Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Oh February...

There is nothing I could say now that I have not already said. There is a sad feeling in my heart that I have nothing new to share, nothing profound or wise to give those who decide to read this. I know
that I could try really hard to come up with something or I can just be honest and say that maybe this is the end of this particular outlet. What is it that God wants me to do with the on-going journey he has me on after child loss? Maybe I am to continue sharing insight and lessons, maybe I am to just be quiet for awhile?

There are many small lessons, scriptures that stick out to me, instances that need to be shared and I want to share those. I also don't want to be flippant or a babbler. I don't want to waste my time or others.

 The few days leading up to the 2nd "anniversary" of Noah's death have been full, good, rich and blessed. They have had some tears, they have had lots of laughs. There has been rich fellowship, the Word preached boldly, I've been challenged in my faith and refreshed to look ahead and not feel bogged down. I had some deeply rich time with my best friend last week, it was life giving and so wonderful! Last night was full of an awesome word by a local pastor, worship with our worship team together, without having to lead... just a time of focus and soaking in the Spirit. It was nice. This weekend brings lots of emotions, yes. It is hard for me not to replay things in my mind. I push play in my mind and then I get to the place where he takes his last breath in my arms and I push pause. Thinking maybe I won't have to experience that again if I don't let my mind go there, but then it plays anyway and I feel my breath stop. My heart begins to beat irregular for a minute and I let the response come. Sometimes it is stuff-your-face-into-the-pillow crying... sometimes there is a tear or two that falls and then I have to pull it together and keep working or cooking dinner or whatever the task may be at the time. There are times when I need a few extra minutes in the shower or I have to excuse myself to the restroom at a gathering or event. If I'm quiet (which is rare, I know, ha. ha.) then I probably have Noah on my mind. He quiets me and at the same time he pushes me to not stay silent about the truth and the ways God has continued to show himself to me.

Grief is a dance. It is letting God lead, following along, stepping on his toes because I don't know how the dance goes, but I know the one I'm dancing with. We lock eyes and there is peace and joy, I look away or begin to realize the unknown steps make me a mess... I begin to back away. He pulls me back in. It is the constant ebb and flow kind of experience. I think that is how lots of things in life can be. Trusting him through a season, like grief or financial hardship, job troubles, kid problems, marital issues.... We must keep dancing, keep trusting him and mainly keep following him. We tend to want to take the lead and we all know that none of us know this life-dance thing enough to do that. We screw it up every time.

Not knowing what to do next in the journey of grief is a neat place to be. There is a freedom and an adventure about it that is exciting. We will see how God wants to continue to use our testimony for his fame. We will always be available to share, to love on and to bring hope.
The future is a neat thing. The clean canvas, open doors, unknown and  adventure are scary but they are invigorating.
Bless those of you who are so faithful to love us, support us, pray for us even now and who have walked this road with us. You're ever at the forefront of our hearts and minds. We are thankful and we bless you and ask God to bless you beyond your wildest imaginations. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

We stopped in Decatur on the way home the day after Noah died. It was odd to stop there, but we did
and we decided we weren't in a rush. We ate in the Subway.. at a table, on a Saturday... and took a deep breath. Nick and I looked at each other before we started eating our sandwiches and just asked each other and the Lord... "did that just happen????" Did all of that really happen? Somedays we still feel the same way. Did that actually happen? Did we survive? Did we trust you through it really? Did we come out of the darkest 5 months damaged and hurt but alive? We had. Now, 2 years later, we settle in for the evening and sometimes ask the same thing. What just happened? Did we just live the last 2 years and become better versions of ourselves, sell an old house and buy a new one, watch our daughter grow into a precious and silly pre-schooler, dive deeper into ministry and focused life, did we just come out of dark grief and pain and walk into a new normal, a new joy and a new fresh space in life? We have.

Time is a funny thing. It doesn't heal. It doesn't even really change anything, itself. Time gives perspective.  Perspective gives us room to let go, be free and experience God's workings.

Happy 2 years, Noah James! I know you've had the best 2 years of all of us! :)

Blessings to you all,