Tag Archives: grief

My Cup Overflows

2 years and 7 months I have waited for this. To truly feel once again that my cup does indeed overflow. Full to overflowing, running over with honest to goodness love. It’s been a long time.

I used to muse to myself of the goodness, the love, and the absolute blessing I felt just being wife and mum to beautiful people. Ordinary people to the untrained eye, but with my well-honed mumma skills it was clear: they were beautiful indeed.

Then the tragedy.

Cancer stole my love.

My cup was empty.

My cup was broken.

Now to hear my children’s laughter, and have it warm my heart, to hear them talking to me, really talking to me and be able to engage, to once again find joy in simple things is beyond priceless. It’s pure gold.

My cup must be mending.

All the tears, all the determined searching for answers, all the willingness to face the pain head on, has done something. It has begun healing my cup, my heart. I cannot say that I have willed it from my own strength, because I had none, or discovered hidden reasons, because there are none. It was the God of all creation, who made the cup, who made my heart, He knew what it needed when it needed it and healing is the result.

I am sure that my grief is not completely over, because my life isn’t over, and for as long as I live I will hold love in my heart for my Paul. But I feel love and joy again, and I know that I know that’s a good sign. I can once again be full of love and blessing. Nothing grand so far, nothing the papers will write about, but I know it’s going to be OK. In my everydayness I can smile and have life overflow.

My cup overflows.


Running the Gauntlet

“A gauntlet is a double line of people with clubs, whips, tomahawks, fraternity paddles, or other weapons; the poor bastard being punished runs between the lines and everyone hits him as he goes by. Depending on weapons and circumstances, this has been used as an initiation, a test of courage, a way to decide which prisoner to let go (to take the message back that you are holding hostages), or a way to execute someone without making any one person responsible.” (http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Run%20the%20Gauntlet)

This post was to be called “I’m OK” in response to the many people who are expecting me to fall apart as the anniversary of losing my Paul looms.  But the more I took an honest look over the last year the phrase “Running the Gauntlet” just kept popping into my head. So in true morose style I gave in to the fact that although I really am OK, there is also a welling backlog of emotions waiting to surface. I hate that! Each emotion a powerful and formidable weapon awaiting its opportunity to take me out. Not one willing to take the full blame or strike the deathly blow, but all pounding away together weakening my resolve.

I am of course “the poor bastard” in this story that the above definition speaks of. But I hate pity and remember that not everyone dies that runs the gauntlet.

Is it hard?

Yes.

Are there injuries?

Yes.

But there are survivors. Injuries heal and I hope that as those mental images of hospital wards and ICU equipment taking over my Paul lose their sting more and more, I too will join the list of the brave that survived.  “A test of courage” indeed it is. To open my eyes, heart and soul to another day and another hope indeed feels like a courageous move that I hope I am brave enough for.

I intend to be that “prisoner let go”, in fact I insist! There are few comforts in grief, and although it took me a year to accept it, I am now encouraged to see if I can help another soul lost in grief see the light of day, to find some bravery, and to see hope again. Somewhere, somehow, I hope for that. To be that one running back to the King pleading for those still held hostage by their grief. The King will help, how do I know that? Because He helped me.

So, I am through the gauntlet…you know, I hope! Still some wounds to heal, but all in good time. No rush, no shortcuts (unfortunately), but I am OK. The memory of the gauntlet is strong and still very powerful, but I survived and will continue to do so.

I am OK.


Lonely

Loneliness rounds me up in circles and then jumps up and bites me on the bum! So unexpected and more brutal than I had ever imagined possible.

I spent 21.5 years with Paul, dreaming the same dreams, planning things, facing disasters – you know life!

Then he was gone.

Just gone.

My mind couldn’t comprehend what was happening. I remember a swirl of emotions, knowing I didn’t want him to suffer, but wanting him to live,I  felt sucked down by the reality of what was happening in front of me. A horror movie …and I couldn’t find the off switch.

