Hello? Blog world, are you still there?
I can't possibly count all the times I've intended to write a blog, sat down to blog and the words didn't come, or the times that I attempted to blog and someone needed something else at the moment.
I'll be the first to admit, I'm also just not "myself" these days. I've been following a blog over the last two weeks of a man that has just experienced the most unspeakable pain of loss. Though many things he has said have touched me so deeply, it was these words that seem to resonate with me the most.
"This house already feels like a shell, an empty reflection of what it once was. I've had this same feeling every time I looked at myself in a mirror over the past 3 days. I just didn't recognize the man who was looking back. He seemed familiar, but not quite the same as what it felt like he should look like."
I think that is where I am. I'm still moving forward and doing my best to keep the train from derailing and keeping our family on track as much as possible. However, when I look in the mirror I just don't recognize the reflection looking back. She, too, seems familiar, but just not quite what I am expecting to see. There is still such a disconnect with who I am at this moment and who I expected to be. There is such a gap between what I am and what people see. There is still this unbelievable turmoil of what I am feeling and what I think I should be feeling.
Anyone that really knows me, KNOWS I love to write and I'm not short with words. Many have been recipients of the short note that turned into a novel. Blogging has been an incredible outlet of expression over the last year. However, right now.....the words are still trapped in my head. Many more words are ready to be written, but because I feel like I have to censor them or tweak them to sound "acceptable"....they just stay where they are. They continue to be stuck in the brain of someone that is notorious for over thinking and they are so jumbled together that it's going to take some major unraveling and sorting to get them free-flowing again.
Though I LOVE and cherish ALL THINGS related to family, homeschooling, crafting, and everything related to keeping our family going....that is not what I intended for my blog to be. I LOVE to read those type of blogs, it just not what I set out to write. My last several blogs have been "fluff" in my opinion. That is as far as I could get......
You see...I'm changed. My view of the world has changed. My heart is changed. I'm still not recognizing the reflection in the mirror.
I haven't blogged also out of the fact that the world has moved on. No one really wants to hear about Dad anymore. There are few that are truly concerned about where we are in this journey. I accept that and that is OK. However, the journey is still VERY real for us. In many ways, it's truly just beginning the hard parts. Many normal/average days have passed on the calendar without "real" holidays, but those same days have held some very tough "firsts" or "anniversaries" of huge things to us, but insignificant to most.
Some of you know that the changes in me and turmoil have come from many other directions than JUST the emotions and grief from Dad's illness and death. That in itself is enough to break a person, but when you add all the many other layers of situations that we are dealing with it becomes easy to understand why many days I just beg for MERCY!
The main thing to know is that though I am still trying to reconnect the reflection I see in the mirror with the reality of who I really I am. I'm still here. I'm still hanging on. I still believe and trust in God above all else. Yes, I spend many sleepless nights and have some very real breakdowns begging Him to explain MANY things. I admit my faith has been shaken very hard, but it's not gone. Right now, I'm just looking through grief filled eyes. I'm struggling with finally having to deal with garbage from growing up and weeding through what is truth, what God expects of me, and where I have to let go and let him. All we've been through in recent months has reopened some wounds that left deep scars and trusting in God to heal those is hard when your faith isn't as strong as it was. However, that faith is there. It's still carrying me. God's word and His promises are sustaining. Truth drowns out lies and darkness. It just takes a little longer to truly penetrate.
Many, especially those that know all the things we are battling, have still said they can't believe how I'm keeping it all together. I admit, I'm tired of being strong. I'd give anything for someone else to have to be the strong one and let me just collapse. However, because of the role I'm in as a mother....you can't just do it. You can't just lay down and let the world go by. Teresa and I talked during the first week after we had Dad's full diagnosis and the news of the reality of how big of a battle we had to face, about how for years we had talked the talk and now we had to walk the walk. We talked about how eyes were going to be on us to see how we handled such a heavy burden. Those eyes would be innocent eyes of our children or even eyes of those struggling to find their own paths with Christ. Because those type eyes were watching us, we were going to have to keep our eyes FULLY focused on the ONLY one that could CARRY us when we could no longer walk, breathe, or talk. THAT focus has been the only thread of ANY of the sanity I've had. When I lose that focus, I fall....and I fall hard. When I maintain that focus, I may slip...but HE always catches me.
So for now, I retreat again. I retreat back inward while I once again try to regain my focus on the ONE that matters. THE AUTHOR AND FINISHER of MY FAITH. He still has chapters left to write and though I'm having to go back and reread some painful ones that I thought I would never have to, it's OK. He knows the beginning, the middle, and the end. He knows all of the edits and rewrites. He knows the chapters that got written and ripped out of the book...but he KNOWS the finished project. HE will get me through to the ending and will give me a story worth reading.
Chad, the author of the blog I mentioned earlier also wrote some powerful words about having no choice but to make the only choice that matters. I, too, am making the choice that matters. CLINGING to GOD when I don't feel like I have an ounce of energy left. Clinging to Him when I can't even form words in prayer or when I can't even unjumble my own thoughts. Clinging to Him when everything seems too uncertain and painful.
"What you've seen in me over the past few days has little to do with being a strong and vibrant Man of Faith. I am a man who feels like all this world held for him has been stripped away, leaving him standing cold and naked, with two choices: cling to the Rock or let go. I have no choice. I must cling to the Rock. All else is misery, selfish humanity, and destructive despair."
I feel that same stripping away. I'm cold and exposed. I choose to cling to the rock as well. There is NO other choice.