Saturday, March 28, 2009

Avery's Funeral

Angel Avery Ann
March 10, 2009
Arrived at 2:10pm

Returned home 11:00pm

Truly she looked like a porcelain doll, so pure, so precious, so sweet!

Uninhibited Kaden, wanted to kiss her, hold her and take her home.

Until we all meet again someday, this is Mommy and her 4 children.

This lovely table shows all the wonderful and special things we have to remember our sweet angel, Avery. I have almost the same display on my fireplace mantel in my bedroom that I look at each and every day & night. When I lay down and wake in the morning this is the first things I see and it brings me comfort.

My precious boys carrying precious Avery! This picture is so touching to me.

Although this was a hard time for us all, we are finding peace in knowing Avery is resting just a couple of miles away so we can visit her often. We hope and pray that she will come to visit us too and we can feel her spirit dwell with us when we are in need of strength and comfort.

I am finding myself speechless and for those of you who know me, you too will find that to be hard to believe. I don't quite have a grasp on what to say, feel, do, or where to begin my new normal life. I know that this is appropriate but, I still feel so lost without this baby in my arms or sitting in the hospital room watching over her recovering.

For now, I will try to learn acceptance!
Your thoughts, prayers, gifts, acts of selfless love, comments and support are more than we ever imagined possible in such a time of need. We love you all!

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  1. I can't imagine what it must be like going through the full nine months of pregnancy and then not having your sweet baby there to hold. I am sure she is there with you, putting her arms around you. Thank you for sharing your feelings with us. You are an amazing example to me.

  2. Thank you for sharing those beautiful pictures and your touching story! What an example you are of true faith! I know that her sweet little spirit is with each of you, and I know that you will feel of her presence often! May our Heavenly Father's Spirit continue to be with you and offer you great comfort!
    Gary, Camille, Sam and Alex (DILV, LTGA) (IHH Family)

  3. What an inspiration your family has been to us. We continue to pray and hope for you during this time of grief and loss. May you feel your sweet angel's presence in your home blessing all of you with comfort and peace. Beautiful, precious pictures, thank you for sharing them. Love, Lisa and Brooks

  4. Thank you for sharing the pictures and your thoughts. I think you and Avery every day. My prayers are with you.

  5. I am so grateful to know you and to have been able to hug you and finally meet you, even if it wasn't the circumstances I was hoping for. I weep with you my dear friend fore I know how hard this must be...but know she is near by always and is preparing a place for your sweet family to join her. I hope we can get to know your family better and that you will call on us for whatever you need. I would LOVE to have you up here when we are all healthy and you are up for it. Please call if you need anything. I love you, dear friend! I will pray for your comfort always...

  6. Leah, you are such an angel. I love the picture with your four babies!!! Please don't hesitate to give me a call if your ever down this wy and need something...I'd be happy to watch your boys if you ever just need a day!

  7. JUST like a dollie! She's perfect, perfect and well even though you are not. You will find you never need to say anything, go any where, do anything you don't want to or feel up to doing. There's no law that says you HAVE to go to church, you HAVE to get dressed or you HAVE to smile. You have a free ticket to do just about anything you want.

    Liz and I are friends and hopefully we'll get to come and see you next weekend! We're so excited to wrap you in our arms and remember your little angel. Remembering is honoring!

  8. I love those sweet photos! She really is beautiful. I'm glad you shared them. I can hardly wait to meet you and share with you! Just like Heidi said, you don't have to do anything, do whatever you want right now and that is what is right. The balloons at Jake's funeral were one of my favorite things. I hope you enjoyed it just as much. My kids love getting balloons and letting them go to remember him! So sweet! We love you!! ((((hugs))) until we see you!!

  9. My niece was right next to Avery, and actually passed away in the same bed that our son was in when he was first born. Our son passed away from HLHS and our 8 month old niece also has HLHS. Just wanted you to know that the pictures are beautiful, and what a special family you have. I love the picture of you surrounded by your children. There is an amazing group of angel moms, that have lost a child/children from heart defects. I f you are interested ever, you can e-mail me at and I will put you in touch with the head of the group.
    Prayers and love,
    Emily Gourley

  10. Sorry, I needed to re-write the first sentence of my post: My niece was right next to Avery when they brought her over. Where she passed away was the same bed our son was in before his heart surgery. Sorry for not making much sense!

