Honestly...

By Molly Bice-Jackson - 8:19 AM



(This was the last photo taken of Lucy. It was taken the night before her accident. Sometimes I look into her eyes and try to hear what she is telling me.)



It's been an extremely difficult week. The reality of Lucy's absence is becoming painfully acute. I feel myself losing perspective and creeping out of the spiritual cocoon that surrounded me for so long.

I found myself in the produce section of the grocery store the other night. It was the exact spot where I purchased the apple that Lucy choked on. I was bowled over by the power that spot held for me. I had to remove myself immediately the pain was too intense, the memories too much to bear. I remember so clearly picking that apple out. It's shape and color and size. It was a perfect apple. The color was so vibrant and almost cartoonish. I remember cutting it that morning into perfect little slices for her. I had no idea what all these actions were leading to. But maybe it's true, she really is a princess. She took a bite of the apple and went to sleep. Only the Prince of Peace can wake her in the resurrection.

Another painful predicament I face, is simply stepping out of the shower each day. Lucy loved showering and bathing with me. Those last few weeks of her life she insisted on being a "baby" and snuggling in a towel while I held her in my arms. The interesting thing is that we had to be in front of the mirror. She held me captive in there.And I had to hold her for at least a good ten minutes. Cuddly moments like this with Lucy were rare, since she was always on the move, so I would hold her and look in the mirror at our reflections for as long as she would let me. Perhaps she was trying to impress the image of mother and daughter into her mind as strongly as she could because she knew she would be leaving soon. Stepping out of the shower now and seeing only one reflection hurts deeply.

Nothing in Lucy's room has changed. Her little shoes and dresses are neatly arranged in her closet, her favorite Elmo doll is sitting in her rocking chair, and there are still diapers in her basket on the dresser. Yesterday I couldn't help myself... I entered her room and breathed in deeply, trying desperately to find her smell. I went through all of her little dresses, telling her out loud which ones were my favorites and how beautiful she looked in each of them. I talked to her about her "cute shoes" and held each pair one by one. The Peter Pan doll she carried with her everywhere was tucked in a basket nearby and I proceeded to fly it around the room and say, "Mommy fly." Finally, I ended at the rocking chair and read one of her favorite books aloud. "The Wheels on the Bus, Old McDonald, and the Hokey Pokey." This was not a pretty sight, with the tears and snot flowing freely, but it was what my heart wanted to do. I don't want to ever forget her. I don't want her to ever feel like a dream.

I hurt. I ache. But I feel the refining process taking place. I feel my relationship with the Savior as real and as vividly as I felt Lucy. But it's still hard.

I received a powerful email a few days ago from a dear friend. With her permission, I share the following excerpt:

"Molly, you have the opportunity to become an extraordinary person through this most difficult experience. It is your choice what you will do with Lucy's loss. Heavenly Father lost his Son for our sins and he has given you the opportunity to experience the same pain and loss that he felt so that you can become more like Him. You have an amazing opportunity to develop empathy, love, perspective, and faith because you've lost Lucy and you have the gospel. Not many people have this opportunity and I believe that, if you make wise choices and have faith in God, you will become a woman of the greatest strength and character. I believe that is what Heavenly Father has planned for you."

I want to be the kind of woman that she describes. I want to turn this tragedy into a beautiful blessing. Until then, I am just working on breathing and living and loving. And I thank you all for keeping me afloat.

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56 Loving Lines

  1. Thank you for sharing this and the words from your friend's email. I can tell already that you are strong woman.
    Your blog is so touching. Thank you for letting us peek in on your life.

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  2. Molly, I have thought a lot about that apple, and about Lucy's shoes and dresses, too.
    Thank you for sharing this process with us. I feel the Spirit so strongly each time I read your (and Vic's)posts.
    Bless you both as things get harder, or more real.

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  3. Molly Dear,

    Thank you for sharing your pain and for explaining how you are coping. I have wondered many times about miss Lucy's little bedroom, shoes, dresses, toys, etc. as Weston's things are similar in size and age development, notwithstanding the gender and style of clothing. The wrapped up little girl in the reflection of your mirror is now wrapped up in the perfect arms of His Love. Pray to feel His arms around you too for I have felt them before and know that He will hold you. Just let Him hold you. How anyone can survive a loss such as yours without the knowledge and faith of the Atonement is beyond my thinking.

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  4. I don't know you, but I have no words for your loss. Our baby died prematurely a few months back, but I only sipped at the pool of grief you are swimming in.

    Just reading your posts, I know that you are touching lives through your words. Keep at it. It burns me to read them because it represents so much pain and so many fears, but at the same time it heals me because I become just a little bit closer to understanding His plan.

