Better Days

By Molly Bice-Jackson - 8:28 AM

Last week was horrible. Awful. Vic and I were both fighting off despair and depression. There were days I didn't get out of my pajamas until 6 o'clock at night. I had this notion that somehow, my pain and heartache were keeping me closer to Lucy. The more I can hold on to the hurt, the more I will feel Lucy. If the pain is gone, Lucy is gone. I sulked and sobbed and grieved and cried and completely caved in. I was tired and confused and lacking perspective. And I know that's OK. But I was reminded again yesterday, that there is something else that is OK too--

To have fun. To feel happiness.

My day began with a pound on the door. I wasn't sure if I heard it or not, in my half asleep state. Then the doorbell rang. I was sure my ears weren't deceiving me. Then another knock. Who dare disturb my slumber at 9 a.m.? I opened the door to find a crazy lady who is nine months pregnant telling me to get in my swimming suit immediately because "we're going boating!" She happens to be in my ward. And I happen to love her in all her craziness. 45 minutes later I'm on the lake listening to Bob Marley and getting sun burned. It was wonderful.

This friend of mine lost her husband 11 yrs. ago in an automobile accident. Her 6 yr. old daughter was thrown from the car and in critical condition. My friend was 5 months pregnant. She remarried 2 1/2 years after the accident and is expecting their first child together in her new yours/mine/and ours family. She was due two days ago...AND HITCHING THE BOAT TO THE TRAILER, UNLOADING IT AT THE DOCK, DRIVING 50 MPH ON THE WATER.

What's not to love?

So there we were. A 41 yr. old overdue pregnant woman,6 adorable teenagers, and a grieving young mother. I rocked on the wake board and wake skate (like a wake board but with no bindings).

And guess what? I felt closer to Lucy in those moments of fun and laughter then I had laying in my bed thinking about how hard and unfair life is. It was as if I could hear Lucy say, "YES Mom! I want you to have fun and enjoy life. That is what I would be doing if I were still there with you. Life IS hard, life is not fair, but life can be beautiful and good. " Within the pain I can find peace. Within my limited vision, I can find a broader perspective. Within my loneliness I can find love. It's not easy, it doesn't happen everyday, but my friend showed me that it is possible. Healing is possible. The road ahead is long and not one I would ever choose, but it is where I am. I had a good day yesterday, and I cling to it with my life, waiting for the next good day to come along and carry me through.



"For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind." 2 Timothy1:7



I didn't forget for a second that while I was out playing, my loyal husband was hard at work. I tell him everyday how grateful I am that he sacrificed so much so that I could stay home with Lucy. He gave us a good life, despite our financial struggles to get where we are now. And he is giving me a good life now. I get time to grieve at home, look at photos of Lucy all day if I want to, go out to lunch with friends, take dance classes, and go on runs. Vic is lucky to have the distraction of his work, but I also know that he needs time to play and escape for a while. I often feel guilty that my schedule is so flexible. It's a tough position to be in. To go from FULL-TIME mother, to having no children to take care of...I'm not sure what to do. I don't want to just go get a job simply for the sake of working. But I don't want to laze around and waste my days away either. Until our next child comes along, I am in the predicament of not knowing the best way to fill my time. I am working (albeit slowly) on an incredible business venture which I will announce in the coming months. Until that gets off the ground, I am trying to figure my daily life out. We love hanging out with friends, trying new adventures, making new friends, and anything that will make us laugh. So bring on the invitations, thoughts, ideas, insights...

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45 Loving Lines

  1. Molly...I can't wait to see you in a few weeks..and give you a big hug. The part in this post that got to me was LUCY's words to you...I think you got that communication perfectly. Wow, I am glad you didn't have deliver a baby on that boat. What a cool crazy friend!

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  2. I don't know you, but someone directed me to your blog. I can only imagine a fraction of your grief, having lost a premature baby myself and being mom to a sweet 21-month-old girl.

    I do know that you are touching more lives than you can imagine by sharing your story and being sincere about your grief. I think I, too, have been holding onto my (albeit much more minor) pain because it was my only connection to a baby I'll never get to raise. But truly the joy of living gives us a glimpse of the joy they experience all the time.

    You are touching people's lives. Feel your pain, but don't be afraid to feel alive again. And, please, share.

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  3. What a perceptive friend you have, to come over (even at 9am!) to invite you out for some fun! I'm glad you have such caring people in your lives to lift you up when you need it most...when so many of us who think of you daily are so far away!
    We are so excited to see you in a few weeks!!!

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  4. That lady is amazing! I am due tomorrow and am barely mobile. What an awesome experience.

