Losing Ari could have wrecked us as a couple. We could have become one of the statistics.
We could have given up on one another, went opposite ways when our grief did the same.
We could have wallowed in our own bubble of pain, not communicating or telling one another we need help.
But we didn't.
We found more love, more fight within us to not let her death break us, but to let her LIFE lead us.
She leads us every day to choose better. To be better as a couple. To be better parents. Better friends. Be better human beings.
It is not a walk in the park. In fact, it is more like a marathon.
But, not one other person on this planet will ever be able to understand the depth of pain we each carry more than one another.
Though we grieve differently, he gets me. He is my person.
Grief exists because love did first.
And ever since grief entered our life, it's been about finding our way through it......
Our little ‘lion of God’ rightfully earned her name. From the moment of late daughter's official diagnosis of Trisomy 13 on November 7, 2016, Ari overcame so many of the odds stacked against her. The biggest odd of them all, surviving.
On a train to Chicago, our son Chase unknowingly captured this photo of me. After scrolling through all of the photos taken that day I stumbled upon this one. I froze. I saw a lion.
What?!?! Yes, I saw a lion, but most likely not what you're thinking.
See the way the light blends with the edges of my hair? It creates a makeshift mane so on the surface, I immediately see a lion. But beyond the obvious, looking closer and going deeper... I see more.
I see the focus and clarity in my eyes, fixed on the thoughts of forward progress. A course that was intuitively set from the very beginning of my story. I see the patience and stillness in my body, a distinct understanding that there is...