    Thank you!

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  5. thinking about you. love you, miss molly. you're so strong. always have been.

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  6. Molly,

    You are amazing! Thank you for continuing to share your process with all of us. It is truly inspiring to read each and every post. We continue to pray for you constantly.

    Hope to see you soon!

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  7. Molly, I hope you know how inspiring you are right now to everyone who knows you. This post broke my heart and brought tears to my eyes. I can't bear the thought of losing my daughter, and I know that anything is possible. My heart hurts so badly for you. I think about you constantly and am grateful for your example and the testimonies that you and Vic have shared. Thank you for your honestly. I love you,
    Shannan

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  8. You are on your way to becoming that women! I admire your strength for getting out of bed, for remembering to breathe, & most of all for sharing yourself & your feelings on your blog. I ran across your blog & I never leave here with dry eyes. I wish you & your husband peace & comfort at this very difficult & trying time in your life.

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  9. That is a great message.
    You too are inspiring. I think about your family every day. Thank you for sharing your experience.

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  10. You don't know me, but I have been following your story since hearing it from a friend. Your family is such an example to many. Thank you for sharing it with us, for letting us be a part of it, and for strengthening each of us on a daily basis. You guys are truly angels to the rest of the world!

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  11. As a total stranger yet sister in the gospel I ache for you and I pray for you and I beg Heavenly Father to bless, comfort, and heal you in time. You have shown me strength beyond what I thought humans were capable. Your testimony is amazing and I hope that you will feel the prayers of others to lift you both in the days to come. She is with you always, cheering you on, and certainly she is your biggest fan. God be with you all.

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  12. Molly, I know I've told you this before, but I am so impressed by your wisdom and your grace. You continue to inspire me. God bless you. I know He has such a special love for you and Vic. And sweet little Lucy.

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  13. I have never read anything more beautiful or more spiritually inspiring in my entire life. Thank you.

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  14. Molly,

    I'm another stranger, but I need you to know how much you have touched me...this post in particular. While I'm not dealing with the loss of a child, I am dealing with some pretty horrific things. This post gave me perspective and the courage to give it to the Lord and let Him carry me. Thank you. Thank you.

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  15. Again, I know we've never met, but I needed to tell you that I am so grateful for your strong, spiritually guided perspective on life. Thank you so much for sharing with perfect strangers. It is helping me deal with the tiny trials I have in my life.

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  16. Hi sweetheart - this is your Dad. I remember holding you when you were Lucy's age as you insisted on being a baby for just a while longer. I always knew your body contained a vibrant and strong spirit - one that could make people laugh easily, and cry easily, and be touched deeply. I've been reading posts from those who know you and do not know you. They are all being blessed by you and Vic and Lucy as you reflect God's incredible love for His children and his refining plan of Happiness. This is a unique "mission" that you've been called to serve - and it will continue eternally.

    I'm Lucy Papa - and my emotional heart was once more opened wide - feeling all your intense emotions as you spent time with Lucy's spirit in her room. As one who loves you and Vic and Lucy so very, very deeply, I thank you for sharing the song "Days of Plenty". I use those lyrics to testify -

    I know that she matters
    I know that she always will
    She will always be with you
    She'll be part of the days you've yet to fill
    She will live in your bounty
    She will live as you carry on your life

    So carry on,
    Full of Hope,
    She'll be there,

    For all your Days of Plenty

    --Papa Bice

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  17. Molly,

    i am sitting here at work with chills and choking tears. You guys are suffering the worst possible scenario. I shutter at the thought of facing such a trial. I don't think I have your strength or profound wisdom. Your friend's email council is inspired. You, Vic and Molly have been consecrated by the Lord for some greater purpose. This probably doesn't offer comfort, but definitely reflection.
    Love you. Can't wait to get together soon.

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  18. This was so perfect. What a great email from a friend. Cherish that forever. And I'm glad Lucy's room is still the same. It wouldn't seem right almost to change a THING in there. I'm sure it's hitting more and mote everyday the reality of what happened. We pray for you guys. I wish there was more we could do! Just know we're here for you.

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  19. Honestly,
    After the tremendous spiritual rock you have been for all these weeks, you deserve a week, many weeks, as many as you want to let the snot flow freely. Seriously, you ARE the woman your friend describes, maybe just not all the way there yet. Who am I to talk though, amidst all your pain and grief, you are the one holding everyone else up. I wish I could do as much for you as you have done for me. I continue to be astounded by your strength. I can't wait to see you.

