Anastasia Frey Iragui

November 11, 2009  
Filed under Letters, In Remembrance

Anastasia Frey Iragui

We buried her in the North Woods of Central Park, near our home. We named her Anastasia Frey: Anastasia for “resurrection” and Frey for the Norse god of fertility.

She was buried in the box which held our wedding bands–glossy brown and topped with a bow–which looks like an expensive box of chocolates. She was wrapped in an embroidered linen napkin. Also in the box was white, heart-shaped piece of coral from the shore of Oahu (where her father is from) and a smooth round piece of black basalt from the shore of Arch Cape, Oregon–picked up this summer when she was conceived.

I wrote this quote on the inside:

“The seed of God is in us. A pear seed will grow into a pear tree, a hazel seed will grow into a hazel tree, and a God-seed will grow into God.”
–Meister Eckhart

My husband wrote: “love, your father”

We buried her under a tree. I placed a white, round stone from the coast of Rhode Island on her little grave, marked with her initials and a heart.

Then we sang the Easter resurrection song, “Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.”

Anastasia Frey

September 11, 2009  
Filed under Letters

We buried her in the North Woods of Central Park, near our home. We named her Anastasia Frey: Anastasia for “resurrection” and Frey for the Norse god of fertility. She was buried in the box which held our wedding bands, wrapped in a linen napkin. I wrote this quote on the inside: “The seed of God is in us. A pear seed will grow into a pear tree, a hazel seed will grow into a hazel tree, and a God-seed will grow into God.”
–Meister Eckhart

My husband wrote: “love, your father”

We buried her under a tree. I placed a white, round stone from the coast of Rhode Island on her little grave, marked with her initials and a heart.

Then we sang the Easter resurrection song, “Christ is risen from the dead, trampling down death by death, and upon those in the tombs bestowing life.”

Dear Griffin

March 12, 2009  
Filed under Letters

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March 2001, the 17th

Griffin,

It’s a cold, snow-covered day in your grove as we anticipate spring and the first shoots from the bulbs we planted around your fruit trees. Today was your due date. My heart is so heavy with the sorrow of your loss. The sadness seems so fresh all over again.

I am so sorry we will never know you this side of heaven. I am so sorry and wish I knew why you had to go away so quickly. I do so wish you could have joined us here!

Harrison is getting big, growing so quickly. He loves little babies. I know he would have loved you! As he matures, I’ll share this book with him and the story of you.

Today is St. Patrick’s Day, an annual holiday we celebrate in honor of the Irish relatives on both sides of our family. It will also be an annual reminder of your birthday. Even though we didn’t get to celebrate it here, it will serve to heighten our anticipation of meeting you in the world to come.

The corned beef is stewing — filling our home with the scents of generations past. So many things about this holiday — the subtlety, the links with the past — will forever tie me to you. You will not be forgotten.

I can’t explain it, but I love you. You will always hold a special place in my heart.

Love,

Mommy

Here’s one of the original apples from the original trees. We had “Griffin’s grapes” the first year, because they were so small. But the second year, we had enough of a harvest to bake an apple pie. It was a family affair.

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Here is the book I made for him. For the first several years after he died, Steve and I journaled in it on St. Patrick’s day, the day he would have been born.

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Dear Isabelle

March 3, 2009  
Filed under Letters

Dear sweet Isabelle,

There is so much I want to say to you. From the moment I found out I was pregnant, I have loved you. In the beginning I was afraid to get too attached. The first trimester passed and you were still with us. I was terrified to have the 20 week ultrasound. I didn’t care if you were a boy or a girl as long as you didn’t have any of the problems I had seen with so many of the kids I had taken care of. When they said you had a perfect looking heart and everything else looked good, only then was I truly reassured that everything would be okay. They told us you were a girl and my mind started to think of all the things we would do together…visiting the zoo, taking walks, playing in the garden, enjoying the sunshine, hating our hair (I knew it would be curly).

As the weeks went by, I got ready for your arrival…had the showers…went to the classes…got your room ready. I learned to love your squirming and kicking even if your favorite time to be active was right as I was trying to go to bed. As things drew closer, we talked about the weeks before you were born, not months. As the expected day grew even closer, we got more excited to meet you. We named you Isabelle and found ourselves seeing things that we thought you would like and even bought some of the things we saw.

Then the nightmare began. I didn’t feel you move and they told me they couldn’t find a heartbeat. It seemed like an eternity until you were born. When I got to hold you, you were the most beautiful child I had ever seen. A full head of hair, a little button nose, such beautiful lips. As I held you I knew all those hopes and dreams I had for you were crushed and over. I would never be able to feed you, change your diaper, hear you cry, comfort your tears. Instead, I would have to do something that no mother should have to do, say goodbye to you, my precious daughter.

Isabelle, even though we do not understand why you had to leave us, we will always love you. We will always celebrate the joy you gave us in the time we knew you. Please look down on us and help us through this terrible time as we mourn your passing. Isabelle, we will never forget you and we will keep you in our hearts forever.

I love you, Isabelle

Love, your mom

To Isabelle

When I first learned you were coming I was scared. How would I take care of you? Was I ready to be a dad?

As time passed I dreamt about all the things we would do together: first words, first steps, our first trip to the zoo to see the animals. A lifetime we would spend together.

The weeks turned into months. The doctors showed us your fingers and toes; they told us you were a little girl. You started move and kick, we could see and feel you. You were real and a full part of our lives.

One day, I’m not sure when, I was no longer scared. I thought of myself as your dad and you as my little girl. Your room was ready and your cloths were in the closet. We knew your name was Isabelle. Any day you would enter the world.

Then the world turned upside down. When I held you in my arms I felt great joy – I had a daughter, I was her dad. I also felt great sadness – your time with us had been cut short. There would be no first words, first steps, or trips to the zoo. Not even a first cry or a look into your eyes.

Still, you will always be my little Isabelle and I will always be your dad.

I love you Isabelle, Dad.