Thursday, December 15, 2016

Grief & Loss

Today I got word that a distant relative of mine passed away suddenly, she was only 61. Although I didn't know her, the loss of a loved one is always hard, especially at this time of year. The hard part of loss is not the time when there are plenty of people around bringing food, just stopping by to visit, the hard part is after the people leave and you are alone. Sometimes in this time alone it is hard to see that you are not alone, you can be so caught up in your grief. You find yourself staring at the favorite places that they used to sit, staring at their side of the bed, lifting their favorite sweater just to smell them. Hanging on to any little pieces of them you can.

We have all experienced grief, and all of us experience it differently, and in our own timing. Grief is noting to be ashamed of , as there can be no recovery without it. There is a common phrase that many of us have heard "Time heals all wounds." I don't believe that this is necessarily true, I believe that we accept it, but it remains a part of us, we just make room for it. Our experiences make us who we are, and our reactions to them however positive or negative help us help the next person deal with it. It also helps us to admit our failures or shortcomings in the dealing of our own situation.

I remember vividly the night my husband died, this has been 21 years, and I remember that more than I can remember some things about him, especially his voice, his laugh, his smell ( I still go through the the grocery store and if I find Brut I open it and take a good long whiff), I know how funny that sounds. 😊😊😊.

Like I said, this grief can also help you deal with your failures or shortcomings that happened from your situation. I was 22 when I became widowed, I was a new mom to an 8 month old. I didn't understand why God would do this to me. Then, I was not as passionate as I am today, or how I wish I knew then what I know now, but this was my road to travel to become who I am. I am not perfect, I have made lots of mistakes, and I freely admit that I carried a lot of those mistakes and baggage into my new relationship with Mike. I also had many great friends from that time in my life, some who we made the Godparents to my daughter. They were our best friends, and that beautiful friendship started with a phone call to the police because the party was just a tad to loud. 😏😏😏.

Sadly, a few years after I lost my husband, she lost her husband in a car accident. I remember that day very well too, she called me at work, and I immediately left work to be with her. Isn't that what any good friend would do? He was a wonderful man, and he loved his family dearly. What I regret from these few years is that I needed to talk, and I talked all the time about me, and gave little thought to what she was going through, or anyone else for that fact. One of the greatest gifts that you can give someone is to help them through the grieving process, the entire process. They helped me a great deal when I needed someone, which was often. Then there was one time when someone said something and 'poof" the friendship was gone. I regret the loss of this relationship, and miss her and her family.

Loss is loss, no matter what form it comes in, from a beloved spouse, a friendship or a furry companion. We all grieve. As I write this I;m listening to Lauren Daigle's album How Can it Be, seems fitting for the topic. All things happen for a reason, and for some reason the road I'm on is not one I expected to be on, but I trust that it is because God has a great plan for me, as it says in Jeremiah 29:11 "For I know the plans that I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

In a book called God is in the HARD Stuff by Bruce Bickel and Stan Jantz, I cam across a quote from Michelangelo:
"Lord, on You I call for help
against my blind and senseless torment,
since You alone can renew
inwardly and outwardly my mind,
my will, and my strength, which are weak."

In the same book I also came across "Faith in God involves hope. A Hope in the future. The hope of a better life to come. A hope of spending eternity with our heavenly Father."

For today I am gonna leave you with a verse from Roman 8:38-39:
"For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angles or demons, 
either the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, 
nor anything else in all creation, 
will not be able to separate us from the love of God that is in  Christ Jesus our Lord."

Another song I heard today that I want to share, as it is fitting for today's theme:

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