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  20. Molly my friend,

    your posts are so incredibly raw... Ben and I have been thinking of you so much... He lost his brother a couple years before we met and he shared much of his pain with me... He said that writing down how you're feeling and everything that is going through your mind is and will be so empowering (he used to tape himself on a portable recorder on his way to work and such). also, the fact that you took so many pictures and recorded so many experiences is so incredible. you have that to cherish forever...
    this time is horribly and refiningly painful as the routine is sinking back in... without your precious one. know that tons of people love you and are thinking of you.
    ben and i certainly wish we were closer... we love you.
    ben and annie

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  21. Thankyou Molly for sharing today's thoughts and feelings. They GET to be up and down and all over the charts and up to the sky and wherever else they take you. It's your grief, and you get to own it. It is part of the refinement process, but oh how painful. You are beautiful, the Queen Mother of the Princess Lucy.
    And still unabashed. Love U.
    ( I expect you have already changed to waterproof mascara, as all your readers/fans should. I just go without! )

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  22. Molly,
    I'm sorry this has been a difficult week. I remember when my hard shell started to crack.
    I love what you wrote about Lucy being a princess with the Prince of Peace being able to wake her in the resurrection. That is so beautiful.
    You ARE a woman with great strength and character. You're doing it. Just keep on breathing.
    Know that there are many sending love and praying for you. You'll make it. Love Tami

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  23. Thank you SO MUCH for allowing us to know what is going on inside your heart and mind. If you even knew the impact your posts have on me. You have made me want to be a better and stronger woman and hold even tighter to my faith and build a better relationship with my Heavenly Father.

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  24. Thank you for your post.
    My husband noticed I was looking at your blog and worried I was becoming a "blog stalker." I promise I'm not, I've just been very thankful for your example.

    I thought of a quote by George Q. Cannon and liked to share it with you..."Every Latter-day Saint who gains a celestial glory will be tried to the uttermost...for the Lord will test us to the utmost before we can get through and receive that glory and exaltation which he has in store for us..." Your test and trial exceeds anything I could ever imagine.

    Thank you again for your strength and I hope the words from friends and even strangers (blog stalkers) can allow you to feel some comfort.

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  25. Oh my dear Miss Molly. How Jacob and I love to reminisce about Brianne McLardo. And how I ache for you every time I visit your blog.

    I wholeheartedly believe that you will rise from this tragedy into a great woman of strength filled with compassion, love, and just the right mix of wit needed for every situation. Take each day for what it is, a new day and a new opportunity to remember Lucy for all of the wonderfulness she brought you and to carry on with a heart full of hope that you will be able to bless others with what she effortlessly taught you daily....unconditional love and a zest for life!

    I love you so much!

    Erin

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  26. Molly,
    Everytime that I read your blog, I am uplifted. I can not imagine what your life is like now and I definately have moments where I wish that I will never know. You are an amazing strength to me. Especially when I am struggling with my own children. Thank You and I love you dearly. Please stay in touch.
    Danielle NeAring Malsbary

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  27. I don't know what to say other than thank you Molly for being such a great example to me. A friend told me about your blog after my sister passed away on May 26th and it really has helped me so much.

    I am so sorry for your loss. I am grateful you have shared your story with so many who have probably really needed you. I did...so again thank you for helping me when I hurt and ache for my sister.

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  28. I am glad Vic posts too. I can see he is a good man. When I think about the love Aaron and I share it is the trials we have over come together that instills that love I have for him. We have a lot of fun together but the deep relationship and aching love that I have for him IS because of the harder times.

    I can only imagine the deep deep love, understanding, and bond you will have for Vic in years from now. Hold on tight.

    Love, Crystalyn

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  29. Hi, you dont know me (as many have written) but I look at your blog often and find my self thinking about you guys many times during the day. I pray for you guys each night. Thank you for sharing all of that. It was hard to read!!! My heart truly breaks for you, but you are doing 100% of what you need to be doing and Heavenly Father will help with the rest.

    Hang in there...

    meredith (Britanys friend...and I see you have another friend Meredith! No, I didnt post 2 times!)

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  30. I stumbled upon your blog after reading a posting on a friend's blog about your sweet Lucy. I just wanted to let you know you are in our prayers. I am amazed with your courage and admire your faith in such a situation. She must be one special little girl needed in the Lord's kingdom.

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  31. I wish there was an indicator when things will start to get better. Hang in there you guys. I miss you so much and wish I could be there. I wish I could stay with you all throughout your day, I would even sleep in your bed with you if I could! It might seem to some that being in another state makes it easier to deal with but in most ways its harder.
    Molly how are the furniture restoring projects going? Stay busy.

