Monday, April 16, 2012

To Love Like Her

SONY DSC

One day last November a baby girl named Wilna was born in a tiny house outside of a the city of Gressier. By this country's standards she was flawed, a deformed ear and other physical abnormalities made her a burden.

6 weeks ago that tiny little girl came through our gates and was born into our hearts. People stopped to stare, not at her imperfections but at her breathtaking beauty. Eyes that sparkled with life, despite the sickness and malnutrition that plagued her tiny body. Lips, reluctant, but ready to curl into a precious smile. 

6 weeks ago baby Wilna stepped out of a life of neglect and pain, she stepped into the gates of a place called OLTCH and she leapt into the soul of a brand new Mama. Wilna of the past became Ella Grace, a new name for a new life.

For the past 6 weeks Ella Grace has blossomed. She was overwhelmed by ups and downs but in the constant arms and love of Lauren. She smiled, she laughed, she played, she cried, all in the love of a mother who has inspired me more than I could ever express.

While Ella Grace grew she worked her way into all of our love. She was impossible not to fall for.

SONY DSC

This morning, during church I looked into the row behind me where Lauren and Ella Grace sat, immediately my heart sank, there was something very wrong with baby Ella. I grabbed her into my arms and ran into the dining room and lied her on the table, her eyes were rolled back in her head, her hands and feet freezing while the rest of her body burned with fever, the inside of her mouth was pure white. I checked franticly for a pulse… faint. Breathing barely noticeable. While trying not to disturb the service I told Jasmine that we needed a car right away. Within seconds Samaritan’s Purse staff members who were visiting has ushered us into their truck and we raced towards Sans Frontiers.

Arriving in the emergency department was sobering. So much pain. While we sat and cried over this baby that we loved so much every single person around us struggled with the same emotion. Every single person there loved and worried over someone else. Some of them would leave together, healed. Some would leave with empty arms… little did I know that we would soon be among them.

Despite receiving all of the [limited] care that this hospital could offer, sweet Ella Grace passed away at around 2pm.

Her passing was devastating.

Not to diminish the joy of knowing that she is in paradise today, we are heartbroken that means a goodbye for us. Ella Grace was loved as much as human hearts are capable of, she was cherished and held and comforted though her pain and tears.

Because God had a plan for the life of a tiny little Haitian girl and because He chose to bless us through that life, we are all better people. Because God gave us Ella Grace, He used His servant Lauren to teach me lessons about being a mother that I will always remember and always strive for. God taught me that pure love does exist, though the love that I saw Lauren share.

SONY DSC

My sweet sister, I am so proud of you! I love you for loving her and showing us all how to love more fiercely. My heart breaks with you and as we spend the next days in tears, prayer and remembering together I hope you know how much I admire your unwavering faith and your dedication to the precious daughter of your heart!

5 comments:

nicole said...

please take heart knowing that she died knowing the love of people and not alone and that in the end she felt gods grace..those in themselves are the greatest gifts to have..what a sweet child god only brings home the best..

Ashlee Nuest said...

Rhyan~
This post was absolutely beautiful!! Ella Grace touched so many lives in the last 6 weeks, including mine. My heart grieves, but rejoices for her, know she is with our heavenly father and no longer has pain! She is in a far better place :) I'm so thankful we had the opportunity to love her! Thank you Lauren for pouring yourself out to the least of this, for his name!! I love you!!

Ashlee

Bethany J said...

Ryhan, I am SO thankful you were able to capture these STUNNING photos of precious Ella Grace... what a gift and wonderful way to remember her by. Thank you!!

Kim Lau said...

my heart goes out to both of you young women. Wish I was there to help in your pain.

Anonymous said...

So glad they had each other to share such love even for such a short time. They are both angels. Gods disciples.