    I don't even know how to wake board...you look like a pro

    Love you tons

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  5. I love your crazy friend, and that she had the insight to know that a boat trip was just what you needed. What an incredible experience, that it was in a moment of joy and happiness that Lucy's spirit spoke to you the loudest. I imagine that what you described about 'clinging to the despair would keep you the closest to Lucy' is also what I would feel. But I am so glad you had the opportunity to feel her through your uplifted state.

    Would you be up for a trip to Boise? There's lots of girls here that love you dearly. I would love to have you if you feel like getting away. We could show you a good time! Let me know! :)

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  6. How sweet that your friend would do that while you were upset. I love how you can sometimes hear Lucy. Sometimes I can't hear my cousin, but I can see her. I know that she is watching over me in heaven. My mom's sister died when she was thirteen years old. Now I have many people to watch over me. I have my cousin, Janeale. My cousin, Mia. My Grandpa Herbie. My Aunt, Rachelle. And now I have Lucy. I never knew Lucy, but by looking at your blog, I feel like I am so close to her. I have a lot of people that watch over me. And every night I get more angel kisses.
    www.littlekdbug.blogspot.com

    -Katie

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  7. Beautiful.

    Your friend was what you needed that day. Kudos to her for listening to the prompting she must have had to come get you out of bed and kudos to you for getting up and going with her. :o)

    I believe that Heavenly Father acts through "earth angels" (friends, family, etc.) to bless and comfort us in our times of need.

    Still praying for you...

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  8. Molly,
    I'm so glad that you have a friend like that. The kind that is there for you, and is in tune with what you need. It sounds like you had a fabulous time. I hope that you can find what makes you happy, filling your time. You have a beautiful spirit about you, and I have no doubt that you will be successful in whatever you do.

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  9. The world needs more people like your 'crazy' friend...I NEED to be more like her. Thank you SO MUCH for sharing your thoughts...if you only knew how much I've already learned from you.

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  10. Yeah! That makes me so happy to hear that you got out and had fun! You deserve it and Lucy deserves to see that side of her Mommy again.

    Luv ya!

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  11. Hey Molly, we are going out of town this weekend, but we'd like to plan a barbecue at our house for one of the Sundays in August. Is there a day that works better for you?

    Thinking of you as always,
    Shannan

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  12. Oh what a wonderful post that was! Please don't think I am crazy, but I think about you and your situation so much that just last night I had a dream about you. I dreamt that you had come to California and when I saw you I ran to you and said "Molly, It's Sarah!" and then we hugged, laughed and cried like we had been friends forever! SO if you feel California calling your name, come on over! We would love to hang out with you guys!

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  13. Thanks for the insight, you have such beautiful words and express yourself so well. I'm so glad if only for a brief moment you were able to escape some of the grief you are feeling inside- Here is to brighter days ahead. p.s. boycott getting a job, you of anyone I know(or don't know, can you really say you know someone just from stalking their blog?) deserve time for yourself, to do only things that bring you happiness, I love what you said about running being so theraputic it is so true, And after all if you had a job who would your crazy friend have to drag out of bed and escape for a day of fun in the water? I have to say seeing a very pregnant lady slinging a boat was probaply quite the sight. Wish I could have seen it-Still praying for you and hoping for brighter days ahead.

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  14. I agree with Leslie, you should come up to Boise. We could make it a mini reunion. Jed and I will be in Park City from August 11-15th. I need to figure out where you live and come see you! Are you up for that? It's been a while, but I would love to see you.

    I cried as I read this post. "Clinging" to the lost and separated feeling is mostly what you will feel for some time. When my brother Jay died nothing anyone said or anything I did helped my hurting. Time was the healer of my heart.

    If you are up for a visit from a long, long, lost friend, send directions to my photography email. I will be staying at the Moutainside Marriott. For now, keep laughing. :)

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  15. Molly,
    You don’t know me – much like many of the people that have left comments for you. I have followed your story since the accident – my husband is a counselor for a mortuary and we were very touched by your story…touched by both you and Vic in your strength and courage, faith and tears, joy and sorrow, love and testimonies. You are amazing – and I know that you are probably sick of hearing that – but I wanted to let you know that you have given so many people so much more than you can imagine! I am lifted by your strength daily.. I have wanted to leave you a message for a long time now, but felt that I would have nothing of any value to you - but today - I am touched...I just have to let you know what a blessing you are...to so many...to me.

