I’m not particularly fond of Halloween. It’s probably not even on my list of top 10 things/reasons to celebrate. But after Audrey Nole was born, Halloween became one more reason - not that I needed one - to fawn over my tiny human. It became a day where there could be memories made and tons and tons of pictures taken. She was almost 7 months old for her first Halloween. We dressed her up as Minnie Mouse and took her to Papa’s house for dinner al fresco and then she went to bed. It was adorable and I have plenty of pictures of my little Minnie Mouse.

George Mason would’ve been almost 9 months old for his first Halloween. If he was anything like his sister, that means he would’ve been itching to walk and cruising on everything in site. I highly doubt I would’ve gotten him to sit still for the hundreds of pictures I would have wanted to take. We’ve been so busy this last month with our move that I’ve been dreading Halloween and costumes and trick or treating with Audrey, but as I put her down for her nap today (in costume, of course), it really hit me that I won’t have those adorable first Halloween pictures for George Mason. I’m not sure what he would’ve been this year. Probably a gnome, complete with beard and hat and rosy cheeks. I can imagine him crawling and tripping over that silly beard. I can imagine the hilarious and equally precious pictures of my Cinderella and her garden gnome. I can imagine a wagon with a blanket and some hot glued flowers, a yard for the gnome is a must, and an eager two year old ready to pull her brother.

Except that’s probably not what our life would’ve looked like if George Mason had lived. The trick or treating would have likely been door to door in the children’s hospital, if at all. George Mason would’ve probably been hooked up to tubes and monitors and any costume would’ve needed to accommodate those life preserving things. That’s one of the hardest parts of this grief journey. It’s so easy to imagine what life would look like with two healthy kids, to think of George Mason as a little boy who was just like his peers. It’s doubly sad. I want my son here, he should be here, but then I snap back to reality and realize his life, our life as parents, would’ve been so different from my dreams and imagination. It makes me thankful for a gracious and merciful Father. One who saw what my son’s suffering was going to look like and called him home to glory. It’s hard to even type that out without melting into a puddle of tears, but heaven is for real and heaven is wonderful. Oh how thankful I am to know that. My sweet son is not in pain. He is no longer broken. And he doesn’t feel an ounce of the sadness that I feel from losing and missing him. Because of Jesus, my son’s death isn’t scary. Because of Jesus, my son’s death is a love story of redemption. Because of Jesus, my heart can rest assured in knowing all the wonderful things that come with a death that leads to Jesus’ arms.

For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain. -Philippians 1:21

I don’t know all the details of Heaven, but I’m going to imagine my mama is taking my son trick or treating through the streets of gold.