I mentioned a couple of days ago (the last time I posted) about a family that recently went through a horrible loss. The family who we are friends with are a Christian family who are very dear to me! One of them had the following on his Facebook:
"The body buried in the ground is meaningless...it's of this world. It does rest, maybe in peace. But what that body symbolized, the soul of a person, if he or she is in heaven, there is no rest, and it is a worship concert forever up there. So, instead of rest in peace, why not say Party On those who were of this world and are in a place SOOO much better. Singing and praising the LORD of LORD and KING of KINGS. Praise be to God now and forever from those of this world, and those with Him. Amen."
Pretty insightful from a 16 year old boy! What peace it reflects. Even in experiencing terrible loss through family friends, he NAILED IT . . . those in Heaven are participating in the BEST worship concert ever . . . and it will NEVER end! I asked his mom if I had permission to use it on here and she said I did. I won't give him credit by name, but the credit is his, not mine, yet I'm pleased to share it with you!
On to other things . . .
Here we are, 1 week past "6 MONTHS" . . . . a date that i feared. And survived. Through the strength that God imparts to me moment by moment! Last night the girls were all gone to track meets (different meets - one running, one watching and one doing the "score-keeping")! Tonight the girls were all gone to see "The Avengers". Two nights home "alone". A day full of doing lots of "house" stuff with little assistance (my dad helped me power wash yard furniture and has been keeping my grass mowed for me!). A day realizing how MUCH different life is without my best friend here to help me do all these things! Two nights with too much time to THINK . . . two nights when the phone didn't ring . . . two nights when I'm reminded how different my "new" life is. My girls are all home again, and I don't feel "alone" anymore! God is so good in blessing me with them - they are my pride and joy and besides HIM, ultimately it is THEY who sustain me day to day!
With all this time to "think" I've drafted many posts in my mind, but am going with the one that is here - REAL conversations that I've had with people in recent days - and my response in italics (not always to them, but to you, here if you care to read on!) . . .
True conversations . . .
"Just let us know what you need, we want to help you"
O.k. - I'm NOT good at asking for help, so I "hinted" while standing near several men . . . my riding lawnmower will need to be serviced for summer - oil changed, blades sharpened, things I can't do. What do you suggest? They all were QUICK to suggest the "best" place to bring the mower, but none offered to help me get it THERE, I don't own a truck or a trailer - and I didn't even know if the mower would START! Since I didn't get the results I was needing, I mentioned it again to another group of men, where one told me not to worry about it, it was taken care of . . . My Dad got my lawn mower going for me this spring - he's not the person who told me it was "taken care of" . . . My parents are SO AWESOME, but sometimes, they need a break too, I didn't WANT my Dad to have to worry about my lawn mower! So, though I didn't come out and say COME AND TAKE CARE OF MY LAWN MOWER, I tried, to no avail - makes asking for anything else really tough - especially for a stubborn soul!
"You are using Rick's death as a 'crutch' and if you continue, you will find yourself all alone on an island"
Really, really? I'm not even sure HOW to respond to that one. I was back to work within 11 days of Rick's accident. I cleared my own driveway of snow all winter except for 2 times someone plowed it for me. I took care of all of the "paperwork" required when someone dies mostly by myself. I have rented a BIG dumpster TWICE and pretty much single-handedly filled it - both times. I'm doing my BEST to take care of 3 girls, a home AND working full time . . . besides that, it's just 6 months, I've made every attempt to NOT use my circumstances as a "crutch", but sometimes, my circumstances ARE my "excuse".
"I would LOVE to be left completely alone for a day."
