One of the hardest parts about life without Avery is getting back into a routine and doing activities we did before her. Everything we do just doesn’t feel right. Everything we do should be done with her or differently than before she was born but she isn’t here and we have to continue living life. It was with much trepidation that I accompanied my husband Friday night to the first game for the fall Church League Softball season. Last time I went to a softball game, I was a blimp. The last time I went to a game, I was 37 weeks pregnant full of life, hope and joy. I didn’t watch much of the last few games of the spring season as I was too busy talking about babies with the other moms at the field. Not only was I excited for Avery’s arrival but so were they. We anticipated starting the fall season off with a stroller and an almost 4 month old. That was not how it went Friday.Friday, the start of the season, looked like it did this time last year from the outside. This time last year I didn’t know I was pregnant, the Florida heat was still in full effect and there I was toting along my chair to watch my husband play softball. On the outside Friday looked just like it did this time last year but inside it felt SO VERY WRONG. I knew it would be trying returning there without her, I felt so empty. But as we were walking up, I noticed the most beautiful sight. In a perfect blue sky, with no rain in sight, shining down on the fields were two amazing rainbows. Every time I see a rainbow, I think of my baby girl smiling down on me from Heaven. I took a picture and started to feel a little less anxious about the fact that the season was starting off completely different than I had planned last May. It warmed my heart and reassured me that I could make it through. I find strength from these signs I feel God sends down to me from my daughter. Little did I know as we were walking to the field how much these 2 rainbows would symbolize.
People started arriving at the fields and I was anxious. Like I do so often since losing Avery, I tried not to make eye contact but it didn’t work for too long. I was, of course, approached by many with words of kindness and love. These situations are always nice but generally are overwhelming. I prayed that my sister in law would arrive soon to help me not become overtaken by everything that was happening. She did and the conversations with others subsided. Then the teams took the field in an opening ceremony. They handed out trophies for last season and then went on to talk about how much adversity our little Church League Softball group had faced over the summer. My heart sank as I knew what was coming. They brought up Avery and how her brief life touched so many and how everyone would be forever changed by us but they also spoke about a member of another team who lost his life in a motorcycle accident this summer. This season, the teams would be 2 short-Avery and Mr. Morris. In the midst of these kind words, I lost it. Hearing how much my daughter touched others turns me to a pile of mush. However, I was quickly smiling as my 3 year old nephew heard them say Avery’s name while playing with his cars and instantly looked up and said, “baby Avery?” It was precious. Not only were the adults remembering my daughter but so was my little nephew who only saw Avery twice before she left us. Knowing that others are touched by my daughter and still think about her is such an amazing feeling. The ceremony was very nice and I was once again thankful to live in a small community where everyone cares about everyone else.I had put the rainbows to the back of my mind. Later on, the head of the league pointed out that there were 2 rainbows in that beautiful rain-free sky before the games; Avery and Mr. Morris letting us know that they are looking out for us from Heaven. If that’s not a sign from God, I don’t know what is! I cherish these moments, these signs. They help reaffirm what I believe in my heart and give me even more hope that one day; I will be with my little girl again. I believe God uses these things to help us through our dark days and this really has helped me through this weekend of anticipating results next week. I just pray that for as long as I am here on earth without her God will continue to send me signs from her in Heaven so that I can continue to feel that connection.
“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.” Isaiah 41:10