A dear friend told me of a place that provides beautiful, simple caskets made by Trappist monks. Each one is made with such care and prayed over and given a special blessing.
Each child buried in one of their caskets has a tree seedling planted for them each spring and a special Mass said for them.
I could not help but think while looking at it and holding it's simple, beautifully crafted wooden frame in my hands... how much it reminded me of the manger.
No mother should ever have to choose a casket for their child, but it gives me peace to be able to provide such a beautiful resting place for our Son.
I didn't have much time to reflect on it before Clara was busy dumping orange juice from her sippy cup everywhere and I was cleaning it up and thanking God that I had children who had a way of "pulling me out of myself". Even this everyday ordinariness is such a blessing... so full of simply "life".
Shortly afterwards, I put the girls down for a nap and was so happy to be able to nurse little Clara, perfect, beautiful, sweet, healthy, flawless little Clara and my dear Ava, (usually so independent) wanted to be held while she fell asleep (she's been more clingy than usual lately). To feel her warm, healthy body and hear her small breaths as she softened and relaxed and fell asleep in my arms... for these simple blessings and many many more, we are so grateful.