Lately I've had a lot of time to think. Hubby and I are repainting some walls in our lounge and dinning room. As I tackle the high walls I find myself caught up in so many of last years memories. Thoughts. Memories. They come through in waves and cause me to re-live those moments over and over again. I'll be driving and all of a sudden one of my conversations with God will re-play through my mind. I will remember the exact conversation with Him on that same road, whilst driving and feeling Zac move inside my womb. I will remember the prayers and the incredible hope that held my heart in perfect peace. I also remember desperately crying out to God and the strong assurance of His presence. Other times it will be a song. It will take me back to a moment on my knees before Him, pleading for a miracle. Sometimes the memories will bring a smile. Most times it fills my eyes with tears. I cannot believe that I even have any tears left, yet they continue to well. I've come to learn that tears represent so much. A sweet friend told me that each tear waters the seeds planted in my heart and ensures that the garden of my heart will bloom again. Such a beautiful thought. I guess allowing myself to cry and work through the pain allows my heart to remain soft and tender. Rather a tender heart being restored by the King than a hard heart full of bitterness. No ways! I'd rather let the tears pour and work it through with my Jesus. It just amazes me how many triggers there are to the sadness in my heart. One of my little girls will put her hand on mine and tell me that she loves me and I will feel the tears well up. It's the reminder that I wont know this side of Heaven what Zac's little hands will feel like holding mine or hear what his little voice will sound like. It feels like such a long wait till Heaven, yet I have a life to live here with 2 precious little girls in the mean time and every moment loving and being loved by them is a moment to savor and dwell in with joy. It's just a strange juggle to live with laughter and sadness all at one time.
Grief is unchartered territory for me. It's a process of learning how to live with the changes that it has brought to my life. These are some of the lessons that I am learning. Loosing a child has changed me. This freaked me out so much initially - coming to turns that I am never going to be the same again. Initially I fought it. I don't necessarily want to be different. I liked the familiarity of how I felt about life. My world felt safer before. When unexplainable things happen that you have no power to control, it leaves your world different. All of a sudden, everything isn't as permanent as I initially thought. Eternity becomes reality (which is a good thing!) and there has come a deeper sense to the depth of life. Life matters. It's no longer a given how long I get to have the precious people in my life for. My new reality takes into account that every moment I have with those I love is a gift.
Much of what I am learning is so painful, but, it has also left me changed for the better. Petty things that would get me wound up are all of a sudden placed into perspective. The old things that would trigger my frustrations are no longer as big a deal as they used to be, because now I see that every moment with my children and loved ones is such a treasure. No, it's not a walk in the park and no, I cannot overlook everything - but to live life knowing that time really is a gift from God helps me to make so much more of my life. I don't get it all right. I still feel overwhelmed having to learn how to negotiate grief for myself, my love and my children ... but I am constantly reassured with the closeness of a loving God who reminds me that forever is closer than I can imagine.
All of this to say that while I am battling to juggle all the sadness that comes with grief, I am daily being reminded to look at the blessing in my life. As the memories crowded around me yesterday, suffocating me in sadness I had a powerful moment where the Lord started reminding me of all my blessings ...
I can see. I get to see two of my children live and love right before me everyday. I also got to see Zac looking straight into my heart and I get to look back on those beautiful pictures that captured our joy with him. There is also coming a day where I will see in full.
I can hear. Everyday I hear the outbursts of love from my Brett and my girls. I hear their laughter and their joy (and all the other outbursts that go along with family life too!).
I can feel. My heart is privileged to know such deep and profound love from a God who stands in the middle of my world every day. He has also blessed me to feel the love of precious family and friends.
Every day I get to taste and smell. I can't think of the last time I remembered what a beautiful gift that truly is. Tastes and smells take us back to such precious memories and give such simple joys.
Maybe you are negotiating your own sadness today. If so, I am praying for your heart right now that your eyes will open to your blessings ... that you might glimpse that just maybe like me, your blessings may just outweigh your pain. We will always have sadness to negotiate in our life journey - but we will also always have joy to give us strength!
All my love as always xxx