Although, I am beyond grateful and humbly awed that there are people who actually want to read what I write and these same people (you, yah, you included :) are what makes me strive to write something of quality, something worthy of the time you take out of your day, when you can be doing anything else in the world, to read what I wrote. I truly appreciate you and it is far from my intentions to offend.
Nevertheless, as I sit here determined to write a blog every single day of 2012, sometimes I haven’t a clue what to write. Some days I’m lucky because the husband says something funny, the kids do something unpredictable or I’m having one of those days where I, simply, need to vent. But alas, the only thing that is on my mind today is a boy, named Tripp Roth.
|Taken from [randycourtneytripproth (dot) blogspot (dot) com].|
Since I’ve started my blog, I’ve been cruising the net for other mommy blogs and I came across a blog started by a mom with a child that has a rare genetic skin disease, Junctional Epidermolysis Bullosa, in which “defects within any of those components of the skin allows for the separation of tissue and blister formation whenever there is friction or trauma to an area,“ and “in many instances, blistering can occur spontaneously” [taken from randycourtneytripproth (dot) blogspot (dot) com]. The doctors gave him a year to live; however, miraculously (and very much due to the love surrounding his precious soul) he lived to be exactly 2 years and 8 months old. Beautiful, inspiring Tripp, lived a life that touched many, simply, by being alive. He lived his life with more strength than I thought possible for a young child his age. He lived his short beautiful life up until the other day, January 14th, passing away in the loving arms of his mother.
His death forced me to face the question that I’ve long since pushed in the recesses of my mind because it is much too complicated, vast and it is not a question that can be easily answered: what happens after we die?
I grew up Catholic and became a Christian in my teenage years (even got baptized for the second time in my life, the first when I was a baby); however, since then I have greatly struggled with religion and the proponents of church because it felt restrictive, conforming and the very opposite of love.
In the process of sharing the teachings of an all-loving, all powerful God, I felt the oppression of a hateful, condemning God. I started to find myself the opposite of open, loving and forgiving, which were the very reasons I sought that direction in the first place.
So I turned my back on God and everything involved, and I judged God, the way I felt He judged others. However, somewhere between then and the birth of my miraculous, amazingly perfect children, I occasionally revisited these ideas.
My children are so perfect that there must be a God involved in their creation. All of this is too extraordinary to be done through sheer accident without the involvement of a power from above, I reasoned.
And then other times, I would revel in my love for my children and question the reasons why God would ever give a mother a child not “perfect,” a child experiencing any magnitude of pain whatsoever or give a mother a child without the ability to give them the bare essentials of life: safety, food, clean water and a warm shelter. Why would God even do something so cruel as that? I hated Him. My anger boiled at the unjust inequalities of this world. Why the fuck would anyone, especially someone so “loving,” deem that a good decision.
These contractions tossed back and forth in the shadows of my mind for years and today those questions were staring directly in my face, breathing down my neck. Where do we go when we die?
The question, of course, begs the answer of another question concerning the existence of a Heaven and a Hell. It seems that almost every religion demands an abidance to some set of rules in order to get an invitation to the gates of Heaven. Accept Jesus Christ as your Savior. Do not lie, lust or steal. Etc. Etc. Etc.
However, I’ve recently come to peace with my own conclusions about Heaven and Hell and that is (almost) everyone goes to Heaven at the end. I'm not quite sure what happens to the others, quite yet. The poor choices we make are more often due to our own ignorance or lack of strength to comply to what we know is right and good or because we were given an unfair start (such as having terrible parents who did not care to teach and mold the right way) to begin with. I think Heaven is a place where we will become aware of our own transgressions, of the pain we have caused others and become wiser, more loving, more like God.
And Hell? I think we are in it. Don’t get me wrong, I have an amazing life and have much more than a person should truly be given. My basics needs are met, the love surrounding my life is phenomenal and my wants are superficial and materialistic. I’m spoiled. But the pain I have felt, that we all feel for whatever reason, is real. It seems benign to say, since other parts of the world are truly unfortunate, but pain even from a damaging word can slay one’s soul. We are forced to grow a tougher skin in order to merely survive and those who don’t, suffer.
Which leads me back to Tripp, a child, so small, so innocent, who suffered pain on a daily basis from a “defective” physical body. I want to ask God, why a child should suffer so much pain. And I have come to peace with the fact that some things are too immense for my own understanding.
What’s that you say? Sounds like a cop-out through and through??
And maybe it is because I’m not incredibly definitive on these thoughts like so many other people paint themselves out to be but I do believe in humility and having the wisdom to know that you do not and will not know everything.
Why did God dare bring a child into this world to suffer, to hurt, to experience an infinite amount of pain? I’m not entirely sure but I know that I am much more thankful for the life I have been given because of it. I am much more grateful that a common cold is the worst health issue I face with my own children. I am much more inspired to live a life that is inspiring, thoughtful and kind because I am blessed to have to a life, to live. For whatever reason, I have this life and Tripp no longer has his. I do not know why God brought him to this earth to only bring his life to a halt in such a short amount of time. But I do know I am better for it. I will be a better person, wife, mother, daughter, for Tripp’s short life has touched mine that much.
Thus, with the tears streaming down my face and an aching heart-filled with sympathy for a woman, whom I have never met, I am inspired to live my life like it means something.
Tripp had the ill-fortune to be cooped up in his house all hours of the remaining months of his life, so in some respect, I felt it necessary to take the "extra" work to get ready, bundle the boys up and play in the beautiful, mystically-swirling snow with my babies.
Tripp, may you find peace and comfort in Heaven. I hope you always feel the warmth of your mommy’s love until the day she is there embracing every single drop of it all around you. Thank you for being you, you sweet boy. You are an inspiration.
Our Snowy Day