Posted by: kathyhugs | April 28, 2008

Grief Lessons

It is spring time and the trees are budding. Life is moving forward. Since starting my new job 5 weeks ago I have been so tired from everything I am learning and experiencing that I think I put all of my emotions on hold. Don’t get me wrong I have felt joy and experienced sorrow. Listened to music and lifted my voice in song, had dinner with Nicole who teaches me how to walk with courage through her daily life and kept up with all of the tasks of life. But I have had nights when I could not sleep and it wasn’t because I wasn’t tired, I was too tired! I had forgotten that in order to continue to heal that I had to continue to express what I am feeling. My answer to everyone has been “I am doing okay”. Well I was doing okay but I wasn’t sharing the tension that I was feeling. Friday started my step back into God’s arms. I experienced joy this weekend as Rick and I went to see “To Kill A Mockingbird” at Lincoln Park Performing Arts Charter School. It was done with such skill and with such sensitivity! One of “our teens”, Nic, had a major role in the play and he was so good. I cried at the various parts and rejoiced at the hard lessons of life learned by the kids in play. Then on Saturday we saw “Fiddler On The Roof” at Beaver High School. Several other of “our teens” were in this play. Braden, Josh, Rachel and Megan all did a great job. Braden played Motel the Tailor and he did a fantastic job singing “Wonder of Wonders”. I am so proud of all of their hard work and talent! This was the first musical I have seen since Tonia died and it was one of our favorites so I found myself crying even as I was singing along with all of the numbers. It opened up the floodgates of emotions that I have been ignoring. I have been ignoring the pain of losing Tonia to the extent that I have pushed several people away lately. I allowed the business of life to take over and instead of walking through and learning from my emotions I have been shutting them into a box. I haven’t even written in my journal for a few weeks. This has been a huge mistake because yesterday I walked into church and everything came crashing down. I cried before the service, during the service and even after the service. My heart was breaking all over again. Missing Tonia, missing Danny, missing Chris, missing the youth group students, regretting the people I have pushed away lately. I fell into a chasm of grief as deep as I experienced after Tonia’s funeral. The storm broke, lightening flashed, the wind roared and then…peace began to gently and slowly cover me. Rick was there handing me tissues and sending one of the students to give me a hug. Linda and I cried in each other’s arms. Claudia, Jodi and Mary all came over just to love on me. The music reminded me that God was there and he was holding me up and listening to my anguish. Prayers were being said all around us as people watched and understood that I was in pain. I fell into the arms of God and once again I could see the light. After the storm passed I felt clean. I have to take the time to clean up the mess left behind once again but the air smells sweeter and the sun is peeking through the clouds! The sermon this week was entitled “For Such A Time As This“. Ironic how the messages seem to come just when I need to hear them!

This morning my body has responded to all of the emotions by shutting down on me! I don’t have a voice today and I slept for 8 hours. God is definitely saying TIME OUT. Rest in me today and allow me to heal your body and your heart. Stop running and start responding to me. I have things to teach you and to show you. You have been created for such a time as this. Be still and listen. Walk through the pain, I will be there.
Once again I am reminded that my joy will come in the morning for God has promised this but my sorrow will never fully go away but it will be transformed and if I respond it will change me into the person that God wants me to become! Faith, hope and trust; I will rest on these!
I know that my grief will always be a part of me but I have learned that I can’t ignore it. It won’t go away but what I need to do is to allow my life to be transformed by the grief into something new. Maybe even something better as I can listen with ears tuned to the pain around me and maybe respond with God’s love. So today I will rest and write and praise the God who gives me a reason to keep moving forward with belief and hope.


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