Sharing my grief is hard to do. I share it with Jesus, my grief counselor and some inner circle friends. I'm grateful for the ability to share it. It is heavier some days than others but it is always there. Grief is not something that goes away. It's something you deal with as long as you live. When you've lost someone so precious you must grieve. It is the path back to peace.
Grief is not a linear path. It doesn't start at the loss and then move forward in a perfectly planned straight line and then come to the end of the line. Our Creator didn't make us that way. Grief takes time, it is a process(for the rest of your life). Grief is individual so don't compare your grief with someone else's. Grief is not always understood by others but don't isolate yourself. Grief makes you vulnerable and can also deceive you. My grief counselor has explained it to me like a cycle. You can move from anger to peace to sadness to joy to resentment to acceptance to guilt to shock to despair to fear to love and back and forth at any given moment. I have found this to be true day in and day out on my journey as a widow over the last 14 months.
Part of grief is the WORK involved. Often people will say, "How are you doing? I haven't heard from you in a long time." I'm so busy living life with the kids and WORKING through grief for all of us. We have and continue to work through it. We are still seeing grief counselors, still crying when we miss Matt, still seeing daily reminders of him, still wishing he was here, still noticing other daddies with their kids, still having sad moments and still looking to Jesus as our Hope in the grieving.
A big part of my grief has been spent dealing with the fact that I cannot go back. I needed to spend time thinking about this. The world has changed. I have changed. God continues to give the grace needed to live in the new situation that exists in our lives.
I am also grateful that is okay to be happy again. I am not showing "disrespect" for Matt if I step forward with him in my memory. That has been SO hard to believe. My sadness is not a memorial to his death. I know Matt would want the kids and I to experience joy and happiness in this life again. Jesus brings that joy. Ps 30:5
As we've moved through the first year without Matt, experiencing holidays/birthdays/anniversary without him I've had so many praying over us and loving us and for this I am grateful. Thank you for praying, for sending cards and for loving my kids through the pain.
Until the end of our days that day of Matt's passing and many other dates will be poignant. God made us that way. Really, I choose to look at this grief and what brought me here as a gift of His grace not a painful ordeal of darkness. Do you see your painful trials as gifts? It's not easy, I'll be the first to admit it! But the key to grief is hope. As I move forward in hope God continues to remind me that I am His. Serving Him brings me that hope. He enables me to bring that hope to my kids and others around me. His wisdom is perfect. His timing is trusted. And His mercy is new every morning!