Yep, me too! As a BUSY mom of 3 a day alone is a treat! Especially if it's a day where I can do what I want (read a book, get a pedicure, relax, take a nap, lay in the sun . . . ). But, there's not much time for that now days. After 40 hours at work, I still have to come home and do all the "house" stuff (the girls are HUGE helps and my parents are wonderful, it's still really different knowing that ultimately it ALL falls to me). And the "alone" that I refer to isn't THAT kind of alone. It's the new state of being I live in. Every day. Being alone in a gym full of people. Being alone in a church where the pews are full. Being alone at a band concert. Being alone at church potluck. Being alone where ever you go. A different kind of alone. An aching kind of alone. An alone that I don't want my friends to experience for a REALLY long time! It's an alone that I know that only the Lord can fill and I'm leaning on Him more and more every day trusting in His filling, but as someone very wise said to me, "God can't take you out to dinner at the Landing"! So very true - so He is ultimately my "All in All", yet there is still that aching hole, that alone-ness that permeates my every day.
"I don't really know when you are grieving"
I don't wear black every day. I don't cry easily in public. I try not to use my circumstances as a crutch. I try not to look "alone" even when I am . . . therefore, "grief" doesn't look like others expect it to . . . yet it is there. Every moment of every day. There's not a moment that I'm NOT grieving. The sting of it is less sharp than 6 months ago. The depth is not as aching. It's still there. It's always there. Again, something that only the Lord can truly "cover". So, again I continue to LEAN, trusting in Him to help alleviate the grief - a little more each day. Some day, maybe I'll wake up and not have my new "reality" be the FIRST thing I think of!
"You have such a great support system"
I have some great friends, yes that is true. But, my real support system, those I can/do go to at any time, for any reason, it's a pretty small "system". There are only a few who are on the "inside". Some "come and go" as I journey through - they are there for a season - when I need them, only a few (very few) have truly been "there" through it all. And that's o.k. There is "history" there. Those people know. They know where I am at any given moment. They know the circumstances surrounding me that bring me joy or pain. They are the special few that the Lord has set aside for me. It's o.k. I'm good with that. I just needed to clarify that. I've talked to other widows and that's how it is. It's good to have your "core". Those are the ones who really "get" you and ultimately will sustain you until you don't need them as much on a day to day basis. I appreciate EVERY SINGLE person who is in my life, who has loved and cared for and prayed for me/us. But, my "core" support system, it's really pretty small!
If you have actually read all the way through to here, please don't think that I'm "targeting" anyone! I'm just trying to be transparent (which is not easy for me - I DON'T want pity - THAT is the WORST thing anyone has given to me throughout this journey!). I'm just attempting to be honest. To share some of my "day to day". Some of the "new normal" that is now my life! GOD has been faithful! Tonight when I was home "alone", I got SO MUCH cleaning done. I feel like we are really almost ready for a graduation party next weekend (but as usual, still worried that I won't have enough FOOD!). "Life" really is good. I am actually happy most of the time. I have learned to see God in the little and big things. Tonight, I had the radio blasting as I cleaned, and every single song seemed like it was written and sung just for me. God orchestrated that. He met me where I was! He gave me a peace about being "alone". He is amazing and I love Him so!
This week will be BUSY! Tomorrow we have Baccalaureate at school. Tessa is playing piano - I think she's playing "I Will Rise" - a song I blogged about awhile back I think - the song I KNOW Rick was singing on November 5 "I will rise when He calls my name, no more sorrow, no more pain, I will rise on eagles' wings, before my God, fall on my knees, and rise, I will rise - And I hear the voice of angels sing, 'Worthy is the Lamb'"! THAT is what the Facebook post above talks about, that ETERNAL worship concert! (I've added the link below!) On Wednesday, the Seniors have their awards night and Senior "Tea" (where tea is not served!), part of my job is getting all of the awards co-ordinated and ready for presentation - it will be a busy couple of days! I have off on Thursday & Friday to get ready for Tessa's graduation party on Saturday and then Graduation on Sunday! I'm so EXCITED for her! It's SO MUCH fun to see the wonderful young lady she has become and I can't wait to see what God has in store for her future! So, if I'm a bit absent in the days ahead, you know why!
"Always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ." Ephesians 5:20