Friday, May 30, 2014

Grieving with Hope

At Ben's Celebration Service, our pastor shared 1 Thessalonians 4:13. That as Christians, we "do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope."
 
Hope. Such a powerful word.
 
We grieve. Yes, we grieve. We cry, remember, laugh, celebrate, sob, and hurt. Christians feel the same emotions as the rest of the world. We are human. But we are also Christ-followers. And our God has conquered death. And we have the promise of heaven if we decide to surrender the control of our lives that He asks.
 
Because we belong to Him, we have Hope.
 
I remember having a shirt in high school that read: "No Jesus, No hope. Know Jesus, Know Hope."
 
This is our hope: Ben is in heaven. We will see him again. And we still have a God-given purpose to fulfill while we are still here on earth.
 
Without the possibility of hope, I would have crumbled months ago. I wouldn't have had a reason to get out of bed in the morning. I wouldn't have been able to let the funeral home carry Ben's old body out of my house the evening he breathed his last. I wouldn't have been able to let them bury him in the ground. Because I have hope, I know that this was not "the end" for our son. It was just the beginning.
 
I'm learning that it's okay to cry. To grieve. To mourn. The reason we grieve so much is just a reflection of how much we loved Benjamin. We feel his loss. We miss him being an active and physical part of our family. And that's alright. But rather than dismiss the pain, seal it away in a jar... we need to accept it. Welcome it. And see it as a part of healing. Because we will be with Ben again and for him, it will have felt like only a few minutes since he had seen us last.
 
Hope. It makes all the difference.
 
I saw a picture of hope today at my doctor's office. Her name is undecided, but even at only 24 weeks gestation, she is definitely a Sauer and she is just beautiful.
 
 
Through everything - the heartache, the pain, the anguish - God chose to bless us with another life. Even before we had learned of Ben's diagnosis. Perhaps God knew we would have needed this gift from the beginning. And we couldn't be more honored.
 
Blessed.
 
I will admit, though, that I'm a little scared. Having had gone through the events of the past few months, there's a part of us that would like to think that we're somehow exempt from future trials. That we've "paid our dues" and are now officially off-the-hook from any hardship that may occur in the future. But we know better. God never guaranteed that. In fact, He guaranteed the opposite: that we would have trouble here on earth. But to take heart, He has overcome the world!
 
We don't have much choice as to what happens to us here on earth. The only choice we have is how we react to it.
 
It requires a little more faith than I feel like I have most times. But I'm learning to trust. To let go. And give God permission to continue to use us as He sees fit. I don't expect to get it right every single day. But that's my goal, that's where I'm headed. And by God's grace, I know He'll guide me in the right direction. One day at a time.
 
For now, I choose to celebrate the God of Life, who richly hands out miracles on a daily basis. One of my miracles is comfortable in heaven. Two are sleeping soundly upstairs. And the other is quite cozy at 1 pound, 11 ounces, kicking her mommy from the inside.
 
Wow. How lucky can a girl be.

96 comments:

  1. Aw,sweet picture. Thank you for your encouraging words. Thank you for sharing Ben's story, and changing people's lives. We pray for you everyday still.

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  2. I think her name should be Hope.

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    1. I was thinking this also.

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    2. I agree. Its right there in the post. "I saw a picture of Hope today..."

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    3. I was thinking the same thing. <3

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    4. "Hope" so profound, which carries us..

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    6. Hope would be lovely name I think,, everytime I read your blog you inspire me so much , the way you write your feelings and emotions is fantastic and to know you will see ben again.

      God bless you mindy and your family x

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    7. Exact thing i thought when i read that sentence "I saw a picture of Hope today" would be an awesome name and be so fitting!

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  3. the name Hope seems to suit her well :)

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  4. I was just thinking about you when I saw your post. So good to hear your honest words once again.So many ache with you and celebrate with you. Holding you close.

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  5. Such an amazing post. Faith and Hope, even in the smallest form, at the most difficult of times, can quite literally get you through anything. I continue to hope that you and your family are finding peace and comfort. I'm sure without a shadow of a doubt that Ben is looking down upon you with such love. God Bless *hugs*

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  6. I was just thinking about you when I saw your post. So good to hear your honest words once again.So many ache with you and celebrate with you. Holding you close.

