My dearest Sophia girl,
Yesterday your Uncle Stephen and your Auntie Becca arrived in Taiwan for the holidays. I was so excited to see them, especially Auntie Becca because I hadn’t seen her in a year. The last time I saw her I was pregnant with you. It was right around the time that I felt you kick me for the very first time, and the reality that a tiny person was growing inside of me was really starting to sink in. Last Christmas she bought you a beautiful pink dress with flowers on the front—I did not know at that time that it would be the one and only dress we would put you in. After you died.
When I was thinking about their arrival last week I realized that instead of having you to introduce her to, all I would be able to show her were boxes of mementos and pictures of memories. It made me so sad that she missed your life, and will never be able to meet you this side of Heaven (thankfully your Uncle Stephen was here to meet you and hold you and kiss you.) That made me think of all the other people who missed meeting you.
Sophia, I know the exact number of people who actually got to meet you in person (besides the countless nurses and doctors). 13. Only 13 people ever breathed the same air as you, and got to feel your soft skin. And do you know how many people knew about your life, and prayed for you? Thousands.
13. Thousands. There were a lot of people who never got to meet you.
The reason we didn’t really allow visitors to see you was definitely a selfish one…we wanted all the time we could have to be with you. We were only allowed to see you for 2 1/2 hours a day, 2 people at a time, and if visitors were with you, that meant we weren’t. And my sweet daughter, I just couldn’t give up those precious minutes to many people.
So because of that decision, and the fact that we live in Taiwan, my heart aches that you were never held by your Auntie Rachel, or Auntie Becca, or Auntie Alice, or Auntie Cathy. It kills me that your grandpa Ly had to go back to America 2 days before you were born…because you decided to come 10 days late when all the doctors told us you would come early.
And I know that instead of picking out the cutest outfit and headband for you to wear when you would meet all those people, all I can do is arrange your photos and blankets and hospital bracelets in a way that shows off your life in the best way possible. For the rest of my life the life of my daughter, you, is confined to boxes and memory cards.
That breaks my heart.
I’m so thankful for Heaven, though. I’m thankful that God made a way for all those people, and more, to be able to meet you one day. So we wait for that day, and I wait for the chance to one day say again “here is my daughter.”
I love you.