  11. I really love the picture of you holding Avery and the boys are around you two. It brought tears to my eyes with how special that moment must have been. May Heavenly Fathers blessings come to you all.

  12. Thanks again for letting us come to the viewing, you have an amazing family and a great support system. Avery touched many lives here on earth in her short sweet life. Our family will continue to pray for comfort and understanding.

    Thoughts and Prayers,
    Mike & Family

  13. Thank you for sharing these precious pictures. I know that your boys love sweet Avery so much. You know, Avery has created so much love that I have felt these last few weeks, a desire to be better, a desire to love more, a desire to live more fully. She has done so much for so many. The world has been touch by her brief presence. What a wonderful family you have. I am so priviledged to have you as my friend, to walk with you, morn with you, to be near you. I love you Leah!


  14. Thank you for sharing the beautiful pictures. The one of all of your children together is priceless. She is a beautiful angel. You are such a strong faithful family. The tribute is amazing. Lots of Love,
    Chrissie Taylor

  15. Avery is beautiful!!! As she is healed and whole now, have no doubt she is watching over and carrying all of your family! May you be blessed with tender, sweet memories as precious as Avery!

  16. Steve, Leah and boys,
    I'm moved to tears reading this post. Your photo of Leah and the boys and the comment "until we meet again some day, this is mommy and her four children" touched me. My mother lost a son at birth many years ago and I have often heard her say that after the hurt subsided she began to be grateful that she had one child who she knew was back in the presence of God. She called him her "angel child" and looked forward to living a good life so she could get to know her perfected, celestial son in heaven.
    I pray that these days of earthly sadness will be brief and that your angel daughter will comfort you from heaven.
    All my love, Tiffany Olds

  17. Leah and Steve, Thank you so much for sharing sweet Avery with us. She has touched so many in her short time. She is with you always and you will feel her in the silence of the night and in the comotion of a busy day. Her love will surround you always.
    May God be with you utill you meet again.

    I love you and am always here.

  18. I am thinking of you and my heart hurts for your family. Stay strong. :)

  19. Please accept my deepst and truest condolences (sp). I'm so desperately sorry for your heartbreaking loss.

  20. Those pictures are so precious and you should be so proud of your family. You never cease to amaze me with your strength and love. I hope you know how much I love you and your family and that we are thinking of you all every day!

  21. This poem was written by my great-aunt. I hope it touches your heart the way it touched mine. You're in my prayers.

    Treasures in Heaven

    They say that Heaven's wonderful
    Its beauty is divine
    A place where we shall meet again
    With loved ones, yours and mine.
    It is a place of peace and love
    A vale so pure and fair,
    But Heaven can't be Heaven
    Without a child there.

    My baby was perfection
    A goal is set for me
    To keep me climbing upward
    To a greater destiny.
    Her heart strings taught 'bout my feet
    Her silent voice calls clear,
    And when the moon beams light the night
    I often feel her near.

    The greatest touch of Heaven
    That ever brightens earth
    Is the coming of a spirit
    In the miracle of birth.
    To fathom Heaven's mysteries
    I would not try or care
    But I know that there are angels
    For my child's waiting there.

    Dear Lord, forgive my hearts complaint
    I did not understand
    The magic of a child's smile
    And soft warmth of its hand
    The power of its winning ways
    And innocence so sweet
    Are needed up in Heaven
    to make it more complete.

    And after I have dried my tears
    This thought, Dear Lord, breaks through
    That she was yours as well as mine
    You loved my baby too.
    I wanted her to stay so much,
    But life is full of care
    You have called and Heaven
    Will be sweeter with her there.

    I give her back Dear Father
    This baby that's yours and mine,
    And wait until you call for me
    In your appointed time.
    I know she will be waiting
    With all her many charms
    And Heaven will be Heaven
    When I take her in my arms.

    --Leona H. Carlson

  22. Your little princess is absolutely beautiful. Grief is such a difficult thing... so very unpredictable, so very up and down. I'm so sorry.

    I remember hearing about your sweet Avery. I remember hearing about her birth. I anxiously logged on to your blog. Know that every life, no matter how short or long, is precious. Avery has touched my heart. She is a special little girl.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you.

    Your friend,
    Ashley Haws
    Mom to angel Mercydez