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  7. counting your blessings...one day at a time... God IS good and faithful, praying for your sweet family :)

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  8. You send HOPE to so many of us through your words. Hugging you as you lead your family through your journey here on earth. When you find time to write a book one day... I am going to buy it FOR SURE! You are incredible. You give me HOPE.

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  9. I agree the name Hope is perfect!!!

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  10. You are amazing!!! What an inspiration God is allowing you to be!!

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  11. I thought about you this morning and wondered how you were doing. Your blog lets me know that your're doing ok. The pic of new baby Sauer must have brought you great joy this morning. I agree, Hope Grace or Grace would be beautiful names. I've always loved the name, Grace. Sleep well, and peace to all of you.

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  12. Her name should definitely be Hope. Mindy I really hope you write a book about Ben and your family. You are truly an inspiration. God Bless you all

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  13. Hope or Faith would be a beautiful name for your baby. May God continue to bless you and your family always.

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  14. I think her name should b Hope.its fitting for her! She has her angel (ben) watching over her. :)

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  15. Did Ben ever give any ideas for a name for baby girl? I seen someone comment that way back when and I've been wondering for a while. I can wait and trust me the suspense will be well worth it when you let us know she has arrived :) I love sono pics, I'm sure whatever her name is it will be beautiful :)

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    1. Ben's first suggestion was "Megamind." When I told Andy, Ben reminded me that he was only kidding and he really liked the name, "Niko," after one of the boys' favorite friends at preschool. :) We did run by all the possibilities with him a few months ago and he approved them all :)

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    2. Can't wait to hear the name! Until then hope all is well and your family is adjusting, I'm sure you are all enjoying the outdoors.. Here's hoping the next few months go by super fast and the summer months are a breeze for you :)

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  16. Your "hope" is encouragement, inspiration, and reminders to so many. I am not sure how you do it, but have a feeling it is all through Him.

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  17. Baby girl Sauer! How totally awesome! ��

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  18. you are the best i can't help my self i look on face book every day to see if you wrote more stuff about God & your Family . i do think that you should Name your new little girl Grace or Hope . keep your faith going for your family and all your followers i know i need it for sure :)

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  19. God Bless this child you carry. God gave us your family, to bring Faith and Hope back into our community. You blogs give others strength. ��

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  20. Mindy you are an AMAZING woman. God Bless you and your family! And I do agree you should name get Hope. She is beautiful already!

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  21. Thank you, for the hope and strength you and your family share with so many. Several times I read your comment above "We don't have much choice to what happens to us here on earth. The only choice we have is how we react to it. " I hope to carry that statement with me to remind me I am not powerless I have some control. Bless you and your family, keeping you all in my prayers.

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  22. Mindy I agree with everyone Hope, Grace, or Faith very fitting your choice of a name of course. Thank you for sharing her with us all it gives us all hope. Your journey has been draining please take time and grieve as long as you need. I'm also checking your blog everyday you give my life purpose. I'm still praying to God for peace In your hearts you deserve it

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  23. You've already chosen her name as others pointed out...Hope.
    Please also check out "Chasing Rainbows" blog by Kate Leoung on fb....you share a common bond of loss, grief and "Hope"

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  24. Having enough trust to even begin the process of letting go and letting God is when we truly know we're finally on the pathway towards peace and acceptance. The ache in our hearts will never completely go away, but that's okay. It will only serve to keep their memory alive until that glorious day comes when our mourning will turn to rejoicing --- and we finally get to go home.

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  25. What a beautiful post ♡ I too often wonder how those without hope, without the belief of heaven make it through a typical day, let alone something much more difficult in life. Hope is truly such a beautiful gift. Thank you for the reminder. Whatever name you choose for your newest baby girl I'm sure will be partly "heaven sent" to you via one proud big brother, Ben! Can't wait to hear what you choose. Praying for you to continue to have a healthy pregnancy. ♡ Love & Prayers, Leigh Anne

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  26. Oh mama, how you have encouraged my heart. Hope is so beautiful. (Hugs)

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  27. Mindy, you and your family are a blessing to many! And yes, God sends us gifts in perfect timing... I am expecting my second blessing in the middle of a trial, not my perfect timing, but you are absolutely right, God is in control of our lives and He will provide.
    Praying for you guys... can't wait to meet your baby girl!

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  28. Replies
    1. i love this name too. You have so much of both qualities!