    I dare not say that I understand your pain, but I do understand the pain that loss can cause. We have been through a few trials in life, after all, we agreed to them prior to getting here, and sometimes I wonder “what was I thinking….how did I ever think that I could make it through this…was I sleeping when I agreed to this?” But then I realize that Heavenly Father has placed so many people along the path of life that have helped me to get through and over the next little hurdle…my little brother died at the age of 5 and it was devastating to me.. I was just 12 at the time, but he was my best friend! Since then, we have lost 12 of our own children….all of which never made it into our arms to hold….including cute little twin boys…something we have a hard time getting around here…the loss of a child is none the less a loss…no matter how much or little time we were able to spend with them here on earth – it is hard…it is heart wrenching…it seems so unfair! And then I remember that Heavenly Father has a plan, He is in charge, He knows what we can handle and He knows that we can make it….sometimes it is through fabulous earth angels (like your friend) that we make it…I am so grateful for the earth angels that He has sent to me – just when I needed them and how thankful I am to them for not judging me, for not questioning my state of mind, for not pushing and pressuring me – but for encouraging me to press forward…what a great friend you have! An awesome earth angel that acted upon her impressions! Heavenly Father does answer our prayers…sometimes just not in the way that we think they will be answered….like getting out of bed :O) … by persistent friends!

    I laugh now, but at the time it was not a laughing matter – but I found that my way out was to bake…so I would bake bread by the dozen loaves one day – and then deliver to my neighbors, the next day would be cookies, then cupcakes, then brownies….soon I had people calling to see what was on the menu next…dinner perhaps? They were ready to place their orders… They were so funny, they made me laugh, smile, and even enjoy my day (I’m afraid of water…I prefer the ground) but they knew that was my way to release my emotions…when the goodies slowed down, my neighbors were concerned – of course for their own benefit…but for my benefit, they knew I was having a good day. Actually baking helped me get through things, because I forgot my troubles, I was serving others…now when they get a plate of cookies I get calls wanting to know what is happening…and usually – it’s just a urge! Your writing is like my baking….you are providing a great service to many, many people. A much less expensive service perhaps...

    Thank you so much for sharing your life and Lucy’s life with so many people! You are strength – even though you may not feel like it….you give strength to many! Your little Lucy is absolutely darling! You are a darling family! You WILL be blessed because you have Lucy! Thanks for sharing and really caring and serving so many more than my cookies could ever serve! You are amazing!

    We shall meet someday!
    (sorry for writing a book here...)

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  16. Molly--

    As I said I would, I came home after visiting with you and my sister, and I got caught up with your blog. Your beautiful words have prompted me to try to have more patience and more joy with my children. I'm so touched by everything that you've shared.

    All my love and concern, Emily Taylor (Anna's sister)

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  17. 1. I'm so, so sorry you had an awful week. I hope you still feel our CONSTANT prayers on your behalf.
    2. You look so TOUGH out there on the water - I KNOW that's what Lucy would want for you.
    3. Sherri hasn't had that baby yet? :) Give her a hug for me next time you see her.

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  18. Molly-
    You don't know me, but I happened upon your blog awhile back as well as upon Camille's mom's blog. I thought today I would post to both of you on your blogs. I have cried many tears over your sweet Lucy. Your words and strength are amazing and through your Lucy, I have been loving my kids more, being more patient and more appreciative of all of the little things. Thank you Molly for sharing your grief and love for Lucy. I truly feel like I have been reminded to be a better mom.

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  19. wow that picture is so cool. Boating is so much fun. Good for you. Maybe thats the key to having fun... having friends with toys!? Keep on keeping on. Love ya.

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  20. Molly, you are incredible. I check your blog often, to be inspired and to get a perspective re-alignment. Sometimes I "mope around" wondering why we haven't been able to get pregnant yet. And then I go to your page and read your experiences and realize that all is well. You are such an inspiration to so many. Lucy must be so proud of her mommy!

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  21. Molly,
    I just want you to know that I so admire you. You are an amazing person and I check in often on your blog to see your progress. I am always amazed with what you have to say. You are genuine and inspiring. I only hope I would be able to endure with the faith you have. I always knew you were a special person, only I had no idea to what magnitude. Thank you for sharing your experiences with us. You are helping us all more than you can imagine. My entire relationship with my children has changed since encountering Lucy's obituary. Not that it helps, but please know that countless mothers and fathers and children are closer because of your experience. Thank you.

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  22. Molly and Vic,
    I read your blog often. My daughter knows when I am reading about Lucy because I am always weeping. She sits on my lap and hugs me. I can only imagine what you are going through but I can feel your pain so vividly. Lucy has done so much to remind us all of the precious gift of life and what truly matters. You are always in our prayers.
    Love,
    Marci Williams (Chelsea's sister)

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  23. Crazy friends are the best. And often, unknowingly, an answer to prayers.

