1. My husband John. My strength when life seems unbearable.
2. Living children:
Emerson Grace. (Gift of a firstborn daughter. John's princess.)
Jackson Nehemiah. (Gift of life after death.)
3. Jordan-miscarried at 13 weeks. This opened the door to many relationships within my church family and started preparing me for Malachi.
4. Malachi Stephen. A lesson on God's goodness, faithfulness, and truth.
5. Free gift of salvation. My eternal destination has been sealed. Rewards to come.
6. A warm house (woke up to 0* this morning).
7. A baby's giggles.
8. A break from the frigid air... a welcomed 65*.
9. My new iPad.
10. A bigger than expected tax return.
11. Dates set to visit family in Florida.
12. Assurance that I WILL hold Malachi--although probably not as a baby.
13. That blogging will help me to remember these foggy days.
14. That my children have parents who love them.
15. That my children have parents who truly love one another.
16. That joy comes in the morning, no matter how long the night lasts.
17. That my God knows exactly what it's like to watch your son die.
18. That I am not alone in this battle.
19. That God has bigger plans for me than I can dream on my own.
20. That I can be thankful while nursing a sick husband, toddler, and baby back to health that this is temporary for them. This is cold season; this is not a combination of fatal complications.
21. A smile on Jackson's face even after coughing up a lung.
22. That spring is coming. Chi's gravesite isn't cold and dead.
23. That Jackson would rather play with my hands than any toy I put before him.
24. That I feel safe in johns arms.
25. That I long for heaven. I ache to see a perfect Malachi.
26. For Gods written word.
27. That God is willing to endure the effect of sin on His creation so that more might be saved for eternity.
28. Gloomy rainy days.
29. Hearing Emma call me 'mama'.
30. That the design of marriage reflects that of Christ and the church.
31. Emma's memories of Chi, even though she was only two (as long as they last anyway) .
32. Johns selflessness toward me.
33. That John doesn't allow me to wallow in self pity.
34. Friends to sit with at CARE.
35. That John finds me very attractive.
36. Hives, and the humility it brings before an awesome God.
37. Listening to John's tales of Princess Emma before bedtime.
38. Bookcases filled with books.
39. The ability to smile after facing death--knowing Christ conquered the grave.
40. Comments people make on the blog.
41. Knowing that Jackson can see his mama.
42. A sleeping baby and preschooler--at the same time.
43. No more subfloors! All rooms are now functional/livable.
44. Reminders of Malachi (even though I have to choose gratitude)
45. Emma's imagination and referring to us as King John and Queen Marissa.
(on my written out list, I separated some of the earlier gifts into more than one number--hence the discrepancy)
49. The flexibility of being a stay-at-home wife.
50. A God-given desire for adventure--possibly China?
51. Warm Spring air.
52. Machines to aid with washing clothes and dishes.
53. That tears tend to help with the pain.
54. That heaven is constantly on my mind.
55. Contagious laughter between a 5-month old and a 3-year old.
56. Hot, HOT showers.
57. *Malachi was delivered at a hospital with a NICU.
58. *Malachi's breathing issues were immediately discovered--and attended to.
59. *My post-delivery complications made for less "bleeding" issues in the ensuing days.
60. *Doc released me from hospital the same day Chi was transferred to the children's hospital across town--just a day after delivery (even though I would have warranted a bit longer of a stay with my complications).
61. *That I was unaware of Chi's issues while he was in utero. I would have just worried.
62. A call from John to share an embarrassing moment he had with me.
63. A simple message from a friend reminding me I am not alone.
64. A "small" group gathering for lunch.
65. A husband's willingness to take over a chore of mine unexpectedly.
66. The chance to fellowship with another young mom while filling vacant nursery slot.
67. An invite from friends for Memorial Day lunch.
68. Looking ahead to a short-time missions trip to China.
69. Free book.s
70. Jackson clicing to me as I carry him.
71. Cool mornings outside with the kids.
72. Air conditioning!
73. Finding a four-leaf clover.
74. Emma putting herself down for a nap.
75. Friends willing to watch kids for a couple hours so we can have a date.
76. A 102-point word on Words W/ Friends.