Tonight Courty and I were shopping at HyVee and we were by the frozen food section... she said she was cold, so I wrapped my arms around her and she snuggled into me and then said, "keep me safe mommy" and without thinking I said, "I will always keep you safe. I will never let anything happen to you." Then I got to thinking about all the 'things' out of my control. How as a parent, I want to promise to keep my children safe from harm and pain... I quickly thought to myself, 'just like I kept Declan safe' with a sarcastic snort. What a simple statement that parents say, but in reality, there are times when our best isn't going to change the outcome... there are times when we do everything right and still everything falls apart. Clearly no one said parenting would be easy, but it wasn't until Declan died that I realized what a monumental task it was and that even at my best... your best... ANYONE's best... tragedy could still happen and does happen. That is one of the harsh truths I have learned in the past 6 months. I couldn't keep Declan safe from something that had no warning, no symptoms, no known causes, no nothing... but I did do all I could to create an environment in which minimized risks and was in my control. I did what I knew... I don't think there is any other way to parent... even though I know I can't always keep my kids out of harms way, I do what I can to keep them 'safe'. This innocent comment made by my sweet little girl... to her, Nate and I are mighty, strong and could protect her from everything scary, dangerous, and terrible.... to me, it is a inner battle of knowing so much is out of my control and feeling guilty that I was unable to keep my precious Dex safe and alive. I will continue to promise her that I will keep her safe... I think she needs to hear that, but I will be struggling with the knowledge that there is only so much I can do.
Miss Courty posing for her 3 year old photo. What a ham... :)