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  29. Mindy , your words and thoughts are so true . : ) Ben will think it was only yesterday that he saw you last , there is no time in heaven . His job was done here on earth and God called him home . You will still have alot of time here on earth to enjoy with your 3 other children. That too will go by fast , keep cherishing the moments with them knowing Ben will help guide and protect you guys every step . Gotta love miracles.

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  30. I like the name hope, but it's funny, when my father passed in December if 2008, I find out I was pregnant. Coincidence?? Or is it our faith in God that he will heal our pain? Mindy,I think you should name her faith, for the faith that we place in it Lord and savior.

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  31. I definitely agree it is "okay" to cry and grieve. We do experience those same emotions and the world needs to see that we do, but they also need to see that while we grieve we also do have the hope like you wrote about. Your precious little baby is so adorable and I know you will proudly share the love Ben had for her to her as you mother her. It is so true that because you had this tragedy that "one time be enough" is not necessarily true but I do think your anchor is firmly implanted in Jesus that you know how difficult it is, you'll continue to walk alongside of him.

    betty

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  32. I've been thinking about you and praying for you. Reading your posts gives me faith and hope. Thank you so much for continuing to share your feelings with us. You seem to post when I need it the most. Praying for you and your family.

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  33. Life, it is a blessing to all. The new baby on her way to a wonderful loving family, I can probably say she knows Ben already, and Jack and Megan. She knows her mommy and daddy. One of things about life and God, his presence is everywhere, unborn and afterlife. His love is what makes every moment special. Mindy, I hope you continue to write, it fills my heart with faith, hope and love for God. My thoghts and prayers always and forever with all of you. When I lay my head down at night one of things I will always say " God, let Ben know I said Good Night" He is my purpose.

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  34. Mindy, THANK YOU, THANK YOU, THANK YOU!!!

    THANK YOU for sharing that beautiful picture of your beautiful little girl, growing inside of you!

    The reason I am so very excited to see that precious picture is because I am HOPING & PRAYING that it will serve as a reminder, or educate & persuade ALL of your countless new friends, to BE PRO-LIFE.

    As I'm sure you know, EVERY HUMAN BEING BEGINS LIFE DEPENDENT ON OUR MOTHER FOR OXYGEN, & NUTRITION... a.k.a. A FETUS.
    I cannot wrap my brain around the mind-set of many people who value 9 months of comfort/discomfort, more than they value the life they created. :-(

    For many years I didn't give abortion much thought. I knew I would never have one, thus did not occupy my list of concerns.
    I have no idea "why" I have become so passionate about being pro-life, & doing what I can to protect those innocent lives, that's all I know is that over the last 5 years (I'm soon to be 45yrs. old), it just happened.
    I can only assume the obvious answer, that God is using me this way, guiding me down this path, simply because this is part of HIS PLAN for me.
    I don't have a clue why HE would have chosen me..?!
    I am nothing more than a disgruntled, non-practicing Catholic, on a 2nd marriage (11yrs. this June!) who has been searching for a religion & church I can respect & support, for many years. I just began reading the Bible this last year or two, & am now trying to correct the error of my parenting (with kids 24,21, & 16yrs. old) by teaching them that manners, good deeds, & honesty, & kindness are all great (as I've always taught), but, if our every day life doesn't include a thank you prayer, an acknowledgement to God that we are grateful for all that we have... Then we're likely failing God, & the most important test of our lives (These words I now speak are all new. Again, I don't know why it is I that God chose to slap upside the head (gently & lovingly, of course!), to wake up... But I am very, very grateful that HE did!
    I am all too aware of how much harder it is to try to force ourselves, externally, to seek God. It is much easier to do so when it's coming from within...
    I AM SO THANKFUL!
    While here on earth, I may never know the "why", but for whatever reason(s), I can feel him now... & I know, at least a portion of, the message HE wants me to share:
    "IF YOU BELIEVE IN GOD, THEN YOU MUST BELIEVE YOU HAVE, YOU ARE, A SOUL...
    WHEN IS IT THAT WE, OUR SOUL, APPEARS?
    WHEN OUR MOTHER IS 5 MONTHS PREGNANT? 8 MONTHS?
    PERHAPS AS WE ARE EXITING OUR MOTHERS WOMB, POOF, OUR SOUL APPEARS THEN!
    DOES THAT SOUND SILLY?
    OF COURSE IT DOES, BECAUSE THE "ONLY" LOGICAL CONCLUSION IS THAT WE, OUR SOUL, BEGINS AT THE MOMENT OF CONCEPTION.

    PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, ALLOW THAT LIFE WITHIN TO HAVE THE 9 MONTHS (small amount of time) NECESSARY UNTIL HE, OR SHE, CAN LIVE W/O YOU.
    Many couples who aren't able to conceive a child would give up a limb to have the honor of raising yours."

    Thank you Mindy, for allowing me to use your platform to attempt to save a precious life.

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    1. Shelly, I didn't see her give you permission to use her platform. I'm sorry you took it upon yourself to do so. I wonder about people like you and I would like to say more than I dare to right now.

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    2. >Deuteronomy 30:19 - I call heaven and earth to record this day against you, [that] I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thou and thy seed may live:
      >Deuteronomy 27:25 - Cursed [be] he that taketh reward to slay an innocent person. And all the people shall say, Amen.
      >Deuteronomy 5:17 - Thou shalt not kill.
      >Numbers 12:12 - Let her not be as one dead, of whom the flesh is half consumed when he cometh out of his mother's womb.
      ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
      The Beatitudes
      …10"Blessed are those who have been persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. 11"Blessed are you when people insult you and persecute you, and falsely say all kinds of evil against you because of Me.12"Rejoice and be glad, for your reward in heaven is great; for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

      Isaiah 51:7
      "Hear me, you who know what is right, you people who have taken my instruction to heart: Do not fear the reproach of mere mortals or be terrified by their insults.

      Philippians 1:29
      For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also to suffer for him,

      John 15:21
      They will treat you this way because of my name, for they do not know the one who sent me.

      Galatians 6:9
      Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.

      Proverbs 11:12
      He who despises his neighbor lacks sense, But a man of understanding keeps silent.

      2 Timothy 4:16-17
      "... no one stood with me, but all forsook me... But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me, so that the message might be preached fully through me..."

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  35. ++++ Your faith and what you project in each blog has truly touched the hearts of so many. I know Ben is up in heaven running around in spirit with other children I ★*know are there. I picture trails of blue running & laughing, free... finally free of his earthly pain. Thank you so much for sharing with us all of your thoughts & experiences in this blog.
    ++++ That being said I have an idea of a way to give Ben & the new little a connection in a different way other then family/bloodlines. Name her ++++ A shade of Blue ++++ whether Navy, teal, Sky (skylar & skylark), cyan, Prussian, Perry (like periwinkle), sapphire, Celeste, Arure? Maybe even a middle name. Some are a bit "different" (wink) but a few are ladylike & cute. I like unique names myself, have 2 daughters named Lennox & Bliss so different works for for our family. ;-) I pray that the Lord gives you & your loved ones healing from head to toe, that in moments of hurt that he wraps his arms around you all, giving you a soft breeze to know he is beside you. †- Amymarie

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  36. I was 8 months pregnant when my son was diagnosed with Leukemia. I allowed him to name the baby, and he chose the name Hope. Lots of love to you and yours.

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  37. This post was beautiful, honest, and true. The fact that you get out of bed every morning is incredible. Crying is good! It lets the pain, hurt, heartache flow out of you. Moms are allowed to cry... b/c we are strong. Plus I think you're teaching the kids how to properly deal with life, instead of bottling it all up and not talking about it. I'm so incredibly sorry for your heartache, but I'm also very happy for your newest miracle. She will bring you some much deserved Joy.

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  38. Megamind, HA! God bless you and your family. I wish you well. Your words are true and they bless me.

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  39. NO names suggestions here..being 31 weeks myself..I don't really like it when other people try to name our baby. It's such a sacred thing..although Megamind would be an awesome pet name in the future!! As for your hearts..praying for the peace that passes understanding. Grief is so exhausting..but when we are peaceful..it's just little bit easier. You sound at peace..but I know there are moments..oh may Jesus help you each day..and when you hold this baby girl in your arms..I pray sweet tears of joy will help ease some of the pain you have today. Blessings

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  40. Mindy, you amaze and inspire me and I pray for you and your family often. We've never met....but your transparency has allowed all of WNY and for that fact, the world know you and you have also shown them the hope you speak of above. Jesus. Without Him, I don't know how any of this would be manageable. When I saw the title of this blog post, I thought of this song called With Hope by Steven Curtis Chapman. I lost a baby some years ago and this song was one of the things that comforted me.