It took me 6 months to realize that horror movie was in fact my life. No more reliance on numbness or simple denial, realities wanted me to face them. I hate you realities. You are very very cruel. Reality doesn’t allow you the luxury of believing the mind tricks that it is just all a cruel joke. So I woke up and Paul wasn’t here.

Just gone.

He lives vividly in my mind, in my heart and every deep place within me, but it’s not the same. I want to get mad at someone, but it’s no ones fault. I don’t like the medical process that he went through, but I believe they were trying to help Paul live, I can’t hate them for that.  Guilt swallows any chance of getting mad at Paul, he did leave me, but not by choice.

So I’m only left with being mad at myself. Weird? Maybe. But I get mad at being lonely, mad for not doing more, mad for not understanding our finances more, mad at everything I have to do that demands I say out loud Paul died. A woman asked me about my husband today, she didn’t know, it was like a punch in the stomach…I get mad at that.

I don’t want to be lonely, I want to be enough. To never want anyone else’s affection or love. To be alone, but happy to be alone. Big problem there, I am not happy to be alone. I don’t believe we are designed for loneliness, but for togetherness, for families. So no, I haven’t figured it all out yet. And friends in faith, relax, I have not turned my back on God. Instead I look at Him straight up and plead “How?” Say a prayer for me as you turn to snuggle your partner tonight because one day you may feel lonely too and then I will say a prayer for you.

I have a certainty that I will not let go of, that God is for me, not against me. That He loves me first, before I even wake up each day. So I will sort this sucker out beyond platitudes, I just don’t have all the answers today. Today I just felt lonely.


Stuck in the Middle

Honey,

Rock Heart When you died my world darkened. Colours lost their accents, and breath was hard to take in. Dramatic? Sure, as were the changes life took on without you. To be honest I didn’t really know that I could live this life without you. I didn’t want to.

The sun keeps rising, keeps setting, and still you don’t come back to me. And I’m stuck in the middle.

Between life with you and life without you.

Between past purpose and new hope.

Between the security of everyday and emptiness.

Stuck – needing to go forward, but not wanting to leave you in the past. Memories of you are great, but they can’t hold me. You are in my heart forever, but not in my arms.

Stuck in the middle isn’t somewhere I can live, not truly. It’s not a place that thrives. So I need to move to the next place my love. I need to be unstuck and I think I can see how. Really, I think I can and you helped me with that. “We love because He first loved us” the bible says of God’s love for us. He loves me, and He did it first. Before you died, before the tragedy my life became, before I got stuck in the middle. You knew that, you lived with that wonderful truth every day. Thank you.

God knew your days and knows my days. Nothing has shocked Him, He is unswerving. When my days were dark, He was there and He isn’t afraid of it. Where God is in my life He misplaces the dark. So in my dark days now I can see a little brighter, a little clearer and I will keep choosing to do so.
The ache is still there, consuming at times, but sometimes it gets swallowed by the light instead of it swallowing me. He loved you first, before me, and He loved me first, before you. I find comfort in that.


Grief…Shhh don’t mention it!!

Grief…Shhh don't mention it!!.


Love in my life.

Love in my life.

I am glad to have love in my life. So glad that I had you to love and share with.

Lots of people fall in love and then just kind of coexist. We really shared love. To be fair we didn’t create it; it was created for us and given to us. God did that, He authored love. We knew His love, shared that and it grew to be our love. Our threefold cord.  I am so very very grateful.

So what now that you aren’t beside me anymore? Always a part of me, always in my heart of course, but in so many ways you are gone. For this moment, I lay aside the sadness to glimpse beyond and see, I need to see.  I choose to see.

The love in my life is changing again, shifting out of a physical realm and settling back in the folds of His grace. It’s a sweet place that offers comfort, warmth and protection. I need those things. My threefold cord has had a strand ripped away, not as strong as it once was, but stronger than it was yesterday.

My cup isn’t overflowing yet, but it will again one day. I still have love. Love I can share, love that can grow, love that is capable of more than I could ever hope or imagine.

Love in my life.

Image


%d bloggers like this: