On one hand, it's hard to believe they were our home for nine and a half weeks; some of the memories have faded, our scars have healed, our life has gone on. But, on the other hand, our time there feels like it was only yesterday. It sounds so cliche, but it's so very true. Memories flood my mind with every pump of the soap dispenser and every beep of the monitor.
My heart still drops standing outside of 5324. I remember exactly what I was doing the moment Ethan's monitor told us he was flat-lining, but I can no longer picture the nurse who finally retrieved my phone from our room so that we could call family and friends.
As I snuggled with a precious four-month old baby yesterday, just six days out from open-heart surgery, it was hard to remember Ethan just two months older, being discharged on that sixth day. Memories of how to hold a baby with a freshly opened chest awkwardly came back to me. "It's like riding a bike", her mama assured me.
I spent a lot of time remembering yesterday. Remembering the hours of pumping, remembering the feeding difficulties, remembering the scary times and the joyful times when sometimes only tears could express how we felt. As I hugged another mama who was preparing her own heart for a surgery that would fix her baby's, I remembered. The fear, the grief, the hope.
Some days, like yesterday, I think back to those early days of Ethan's life and I wonder how in the world we made it. Then, I remember.
Your prayers. Your encouragement. Your support. The kingdom of God was alive through you. I remember the calls, the texts, the blog comments. (I've saved most of them!) I remember the visits. I remember you making us laugh and I remember you sitting with us in silence. I remember the way you prayed with us and for us, sometimes around the clock.
I remember all that, and so much more, and I'm thankful - thankful for where we've been, thankful for where are are now, and thankful for the opportunities to remember.
Happy Thanksgiving, friends. We are so thankful for you.