Saturday, March 28, 2009

To love a child

When a mother gives birth to a child, there is a part of her that is never the same again. One chooses to love, to care for this child that God has given. Love is a dare. Dare to love well and unconditional. Dare to love even when it will hurt. Dare to love even though life is unpredictable. Dare to love when it could be taken away. Dare to love when you have no true idea of how this child will be. Dare to love even when the cute baby stage is over. Dare to promise to love forever! When Kira was born, Merlin held her first and I thought they were never going to get finished talking to each other. I watched in amazement as they bonded. They understood each other after that like only a father and daughter can. This was the second girl for Merlin, and he now was comfortable being a father. Together we loved her, cared for her, and met her needs. She was sweet, innocent, and joyful. Marlea and I sang "You are my Sunshine, my only sunshine, you make me happy when skies are gray...." She was, she brought us sunshine. Only last week did I realize that her name actually meant a form of the sun. The one thing Merlin and I both keep coming back to time and time again is how we loved her so well. She wasn't an easy child, she was so energetic and lots of times drove our nerves over the edge. But she was Kira, she was ours - we loved her. All this to say this week we were contemplating all this. In the hospital, as I held her and gave her back to Jesus on February 24, I was able to say with all my heart: "God - here is Kira, I give her back to You. Thanks for letting me love her and care for her. You enabled me to love her well. I learned a lot from her in her birth, her life, and now her death. I give now give her back to you, well loved." I think of this so often, and the miracle of having no regrets in loving her. Only this week did it dawn on us that if it is this hard for us to give our child back to God, how hard it must really be for God to have given her to us. I knew when I gave Kira back to Him that He will care for her needs to the utmost. He knew I couldn't be perfect, and yet He gave her to us anyway! I feel so honored to be trusted by a God who is perfect!

This week was extremely hard for us. I am physically and emotionally exhausted. Tuesday Merlin was sick and we ended up in the ER at LGH for a couple hours. They gave him fluids, pain med, and oxygen and discharged him, for which we were thankful. We were not into a hospital stay! We spent the next two hours at Merlin's doctor. We were so thankful for his input. He apparently had a blocked stomach. He has been getting better although is still not back to normal. Whatever normal is! It's hard to be okay with one's emotional state when there is physical pain also. His stomach is better but yet he isn't better. This time of the year is always bad for him so it's hard to know what the problem really is. Marlea wasn't feeling the best again and I spent Wednesday on the couch too. Marlea and Anna have been up some at night. I am lacking sleep.

It was really hard for us to be back in at LGH again. The good thing is that one of the nurses that took care or Kira came and talked with me. Thanks so much, Steph! We had not thought much about LGH and our feelings from being there. I was scared to go to LGH again, felt like I was reliving it in some ways and then yet dealing with trying not to be too frightened about Merlin. The terror I felt walking into the ER expecting Kira to not be living anymore and then the hope I felt after I saw her lying there pink came back to me. The dare to hope for life that we felt and then to in the end give her to Jesus for life in heaven was so real and yet so unreal. So confusing and heartwrenching again. It's made me dream the past several nights and wake up full of hope only to realize that it's not true. The valley of denial, grief, anger, shock feels like it started all over again. I say this because I feel weak, worn, and battered. I cry out to Him again and again in anguish, my mother heart full of pain and loneliness for Kira. I am human, with a human mind and I can't see His or know His whole plan for us, for Marlea, for Anna. Again because He has shown me without a doubt that He is God, I choose to trust my heavenly Father who loves me and gave His own Son for me.

We say thanks again this week for your prayers and care for us. It feels like touches of love from Jesus to us. Touches we feel very much. Pray that we will slumber peacefully. Pray for Merlin's physical healing. Pray that we will know how to guide Marlea.

