Friday, July 18, 2008

Ups and downs

Below is an excerpt from a blog that a friend of mine wrote. Her son was stillborn last November. Please keep her (and her husband) in your prayers. She graciously gave me permission to include it on this blog. Reading it I am challenged to be a better friend, to be more authentic, and to never quit evolving into who God has created me to be. May you be blessed as you read this.


I finally gave my friend her quilt/blanket that I made for her tonight. I had it finished a couple of weeks ago when I couln't sleep one night. Going to her baby shower was one of the hardest things that I have done. I couldn't even look at the things that she got, especially the clothes. I never got to have a shower, and I will never have that same excited feeling again. I wish that I could have that back, but I guess that is all part of my healing process. I hope that one day I can actually be somewhat joyful and attend a baby shower for friends.

A lot of people ask us how we are doing? It is so easy to say "Fine", when really we have so much on our minds and hearts that we aren't sure if anyone is really wanting to know how we really are. So here goes.

My husband: He has been reading this book about a pastor in Olathe who lost his college aged son. The book is about what he is learning through his grief process. A lot of what the book has to say hits home and he can definitely relate to it. I think that it is great to have a man's perspective on grief. His sometimes wonders how Caden would have been at this stage. He would have been 7 months old. My husband right now is in so much need of encouragement. He needs some kind of reassurance that life is going to get better than it is right now. He also wants to move on but not forget Caden and feel good about life again. I am proud of him though, b/c he is still continuing to reach out to other guys and invite them to do things with him or play on his sports teams with him. He is so good about that kind of thing. He also has been so much more open about how life is just hard sometimes, and I see him reallly searching for the truth GOD and what GOD wants him to do in his life. He doesn't have things all figured out, but he is showing me that when things are so super tough and we don't think we can do it, we are wrapped up in the arms of Jesus and he will sustain us.

Me: I have my ups and downs and when I am down, I am REALLY down. All I can do is just cry when I have those down times. It is so hard to explain or even be a part of. I so much want to be different and joyful. I feel as if grief has taken so much away from who I am that I can't see who I am becoming again. I really struggle with that. Right now the hardest place for me to be is church. I wish it weren't so, but I praise God so much at home and in my own time and place and have seen glimpses of God in a very private and personal way, that when I am at church, I feel like I am just there to be there. I feel like I have been labeled "The Girl Who Lost Her Son." I wonder sometimes if my life or Caden's even matters at all to anyone anymore. I love the people at my church, but sometimes it is so hard to be there. I sit by myself sometimes, and it hurts so much that no one stops to ask me if I would like to sit with them. I also have felt like I need to go to the altar every time I have the chance to just thank God for getting me this far. I often would love for someone to come and pray with me just to know that they still care and that I still matter and that Caden still matters, but a lot of times that doesn't happen. I know that many people have no idea what to say or do, so they say nothing and do nothing. That sometimes makes it worse for me, because I think that they just don't care. I get the feeling that people just don't know how to be around me right now. I am so completely lost when I am at church and just don't know where I belong or fit in. Do I even have a place right now? My only child is not with me, but I did have a son, I am not too old, so where does that leave me? That is what I am needing constant prayer and support to find that place where I belong again. I feel like I am starting all over again, and it is soooooooooo hard.

Real quick. I have come to terms with some aspects about Caden dying and my guilt and such. I recently read a book called " A Room of Marvels." In the book the author goes to heaven where many of the people that have died or that he had impacted in some way are in heaven taking him on a journey to his special room. You know the verse " In my house there are many rooms,... I will go there to prepare a place for you" (my very paraphrased version). Anyways, his daughter is there. She died when she was 2. She is the one that asked God to let her father take this journey. He sees all of the people's lives that he has touched in one way or another that he never even knew about. The last stop on his journey is into his "room" where his daughter is waiting for him. She talks to him about why he is always so sad and in pain when he thinks of her. She assures him that she is just fine, and doesn't have to be crippled anymore. In heaven she is "perfect". She wants her daddy to not be in so much pain b/c she isn't and that some day they will see each other again. But for right now she is saving his "room" for him until he comes. That was such a touching chapter that I cried the entire time I was reading it. What I learned from it to relate to myself is that Caden is ok. He is waiting for me and wants me to be happy. He knows how much I miss him and the life that we could have shared together, but he is in perfection and doesn't have to feel any pain. He knows that I will be happy again, and he wants that for me. He is looking down on me and wants me to do the best I can and to keep looking to GOD for my strength. He is with me always. What a great thought.

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