Elizabeth shared this daily email from the writings of Henri Nouwen that happens to be about parents who have lost a child. We have discussed this often and my view continues to be firm; we must live. If we collapse, if we “die” metaphorically if not literally, because of Mack’s death then we not only rob our daughter of all she deserves, but we also erase the memory of Mack. People will remember only how it destroyed us and not what a wonderful boy he was, his joy, energy, humor, and smile. We will live so that he may live.
Many parents have to suffer the death of a child, at birth or at a very young age. There probably is no greater suffering than losing a child, since it so radically interferes with the desire of a father and mother to see their child grow up to be a beautiful, healthy, mature, and loving person. The great danger is that the death of a child will take away the parents’ desire to live. It requires an enormous act of faith on the part of parents to truly believe that their children, however brief their lives, were given to them as a gift from God, to deepen and enrich their own lives.
Whenever parents can make that leap of faith, their children’s short lives can become fruitful far beyond their expectations.