and it was really exciting for him, and I would love him coming home to me, and asking him about his day at work, and enjoying funny stories he had to tell, or celebrating his little achievements, or trying to relieve tension after a more stressful period... But he's going back to Uni to learn more and work even harder, and I know he will do just fabulously.
I'm starting to feel as though I miss Seth more than ever. I don't cry as often, but when I do, I cry for all the days I didn't and more. My arms still ache for him, I miss visiting his precious place of rest so often, I miss passing the hospital where he was born, I miss the only home he ever knew. I look around my parents from room at the pictures of Seth's cousin, and my heart stings with the knowledge that there is one missing; one who should slot right in between the rest. His little white dog sits on top of my piano, and I childishly pretend I'm playing to that teddy every time my fingers melodically touch the keys. It's hard to even finish one piece sometimes. There's a hole in my heart waiting to be filled, and since moving from Swindon, it seems to gape, as so many of my daily reminders have vanished as our little lives turn a corner.
So things are changing. Life is as wonderful, but hard as ever. But I know as long as I keep praying on my knees and in my heart, keep working to find answers to life's questions, and keep letting the tears come when they need to, that life will continue to be hard, but wonderful.
It may sometimes seem as though we are forced to make decisions that we aren't keen or willing to make, and hearts get broken, dreams shattered and hope for certain things becomes lost. But we must remember that there is a plan. I sometimes have to take a step back and remind myself of this talk. It's not about trying to be the Gardener, or trying to dictate what the gardener does, but by humbling ourselves enough to say "Thank you, Mr Gardener, for loving me enough to cut me down."
*** Posted with the awesome Sony Vaio Ultrabook!***
***Abundance of pictures from Germany coming soon... I know I have taken forever - sorry!***