Tuesday, November 3, 2015


It has been a ridiculously long time since I have stopped long enough to consider writing. Some of  this is the busyness of working and mothering 3 young children. Some of this is not wanting to explore my thoughts so closely. As always, however, it eventually comes to a head and leaves me sobbing in bed next to Ryan. (Which, truth be told, has been a first in a long while that I have openly grieved) This year I thought October and Fall would pass and I wouldn't have the moments of intense longing and missing Daniel. That isn't to say I never feel the nagging and pushing as it edges in around other moments and thoughts, I just really thought at 4 years out I could handle it better. It's always the same, though. It starts with feeling displaced and irritable and unusually moody. Looking back, there are always signs pointing to the need for an intense cry and grieving session, but I don't ever see them for what they are until later. 
It eventually leaves me sitting at his spot with fall decorations placed a month later then I intended, awing at the fact the police car remains and angered at the idea that I have not dreamt of him in 2 years. It never feels like a terribly difficult request. I just want to see him and hug him and smell his boy hair. I want to be able to have him present with his cousins and not have to settle with his sister wearing a necklace to represent him. It's in those moments when I am the most honest with myself, that I sorrow the hardest. It's quite amazing what the mind can do to protect itself until the air of vunerability is present. 
Sitting there, I let my mind focus on the part of the feelings I had been sequestering for so long. This year, the part that hurts the most is that the more I move away from the time with him the more it seems like he was more a dream than a reality. It is an awful, awful feeling. It's like talking about a character in a book and the relationship only going as far as the end of the book; it is so real during and the once the story is complete, the character isn't as relevant. Daniel is not as tangible as he once was and this is by far the worst part of the grief process. There isn't a memory or smell or video or picture that can conjure up all of the parts of him as vividly as before. 
When I spoke of Daniel in the dark intimate setting of our bedroom, saying his name out loud shocked me. It was more then my duty as a Mother to preserve his name and presence with the kids; I was mentioning him to his Daddy and it felt so much more private. For Ryan's sake I don't mention the secrets of my heart; I grieve so differently then him and my emotions are always so much more raw it seems, but I had to utter the whispers of my heart-Daniel doesn't seem as close anymore. That was probably the hardest sentence I have ever had to say. It was a really dark moment for me.
And then tonight I read this:
"All I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen"
And my mind races with the moments I have had between uttering my worst fear and reading such a big promise. Andrew lying on me and feeling his little blonde boy hair and 4 year old feet. Jake's stories and assurance that Daniel lives in him, Emma's sweet face and eyes and baby warmth.  Sharing his story with someone new and having them "get it". Watching his little baby face grin at me from behind the camcorder. Seeing him dance and stick toys under his hat like his favorite Imagination Movers characters. Watching our last Christmas together and remembering the excitement Ryan and I had over gift buying. 
Suddenly, Daniel doesn't seem so far away. He is now just presented differently. He lives in his brothers and sister. He peeks through in Emma's eyes and smile. In Andrew's hair and profile. In Jake's memory. He is even represented in that little police car that has weathered almost 4 years of changing conditions and continues to remain present. He tugs at my faith and reminds me to carry on in God's grace. That these hard moments are just that-moments. That the longest and best time is so much bigger then any hard times on Earth. It's in these times where I am reminded to look at his pictures longer, harder. Memorize each detail. In doing so, I am able to put on the armor of protection from the scary fears I have because I can recall more of him. 
Fighting grief is such a hard and barbarous process. A heart can take many hits during the course of the battle. But it's such a strong muscle. With each emotional break, it can build back stronger and more sustainable. 
I only need to continue putting into practice what I learn and received from God. His peace is present and dwells in me. He will always guard my heart and strengthen me as long as I leave it open for fixing. As long as I remember His light is present in the darkness. In those times, I can recall my special verse:
I remain confident in this: I will see the Lord's loving kindness while I am here in the land of the living...be strong and take heart.

1 comment:

  1. Glad to see your post and glad to that you can share your grief. I care.