Sharing Tears

Nothing bonds two women more than sharing tears.

I was torn up and could not hide it. Everyone knew since I could not hide my pregnancy…and loss…

She talked to me, cried with me and in our mingling tears and hugs…she made me feel blessed, so blessed to have her as a friend, so blessed to have the children who were in my arms.

She knew because she had been there too.


This week it is time to tell her goodbye.

She was my sister in tears, in life, in loving…And I will miss her.

It is times like this that I know:

Life was never meant to be fair

Life was never meant to hoard

Life was meant to be embraced, poured out, and fully enjoyed

And life always ends before we are ready for it.


Beth, fly with the angels, see the face of Jesus, plant a few flowers, ride the best horse, and meet your baby that is waiting for you…

See you one day and we can catch up on our blessings!

Heaven is so much sweeter as I get older and more of my family and friends are on the other side

This is NOT my home, I am just a traveler here…



By Esther Posted in grief

When a Blog goes Silent

This past week has been a rollercoaster of emotions for the whole community that prayed and stormed heaven’s gates for a little boy named Max. Max, fifteen months old, fell into the family’s swimming pool and was life-flighted to a children’ hospital. After a fight of about a week, God healed Max on the other side of heaven.

Leaving his family, our dear friends, with a very empty place in their hearts.

Why God chooses to heal one child and take another one home, is not something I could answer.

I couldn’t answer that question; although, I have asked it myself. All I know is, God loves me, God could have healed, but He chose not to. I remember back when we lost Enoch and Levi was sobbing, gut wrenching sobs, saying, “God raised Lazarus from the dead, why did he not hear my prayer and raise Enoch and let him live?”

I had no answers then, and I have none now. All I could do was hold Levi and assure him that God knows the things we don’t know. I have to trust Him, I have no other choice. My prayer to God was that it MEANT something. In order for his life to mean something, I had to look for ways to use it for God’s glory.

And that meant not being silent any more about pain, anguish and heartache from loss. If I kept it all to myself, it could not help anyone.

I had been taught to keep such things to myself, but in doing that, Enoch and Tressa and all of the other losses in our family’s life would fade into meaningless memories. And other than causing pain that would be there, but hidden; there would be no reason for any of it. Our experiences in life, when we share the pain, we find we are not alone…there are others who need to hear just what we have to say for them to make it one more day. We need to weep with those who weep, and believe me, if you have experienced the loss of a child, you cannot help but have emotions come pouring out when your friend or family member has the same experience.

The strong hugs, the running makeup, the shared pain, the empty craters bind us all together.

So, if you have experienced such a loss, know when you see anyone going through the same experience, do NOT keep quiet, do not hide as your pain from hurts in the past resurface; reach out and give the gift of yourself, it is the way God designed it.

Will I ever know why? No…not on this side of heaven. But, I could listen, and I will continue to listen… and love.

Please be praying for this dear family…

Isaiah 61:3

” To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the Lord, that he might be glorified.

So when a blog goes silent, it means either there is nothing going on or what is going on is so deep and painful, that the words don’t come…

And then…there is LIFE!!

After the last post, I just had to combat death with LIFE… Thank you so much, birthmoms and birthdaddies, for your choice for LIFE and taking that road less traveled.

Two Burley Fellows:

DSCN1040 DSCN1091 DSCN1095 DSCN1097 DSCN1114

Josiah is now ten pounds and 22 inches long…Go Josiah!! I took him to the cardiologist and found that: The POF (foramen ovale) is closing on its own!! His ventricle pressures are still higher than they should be but have gone down. However, he still has stenosis in his pulmonary arteries, the left is smaller than the right. But, the cardiologist was very encouraged and we do not have to go back until the end of October!!

DSCN0910 DSCN0922 DSCN0903 DSCN0902 DSCN0901

Eli has not been right since his shots two weeks ago, he has begun head banging and has huge bags under his eyes and his sleep patterns have changed… he did not get the MMR/and 18 month shots since he is behind. He got his 12 month shots.  But…. At 11 months his head was in the 45th percentile and his height/ weight were 3rd and 5th respectively…now, at 18 months, his head measures in the 75th percentile and his height/weight are 61 and 67 respectively!! So wow!! He has grown and is awesome, but we all know that don’t we!