Marylu and Merlin, Marlea, Anna

Saturday, March 21, 2009


We feel separation. We feel it intensely, daily, every minute. We are separated from Kira for the rest of our time here on earth. We will live, grow older, change. She will not change with us. We will never see her as a teenager, young woman, mother, or grandmother. We will always wonder what she looks like in heaven and we will never know until we get there. My arrival could be tomorrow, next year, thirty or fifty years. I don't know. Separation could go on and on for what seems like a long time to us. But, to Kira a thousand years are as one day. My human mind can't fathom that. My mother heart wants to reach out and touch her. I can't - I am on earth and she in heaven. I want to hold her hand, run my hand thru her fine, silky hair. I - can't I am on earth and she in heaven. I want to make her breakfast, put on her shoes and coat. I can't - she doesn't need them. I want to care for her when she is sick, cold, and lonely. I can't - she never is. I want to her to run towards me into my arms and give me a sound smoochy kiss. I can't - she isn't mine anymore. I beg God for another chance, to have the knowledge about HIB and do it over. I can't - she is already gone. Death, final forever to us here on this earth. Death, the only thing that can be this life changing. Death, what steals a normal day and turns it into your worst nightmare. Separation, what death brings. Separation, what people in hell will feel when they look into heaven. Heaven - a place beyond our human minds, where I am going.

The only thing that really matters to me is whether or not people go to heaven.

Last night we were again feeling so sad. Friday night, here comes the weekend and all the fun family time we used to have. Feeling the pains of separation. The longing for her, God and heaven. Crying out for comfort to our Heavenly Father. At night, when everything is dark and still God seems so close to us. I could picture Him holding us just like He held Kira in His arms those days and nights in the hospital. Again, we trust Him blindly to heal our broken hearts.

One verse that I keep thinking of. It's so real to me. "Jesus wept" John 11:35

We feel so cared for and thank you all for that. Your kind words, care, and cards are a picture of Jesus to us.

The Yutzy's
Marylu and Merlin, Marlea, Anna

Saturday, March 14, 2009


Pain, pain, pain - our lives are full of it. Everywhere I turn, it follows me. I try to run away, but it goes with me; I try to pretend it belongs to someone else, but it doesn't. I try to give it away, but no one wants it. No one except Jesus, He opens His arms wide and I give my pain to Him again - daily, hourly, and moment by moment. I can't feel Him, but I read in my Bible that He is close to the broken hearted - I believe that describes us. Brokenhearted, sliced open with a knife, exposing the core. We want our hearts to be able to experience the pain, to feel, to be real. Through being able to feel pain we trust Jesus to heal us, to bind up our wounds, to make us whole again. We will be the same people, but we will never be the same. I find that every day we need to adjust to a difficult new kind of normal. It will take time and patience.

We feel the gap in ages so strongly in our little family with five years between Marlea and Anna. The gap will always be there, but we will somewhat adjust to it. It struck me recently that Marlea will be 21 when Anna turns 16. Marlea especially will feel the gap the rest of her life with the loss of her playmate and best friend. She doesn't like to play alone or even be alone, since Kira was a soulmate to her. The last six months especially they were together all the time. It is painful to be without Kira as her parent, but it is intensified when we see Marlea alone, lonely, and trying to sort out life. When I cry, she often comes and sits on my lap, rubs my arm, and says: "It's okay Mommy, Kira is with Jesus". God takes care of the children!

We feel your prayers...thanks so much for them! Please continue to intercede for us.

Merlin and Marylu, Marlea, Anna

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Memories of Kira's funeral

This is Wednesday, March 4. It's hard to believe that it is a week ago already that Kira passed on to be with Jesus. We thank all of you from the bottom of our hearts for your love, support, and prayers. Why this all had to happen we will never fully understand in our human minds. But, we do know that God is a big God and knows and understands us beyond our comprehension. The call to trust Him even in the darkest hour of our lives still is so real to us. Now that everything is over...I ask Him why and He whispers "Trust Me." I want to run, but He draws me gently back to Himself and I go willingly. I wish I could describe in words how it feels to give a child back to God that was given to you. The joy I felt as I held her in my arms, the joy that came from knowing that I loved this child well, with no regrets. It was a gift I sent along back with her to heaven. The glory of God in that room was too much for my human body, I covered my face in my hands and cried out to God. His glory was so great I wanted to hide like Moses did. In all my wanderings and confusion, one thing that is so real to me that I will never forget and that is that I know that God is real!

