Tuesday, June 3, 2008

6 months ago at 12:42

As I sit here writing this post it is 12:42 pm on June 3rd, exactly 6 months ago today my precious little boy, Tristan Asher Hostetter, was born. Trayc immediately placed his sweet little face against mine so that I could feel him, kiss him and tell him how much I loved him. This was the most incredible moment of my life, my little boy was here and he was ALIVE!!!! He even started crying, which is a sound I will never forget. Knowing the diagnosis of Trisomy 18, we were very unsure as to how long we would have with him, we literally lived in the moment. I am so thankful the Lord gave us time, 56 DAYS is more than we ever dreamed was possible.

It is hard to believe it's already been 6 months since that day. My mind has wandered alittle, thinking of all that Tristan would have been doing at 6 months old. It is in those moments that I have to make myself stop or I will be caught up in the "what if's" and that can become a very sad place to dwell. I try to turn those "what if's" into what we had - WE HAD 56 DAYS and we made so many memories in those 56 DAYS. We gave all we had to our precious little boy and held nothing back!

I have not really posted much recently, except for Tristan's award, Tanner's musical and a special prayer request for another T-18 family, but nothing real personal because ......... honestly, because I have struggled. I have really struggled since Mother's Day and I just didn't know what to write. Mother's Day really hit me harder than I expected because I was really good up until then. I felt like I was in the valley, I could see the mountain top but I just didn't seem to have enough strength to get out. Don't get me wrong, I have not been in the bed depressed nor have I withdrawn from life. It's a different kind of struggle, it's a quiet struggle within my heart as I am really missing my little boy and longing to hold him again. We are a very active family, constantly on the go and the only time we've ever truly slowed down was the 2 months Tristan was here. We're either doing home school, at soccer, at piano, at church, at church activities or family events and even if I wanted to stay in bed I can't - I have a 2 year old, which should explain itself. But now as the activities have finished until August, it has allowed for some down time which is not always good for the mind of a grieving mommy. So again, Tristan has become forefront in my mind. I want to be that same carefree, fun, loving, happy, on-the-go kind of girl but it seems so distant. Right now I am guarded. My heart is guarded. I am afraid of getting hurt, from anything or anyone, so I have withdrawn and quietly struggled. It's not just Tristan though, I've also recently found out about an extended family member that has received a diagnosis which is almost too hard for me to even bear therefore my emotions are a wreck, this is alot to comprehend just 4 1/2 months after losing Tristan. I've been better this past week though, I am on my way out of the valley and I can see the sun shining again!

I have been hesitant to share that I have been struggling because there is the pride part of me that wants everyone to think I'm still doing great and that I am strong. But, the more I have thought about it the more I realize I wouldn't be honest if I came across like that. I want my entries to be real, to portray the real me, the real pain, the real struggles of this journey. Why? Because whether tomorrow or 5 years from now, if a new mommy finds my blog I do not want her to feel like she is alone in grieving, I want her to know it's okay to struggle on the journey and that there are other mommies out there feeling the same way and those mommies are just an email away.

There are times I have felt so alone with these thoughts and feelings but then I go to the computer and check on my "Internet" friends and realize I am not, they are feeling the same way. I am so thankful for these friendships, little did I realize back in October when I met my first friend, Angie, how much I would need her and all the other girls who have come along. Although I did not post, I did email my sweet "Internet" friends weeks ago telling them of my struggle and asked that they pray for me. I greatly appreciate their emails, their love and their prayers for me the past few weeks. This is what true friendship is, this is what makes this journey easier.

The Internet has also become such a reality to all that is going on with other families around the world. My heart breaks every time I read of another family experiencing the loss of a baby/child. A part of me thinks that I should just stop reading about all these families but then I realize that had my friends felt the same way many months ago they would not have reached out to me, and I cannot imagine how I would feel without them in my life. I feel as though the Lord has given us Tristan's story to help others and I want to use that, not walk away because it would be the easy thing to do. I, along with many of my "Internet" friends, have been affected along this journey by friends who have walked away because they did not want to get involved or they did not know how to deal with the death of a baby, unfortunately life and death, no matter how long or how short, are a reality and what we need are our friends to be there! I never want to be the friend who walks away, I want to be the one who is there all the way to the end! The reward of being there every step of the way is seeing how the Lord turns your tragedy/loss into something beautiful. I have already seen this happen with my sweet "Internet" friend, Angie, 6 months from the day she lost Poppy Joy she was holding another precious little girl, Adrienne Christine, oh what a miracle! And there are so many other things that are happening among me and my "Internet" friends that have yet to be shared.

