Thursday, June 14, 2012

Holden and Brant

I have been feeling so sad for some really sweet, strong, special couples.  Above is little Holden Lee.  Holden was born in Hawaii on May 20th.  His parents Jared and Caitlin live in Hawaii while Jared is a student at BYUH.  Jared is the son of good friends and neighbors of ours from Lancaster.  Paul and Vicki Lee moved across the street and one house down from us when we lived in Lancaster years ago and we have been good friends for many years.  They have 5 children just the same ages as some of ours and the kids have been good friends for years.   After two days Caitlin and Jared took little Holden home and were so excited to have their first little baby at home, but he was not doing well.  He was having problems.  The next day they took him to the hospital and they were given some treatment and sent home.  The treatments did not work and the baby had to go back to the hospital.  He was having some intestinal problems and he was operated on.  Little Holden did not do as well as expected.  Some time later he had to have more surgeries as more problems were discovered.  All this time his parents and grandparents loved him and stayed with him.  Finally on June 4th they knew little Holden would not make it and as his parents and grandparents surrounded and held him and sang I Am A Child Of God to him, sweet little baby Holden went home to Heavenly Father from whence he came.  Jared and Caitlin are so happy and proud to be his parents.  They are so glad that Heavenly Father sent Holden to their family.  They are so strong.  I admire them.  The funeral held in Centerville was lovely and he was buried in Bountiful in a beautiful little cemetery near the Bountiful Temple.  After Jared dedicated the grave, they sent off a huge bouquet of white balloons which all the children and relatives got to hold and then release.  It was a sweet send-off and as we watched the balloons going up heavenward, there was a wonderful feeling of calm and love.

Also in Lancaster live James and Wendy Hardy.  James is a wonderful young man.  When he was in high school John taught him the gospel and James was converted and wanted to be baptized.  Now James, who is a very nice looking black man, is quite large.  He is not fat at all, just football player big.  In fact he is now a football coach.  Well, John baptized him but had to have the help of young missionary who was in the ward at that time.  Years passed and James fell in love with Wendy, a beautiful, white returned missionary who is an R.N.  They got married in the Los Angeles Temple and are so happy together.  Years passed and they were unable to have children so they adopted a darling little girl, half white and half black.  How perfect is that!  A few years later they adopted a little boy.  He is also darling and also half black and half white.  The children are now about 4 and 6 (approx).  Last year  Wendy became pregnant and this past Mother's Day she gave birth to little Brant who did not make it because of an umbilical cord accident.  So, so sad.  They are so strong and brave, but as Wendy said, " We just wanted Heavenly Father to let us have him longer."

I'm sure everyone remembers Grady the little grandson of my friend Connie who also had to go home way too soon.

We know that because of Jesus Christ and His sacrificing atonement that we will be reunited with our loved ones and we also know that those who die before the age of 8 will have automatic exaltation in the Celestial Kingdom.  That is awesome and that is what we want for our children.  However, it is so, so sad especially for the parents and for those who stay behind.  I know these babies are fine.  They have it made and yet I feel so sad for the families.  It just doesn't seem natural for the babies to go before the parents.  I admire the strength of these families.  They are special indeed to have provided bodies to these little babies that only needed that gift from their parents.    

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