Death/Life… many, many, someones make the choice every day…Don’t you think our special ones have a quality of life?? Don’t you think they have a purpose?? It is so easy to see their value when you SEE them…but when they are inside, just because you cannot see them, doesn’t mean they aren’t just as valuable to God who CAN see them smile, and do flips, and blink at bright lights and wince at loud noises. 

DSCN1058God saw that precious one’s parents today, God saw the doctors and nurses in that facility today…God saw you today as you cried in anguish over the loss of another baby… But tomorrow, his or her momma and daddy will need the warmth of a loving God’s forgiveness, the embrace of a Jesus with skin on believer…the healing of very empty body and arms… And at that time, be ready to forgive them, won’t you?


Healing Rain

 Benjamin listens to his most favorite Christmas automatic snow globe… “He knows when you are sleeping, He knows when you’re awake..” It is plastic and cracked, but the snow still flies and if you shake it, the music starts.


It is damaged, but it functions. That is a bit how I feel this morning. All the work of refunding the paypal donations is complete. There is nothing more pressing to “do” and here I am lying on my side as tears course down my cheeks. Eli is having his morning nap so I have this moment.

She might have come early, so I had gone through some beautiful clothes trying to decide what April weather would bring. They are in a bag now, their frilly preciousness hidden. The vision of her in my arms is still strong, and the loss I feel is great. My heart was so ready for her to enter that empty space made just for her.

Those who have experienced stillbirth or miscarriage wonder if it is the same. I have had all of them: stillbirth, miscarriages and this so called “paper loss.” But, she was not on paper, she was in my heart, I was carrying her there.

 I do admit, that when you have a miscarriage or stillbirth the constant physical reminders…blood and tissue loss, physical pain, exhaustion and the feeling of “empty” is different. But my arms are empty and that special spot for her in my heart is “empty.”

I know when the craters in life open, you have two choices: let the hole be filled with being busy…or just rest and let God begin the healing.

The healing is not fast, it comes in trickles. Pray for me as the trickles of God’s precious rain fill the crater blasted in me over the past few days…

cracked but functional. And if you shake me, maybe some music will play…

Optimist vs. Pessimist

Optimist vs. Pessimist

Given:    9747         Needed:  4753

If you are watching this blog, reading it day after day and are praying, thank you.

If you are reading this blog just to see if we reach our goal, or fail, and have decided not to contribute… we will fail. Even if each of you gave one or five or ten dollars, we would reach that goal.

 I am an optimist. I am!!  Only an optimist would go into a journey like this believing there were enough people that would help this baby to have a home. My husband, however, is a pessimist. He did not believe it from the beginning. I tried to tell him that there are people who have a heart for the orphan cause and they will support us…our friends and family and even strangers will step up to the plate because it is a great thing…she chose LIFE!!

Wondering which of us is right at this point. I just believed that our family and friends and their friends would see the need and say what the heck…I won’t miss that five or ten dollars and it might just be the difference. We are kind of stuck around this number and only God can move your hearts.

 I am hoping that the compassion that you have inside will result in action. I love all of you, and this is making me very sad. Time is running out, and Ray says we will not borrow money. So we won’t… if you are wondering, we will walk away because Ray just needed this right now…He needed to know that we were not in this alone; that the Christian community would support something other than a choir and a new cushion for the pews. :”( That there would be more than lip service for a cause to which we have given our lives. Some of you have responded, but quite a few have not.

Ray spoke in church this morning about the need, and ONE older widower, who we love dearly, handed him money after the service but NO ONE else felt the burden NO ONE…on which side are you? Are you praying? Are you giving? Or are you just watching?

Psalm 68:6  God sets the lonely in families, he leads forth the prisoners with singing; but the rebellious live in a sun-scorched land. (NIV)

Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows. Isaiah 1:17

Never take advantage of any widow or orphan. If you do and they cry out to me, you can be sure that I will hear their cry. Exodus 22:22-23

In you the orphan finds mercy. Hosea 14:3

If you hesitate to give online, our address is:

Ray Primel and Esther Gay-Primel

507 Kepple Road

Mineral Point, PA 15942


Out of Oil

oct 2011 046

Snow pounding with no relief; A quick run to the store so the kids had supplies for the evening.

A friend calls needing a ride to take her baby to Medwell (the local after hour clinic). A date, first one in a very long time.