Even though I have struggled the past few weeks, I have such a peace about the life of our precious little boy. Although I do not understand why the Lord chose this for our family I am so thankful He entrusted us with Tristan knowing we would love him with all that we have and that we would never question why or turn from our Lord. We love our Lord more than ever before and we know He is in control. This has been a hard journey, but we would do it all over again even if it was for a brief moment like the picture above.

I would ask that you please pray for our family as we continue to move through the grieving process, as we are still working on the foundation and as we are making some very exciting plans for the future......check back soon to find out what they are.

This is the slideshow we showed at Tristan's "Celebration of Life" service on January 30, 2008. I am sure many of you have already seen it, but I know there are some who have come along our journey since then, so I thought I'd repost it. Today was the first time I have actually watched it since the service. These are 112 pictures of the 1600 we took that shows God's faithfulness to our family.

Isaiah 65:20 says: "Never again will there be in it an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not live out his years; he who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere youth; he who fails to reach a hundred will be considered accursed."


Rebecca said...

Much love...

Melody said...

Just letting you know, I still check in and pray for all you special Mommies and families. Please dont ever hesitate to simply post "struggling-please pray." We dont need specifics. Thank you for continuing to share your heart.

Emily said...

I think about little Tristan alot. He really was a blessing to me through this internet. I loved watching him grow & I loved watching your family love him. I do check in on your family often. You are such a sweet mommy & I will continue to pray for you!

Chrissy said...

Thinking of you today. Praying you through another milestone. I know how hard these days are and how much they make us miss our little ones even more. Looking forward to "future plans"! Love you!

Anonymous said...

Your story has made such a difference in my life. I know that the hurt will never go away as you have lost such an amazing little boy in your life. However, you have taught your readers to live in the now and celebrate each moment. I have never read such a story as yours and believe that many people in your awful situation are now modeling their lives after yours...to live in the now.
You are such an inspiration and are leading people, such as me, to pray daily, and enjoy each moment with the people that we have around us.
Thank you for sharing your story. I am so sorry for your grief and will remember your sweet little boy every night when I go to bed, he gives me hope and helps me pray.

God Bless,

Deborah said...

I think of Tristan all the time. His life made such a great impact! Thanks for sharing your story, and your feelings. I will pray for you and for your healing. Love to you and your family. (((Big Huge Hug)))

M said...

I am praying for you. You and all of your boys are so lovable. Thank you for sharing with us. I will continue to pray for you through this time, and also for the foundation.

Love, Michelle

Cathy said...

Yvette, WE are praying for this process that you are going through. I don't even pretend to comprehend it. I check in on you so often. We love your family, Cathy & Annabel

amie said...

Tristan will never be forgotten nor the impact his life had and will have on so many people. You have allowed God to use you during your heartache. I pray that God will continue to comfort you and give you strength every moment of the day.

The VW's said...

I'm praying for you and all the other mothers who are dealing with such a loss! Your families were chosen to carry this special burden and God will give you the strength to sustain! Thank you for sharing your precious boy's life! I have learned so much from you and him! God Bless You!

Kenzie said...


I was thinking of you guys so much yesterday. It is so easy to focus on the day they arrived to heaven and not always they day they arrived on earth. December 3rd will always be a day in my heart and although he isn't here now, it is a beautiful day now, six months later, to reflect on the beautiful time you had to share with him. I know the pain is intense and sometimes it's just so hard without him... but boy he is having fun with Jesus and so many of his little friends.

I love you friend and can't wait for a few weeks!

Kim (marygracesummons.blogspot.com) said...

Yvette, When I am reminded that it's six months it is such a mix of emotions. Thankfulness, joy, love, sadness..all of them are there. 56 days of pure heaven in your arms. I will always remember Tristan as the one who was so encouraging everytime I got on the computer and saw a new picture of him and his brothers, a new night of Christmas, Disney world at your house...so much fun. You know we will never forget any of it. He was such a strong fighter. I can't wait to see him again some day.
I will continue to pray for you as I know you will for me. I know the struggles and the heavyness of heart. I can't wait to see your face and just talk about all of it.
I love you friend,

Anonymous said...

I am an avid "scrapbooker" and am now wondering if you have ever done scrapbooking. I find it relaxing and I love to see the creative ways I come up with to capture life's moments - from the mundane to the celebrations, there is always a story to tell. If you haven't gotten into it, maybe making a tribute book to Tristan's memory would be a great way to continue to work through the grief. Taking his pictures and putting them on a page where you can journal your thoughts about him, the things you loved, the way you would love on him and stay up all night; basically all the memories you have shared in your blog and then some. Then you could flip through it and remember things you may otherwise "forget" (although this journey is probably not one that has forgettable moments.) It's something personal your your other boys could cherish and look at, too.

