CS Lewis once said that "grief is like the sky, it covers everything." In recent weeks, our family has found that this is so very true. It seems that there is no right or wrong way to travel this path of grief. I have created this blog in hopes that some day we will be able to look back on our journey and see written proof that our great God never leaves us. God is good all the time.

Celebrating Laynee

You might want to scroll to the bottom of this page and pause the music before playing this video.

Thursday, May 6, 2010


There's a question that I've struggled with since Laynee's accident.  The question causes me great distress.  At times when I least expect or desire, it pops to the forefront of my mind.  Without fail, it brings a wave of nausea and desperation.   Though I've mentioned this to a couple of people,  I've mostly kept it to myself.  Part of the reason for keeping it to myself is that  it's horrifc and I try desperately to push the thought from my mind.   Another part of me fears the answer.  But as I've learned, pretending that we do not have such thoughts does not change the reality that they are there.

I am aware that there are forms of therapy that can help with traumatic memories and their resulting thoughts and questions, keeping them from causing serious problems in one's life.  However, I am not so unrealistic as to think there is anything that can ever completely wipe them from memory.  With that reality in mind,  I find it is best to not deny their existence. 

At times, when I think of my sweet Jalayne, the image of her in the pool comes, uninvited, to mind.  Close on it's heals is the thought of her last moments on earth.  Did my baby wonder "where's my mommy?"  Did she question why isn't my mommy helping me?"  Did she think, even for one second, that I had forsaken her?   These questions come at random times, like a kick in the stomach.  The pain from this question snatches the air from my lungs and drops me to my knees.  There are two people that I have shared this thought with and both reminded me that Jesus or His angels were there for her.  There is comfort in this thought and yet, I am her mother, I should have been there for.  She had to have wondered where I was.  Didn't she?  For nearly 8 months this horrific thought has plagued me, creating dreadful images in my mind, waking me in the night, leaving me weak from anxiety.   Many times I have feared that it would be this thought that would push me over the edge of sanity.

This question threatens the deepest of female instincts instilled in both man and beast, the primal need to protect our young.  It screams failure and inadequacy in one of my most important roles, the role of motherhood, second only to my role as christian.  Something inside of me quells at the possiblity that my child for one moment may have thought that I was not there to rescue her.  My heart, so full of love for my sweet little girl, cannot bear this thought. 

Last week my aunt called me and we talked for quite some time on the phone.  I expressed this thought to her and she reminded me that no matter how much I loved her,  Jesus loved her even more.  This thought brought great comfort to me.  It seems that simply knowing that He was there to welcome her was not enough.  But to be reminded that my love pales in comparrison to that of our Saviour  gave me a new vision.  It occurs to me that it is rather vain of me to even think that she would still long for her mama in the presence of Her Jesus.   Laynee was viewing, for the first time, a place and a face more beautiful than anything known to this earth.  She found love in it's purest form.

Even with this new, comforting thought, which I've always known, but needed to hear again, I still struggled.  I'm not even sure what it is I struggled against.  Perhaps a need to express my love for her.  Perhaps a need to forgive myself for not being there at the pool.  Perhaps to forgive myself for the latch on the gate that never seemed to work properly and we had become lackidaisical.  Perhaps the struggle is with the fact that I had felt the need to hand wash the car that evening, instead of playing exclusively with her.  Obviously I struggle with my own human weakness and shortcomings.  Regardless of the reason, I could not release the agony that came from the question I thought she may have asked....."where is my Mommy?" 

After talking to my aunt, even with the new comfort of knowing how Jesus loves her, these thoughts plagued me with renewed force.  Until one morning, in the quiet solitude of my home, after all the children were off to school,  I cried out to my God in a mixture of sorrow, anger, and remorse.  I begged God to tell her how sorry I am that I wasn't there.  God in His peaceful way spoke to my heart saying, "you weren't there but I was.  I did not take her from you, I brought her to me."  In my unwillingness to let it go, I foolishly challenged God with "I don't think you know how much I love her."  To this He quietly replied "I loved her more."   I pratically screamed at God  " I would have given my life for her!!!!!"   In a final, climatic moment of understanding and peace,  Jesus said  "I alreay did." 

Greater love hath no man than this,
that a man lay down his life for his friends.
John 15:13


  1. Karol,
    We continue to pray for your family for any
    heart ache that overtakes your every thought.
    Everyone that knew the relationship with your
    family and Laynee Girl saw nothing but unconditional Love. I'm sure at times quilt is
    always there, but Karol-you loved her so much
    and you put it perfect "Jesus loved her more."
    I loved the blog!!


  2. You probably noticed that I don't mind asking questions about Laynee, how she was, with this or that situation, little bits about her or the accident or the time surrounding it. But this is one question I've not had the courage to ask, but I have always wondered about it. I wondered if you thought about this. I wondered if it haunted you. Because I think about what her thoughts were, and I didn't even personally get the chance to know her. The times I've awakened thinking of you guys, THIS is always the part that gets me the most, because THIS is the part that would nag at ME the most, I believe, if I were in that situation.

    What wise things your aunt said. And what a blessing to have the reassurances of the Lord as you cry out to Him. How do people handle this when they don't have Him to cry to and rely on??

    As always, I'm blessed, humbled, and edified by your words... you may still be human, but you're a pretty special one. :o)

  3. The ties that bind us together are so bitter...the same thoughts, nightmares and sorrow, but also, the same Jesus. Praise God.

    I relive the moments over and over of finding my sweet baby Mark in the water. I imagine what he was thinking...where is my mommy? I also imagine what he felt. Is drowning painful? How long did he struggle before he went unconcious? It all plagues me to the point of wanting to die myself. I just can't believe that I wasn't there...to save him.

    Someone reading this might think it unfair of me to mention such horrid things...but you and I both know that there isn't anything that anyone could say that would suprise us. We have already thought it all and even think about it all day long.

    I have cried out to God to release me from these painful thoughts that torment me and to a great extent, He has. I have been told by several of my Christian brothers and sisters to imagine Jesus reaching down and picking Mark up right out of the water. I have been told that God probably didn't let him suffer...although I have a hard time believing that since suffering is often a part of death...whomever it is.

    It all helps, as does your beautiful post about Jesus loving our children more than we ever could. I cling to that and hope and trust in that fact.

    I just wish that I didn't have to try so hard to convince myself of the truth.

    Until we hold them again,

  4. My heart is always with you! It never fails-Laynee's story makes me cry each and every time. I just know that her and Carmen are buddies up there.

  5. Again, I feel that your speaking the words of my heart. I too have that video playing n my head. I hear the things he may have said, or how he cried out. I was not even the one who found Brayden or took him out of the pool.. yet I have created these things that haunt me.
    God does love them more... it does not remove the pain, but it comforts. I too choose to believe that God took my sweet Brayden quickly and silently.
    I want so badly to just shake my older son and demand he tells me every detail of what happened, what he saw, heard...
    Thank you for your honesty in sharing this post. Your words speak right to me and are such a comfort.
    Thank you for encouraging me...