Friday, 24 October 2008

Theo's Birthday

Clare and I are both at home today with a cold but at least it gives me a chance to catch up on blog-world and post about Theo's birthday.

We both took the day off and we went to stay in Oulton Broad about 50 minutes away from Ipswich. We started the day at Thrigby Hall which is a small wildlife park. It's more open than a normal zoo and lots of the animals are not in cages as such. For example, you are only separated from the tigers by a double layer of wire mesh. It's big enough to stick you fingers through but luckily the gap between the two layers is large enough so that you can't actually poke the tiger! It still lets you get pretty close though!

We also saw Red Pandas (my favourite!) and dropped leaves on a crocodile's head to see if it was still alive. I wanted to drop my bottle of water on its head but Clare said no!

In the evening, we went to Southwold Pier (where we scattered Theo's ashes last year). It was a beautifully clear, moon-lit night. We let some balloons go from the end of the pier and said some prayers.

The next day, we got both families together and went out for a Chinese meal to celebrate Theo's birthday. It was a really great day and it was nice to have both families there. Typically, I forgot the camera so no pics of that I'm afraid!

Overall, it was a lovely weekend! Although there had been some sadness in the run up to Theo's birthday, the actuall day was very happy and it was good for Clare and I to get some time away by ourselves.

Anyway, in my slackness, it seems that there are still two more holiday locations I've yet to blog about. So come back soon to hear what we got up to in L.A.

Friday, 10 October 2008

One year on...remembering Theo

It seems like a cliche, but it really doesn't feel like a whole year has passed! On this day last year, we welcomed and said goodbye to our son Theodore. Over the last year, we've been through times of happiness and times of great sorrow.

Theo was only with us for a short while. Some people spend their whole life looking for their purpose in life...searching for the one thing that will make an impact and cause their name to be remembered always. Theo managed to achieve this in just 4 and a half hours. That was all the time God required of him here before his work was done. Although Clare and I don't fully understand why his time was so short, we know God's will was done because we see it in the effect Theo's life has had on other people as well as ourselves.

We are certainly changed by all this. In some ways we are older, wearier and more battle-worn. But in others we are stronger, firmer in our faith and more trusting in God. The good surely out-weighs the bad.

As Clare and I look back over the past, we also look to the future. We don't know what's around the next corner for us but we know that we will make it through because we trust in a God who promises to be with us always. He hasn't always made it easy for us over the last year but he has always been there for us. We know we can rely on God because he has a track-record of not letting us down.

Finally, a very big and heart-felt thank you to everyone who has supported us over the last year. In many ways, big and small, you have made our journey easier and for that we are extremely grateful.

To him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy— to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.

Jude 1:24-25

Tuesday, 7 October 2008

Baby Loss Awareness

Moving away from our holiday tales for this blog entry... please remember baby loss awareness day which is the 15th October. Clare and I will be attending a service at the chapel in Ipswich Hospital this Sunday. Clare has written a poem in remembrance of Theo which she will read at the service. Please remember all those who have lost children in your thoughts and prayers at this time.

The Gift

Just a moment together,
A tiny glimpse of the life that was yours,
The face I had never seen, but knew so well,
A reflection of the love that brought you into being.

All too soon, the moment was gone,
Your soul was free,
In the arms of your loving Saviour,
Pain and sorrow blown away.

I felt the grip of overwhelming loss,
I felt my soul begin to fall,
My Lord reached out His arms and caught me,
Wrapped me in His ineffable love.

He showed me a picture of a mother,
The warmth of love in her face,
Her heart bursting with pride,
Then He lowered the mirror.

I am blessed because God chose me,
To hold your precious little body,
To love you unconditionally,
To be your mother,


You are my gift.

By Clare Dungey
Mother of Theodore Edward Dungey – 10th October 2007