The summer months are difficult for me, they always will be. Each day, the constant reminders of three years ago dance through my head. The beautiful moment of giving birth to my triplets is met with the tragic and painful memory of losing two of my children. As the years go by, life moves forward. I find myself consumed with raising my beautiful miracle child, and most times, the happiness outweighs the sorrow. But this summer was different. My surviving triplet graduated from every therapy, she no longer needed a handful of specialists, and she was about to start preschool. With so many milestones, I was a mess. The watery eyes became a daily occurrence; sweet and happy tears, riddled with heartbreak. But, as the summer slowly comes to an end, a smile spreads across my face as I remember a beautiful sign from above. It’s amazing to think that a single butterfly had the power to ease my grief.
I first saw this butterfly shortly after my daughter turned three. It was the end of June, a month that is always filled with many emotions. It’s tough being a mom to children both here on earth and in heaven. I need to be strong for my survivor and celebrate her special day, yet the pain inside is unbearable, knowing her brother and sister should be joining in on the birthday celebration. I sat outside watching my daughter play on her swing with tears trickling down my face. It was a moment of sadness as I pictured my triplets giggling together, something that will never be possible. Just then, as I looked across the yard at my daughter, a beautiful yellow butterfly fluttered nearby.
Many people experience a sign from their loved one in heaven and butterflies are often considered to be a symbol from beyond the grave. I’ve experienced that special sign twice thanks to butterflies, so it’s not unusual for me to look at the insect and ask, “Are you Parker or Abby?” As I watched this butterfly, the thought did cross my mind, but it was a fleeting memory as it quickly flew away.
A few weeks later, I was reminiscing over my son’s short life; his wild blonde hair a stark contrast to his gentle personality. As I looked out the kitchen window, a beautiful yellow butterfly flew by. I instantly thought back to that day when I first saw that yellow beauty. As the summer weeks flew by, the yellow butterfly continued to appear. Sometimes I was outside with Peyton and my husband, other times I was walking to the mailbox or driving down the street, but each time that yellow butterfly made its presence known. And every time I saw that bright flutter in the distance, I thought of Abby and Parker, my two children in heaven.
As September approached, I was faced with a range of emotions. I was so proud of Peyton as she was about to begin preschool. It’s a milestone we were unsure would ever be possible for our 22 weeker, one pound child. And while I watched my child overcome so many obstacles, I was also heartbroken, knowing that I should be buying three little backpacks, not just one. On that first day of school, I held it together, a lump in my throat hidden from the world. I walked hand in hand with my daughter to her classroom and gave her a kiss when I left the room. As I walked outside, the lump in my throat multiplied in an instant. My eyes became glassy and I sped up my stride, quickly walking to avoid other parents in the parking lot. Safely in my car, I let out a giant exhale, not realizing I had been holding my breath unconsciously. The tears turned to sobs as the weight of the morning sank in. I took a deep breath and wiped the tears away. As I looked up, there it was right in front of me: that beautiful yellow butterfly fluttered just outside of my car.
The tears once again tumbled down my face, but this time they were full of happiness. As I drove home alone, a sense of peace came over me. It turns out, Abby and Parker were with me throughout the summer, guiding me through the trechearous waters of grief. I arrived home and made a cup of coffee, unsure of what to do with my few hours of freedom. As I sat at our table, I glanced outside at the serene September morning. And just like that, a beautiful yellow butterfly appeared out my window; a special sign from above, letting me know life will be OK.
Beautiful story Stacey, those butterflies will be with you to let you know they are there every step of the way. Watching over Peyton and going everywhere with her, so they are going to school just not visible to anyone but you and Peyton. I’m sure she knows they are with her.
What a beautiful post this is! What a blessing you have in her! Love your blog!
Stephanie Gilbert says
Oh my heart aches with you. This was beautiful. Praying for peace that passes all understanding for you right now!
Ellie Augustin says
My heart is with you and this post. We lost our oldest baby girl when she was 2 1/2 mths to SIDS in 2006 and then were blessed to have our 2nd girl born in 2007 and we always find butterflies and smile and think of Anjie. Fast forward to 2013 when we had our 3rd girl and she was born at 27 wks and stayed in NICU for 59 days and every day during the summer there they would be a butterfly in our path and I would feel comforted and now that Isy is 3 this past Summer the butterflies went to the girls not me as they use to when they would appear. I like to think their big sister is so proud and loves and send them kids… Just as your sweet babies do w/their sister. ((HUGS)) to you!
Sane Mama says
I am inspired by your strength despite your heavy heart. I imagine that your ability to find peace will be so helpful when Peyton becomes aware of her own loss.
Jasmine - LoveLifeLaughMotherhood says
I really liked reading this-I feel like I just learned so much about you in just one post. Thank you for sharing
Wow. What an amazing beautiful story? Parker and Abby are definitely watching over their momma, sister and daddy. ❤️❤️????????????????
Simply Sarah says
I am so sorry for you losses. Your beautiful butterflies are always watching over your and little girl. I admire your strength Mama!
Hope after the Storm says
After we lost one of our twins, a cardinal moved into our yard. Over the past year he met a girl and had a nest with cardinal babies. We lost our son on Mother’s Day. Since this wa sour first Mother’s Day since that terrible day, I decided to spend the weekend off of the grid and my family went camping. It was an emotional trip for me and then the first thing we saw when we pulled into our campsite was a cardinal sitting there singing to us. It lifted my heart.
The craziest sign was when I left the hospital parking garage after our first attempt at IUI since our twin pregnancy. As I came out, two cardinals flew in front of our car. Considering we had nine failed attempts before we got our twins, we were shocked that the one attempt worked. We were expecting months of infertility treatments.
I believe that we are given signs. These perky red birds are signs for our family that my angel Connor likes to check up on us as needed and it gives me comfort. I love that the yellow butterfly reminds you of your son’s blond streak. My son Connor had a head full of red hair.
What a beautiful story.Love seeing new things,Peyton is doing.Shes come a log way.