Butterflies are nature’s angels. They remind us what a gift it is to be alive.

— Robyn Nola

This Monday, Memorial Day, our family won’t just be remembering those who have died fighting for our country.

This Monday is 30 May – and we should be celebrating Millie’s third birthday.

It is hard to believe that a few short years ago we were met with a grief and loss that we never expected. It was a time of loss, not just of Millie- it was a crushed hope and expectation of what was to be, a crisis of finding a new purpose, and a journey to find healing by myself, within our couple and for Mon Cœur.

In these three years I have come to accept my reality, hope for a reunion with Millie, and trust that in the end I will be able to look back and understand and connect the dots.

A butterfly symbolizes acceptance of each new phase in life. To keep faith as everything around you changed.

— Lisa Kleypas, Rainshadow Road


Denial. Anger. Bargaining. Depression. Acceptance. Finding meaning. These are the six stages of grief, listed out.

Mine was more denial-anger-bargaining on constant loop for the first three months. Then reality sank in. This was real life.

Depression sprinkled throughout and poured on heavier in some seasons (milestones, holidays, firsts).

Then acceptance. And Millie’s Garden allows me to find meaning. To be in nature, a little closer to her. A little closer to God. And remembering our village who continues to love and support us.

Anger still reappears from time to time. But the garden has been a place of comfort and solace, a place to mother her, and a place where she can “show herself” to us in the butterflies, in the blooms, and in the gentle melodies of nature.

…Butterflies are a symbol of hope. It’s said that if you capture one in your hands and whisper your dreams to it, it will carry them up to the heavens so that the wish can be granted.

— Sherrilyn Kenyon, Retribution


I do not pretend to have a strong faith. I’ve always questioned a little. I’m working on this. Always working on this. When Daddy died, I did hope for a Heaven. When Millie died three short months later, I was adamant in my hope, for a reunion to meet her and hold her again.

Do I know without a doubt that there is something beyond death? Absolutely not. Do I think that it is a possibility, that perhaps there is a Heaven where we will all come together again? I sure hope there is, and I think it’s possible. Anything is, and I have to hold on to this hope.

Don’t waste your time chasing butterflies. Mend your garden, and the butterflies will come.

— Mario Quintana


The only reason I could find for this tremendous loss was that she was needed. Daddy needed her, God needed her. There were bigger, more immediate plans where she would be needed and they were not here on Earth with us.

I trust that for whatever reason, God had one, and in the end, I will know. I am blind to it now, but one day I’ll be able to look back and connect the dots.

For now, I will accept my reality, hope for a reunion with Millie, and trust that in the end I will understand.

For now, we have plans to make blueberry pound cake for Millie. We will acknowledge her heavenversary tomorrow. Mon Cœur has declared, “I will put three candles in the cake. And then I’ll blow them out for her. Because she isn’t here to do it.”

For now, we will find meaning working in the garden- tending to the flowers, pulling the weeds, and continuing to mulch.

We will be with her in the garden. We will delight in new flowers, appreciate the fluttering butterflies, and welcome the whispering chimes.

The butterfly counts not months but moments, and has time enough.

— Rabindranath Tagore

Remembering Millie 2021

Remembering Millie 2020


One thought on “Acceptance…Hope…Trust?

  1. Pingback: Of lemons and blueberries and birthday cakes

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