by Rebekah Wright | BBFI Missionary | United Kingdom
At the beginning of 2016, Brian printed a paper titled “Answered Prayers of 2016” full of blank lines. The third thing we wrote on that list was “We’re having a baby!” We learned we were pregnant with our third child January 11, 2016. On January 4, 2017, we laid our sweet three-and-a-half-month-old baby boy, Beckett, down for a nap and he passed away in his sleep. We went through a lifetime in one year. But it wasn’t just a birth and death that happened in that year, it was a deeper change in our family.
Around March of last year I began a Bible study about motherhood with a friend. Through that study and her influence, I fll more in love with my ministry of being a mom. I began to love and interact with my kids in a different way. I knew going into Beckett’s birth, I wanted to take a long period off from all other responsibilities and just focus on being his mom. And for the first six weeks of his life I did that. I focused on Brooklyn, Boston, and Beckett, and I loved it. It was hard. Babies are hard work. But I knew what I was doing was important. And I cherished it.
It wasn’t just me making changes to prioritize our family. Brian bonded with Beckett quicker than our other two babies. They were a great team from the start. As Beckett entered the smiling stage, it was his Daddy that made his eyes light up and his smile shine.
Brooklyn loved her brother. She read to him from the time I was 20 weeks pregnant. Brooklyn’s heart and attitude have changed this past year and she has become sweeter, gentler, and more mature. She’s still a wild six-year-old — I don’t want to paint any untrue pictures here — but she loved her baby brother with a gentle, genuine love.
And then there is Boston! He had no idea the baby in mommy’s tummy was going to be real until he saw him at the hospital and immediately fell in love. His exact question was, “Where’d this Bucket come from?” From that point on his brother was called “Bucket.”
To say all of these things in the past tense seems unnatural. It seems unreal. I feel numb. I feel intense emotion and hurt. No one knows what to say to us. We don’t know what to say to them. I want him back. I know the road ahead is long. I know we will have many different emotions and reactions along the way. I don’t know how I will handle every step of the journey, but right now I am choosing to be thankful.
We had close to four wonderful months with our little guy. We held him, loved him, and create memories that will always be there. We are choosing to be thankful for those four months. We are choosing to believe Beckett was a gift to our family. We cherished him for the time we had him. I want my little boy back. I want him back so much. But I don’t want him back to do things differently. I want him back because I miss him.
I’m not saying I didn’t complain about the late nights or the lack of showers. I fell behind on housework, on recipe planning, on record keeping, on countless things, and I felt I was failing at times. I’m not saying we did everything right with Beckett at all. But I am saying we enjoyed him. I am saying we loved him well. And when I look back at his short time here, I am thankful for the priorities we chose.
I know our situation has brought out a lot of fear in other new moms and families. I understand and I think it’s natural. But if I could choose for you, I would say don’t let this bring you to fear. Let it bring you to love. Love the moments you have, don’t fear the ones that are unknown.
We went on to write 138 items on that answered prayer list Brian printed at the beginning of the year. It was a good year — because we looked for the good. We looked for God at work and we saw Him. And 2017 is going to be a good year as well. I know this because I know my God. In the midst of my darkness, in the midst of my pain, He is there.
God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea; Though its waters roar and be troubled, Though the mountains shake with its swelling.The LORD of hosts is with us; The God of Jacob is our refuge. (Psalm 46:1-3,7)