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  41. Your story is humbling and inspiring ....and your sweet girl is beautiful! Your whole family is beautiful!!

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  42. Mindy,
    I wish you truly knew how your words life people up and encourage our hearts. My grandma lost her 51 year old daughter on April 3, 2013. She accepted Jesus - maybe around 8 years before she went to heaven. So, we KNOW where she is. But, I want to take your words when I visit my grandma today because I think it'll encourage her.
    I don't know how different losing a child-child and losing an adult-child are, but it hurts like nobody else can imagine either way. And, I think your words will encourage my grandma as she misses my aunt every single day. Praying for you!

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  43. So many words of love, faith and hope encourage me more than I can express. I am so glad that you have another little life to care for. As you stated, we are promised that life will not be easy. May favorite scripture expresses that as well. In John 16:33 Jesus tells us, "These things I have spoken unto you that in Me you might have peace. In this world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer for I have overcome the world." As you also said, we KNOW where Ben is now. May we all live our lives so as to one day be reunited.

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  44. I think Hope is beautiful. But also Grace is a beautiful name. Faith also fits. You are a wonderful Mom and I believe whatever you name her it will be perfect! I still think of you often and how amazing you are handling your journey in life. I believe 1 day at a time you will continue to heal and always hold Ben in your heart. As he is in many thousand others hearts and thoughts. Just remember you are an amazing person with strength. If you need anything at all let me know. Even if it's just to vent.

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  45. Mindy, when I lost my 5 1/2 month old son Michael, in 1980 (he was not expected to live more than a few weeks) the heartache was almost more than I could bare. From the day he was born I clung to God in the hope that someday Michael would be healed. When Michael died in my arms part of me died with him as well as part of my faith. I remember thinking that now I was immune from more heartache, at least for a while. I also tried to hide from God, tried to make myself as invisible as I could from Him because I had this ridiculous idea that if He forgot about me He wouldn't strike me again. I tried to stop loving my 10 yr old daughter, fearing that she would die too. Horrible thought, right? Thankfully, He knows me and loves me because instead of "striking" me put His arms around me, comforted me and brought me back to Him. As I grew older and hopefully wiser, I realized that all the pain in my life eventually made me more compassionate, more loving and more dependant on my God.
    God bless you and your family. As always, thank you for sharing your journey and for allowing yourself to be used by God.

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  46. One of the things I have learned thru grieving many losses is that there comes a day when grief stops controlling you and you control it. There is no set amount of time-it is different for each loss and different for each person. But it will happen-you will always feel the hurt but grief will not consume you.I definitely feel God has blessed you with the timing of your pregnancy to give you and your family a happy focus in this time of deep grief. God's strength and peace be with you.

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  47. You are truly an amazing women. You have given to me so much Hope and Faith. You inspire me to be a better person! I wish I lived near you, just to hug you and tell you how much your posts mean to everyone who reads them. I grieve along with you. You have so many trails ahead of you. So many gifts too. May God Bless you and your family! <3

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  48. I totally agree with everyone else. That sweet little angel should be called Hope. She is a special gift to you and your family from God to remind you that the Lord giveth and he taketh away ;). Also thank you so much for sharing Ben's memorial service with us online. I watched the whole thing and cried my eyes out for the full 45 minutes. I was just in AWE of how God used your little boy to bring others to him. I loved the part when your pastor said that on Easter a four minute video of your family's story was shared with the church and 160 people gave their hearts to Jesus!!!!! Just think of how many people who he lead to the Lord that he doesnt even know about yet because God used him to change the world and leave a legacy! Again, thank you for letting us be a part of that service!

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  49. Hope, Faith, Grace....any of these would surely represent what YOU, Mindy, have represented to all of us from the outside looking in.....but whatever you name this precious little one.....I know she will be loved and have a wonderful life with one of the most amazing families I've ever known of. God bless you.....as you know He does!
    Peace,
    Patti Percoski

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  50. I am in emotional and mental crisis right now. I have been reading all your posts religiously, some more than once. I listened to Pastor's sermon of Ben's service. I am trying to lean more and more on my Saviour for strength, love and guidance right now. That's all I have to get me through this.
    Our first daughter is named Hope. We chose that name because we hoped for a girl after two sons. When we were discussing names for our second daughter, Joy, came to mind just because it goes so well with Hope. Our pastor sealed the deal when he gave a sermon on hope, faith and joy. "Hope and Faith are closely related (Faith is my sister's middle name), and Joy follows soon after". We named her Joy Marie. When our Joy was dedicated he also said this which totally makes sense to me: "The meaning of Joy is happiness, gladness and joy. Marie is similar to Mary which means sadness, bitter and sorrow. We need sadness and sorrow in our lives to really experience God's Joy".

