By Guest Blogger, Krista Wilson, founder of Button Boo Designs and author of Infertile in a Fertile City
I’ve baked a thousand casseroles in my life but never imagined I would receive a thousand. Yet, on a lovely fall day (the kind you dream about in the summer and practically beg for in winter), my turn in the “casserole circuit” began. On September 30th, my precious daughter (Lily Katherine Wilson) was stillborn at eight months . . .
As I sat in the hospital mourning the loss of our daughter, I wondered how I would ever learn to live again. All the dreams I had for my family seemed to pass with her. I pictured my life without Lily in it and all the lovely moments I would never experience. I would never see Lily dancing in our kitchen in a princess dress, never talk about her heart being broken by a foolish boy, never kiss her skinned knee, or even watch her blow out her first birthday candle. I carried Lily for eight months and knew her every move, but I will never know her eye color.
As I looked at the past and what could have been, an army of women across Charlotte were looking towards the future and how to care for my family. Cream of mushroom soup was being purchased and family recipes, the ones that are shared for generations and are believed to have true powers, were being pulled out of recipe boxes. Our friends and community starting planning on healing our family, one casserole at a time.
A dear friend and true saint, Lori Martin, organized a meal delivery for us and over the next several weeks our door bell rang, and strangers and friends alike brought us meals. We rejoiced in the love poured into each baking dish. We rejoiced in seeing people at our door to remember our daughter and acknowledge our pain. The “casserole circuit” is amazing and I’m so proud to be a part of it. These women gave me the strength I needed to endure the most painful experience of my life. One thoughtful friend even brought us milk because I feared going to the grocery store and seeing people I would have to explain our loss to. My husband and I learned so much about what it means to be a part of a caring community and to give unconditionally.
I wonder if the women of Charlotte know how amazing they are. Ladies, we could run The White House if only our schedules would allow the time. Will you wonderful women ever fully understand what you gave to my family? Through Tupperware and teary eyes you told us that everything was going to be okay. You taught us that in even the darkest moments, there is light.
Now, when I cook for a family, whether to honor times of joy or sadness, I treasure every turn of the spatula knowing my time matters more than I could have ever imagine. I’ve learned to believe in the miracle of life, the importance of owning good Tupperware, and the healing powers of cream of mushroom soup.
What a beautifully written piece. Thank you!
I agree, that was beautiful! I'm so sorry for your loss and so happy that you had wonderful, supportive friends to hold you up during that time. I also have been on the receiving end of many "love" casseroles and I will never forget the kindness.
Wonderfully written. …tears…
Krista, you are a true gem in Charlotte! I am so thankful that CSP brought us together:) Know that we all love you dearly and are proud of you for pouring your heart out to us. Tears is right, more like a river! XOXO, Jen P
You know how much we all love you! Reading this made me tear up all over again. Our hearts stopped the day yours did. I will forever be in awe of your ability to find gratitude. You will teach me someday…Erin (R.)
Thank you for sharing this. You have such a way with words. I am very sorry for your loss. I am in awe of your strength.
Krista, this was beautiful. I'll remember this every time I cook a meal for a dear friend.
beautiful story! thank you so much for sharing and reminding us all that those casseroles contain so much more than just a few ingredients from the pantry. i am so sorry for your loss.
thank you for sharing. praying for your pain to lessen…
I love this! There is so much love baked into a casserole sent to a family in need. Your article is beautiful and is making your sweet Lily proud. It's an honor to be on the giving or receiving end of the circuit; women are amazing!
Krista, you are such an inspiration to all who know you and have seen you through this loss. I have thought of you every day since I met you in that waiting room almost 3 weeks ago. Sharing your grief with others surely helps to lessen the pain just a little bit and I am honored to have met you that morning after we parked in that tiny parking lot 🙂 I have told others of your bravery and it has comforted friends of mine who have gone through recent grief. One of my favorite scriptures reads, "Weeping may last for a night but JOY cometh in the morning," Psalm 30:5. You are in my thoughts and prayers. JOY cometh my friend…Anna Juby
Krista- I know you from the Y… we've worked out in the same classes (zumba, baby boot camp.) I haven't been in a while or seen you lately so I didn't know. I am so sorry for your loss. What a beautifully written piece. I cannot imagine what you have been through. Thank you for sharing! you are an amazing woman and mother!
Your strength amazes me. This was the day I met you broken and vulnerable. But I got to see you take that and put the pieces back together. I am glad I got meet you, Tom and Sutton and then help you welcome the twins!! I will never forget Lilly either! Marti