A letter to little me...
Dear Little Brie,
You're so young now, maybe only 2 or 3 years old. Many things frighten you, that maybe shouldn't - the garbage man, or fireworks on the 4th of July, or even the loud noises of your older brothers and sisters goofing around. You are hyper-alert, and you are sensitive. Mom says that out of all 10 of her kids, you are the most different - not bad - just different.
It's okay to be scared, to be sensitive. These things will shape the woman that you are going to grow up to be, and I can tell you now, that she ain't too shabby. :) So be brave, and be strong. You are safe, and you are okay.
You're a little older now, at 5 years old. This is going to be a scary year for you, because you're going to go into the hospital for a long time, and you are going to almost die. You are going to be fearful and distrustful, and you are going to hear the doctor telling your parents that things don't look good, and you're going to be confused, because parents are always supposed to keep you safe, so how could you die? How could everything not be okay? And you won't die - but you'll come close, and you'll be scared. But you'll make it. You'll be okay.
This experience will shape the rest of your life. You will be wary, and you will not trust people, because suddenly the world isn't bright and magical anymore, it is dark and unknown and full of scary things like doctors with sharp tools and pain and this idea - that never occurred to you before - that you could die, and you don't really know what that means, just that you can't be with Mommy and Brett anymore, and that you have to go live with Jesus.
And I know you're so scared to die. And I know you just want to get better; for everything to go back to the way they always used to be when things were simple and abundant and joyful.
Little Brie, it won't ever go back to that way again - the simplicity and naivete of your innocent youth cannot be replicated. Your life is going to be hard, but that doesn't mean it has be be bad. If I could tell you anything, it would be to trust your mom and your dad and your twin brother, and to be brave. I want you to know that you can tell your mom anything, and that you don't have to keep secrets inside that make you wonder about yourself and where you belong and why you are here. Because those secrets are poison, and they'll fester inside you and try to kill you, if you don't let them out. So please. Trust your mom. And Little Brie? Don't be so hard on yourself.
This world isn't permanent, and you won't always be here, and I know you're scared of that, but it's the truth, so I have to tell you that. But I can tell you that you'll remain here for a very long time, and when you grow up, you'll finally experience joy like you've never had before - with your amazing, loving husband by your side, and your children, you will finally feel alive and happy and free.
So hang on, Little Brie. You can do this. I believe in you. I love you. I am waiting for you.
Grown Up Brie