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  51. I think about you and your family so often. Your precious daughter is beautiful. Praying for you always...

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  52. It is not until we've gone through something like you have, that we really see what our personal faith life is. We we are yet untested, we tend to think of ourselves very heroically, like we could brave any storm, withstand any trial. God never sends advanced notice a trial is coming, and when it hits, it is always a surprise.
    The death of a child is about the very worst a parent can suffer. It is unthinkable. It is beyond comprehension. It wounds so deeply, beyond words. The helplessness in the face of death is one crushing blow, and a second is the absence of the beloved child, once the final day has come. It is relentless. Every day. He is gone. He is gone. He is gone.
    Indescribable.
    But when a little more time passes, when your life goes on, and your new little one is born, and a new normal emerges for you and your family, and then years go by, the daily grief will be less, but it will never stop hurting. In those times, you will maybe be able to see how God Himself carried you now, and allowed you to breath and keep going without falling into the black hole that was this experience.
    Ben will always be with you. He most certainly is in heaven now. He enjoys the Beatific Vision: the experience of the essence of God. He is "beyond"now. He instantly knows anything he is curious about. His mind is mature, not five years old anymore. His intellect perfect. Without having to go to school, to grow and learn, to live and suffer, he has reached perfection. He prays for you, for the world. He is eternal.
    Many years hence, when your time comes and Our Lord calls you home, God will grant you all understanding as well, and you will see the true value of Ben's life, and of yours.
    May God grant that in that time you hear, "Well done, good and faithful servant."
    God bless. God bless.

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  54. All my 9 born children (and carrying a new little one now also) have names that have signified our life at the time of their coming into our lives. It has been such a blessing to see all that the LORD has done in our lives just through our children. One daughter is Nevaeh Hope, meaning the hope of Heaven. Nevaeh is heaven in reverse. (Ne-vay-ah). Hope sounds like a perfect name for your sweet girl.I have been following your blog from the beginining and i want to thank you for sharing all that you have. I have not lost a child but have so many friends who have and it is a blessing to pray and cry with and for you. And also learn how to walk with others through these times. May the LORD richly bless you and give you an extra measure of comfort and peace as you grieve and prepare for the next chapter in your life.

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  55. I think her name could be Hope. Or Faith. Hope Sauer. <3

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  56. Mindy you are a true inspiration..... thank you for sharing this difficult journey with the world. Many thoughts and prayers to you and your family.

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  57. Mindy, I love in utero pics!!!! I always gaze upon my grandchildren's images and I can see generations before them in a whole new person, a sweet image of God's pure light! Isn't it so amazing????

    Praying for you, dear mother. Thank you so much for sharing your walk with Ben... and your family and your faith with so many of us. You touch hearts in God's simple way, with truth and faith and light.

    God bless you.

    Ruthy

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  58. Mindy. . . you are a mother of Faith. You are writing about Hope, and hope in our Savior the Christ. Hope Christine, perhaps? Just a little idea :) God Bless you today. You have been in my thoughts, and I will continue to pray for your family too.

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  59. Hannah is another name for Hope. Hope or Hannah...Both are lovely names. ;)

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  60. Mindy, this is so true and beautiful! Praise God for all He does for us and for His deep love for us <3 i know whatever name you & your family choose will be wonderful. God is so faithful to be with us in our trials. Sending abundant love and hugs your way!!

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  61. Mindy, thank you for the link to Biblehub. I've been finding my way back to church, and have been wanting to read the Bible. I'm trying my hardest to put my faith in God and to truly believe that He has a much bigger plan for us. The last thing I'm sure you want to hear/read is how much you're helping me, so just know that I think of you and your family every single day and I pray for your family every single day.

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  62. Wow! Your words are so inspiring. Your journey has been difficult, indeed, and the grief hard to overcome, but what a positive outlook you have! I am fascinated by your strength and optimism and wish others that know this kind of tragic loss could accept it and move on.

