Saturday, September 19, 2009

2 years now since I last held you close

Sleep isn't coming anymore tonight...yesterday was the last time I took a picture of you-the one above with Aunt Barb as we were finishing packing that night before we left today for our trip. I am thanking God you did come over one last time-inbetween classes (also to eat--you were always hungry!!) to say "goodbye" to us as we all left today, 2 years ago for the "trip of our life", hoping to meet you and Chris in Venice and in Rome. Only you guys missed that train to Venice by one minute. I won't go back down the road of what a minute means...
Here is a picture of you small--so full of light and smiles--and a dirty face from peanut butter and jelly probably...and the gym outfit I made for you...loved sewing for you.
I am looking out the window right now-at the calm waters of lake erie and a beautiful soft pink sunrise just starting to glow over the water. coffee is perking and smelling good...Harry (chocolate lab who loved you too) is shuffling, waiting to be fed and let out.
But in my heart right now swirl so many memories. Carefully I touch them, holding my tears in check.
Thinking back sometimes is too hard to do. So many people have said things to me of late---"how is the 2nd year?", "I hear the 2nd year is harder than the first." and on and on...questions asking me to share how it I am...where it is on this path for me...kindness from others really...just them trying to find a way to touch into me in this journey.
I have more compassion for others on this road alongside of me these days---I want to say,
"thank you to you all. Thank you for your warmth and quietness and soft eyes at times I didn't even see. thank you for continuing to find me when I didn't know how far away I had gone. For reaching out-taking my hand, sitting still beside me, for letting me make hundreds of toasts to her and all the memories I could conjure up-one after another---trying to keep the warmth of life in me while I toasted---to keep going so the sadness and grief wouldn't press its' unwanted way back in--the reality of "no new memories" ever again. thank you for listening to me tell stories or even making me tell them at times I have been quiet."
I thank my family-my sister Marty and aunt Barb who journeyed with me 2 times during this past 2 years---and grieved so deeply themselves for their beloved niece who loved them both so much too. I thank my friends who have not often known what to say or do, but did everything they could think to do to help. For my pastor and his wife-who has been there through so much-married Chris and Sarah---sowed into them, believed in them, encouraged them...
For my dearest husband, who only got to meet Sarah and Chris one time, and is a gift truly from God to me...somehow I think Sarah was involved in both Christopher's and my future as we both have been blessed now with incredible people in our lives...this new discoveries, new families, new journeys.
but, how is my heart...truly...
well, the heart aches. it aches as it beats, each beat feels the loss of my sweet child, my sweet friend, my sweet girl. i miss you so. i press on, i believe with faith that is compelling me to press on---and look with hope to heaven...where there is no more death, no more disease--mental or physical, no more more.
i am tired sometimes--way too tired...and fight to stay here-to stay present and savoring the gifts here in my life, the fullness....trying hard not to stay too long in the darkness of tragedy or loss. to not lose hope, to not get hard, to not become bitter or full of self remember the joy of being able to have a child---and to have her for 28 wonderful years full of memories.
each of us has our trials...and struggles...and some of the best times for me anymore are the times spend quietly beside a friend. resting. quiet. loving. To embrace my new family---and savor their absolute beauty in my life today. To not miss them--miss making new memories...not to miss their presence in my life.
September 27th is not too far away. i appreciate prayers for all of us who will be remembering that day...for my dear son Christopher---mostly...for his healing and life. For his heart of watching his dear wife die before his eyes. for him to live well, healed and whole.
not as many words spilling from my fingers these last weeks and days...but they are in my mind...and always looking for a place to land.