I am just like you. Going through the loss of our son Knox in December and Lily this last weekend does not make me strong. It makes me reliant on God.
The loss of my children has brought me to my knees. It has shaken the very core of who I am in some respects and has made me question why God allowed this to happen to our family. Before I lost my children, I felt sorry for women who experienced loss and wondered how they were even upright and talking. I couldn’t imagine what that mourning must be like and I was sure I could never endure it. When Knox died that little wall of safety during pregnancy came crashing down and completely shocked me. I grieved not only the loss of my child, but the loss of my security too.
When Lily died, I wasn’t naive enough to believe that there was that magical “safe” point in my pregnancy. I knew it could happen. But it doesn’t make the hurt any less. I still grieve the loss of my child, the rest of my pregnancy, her birth and watching her grow up. I grieve the loss of inhaling deep the smell of a new life, cuddling that tiny warm body and staring in awe at her beautiful face while she sleeps. In my selfishness, I even grieve the fact that I have spent about 6 months in the first trimester…the morning sickness, the food aversions, the just feeling rotten and I have nothing to show for it except the ashes of my children. It isn’t fair, I don’t understand it and I grieve.
The loss though, and my ability to endure it has nothing to do with me.
I am weak.
I have moments where I just don’t think I can go on. I get so angry at the unfairness of it all. I have struggled with bitterness towards women who got to have babies they didn’t want and complained about when they got pregnant. I have struggled with bitterness towards the joy of others. I am ashamed to say how many times I have wanted someone to hurt just as bad as I have. But my mourning shouldn’t take away someone else’s joy. My grief is my journey. It is a journey I am on as a mother, but I am not alone.
The loss of my children has brought me to the point where I realize there is no one left for me to rely on but God. Only God can share my grief, only God can help me reconcile my feelings and forgive. Only God can give me the strength to take one step after another. No one else. Not Kerry, with all his leadership, love and compassion can identify with what I feel down deep inside. Not my children or future pregnancies will redeem the feelings of bitterness and anger I have felt. Only God.
Psalm 121: 1-4
1 I will lift up my eyes to the mountains;
From where shall my help come?
2 My help comes from the Lord,
Who made heaven and earth.
3 He will not allow your foot to slip;
He who keeps you will not slumber.
4 Behold, He who keeps Israel
Will neither slumber nor sleep.
My reliance on God is the only thing that has allowed me to continue on this journey. The help from my God, is what enables me to wake up every morning without crumbling under the tremendous weight of my grief.
Jesus has conquered the pain of this world. Because we still live in a fallen world full of sin, we still experience the pain and grief of losing loved ones. BUT…Jesus has conquered the world and all the pain in it. We may not experience freedom from that pain in this life, but we will certainly experience it when we die if we trust in Christ as our Lord and Savior.
33 These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.”
We will have tribulation, but we are to be courageous, we are to be peaceful because Jesus has overcome this world. That is where my hope comes from, that is where I draw strength to move from day to day. I still hurt, I still get angry, but I give those feelings to God. I ask for His strength. Not strength to make it through the month, the week or even the day. I ask for the strength I need to make it through the next hour, sometimes the next minute or next conversation. And He delivers. He doesn’t often give me more than what I need, but He never gives me less than what I need.
Psalm 16: 1-2
1 Preserve me, O God, for I take refuge in You.
2 I said to the Lord, “You are my Lord;
I have no good besides You.”
I choose to walk daily trusting in God for the strength I need. God has a purpose for these challenges, I know that He is using this journey to make me into the woman He wants me to be. I surrender daily to His will, even if I don’t understand. It is His strength, not mine that allows me to make that choice and move forward one step at a time.