May 19, 2009

139- Amanda Ruth

Last night I was lying on the bed and looked at the clock and realized that tomorrow (today) was Amanda's birthday. She would be 33 today. I started writing some of my feelings last night and was so tired all I could do was feel sad. Today I worked just as hard, but I think it was very therapeutic and tonight I've enjoyed scanning photos and working on this post very much.

139- Amanda
Joanie, Rebekah meeting Amanda, just home from the hospital- May 1976.

Almost from conception I was filled with the most profound love for my yet unborn baby. It wasn’t until Amanda was born that I realized that the Lord knew just how much I would need to love this little girl. She was a true redhead and had the stereotypical personality. She had almost no tolerance for frustration; she was hot or cold, red or white, extremely happy or very sad. And I love her with all my heart.

139- A-2
Rebekah, Grammy, Amanda and Tony- May 1976

Mom came to take care of us when I had Amanda. She was so good to do that for all of us. (I missed that with my three younger children.)

139- A-3
Amanda in Tony's giant pumpkin- October 1976

139- A-4
Amanda at 17 months

139- A-5
Amanda Christmas 1978

Ann and Sue tell me that she was a little Joanie in so many ways. She loved to make up names for her little stuffed animals. There was: Koomot, the bear and Moosamoola, the dog. Amanda said the funniest things; she’d put her eye on my cheek and then say, “I’m gonna keep my eye on you!”

139- A-6
Amanda in Baker, OR- summer 1979

She loved to write on the walls, the floor, my car bumper (hot in the sun), and the heater with crayons. It didn’t matter what I did; spanking, time-out, make her clean it up… nothing. (And after her death when I had my car serviced some well-meaning mechanic cleaned that crayon off the bumper and I was heartbroken!)

139- A-7
Amanda's 4th birthday- 1980

This will always be my favorite photo of Amanda. It captured her sweetness and her precious spirit that was just too big for that little body.

I struggle when I try to express her brief life here on earth; the whole of it was fraught with much family upheaval and I know that if she could have come to my family under different circumstances her little life would have been easier. I am particularly grateful that I will have the opportunity to "raise" her in the next life without all of the dysfunction and garbage... what would I do without that eternal perspective?

139- A-8
My last photo of Amanda and I together- August 3, 1981

Amanda, I love you and I am so grateful that you are my little girl... just keep waiting for me... I will get there soon.


Joanie said...

Sadly, the post didn't end as well as it started... now I have the crying headache...

Anonymous said...

How could it end as well as it started? Happy Birthday Amanda from your Auntie P. We'll meet soon.

Love you

Dean and Sheri said...

What a beautiful her mom. I didn't wake up this morning thinking I would have tears so early!

debra said...

Oh, I think my contacts are ruined today! What a beautiful post and Happy Birthday Amanda! You're amazing, and we love you SO much!!!

Laura H said...

That was very moving. Happy Birthday to you Amanda.

Jessica said...

Happy Birthday to Amanda. And thank you, Joanie, for sharing her with us.

leannewitney said...

She is so beautiful! The color of her hair is something you could only imagine! You are an amazing mother... Happy Birthday Amanda.