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  24. I am going be in in SLC Aug 15-17. I must, Must, MUST see you at this time. Keep your schedule open! :)
    Love you girl.

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  25. You are such an amazing person, and you deserve to be happy. It makes me happy to see you happy. I'm glad you had such a fun day. What a good friend you have!

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  26. I'm crying so hard for you... it's true what others have said, you will become greater and experience more joy if you take this pain and grow from it.
    I am so completely touched by your strength. You are doing so well, in the best growing direction. God Bless.

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  27. I am another random person who came across your blog months ago & have been so touched by your heartbreaking story. I can't imagine the pain you and your family are going through. Your spirit & strength are amazing to me. Your Lucy is so beautiful. I was brought to tears reading this post about your last moments with your precious daughter. I too have been to "the yellow line" with my at the time 6 month old daughter going in for open heart surgery. I hug & love her more each day thanks to your amazing writings. You truly are amazing. God bless you & your family, your reunion with Lucy will be spectacular.

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  28. I dont know if you would be up to this, but I know that hospitals LOVE having volunteers come and hold the babies. There are many parents who just have to be back at work and their babies have to stay in the hospital. I encountered many loving ladies during our hospital stays that just come and love the babies and children. At least in the Phoenix Childrens Hospital they are pretty flexible. I dont know if you would be ready for that or not, but I felt like I shoudl share the idea.

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  29. Molly--I think of your family nearly everyday. I am amazed by your strength and faith. Know that you are loved by so many!

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  30. Yea Molly! I loved this report. I am so happy for such a great friend. 9 months prego and boating...now that is cool.

    My idea is...lets go camping with a bunch of complete strangers at mormon flats campground. I promise it will be a good time :) Ha...bad joke.

    See you on Aug 9th?!?!?!

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  31. Molly that is awesome. I don't know you but I love you! Go Lucy!!!!

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  32. I am so so glad you have a friend like that! Someone who is so thoughtful just to get you out of the house. It's so true that the good days just have to help you swim through the bad days until another good day comes along. I would highly recommend NOT getting a job. Your not me, so you could be different, but I started working for my parents a year after James passed and I found it so hard to concentrate and be productive w/o crying. I also found it difficult to be reliable. There were days that I just needed to stay in my PJ's and not go to work. It was really hard so I ended up quitting after 3 months. Up to you, but that was my experience. Thanks for sharing your happiness with us. Love James' mom
    Michelle

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  33. You're incredible.

    That is all.

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  34. You should write a book, Molly. Your thoughts, words and heart inspire me every time I come to read what you have written.

    I just love you to pieces, my friend. Thank you for being so incredible.

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  35. I was directed to your blog from a friend, who is a friend of a friend who is a family member. I hope that is okay.

    I just wanted to tell you that I feel love for you. You are my spirit sister, and through your written words I have felt a sorrow so intense and empathetic, but a sorrow I know must be so small in comparison to yours and your husbands. Your daughter is beautiful. I love the videos of her. She really is so happy and full of life, more happy than any toddler I have seen--and I've seen a lot, and have two myself. I will pray for you tonight. I will pray that Heavenly Father will bless you with peace and perspective. Comfort and reassurance. I wish I could take away some of the pain. I am so sorry.

    I hope it is okay that I write this without knowing you. I do not want to say the wrong thing. But bless you and your husband. Your daughter is touching lives still.

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  36. I second the book idea. You are so talented and inspiring.
    Glad you had the courage to get out of bed and experience something fun! Lucy WANTS to see you HAPPY!

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  37. Hello. I have totally stumbled on your blog by accident but feel compelled to leave a note. You are a smart, lovely young woman and I am so sure there is much happiness ahead of you. My heart breaks for you and your husband and the loss of your sweet little girl. I am so sorry this suffering has come to you. Things to do? Weirdly enough, I just had a conversation about this with a friend (in a different situation, but still needing things to do).

    1. Things you can do alone, at your own pace, that still matter: PRAY - for something or someone you have never prayed for before. My grandmother has a little book about all the nations in the world and spends 15 minutes a day reading about a country and praying for its people. BAKE - I take cookies or brownies, etc to the Ronald McDonald House here on the first Monday of every month. If there is one in your city, call and talk to the volunteer coordinator about what you could do. Or take treats to your local police station, fire station, etc. We've done that many times and they're always happy to see us! WRITE - Call a nursing home and ask how to send cards & letters of encouragement to residents who have no family or visitors (there are always a lot of those). SING - it says you are a singer & an actress on your blog. Buy a big stack of blank CDs and make a recording of you singing all the songs your daughter loved. Make a bunch of copies and donate them to your local Head Start office, or any preschool in your yellow pages. Or make a CD of you singing church hymns and ask whoever is appropriate to give them to elderly shut-ins, etc. OTHER STUFF - think about what other talents & skills you have that you could put to good use in the service of others right now.