For those of you that weren't able to come to the funeral. We are so grateful for the beautiful music before and during the service. Three of our close friends shared their hearts thru song. It was so healing to listen to the words of Jesus thru them. This Little Light of Mine was so special, it's Marlea's favorite and her and Kira couldn't wait til it came on on Oasis latest Cd. My father, John Glick had the Devotional Meditation. Kira was special to him, he had a very calming effect on her life. Jason Smoker shared a message with us that was very touching. He is known as the Smartie Man at church because he gives Smarties to the children after church. He was very important to Kira. Thanks so much Jason, for your words of Life!

Merlin wrote this poem for Kira and shared it at the funeral.

A Tribute to Kira-by her daddy

God sends His love to us
In many ways its shown
Three years ago it was a girl
As Kira she was known

It was not long until we knew
We had a special child
Kira quickly grew and really soon
She was on her feet, running wild

Soon after that she learned quite well
Dad's time was spent across the street
And any chance she had she'd try
To catch up to her daddy's feet

Kira's fingers found a way
To cinch her daddy's heart
And though one tenth his age
As friends like this, how can we part?

Her cherub smile and winsome gaze
Found ways into many a heart
Though she'll not come back, we know
Memories of Kira will not depart

Then stumbling through a maze of confusion
We seek to claim God's healing grace
In life, we'll find enough to go on
In heaven, doubts flee when seeing His face!

So briefly lay down your cares and remember
God's time is not your own, you see
Give loved ones a hug or tender kiss
Doing so will continue the legacy of Kiki

Kira's favorite song was Swing Low, Sweet Chariot. I never understood why it had to be this one. It put her to sleep many a night when she was wound tight. Many nights when she was a baby and up for hours at a time I sang this song over and over to her. If I tried to sing another one she would slap my face. I sang it at her bedside in the hospital and I promised her I would sing it at the funeral. Here are the words for those of you that might not know the song.

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot, coming forth to carry me home, swing low, sweet chariot, coming forth to carry me home.

I looked over Jordan and what did I see, coming forth to carry me home, a band of angels coming after me, coming forth to carry me home

Swing Low, Sweet Kira-oh, coming forth to carry me home, swing low, sweet Kira-oh, coming forth to carry me home.

If you get there before I do, coming forth to carry me home, just tell my friends that I am coming there too, coming forth to carry me home.
Second Chorus
On Tuesday evening I added another chorus that came straight out of my heart because while I was singing it, this is exactly what was happening.

Swing Low, Sweet Chariot, coming forth to carry her home, swing low, sweet chariot, coming forth to carry her home.

We also read Curious George and the Holidays, one of Kira's favorite stories. One thing always happens in those stories, the man with the yellow hat always comes at the right time, just like Jesus.

She loved Hershey kisses, flowers, and bubbles. Except her bubbles most times ended up on the ground. At the gravesite we threw hershey kisses, daisy's and the kids blew bubbles. It was therapy for Merlin and I to watch the children deal with grief in the kind of way that she would have.

Kira's last Sunday School craft was the picture of hands folded in prayer. In the middle her teacher had pasted sticky notes. She had tried to write her name on it. At the bottom is the verse from Matthew 26:39 "Not as I will, but as Thou wilt."

I say all these things, but one thing remains the same. That is that I know God is real because He gave me a taste of what heaven is like and I am not going to miss it.

Because of Jesus,
Marylu, Merlin, Marlea, and Anna

I will probably post again sometime in the next weeks