 So much pulling … an internal desire to escape from the winter cabin fever…I opened the door…the thought came and went: “better call Chelsea, it might be important. Nah, it is always a minor thing, a stuffy nose, an ear infection, or I call and get no answer and she already got a ride…let her mom or grandma take her. The last time it was 10pm and she wanted me to get her formula, she had decided to wean the baby…right then…I’m just not in the mood,” I thought.

 And I went through the door, pulled it firmly behind me.

Dusted the snow off of the windows and scrambled in the passenger seat. “Do you think you should call Chelsea?” Ray asked.

“Nah, I said. Even if the baby just has nothing much wrong, she will rope me into taking her and then we won’t get a date for another two months!”

“I’d take her,” my hero said.

2010 Fair part 1 039

But my foolish, selfish heart said lets go…and go we went.

It was not as enjoyable as it could have been with the thought nagging, I should have at least called.

When we returned, I found out that she called the ambulance. The baby had turned blue. RSV pneumonia. She had called a second time, five hours after the first while I was BUSY…

When is it Enough?

Some friend. Because I never talked to her I did not know her grandma was in VA, her mom didn’t know how seriously the baby was sick until he had turned blue. She called me first because she knew she could depend on me.

I would have known how sick the baby was. I promised her I cared and would be there for her, but I was out of oil.

October and November 2012 108

I was not filled up with OIL. I was running on empty and I knew it. I was not prepared to be the light, I was wrapped up in my own needs…OIL.

I did not have enough for the dark night. Who needs oil for their light in the day?

October and November 2012 122


 I belly cried to the God who hears and knows and forgives. Oh wretched man that I am… I have so far to go to be able to look in the mirror and see Him.

 I humbly told Chelsea the whole unaltered story and asked for forgiveness… Five days in the hospital. The baby is fine now and is home, but it could have been much different.

October and November 2012 039

The Parable of the Ten Virgins

25 “At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish and five were wise. 3 The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. 4 The wise ones, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. 5 The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.

6 “At midnight the cry rang out: ‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’

7 “Then all the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. 8 The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’

9 “‘No,’ they replied, ‘there may not be enough for both us and you. Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’

10 “But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.

11 “Later the others also came. ‘Lord, Lord,’ they said, ‘open the door for us!’

12 “But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’

13 “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.

Out of OIL

Saying Goodbye

Large, childish letters spread across a bright pink card tucked into the covers. Loss. A child should never have to do it. Never should she have to say goodbye until she is grown.

A momma with tears, hugs and the heavy leaning. A momma should never have to do it. Never should she have to say goodbye. She should go first.

Silence. Dazed silence. Family leaning, lending balance when the earth has shifted.

The last moments to say goodbye, but it already happened really, but we didn’t know it.

Saying goodbye.  If you can, say a prayer for Angel, his little one: and Shirley, his momma.

It doesn’t matter how old a boy has grown, he is still your baby, and a momma loves her boys you know. And a little girl needs her Daddy.

God has promised to be near to the broken hearted, and He never breaks his promises.

Will I Be OK if Things Stay Exactly as They are Right Now?

My burning question as I woke up. Mazie was singing a nonsense song about school, very happy with her new TSS support at school. I began  my day by loading the dishwasher, cleaning the table, putting in a load of laundry as I got the Gremlins off to school…

Then the spin cycle began… Benjamin runs down the steps, gives me a little hug, “Good mornung, Muuummmy.” And makes a beeline for the machine and places both hands, arms extended onto the machine to feel the spin, then, shuts it off. My mind stops, rewinds, and begins another day in the Ben zone.

We had an evaluation on Tuesday. He screamed the entire visit. I had to put on his vest to prevent him escaping the exam room. He kicked over the Legos ® and screamed “NO” when anyone said anything to him. He was not in his element to be sure.

We had a BSC but had been put off forever for his TSS. Amazing, the next day, we got a TSS!! And so did Mazie!! Whoo hoo. But in the same breath, Benjamin is losing his Access card so I have to appeal the decision.

“Imaashehse” Ben just said to me. But he looked me in the eye!! Back to the question, “will I be OK if things stay exactly as they are right now?” Ben has had vERY LITTLE improvement over the past few months. Mazie has had tremendous improvement. Something breaks inside when you look at this little boy who looks so normal, but acts far outside the normal range. Can I see myself when he is 10 in the store as he throws a fit? How about when he is 20?

