Preserving a Legacy of Family, Faith, and Food – November 1 – December 31
Written by Teske Drake
Even the tiniest of lives have the potential to leave a legacy everlasting. I didn’t realize such a thing until I experienced this firsthand, through the life – and death – of my first daughter, Chloe Marie. Even before her birth, she was building a legacy in and through me and her daddy as we anxiously awaited her arrival. We planned, hoped, and dreamed for this precious girl. Love doesn’t seem fitting enough to describe all we felt for Chloe. Yet love we did, and all the more as we received news that would forever change the course of our lives.
It was apparent by ultrasound that something was seriously “wrong” with the way Chloe was developing. Or could it be that everything was right? After all, Creator God makes no mistakes. Yet here we were, told by doctors that Chloe’s condition was “incompatible with life.” She would die; if not before or during birth, shortly thereafter. Born prematurely due to pregnancy complications associated wither her diagnosis (a chromosomal abnormality), Chloe lived for 45 minutes, each of which was spent cradled in our arms. I couldn’t have fathomed the legacy she’d leave; the impact she’d make. It’s been six and a half years since those days of grief so fresh. There’ve been tough days all along the way, joys and sorrows alike. More losses even still; baby Jesse and precious Riyah Mae, precious siblings lost in miscarriage. Yet legacy still, and I am proud to be the mamma of all three.
These precious ones with lives so tiny have brought legacy lasting; even unto eternity. More than years on this earth, it was the mere moments of these babies’ lives – our tiniest family members – that taught us the true meaning of legacy.
Life is precious, fragile and must be handled with care. Life well-lived and well-loved, every second, brings meaning and purpose even when life itself doesn’t make sense. All life, our lives, are but a vapor. Let us live with eternity in mind. After all, there are no guarantees, except that which is eternal. I’ve learned from my babies that legacy has the potential to reach eternity when it points to the One Who is eternal; the Alpha and Omega, from everlasting to everlasting. Four months after Chloe died, her daddy met the Heavenly Father. Her legacy pointed straight to the heart of eternity and reached down from the heavens to bring a grown man to His knees in repentance. What greater legacy than this!
Legacy continues in the lives of our family in big ways and small. In the everyday lives we live; speaking their names, honoring each of them, and remembering the joy they brought to us, if only for a time. Legacy prevails when we choose to be intentional. What greater joy than to find purpose in this pain; meaning in this mess. We find hope in the legacies of our babies who are safe in the arms of God. Might we also find rest in Him.
[tooltip text=”TOOLTIP TEXT”]Teske Drake is a mommy to three babies in heaven, mother to two on earth, and wife to her one and only, Justin. Inspired by her own loss experiences, Teske serves as co-founder and President of Mommies with Hope, a biblically-based support group ministry for women who have experienced the loss of a child through miscarriage, stillbirth, or infant loss. Teske is the author of Hope for Today, Promises for Tomorrow: Finding Light Beyond the Shadow of Miscarriage or Infant Loss (Kregel, 2012) and she leads women to live in hope at www.mommieswithhope.com. [/tooltip]