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  63. Once again, you have inspired, encouraged and lifted up so many with your testimony of faith and love for the Lord. I find myself thinking of and praying for you often. I feel as though you are a dear friend and I thank God that you are so willing to bare your soul as you do with each and every blog. May God's comforting presence be sensed day by day in the hearts of you and your beautiful family. Praying still, my friend.
    Angela Baker

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  64. Thinking of your family. I have known grief....many times, different ways. But God is sufficient....even when it doesn't feel like it....and your sweet baby girl. Enjoy picking out the name that sings to your soul. I can't wait to celebrate with you at her birth!

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  65. I love that we can grieve with hope! We don't have to think that our lives are over, but as we grieve, we can cling to Jesus in those times. Thanks for sharing! I love that the Lord is blessing you with this life. He is already restoring. Praying and believing He does the same for us after our loss.

    www.in-due-time.com

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  66. Thank you Team Sauer for continuing to reach so many people. :) The ultrasound picture of your Baby girl is beautiful. It is nice to hear that all of you are doing well, despite the grieving process.
    Two years ago our daughter suffered a grand mal seizure, was star flighted from our small town hospital to CHOB, where she was diagnosed with a brain anomaly (AVM on her occipital lobe).
    In between moments of reality I found myself in the hallway of the hospital sobbing uncontrollably. A female Chaplin approached me (Brenda)...I'll never forget this moment.
    I felt as though life had been ripped from my fingers in the blink of an eye. Here I was standing in this fearful, saddened, unknown moment...not knowing what to do...I had a almost 7 year old in the hands of medical staff and a 5 year old son and 18 month old daughter staying with family as my husband and I treaded through this unknown water. All of this happened on what seemed like " just a typical Monday"?!?!
    Meanwhile, Brenda approached me in the hallway, bent down beside me, wrapped her arm around my shoulders and began to pray. I almost forgot how to pray after the flood of emotions claimed my physical and mental state. Brenda helped me rediscover my faith in that moment. Then as we began to talk, I explained our situation and the Mommy struggles I was having within me. Where should I be? What should I do? What is going on? Who do I call? WHY is this happening?? Brenda offered some additonal words, then handed me a necklace, it had one word on it... Hope. A simple word, packed with a punch. I looked her in the eyes, thanked her from the bottom of my heart and gave her a big hug.
    I needed to have "Hope" that all of this would get taken care of and I was right where I needed to be at that moment in time. There weren't answers to my list of questions. There was time that needed to pass, like you said...one day at a time.
    Brenda followed us throughout of hours and days at CHOB. She provided all of our family members with a Hope necklace. Something that sounds like nothing meant so much to our family. It provided strength in many times of need.
    I continue to pray for all of you to have strength to get through the ups and downs, I prayfor peaceful momenta during your grieving process and I pray for Hope...for all of the opportunities your future holds.
    Amen

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  67. Thank you again Mindy. We bless you and are near to listen as you share your thoughts, your heart and your faith. Yes, our God is faithful.. Hope is a big name for a little girl to live up to. Don't let 'us' sway you. She is her own person already, created according to Father's good pleasure, with her own purpose. Whatever name you choose for her will be perfect :)

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  68. Just beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing your Godly perspective. It is such a blessing to read!

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  69. Ouch, quite the slam to non Christians! I am not a Christian.. I have hope, lots of it, and I'm sure there are plenty of others like me. I'm sorry for what you are going through, but please remember that not everyone is Christian. Even in Buffalo. I wonder how something like this makes the Muslim woman who lost a son and has been following you feel? Or the atheist who feels loss just as deeply as you, who would sob next to you just as emphatically? Do they not have hope? Are they a lost cause, their lives valueless because they do not share your beliefs? Most people hope for an afterlife where they can see their loved ones again, including countless other religions and even some atheists.

    Again, I am incredibly sympathetic to what has happened in your family and admittedly have no idea what it is like to lose a child. Though it seems this blog has been intended for a unaminously Christian audience, I have followed your story as many people have. It is only now that I have felt personally offended.

    A quote from Pope Francis:

    "First of all, you ask me if the God of Christians forgives one who doesn't believe and doesn't seek the faith. Premise that - and it's the fundamental thing - the mercy of God has no limits if one turns to him with a sincere and contrite heart; the question for one who doesn't believe in God lies in obeying one's conscience."