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  32. What a beautiful (and heartbreaking) entry. I cried like a baby while reading it and I am going to cuddle my 2 year old a little longer today after his bath. He loves being a baby in his towel and I know I don't take enough time to hold him and just be. Most days I hurry to get him dressed so I can finish my "to do" list.. when the only thing that really matters to me is having a son who knows how much I love him and want to be with him. Thank you for being so open and sharing your feelings with total strangers! You have had a big impact on our family.

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  33. I can imagine how your arms must literally ache to hold her. And smell.....the smell....perfect. I am so sorry that this world is going on "Lucy-less". I hate the thought. Heaven's gain is our loss. Keep breathing, eventually you won't have to remind yourself. You're stunning and strong. We love you guys!

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  34. As I'm preparing my lesson for R.S. my mind is taken to the both of you. I'm talking on spiritual storehouses and need for them during harsh times. Thank you for what you are teaching me through your incredible trial. To me, you are that woman that your friend described. You humble me and keep me afloat. Thank you for being so incredible and for letting down enough to share your trememdous pain with us. You have put so much perspective on life. Thank you!

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  35. I pray that God will shower you with his greatest blessings in the greatest urgency.

    I love you, Molly. I'm so sorry you are hurting right now.

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  36. I was feeding Jackson when Trevor & I logged onto your site, we read together your faith-and-emotion-filled post and we both found ourselves overwhelmed with emotions. Thank you for the glimpses you give us into your heart, you are so brave to post such intimate moments and feelings. We are feeling so much more for you & Vic right now as our lives have changed so dramatically over the last 3 weeks. We have thought about you and realized so many new feelings that come with parenthood. Thank you for being such amazing examples for us--thank you for posting your experiences & thoughts, and thank you for being WHO you are.

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  37. It's so hard to fathom the kind of pain and heartache you feel. We keep praying for you and hope that you'll continue to feel the Savior's powerful love constantly.

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  38. Miss molly.
    You have always been a strong and wise gal. I am so glad that your courage, strength, wisdom, and memories have been made public to all who know (and don't know) you. You are an example to me and so many others.
    I love you.
    karyn~

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  39. Miss Molly,
    I stumbled across your blog from a friend of mine's blog. You don't know me (as many have now posted) but I feel through your blog that I know you and your family. I am so very sorry for your loss. I cannot even begin to imagine what you must be feeling. When I read your heartfelt entries I realize every time that the Lord does not give us anything that we cannot handle. There are many days that I feel like I cannot handle my 2 yr old daughter. It is through your entires I find strength and that I realize that I can be a better mother to my children. You continually remind me to never take anything for granted, every moment counts. Thank you for sharing your thoughts, your trials, and most of all your triumphs.

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  40. i'm so, so sad for your pain and sadness... i'm still thinking of you and praying for you. love you.

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  41. dearest Molly, this post was hard for me to read. I don't know if most people realize that I was at my brother's side when he died, and my mom's, and lastly, my grandma's. I remember, especially with Chris, just holding on to him, feeling the warmth fade away so slowly...willing it to stay just a little longer. I spent so much time fearing the "forgetting" part of the healing process. every day you try to hold on to the tiniest things; the smells, the sounds...and they, too, fade away, to come back every once in a while, but not to stay. so hard, but in a way, it makes life liveable again. I wish i could recall Chris' laugh...or my mother's voice at will...you are so blessed to have the videos! I have been inactive since my mission Molly, and for the first time in many years, you've made me wonder if it has made my losses harder than they need be. it is SO hard-it is nothing compared to the loss of your baby girl, but in a small way it connects us to both sides of everything: life & death, light & darkness, happiness & sorrow. It is a new language altogether, isn't it?

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  42. Molly, I am constantly amazed at how you and Vic are able to describe your emotions and feelings in such a way that I feel as if I was right there with you. I hope that some day you two will be able to write a book on your journey through this tragedy, describing your ups and downs and the ways you were able to survive. I think you could be a great strength to others who have and will go through this. You are amazing!

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  43. i am another stranger to you, but heard of your loss from a friend. this post, as the others, truly touch me and while i can't offer anything of comfort to you other than the knowledge you already have from the gospel~ let me just say thank you. thank you for your posts, for sharing your feelings, i can't imagine how hard it is. but it's such a strength and a reminder for us who read it. i cuddle with my daughter the same way in the towel every single time after her bath, she loves it. i'm usually focusing on drying her and what i need do next for the day's tasks... i need to cherish it more. thank you.

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  44. Molly, I just read this entry again and wept (again). My heart aches for you and I think about you constantly. I hope you know how many lives you continue to bless. Love you.

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  45. Still thinking about you...

    You have an uncanny ability to describe your feelings on paper and I don't think you'll ever understand how many people you've touched by what you write and what you will continue to write.