I continue to pray for you as you learn a new normal and miss your sweet baby Tristan. I think it's safe to say that your blog readers all miss him, too - but nowhere near the capacity that his mommy does. I love the honesty of your blog, and I hope that even in the midst of your struggles you feel held by the One holding your little bundle of love.

sumi said...

Hugs, Yvette.

I am so thankful for the internet too. It has certainly helped me feel less alone as I travel this road.

May Jesus hold you close to his heart as you remember Tristan's 6-month birthday...

Corie said...

Thank you for your post. You are not alone in those feelings. It is hard not to think of what the summer would have been like. I have to remind myself that God wants to hear all our heartache for he is "man of sorrows, aquainted with grief." I do know that your honesty will help others. I comforts me I know. I will be praying for you as you press on. Summer is good to "try" to slow down and yet we know with kids that is also hard to do.

boltefamily said...

Oh Yvette,

As I read your words tonight I am in tears. I too have been struggling so very much and your willingness to be real helps me more than you could know. Sometimes the lows are so low they are completely unbearable.

I am so thankful that I have found my new internet friends to help me along this journey. I think of Tristan so often. He has such a sweet face and I cannot wait to see that face when I get to Heaven. I always love checking your blog just to see that beautiful little boy at the top of the page!

56 days of miracles says it all! What a miracle he is! He will NEVER be forgotten. I will be praying for you and for your family!

I love you!

Anonymous said...

I also feel grateful that you are honest about your feelings. I can relate to wanting to share only the good, and don't know why it's so hard for us to sometimes share the good AND the bad, but I think whatever it is that is causing us to hold back is also limiting the opportunities we could have to feel connected. We aren't failures just because we can't always "soar," and when someone shares the way you just did, it makes them seem more approachable. I've always loved your honesty, and it assures me that I can be not at my best with you.

Tristan's face is so kissable in that just-born picture!!

Isaiah 65:20 is such a wonderful quote to end your post with. I long for that day, when no mommy needs to ever contemplate what you have been through.

I love you,

The Hull Munchkins said...

You are such a sweet family! I check your blog often and vividly remember the day Tristan went to be with Jesus. I cried and my husband couldn't figure out what was wrong with me.

I pray for your hearts often too. Your honesty brings glory to God! We all have suffering in this life... but those who believe in Jesus have hope in the pain.

I really enjoyed seeing the slide show again. What a beautiful boy Tristan was.

anita said...

I just read your post on the Deeper Still blog about you and your 5 friends meeting for the first time face to face. Your post really moved me. God is so awesome to bring you six together! I feel like Michelle posted...I just want to hug all your necks!! I will be at the Deeper Still in Atlanta also. I just want you, Emily, Kristy and your three other friends to know I am lifting you up in prayer. I am so sorry for the loss of your babies. I am so thankful to God that He gave you those 56 days with Tristan. I pray God blesses the six of you in Atlanta with so much more than you can even imagine! Much love to you in Christ! Anita

Laurie said...

I have been praying for you Yvette and for all of the things that are heavy on your heart. You are loved.

Laurie in Ca.

Kirsten said...

God bless you today! You are in my prayers. Thank you for sharing your precious baby boy with us and your story. You are an inspiration!


Jeanie said...

Thinking about you all on Trayc's 1st Father's Day of his 3 boys. He will always be a daddy to 3 boys and that is so special!! Hugs to you all!

Lori said...

With today being Father's Day, I just wanted you to know you and your family have been in my thoughts and prayers today!

Jen in Al said...

praying for you! jen in al

123 said...

Hi guys... I've followed your story from the beginning almost. I pretty much stumbled on your blog and never turned away. I pray for you often at 3am, because I work nights.
Anyway... to get to the point... your blog caused me to develop an interest in Trisomy 18. I had no idea why. Now, one of my very best friends will find out tomorrow if her unborn child has Trismony 18. I almost couldn't believe it. It's all making sense now... but my biggest fear is if it is positive, that she won't carry the baby to term. I don't know what to do and I don't know where my place is or isn't... in fact, I'm not even sure if it's right to share this with you. I can only pray if it is, you'll catch this comment tonight, and if it isn't, you won't.
And as for me... when I have a son one day, he's going to be named after the most amazing boy I've ever heard of. ;)
If you want to respond, feel free to use my personal email.

Carrie said...

Oh, I am just in tears. I can't stop crying! Your little Tristan was such a precious gift! My little boy was born 2 days after Tristan. I can't imagine if I had to give him up. Thank you for sharing your heart & your struggles.