    2. Things you can do out in the world that require more commitment: VISIT - a nursing home or a VA hospital. Call your school district, or just your local elementary school /jr high/ high school, and ask about any "buddy" programs they need volunteers for this school year (most have these and need more people all the time). If you're really feeling up for a challenge, ask to be paired with a kid with ADHD or social-skills issues. (I have a son with ADHD.) These kids often aren't label "disabled" and don't get services but desperately need extra help, particularly in social settings, etc. My son had a lunch buddy last year who came every other week to eat lunch with him at the school and he loved her so. TEACH - call your public library and offer to do a free 1-hour or half-hour singing session for kids. Our library offers lots of stuff like this and my kids really enjoy it. Or call a preschool or Head Start, etc. VOLUNTEER - pick a one-time event (like a 5k charity run/walk, etc) and volunteer to work it. Outdoors is always good. Or pick something totally random you have never ever done before and volunteer for something small, one time, to see if you might like it. HELP OUT - Look around you and your circle of friends, family, or neighbors for things that could help. I mean, really really look. Most people rarely ask for help, even when they sorely need it. Be creative and think of ways to serve those around you.

    I hope this list gives you lots of other good ideas, and I hope I haven't offended by posting so long for someone I don't even know. God bless you and your family -

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  38. You have strength beyond even your own understanding, and yes, at 6pm, to finally get out of your PJ's is fine!
    You are an amazing woman, with strength and faith I only hope to achieve.
    Your marriage will be, and I'm sure has been strengthed by this situation.
    Thank you for being the example, and constant hope for things of a better.
    Lucy lives, and now a little girl will also, thanks to her and your generosity.
    Thank you for being such a strong example to my family and I.

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  39. Good for you Girl. I am proud of you for feeling the grief as you should; I am also proud of you and your "aha" moment. It's ok to be happy- those moments may come few and far between for now, but now you know you don't have to be afraid of them.
    Always thinking about you.

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  40. you are such an example to me and when i read your posts i feel like i gain strength as a mother/as a person from your words. and there's nothing wrong with laying in bed all day, but i'm so glad that you had a wonderful day yesterday. i know you will have many, many wonderful days... and lucy will be with you during those days (and the bad ones too).

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  41. As I sit here sobbing for you, for Stephanie, and for me, I think of this very sacred club we have joined. I am not glad I have joined this club but I grateful to have found women such as yourself and Stephanie who can help in ways no one else can. Our little angels have been given a sure "ticket" to the knees of our Father in Heaven. If we can but bear this loss and live worthily we will one day be able to raise our little spirits. Thank you for your words. Feel free to look at my blog if you have a moment
    www.dbkunz4.blogspot.com

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  42. God gave us friends to help carry us through the times when life is the most difficult and unfair.
    Kudos to your friend for caring enough about you to stop by and make sure you had a happy day. Everyone needs friends like that.

    One day at a time,
    Emilee

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  43. Molly, You are amazing...I know that you have heard that so many times now, but you are. We would love to have you if you ever have a desire to come to Colorado!
    Danielle
    http://themalsbarypatch.blogspot.com

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  44. Molly, I didn't tell you in the comment I just made, but I am so inspired by you. Like the comment before mine stated very few people understand the true depth of your grief. I can't even imagine it. If I even try to imagine it I start to cry. But, I admire your attitude. It is full of hope and moving forward and at the same time always remembering Lucy. Even though life is so difficult and unfair for you right now you still keep going. You are an amzing person.
    I would love to see you again. I can't remember the last time I saw you. Maybe we could get together for lunch or something after I move back to to Utah. Let me know.
    Oh, and sorry to comment again. I tried to keep my first comment short because they always get so long, but as I read it again is sounded harsh and heartless. So sorry; I guess you get another long entry. Maybe one of these days I can get my comment lengths under control-LOL
    I hope you have another happy day. You deserve it.

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  45. Oh Molly, I am so glad that your crazy friend came by to take you out on the boat! You and Vic and Lucy are constantly in our thoughts and hearts. We cling to your blog for updates. Vic, you must feel exhausted at times trying to juggle all that you do. We love you dearly!

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