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    1. UpstateGirl, if you are so personally offended by the posts on this blog, then quit reading them. Please allow Mindy to express how she is coping with her grief without over sensitive people like you laying on a guilt trip about her beliefs. Everyone copes as best they can, regardless of their religion. Stay off this site if you can't handle someone else's perspective without crying "I'm offended."

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    2. Pope Francis is wrong on this point. He was not speaking infallibly, and he erred. The problem is that he is often asked questions on theological issues by the press, or those challenging him, and he tries to give a very compassionate answer "off the cuff" to the person asking, but it appears to me he forgets he will be quoted in the press and people will think he is speaking out of his "teaching" office.
      I am sorry you are offended by the words of St. Paul, about people "without hope." You should not be however, because if you are a non-Christian you may not be familiar with the scripture Mindy quoted. It is from St. Paul and the expression, " do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope." means, people with no hope in the Resurrection; no hope for heaven, no hope for salvation. St. Paul was saying a Christian should be joyful in the face of trial and death, because they do have this hope.
      You have no hope because Jesus Himself said people who do not believe in Him have no salvation, no heaven. Now, you may think that is wrong or unfair or whatever, but it is part of our faith in God. WE believe there is one God. WE believe there is one heaven. WE believe that those who confess with their lips and believe in their hearts that JESUS CHRIST is the Son of God, yea, God Himself, will be saved. All others will perish.
      I'm sorry if you are a nice person, and good, and follow the natural law, and have lots of "hope," but if you do not believe in Jesus Christ, you will not be admitted to heaven. We believe this because Our Lord Himself told us it is true.
      This teaching is not to disparage or condemn anyone, but only to state the criteria for salvation. Because we who are Christians realize we are sinners, we break God's law all the time, and we could never act well enough be justified before an all perfect God, and thereby attain heaven on our own merit. If you accepted God's law, and were honest with yourself, you would see the same is true for you. So, then you would ask, "how can I be saved." And the answer is, "Through the Blood of the Lamb, " by your confession that Jesus Christ is Lord.
      I pray you will be able to come to see there is no hope of salvation except through Jesus Christ.

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    3. I can tell you as someone who does know what it feels like to lose a child...138 days ago ... a person who knows this pain would choose to keep her opinions to herself, rather than throw a stone at a grieving mother. I know you believe you meant well, but really, was it more important for you to vent your opinion? Or more important to just be silent this time and help a mother who lost her child? I really hope you will take the time to ponder this next time. There is absolutely nothing more cruel than to purposely hurt a parent who had to bury their child.

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  70. What a more fitting name than Hope?

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  71. agreed.... I felt like you were telling us her name will be Hope as well. Blessings to you all.

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  72. Thank you for this beautiful post. I lost my precious Natalie in January and I SOOOO needed to read this at this exact moment. Thanks for sharing. You and your family are always on my heart.

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  73. I agree.... I think Hope is the perfect name!

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  74. Ben was an adorable little boy! And now he is safe at home in Heaven forever.
    I think he's meeting our friend's two year old daughter who went to be with Jesus on Sunday. Hope is a beautiful name! Or Grace, as someone else suggested.

    Kya, who I just mentioned was adopted from China with severe heart problems. Her family didn't know if she would make it, but they poured their love into her just the same. And they have no regrets whatsoever.

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  75. I have been reading your blog for a couple of months now. I never had the courage to write anything as I really don't know what to say or, better said, how to say it - the sadness and helplessness I feel is undescribable.
    I do not pray (I don't know how) or go to church very often, but I do think about you and your family EVERYDAY. I hope that Ben is happy "up there" and that you all can find peace and comfort in knowing that God is taking care of him.
    Through this blog, you have surely helped yourself in dealing with your loss, but you have helped many people (in so many different ways - from the comments I have been reading) and have lead me closer to my long-lost faith. It is however unfortunate that it takes such a tragedy to achieve this!
    Please continue writing and sending your message of HOPE out into the world - and I agree that this name would be perfect for your little girl; you are an amazing person!

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  76. I have been reading your blog for a while you story is sad and beautiful. Your son through his illness taught people to hope and your daughter came into the world to give you hope and courage for the future. I think hope is a good name for her

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  77. I think hope is the perfect name for this sweet little girl. :) and im sure ben would love the name hope for his baby sister

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