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Tuesday, December 24, 2019

This Christmas...

Wherever you find yourself this Christmas season,
may you find Grace right there in the midst of
the grief and the joy...

It's the message, beautiful and sacred, the angels proclaim...
this tiny baby born, as shepherds and wise men rejoice,
has come to face the grief of a cross.

A grief that is broken with a Resurrection
that brings the dead to life.

Graced to celebrate this Holy Season with joy midst the grief,
for He has come to proclaim the good news,
bind up the brokenhearted,
to proclaim freedom for the captives
and release the prisoner from darkness. 
                                                         ~ Isaiah 61:1

That is Hope and Blessing Abundant for this grieving daughter...

Sending My Love this Christmas,

Friday, December 6, 2019

The Valley Road of Grief

Isn't it ironic that dad's memorial would fall the week of mom's passing?  If the grief weren't so deep, we would find that aptly fitting.  Dad has missed mom with an intensity that has never lessened with time.

We have all felt the grief come in waves this past week.  Dad's memorial service was on Monday and the anniversary of Mom's passing fell on Wednesday... We have journeyed the valley one faltering step at a time.

I believe that only God can sustain a body when the sadness would crush a soul.

Dad's service was small, a private gathering of his loved ones, family and friends that cherished and loved him so.

We shared stories, we sang his favorite hymns...there were tears and there was laughter... a promise of grace for the days ahead.

And a peace that felt right as we settled their urn into the columbarium, together, just as they had planned so many years before...

Family came from near and far.  A reminder of all the good there is along the valley road.  They cheered us, loved us, cried with us, and held us as we stepped into the unfamiliar, new normal of life without dad.

Then Wednesday morning found me walking back through the doors of the columbarium, alone, bearing the yellow rose that dad always brought on the anniversary of mom's passing...

Only this time, the chair he sat in was empty...

The memorial service was finished, the family lunch served, sympathy cards read and the friends and family gone... the suddenness of being alone on this day, missing dad and feeling the weight of these 8 years since I heard mom's voice and leaned in to her hug... the tears fell unheeded and the grieving tore my heart as I sat in the chair that had always been reserved for dad. 

Now it was my turn to sit and mourn. And remember. To reflect and grieve. And simply miss their very presence like crazy.  The tears would not be stopped...

And perhaps that is exactly what I needed.  A time to stop, and breathe deep, let the tears soak through, allowing the sadness and grief to just be.  For missing mom and dad is and will be my new normal.  And so are the tears...

"There is a sacredness in tears.
They are not the mark of weakness,
but of power.
They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues.
They are the messengers of overwhelming grief,
of deep contrition
and of unspeakable love."

~ Washington Irving

Blessed with an unspeakable love this night,
Graced to grieve and hope and remember on this valley road...
For that is part of my new normal as well.

Resting on God's faithfulness,