    You are so brave to let your emotions out in the open when so readily we bury them deep inside.

    Wish we were able to figure out a time to see you this last visit. Next time, for sure.

    Spencer

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  46. Molly- I can't even imagine how hard it must be to look at pictures and go into her room each day! I LOVE and appreciate the outlook you have on life... everything you write is so beautiful and true. Thanks for sharing this journey with all of us and making us all stronger individuals.

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  47. I have noticed Lucy's Fellow Angels and am awed at the strength of these families as well as your own. I am a stranger but check on you often. I heard of another little Angel named "Mason Curtis Hibbert" from Bountiful whose funeral is tomorrow and whose story mimics that of Lucy's only he was eating a pretzel. Perhaps there is strength in numbers. I don't know really but maybe just strength in truly being able to relate. I will attach the link of his obituary and hope that you are able to pull it up.

    With many thoughts and prayers,

    Melanie
    (meltoffersen@hotmail.com)

    http://www.legacy.com/saltlaketribune/Obituaries.asp?Page=LifeStory&PersonID=113234864

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  48. (You won't remember me...I'm one of Amy's classmates) but, I too have been following your blog a bit since hearing about Lucy. I think about you almost every. You have been in my prayers. I will continue to pray that the days will grow easier for you. Thanks for sharing your story, your faith, and your strength.

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  49. molly, i don't know if you remember me, april vongchanyakul. i was one of chad hardy's friends at rick's. i spoke with him a last night and he told me of your tragic situation. i just want you to know that after looking and reading some of your blog, she was a beautiful, precious little girl. that is easy to see. you seem strong, and i know she was blessed you have you as a mother. you are in our prayers. love april

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  50. Hi,
    I heard your story about Lucy from a third party following the passing of my best friend's little boy last week. I saw him mentioned in the comments here, Mason Curtis Hibbert. He choked on a piece of a pretzel while in his carseat. My best friend did everything she could, but he still passed away. Anyway, Charlotte is an incredible person, and reading your thoughts here on this blog make me think a lot of her. I am sure at some point she would appreciate if you wanted to talk with her. We have several friends who have lost babies to illnesses and such, but none who have had a tragic, sudden loss such as she and you have experienced. You seem strong, as she does, and wanting to make it through each day a little better than the last. I am hurting for her, and after reading your story, feel the same for you, although I don't know you. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and feelings here, it helps me understand better what my friend must be feeling and going through.
    My thoughts and prayers are with your family as well,
    Tama Anderson
    (tama_anderson@hotmail.com)

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  51. You don't even know me (I know Jenny and Chris in AZ), but I found your blog and am in absolute tears for you pain and loss. I cannot imagine the almost unbearble pain that you must have and still do experience. I am FLOORED at your ablility to hold onto gospel principles and strive SO hard through the hardest time of your life. I'm afraid I would not be able to be as strong. The fact that you are trying to learn what it is you are to gain from this that is positive is spiritual LIGHT YEARS beyond me! I'm am SO sorry that you have to experience this heartache in this life.

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  52. Like many others here, I've never meet you but I've kept up with your story. Today your story lingered through my mind as we discussed death in Relief Society. I wept as I began to think about your strength and your amazing faith. You are truly a strong woman and I have no doubt (from the little I know) that you will be that woman that your friend described.

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  53. I think a lot of us were thinking of you during Relief Society. My Relief Society President actually walked back to me before the teacher started and told me that when she read the lesson she was thinking of Lucy, especially the one section about a 2 year old.

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  54. Molly & Vic, I'm feeling your pain right along with you. Please know that you are "normal" in feeling these feelings. Remember, it's like an onion that you peel....one layer at a time, and cry when it's hard. Someone told us also to remember that every day that you get farther away from the accident, is one day closer to the resurrection. And to know that your sweet Lucy is "flying" with the angels now, flitting from one person to the next who needs to "feel" her love is an incredible concept. I recently went through another hard experience, and I truly felt our Lacey close by, holding her mom up and encouraging her to endure to the end. I smiled when I pictured you trying to find her smell...I did the same thing. I stocked up on the lotions that I used regularly with her too. It seemed to help. Here's a hug, Molly. I love you.....Melissa's mom

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  55. So I don't even know you, but I found you through another blog I was reading. I have to tell you how much I admire your ability to deal with the loss of your precious daughter. Your entries touch my heart and help me to be a better mother to my two children. I truly hope and pray that The Lord will touch your heart and your soul and take away some of the ache that you feel. You are in my prayers, and I a truly, deeply, and sincerely sorry for your loss.

    http://loesevitzs.blogspot.com

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