When my family sang together, there was a family that faithfully came to all the local concerts. They were Bill and Phyllis. They had an adult daughter in age named Nancy, who was probably about 5 or so in developmental age. She LOVED to hug us all. She clapped and loved music. I often wondered why they came to EVERY concert. The songs were almost all the same over a period of a few months. I get it…Nancy enjoyed it , so they came.

The bending without breaking that happens when you have a special one. There is a lot of bending, accommodating, and loss of choices for the parents. But if you have HOPE that is easy. But when HOPE is gone, then the reason must be LOVE; the unconditional love that you have for your child. As I woke up with that question, that was one of the answers.

But the other is deeper. I do it because I love the Savior. If I cannot do it for me or for Ben, I do it for HIM. And he is the God who sees. He sees me as I try to hold it together, as I give up even more of myself to serve this little buddy who Needs the environment to move for him. But I do mourn Me… that is my humanity.


Kandles and Kids

Kandles and Kids

Friday was a day of tornado warnings and fussy babies. Eli was having a sick day, probably from his shots. Ethan just loves to be held and putting him down usually resulted in crying. Around 7pm, the winds started going sideways and the cows were acting like they NEEDED to get to the barn, so I made everyone go to the cellar. Whatever it was passed over us and we made our way back upstairs. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw something kind of like lightning intensity, more like a welder in brightness, arcing from the ground to the sky. Our power flickered on then off multiple times. Then it was gone… Later we found out a tornado touched down briefly about a mile away.

We ended up calling the electric company since we could see lights on in all the other houses. Mazie was panicking, Ben was going around singing “Happy Birthday” and blowing out all the candles the older children lit to keep the younger children from being frightened. The babies had gone to sleep. The power company, after speaking to us, decided we needed to call 911 since the line was down on the road.

Enter flashing lights, loud motors, and very bright emergency beams. Goodbye Benjamin. He just checked out. Since he is in the Autism Spectrum, too much new stimulation, he made himself invisible. Around 1am, the power was fixed and the children were in bed. Time for baby A to wake, followed shortly by baby B 😀

I was completely exhausted when Saturday rolled around: of course Friday melded into Saturday seamlessly with no big sleep for any of us. On Saturday, Benjamin would only eat pickles and crackers and had multiple melt downs. He lost his speech. His language became jumbled constants and sounds. My poor buddy. We went nowhere and kept the day very stable, very un-stimulating, and tried to let him regroup. It is the unexpected that throws him. He needs us to be the constant.

IT was then I remembered: a year ago on the day the power lines came down, our house almost burnt in the dryer fire…Memorial Day week and weekend wow!! You know, God planned this busy season to take my mind off of the five year anniversary of our loss of Enoch 5/26/2007. Missing you.

The Divine Weaver

My life is but a weaving

Between my Lord and me;

I cannot choose the colors

He worketh steadily.


Ofttimes He weaveth sorrow

And I, in foolish pride,

Forget He seeth the upper

And I the underside.


Not till the loom is silent

And the shuttles cease to fly,

Shall God unroll the canvas

And explain the reason why.


The dark threads are as needful

In the Weaver’s skillful hand,

As the threads of gold and silver

In the pattern He has planned.


~ Author unknown

One of my favorite all time poems !!

Enoch 5/26/2007, 21 weeks gestation, miss you honey

I wrote this during one of my losses, a reflection on the above poem.

You Stopped

You stopped your hands

while you were weaving

The loom was left to stand


Still not believing,

I tried to understand.

I tried to grab the shottle

To force the needle through


Soon in endless silence

I dropped the needle too

I pulled my hands away

And felt time stand still


It started to unravel and

You took it off the loom

in Your cradled arms

Lifted the unopened bloom


Into your unseen places

To complete the work there


Now I sit in anguish

my busy loom now bare

The empty hole just gaping

Not even a string there


Waiting for the weaver

To begin work anew

Making a design

All want to eschew


lots of knots and tangles

as I thought things through


a perfect work of beauty

unbeknownst to me

so blinded by what I could

not what I could not see.

Esther Gay-Primel,

in honor of my five lost little ones, the last was gone in June 2010