Sunday, January 18, 2009

Grief

When my Grandparents died, there was time to grieve. There was time to feel sad, to mourn, to think lovely and uplifting thoughts. But when they died, my life wasn't full of obligations and responsibilities. I was in my late teens and early twenties, juggling little in the everyday life.

My Mom died in November. But rather than an isolated event in the Fall during a time when not much was going on, her death came when our family's plate seemed overflowing. I am a mother of four. We homeschool. In October, I had to have triple hernia surgery (a caution to doing too much, and a sore point of humility) which required at least two weeks of doing nothing and four weeks of doing little. In September, my husband had changed jobs, going to a different company. In December, we plowed through determined to have a good Christmas, but all the kids got sick.

I looked forward to January as a time of just being and taking moments to mourn my Mother's death.
However, in spite of antibiotics, a secondary infection became bacterial pneumonia in my littlest. Barely two years old, he had to be hospitalized for six days. Friends helped us; my husband took off from work (my husband never thought twice about it, though the corporation wasn't supportive). I never left my son's side. If it hadn't been for a timely surgery, my son would've died. The doctors had expectations that he'd be in the hospital for two-three weeks, especially since the bacteria causing the pneumonia was in their words "particularly virulent and resistant." However, thankfully, God had other plans, and our son recovered much faster than expected. We have to do home health with IV antibiotics, but he is home and does better everyday. God showed us tremendous mercy.

But now nearly two weeks after his coming home, the exhaustion is beginning to hit me. Giovanni is still under home health, and I have to give him infusions four times a day. The last four months seem incomprehensible. The future seems all fuzzy.

I need faith. I need to look up and not look at things below. But my goodness, things below seem to be raging for attention. My husband and I have had so many plans frustrated. It now seems senseless to try and plan anything, but then that would be giving into despair. Do I really want ugly despair to triumph? I can't tell you how much I'm relying on His promise to be our strength in weakness. I think I need to make a running list of blessings and praise reports and keep them posted on the family bulletin board.

People keep telling me I need some time to myself and just mourn. I'm trusting the Lord will provide that time when He's ready. For now, I have to keep on keepin' on. I am grieving, I'm just grieving with everyday life at my feet. I think that's the biggest part of grieving's complexities--you have to live life, even through crises, with a huge hole in your heart. The hole will heal, but you can't sit around and check-out until it is healed. You have to keep going. Thankfully, we're never alone in our journey.

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