Grief and Joy Coexist

Last weekend my kids surprised their dad by coming in for dinner Saturday evening. It was the first time they’d been together since May 2014.

Maggie arrived Thursday morning; she’ll be home three weeks. Meredith flew in Friday evening and left Sunday; she has a family that needs her. Lyz lives in our town and we get to see her more often than the others; still it’s always great to spend time with her.

The boys each live about two hours away. They came in Saturday after finishing work or whatever they had Saturday morning. Peter had to leave that night as did David and his fiancé Taryn. Adam stayed the night and went to church with Ron, Meredith, Maggie, and me.

It was a good weekend. Ron was completely surprised! He grilled salmon for everyone. It’s their favorite. Games were played. Stories were told. Shopping was completed.

Last night I posted one of my favorite pictures of Andrew. He was two. He loved his new outfit, especially the bow tie. This is his birthday week. He would have been 25 on Christmas Eve. This will be his fifth birthday in Heaven.

Facebook keeps asking, “What’s on your mind?”

Nothing I can put into words. I’ve learned the past four Christmases that not every thought or emotion must be expressed or even can be expressed. Sometimes it’s best to simply feel them, experience them. Sometimes that is all I can do. I cannot adequately express what is on my mind or heart right now.

I look around…so many memories…so much missing even with the joy and laughter of having my six home the past few days.

Yes, joy and grief coexist in the heart of a momma who has buried her son. In the heart of this momma anyway.

I have great joy in the moment and sweet memories of days gone by. I have hope for tomorrow…and yet there is still grief for that which will never be again: my four sons together laughing and telling stories, all seven in one new picture, his nieces and nephews getting to know him, his laughter, his stomping through the house, his stories, his hugs, his smiles, his phone calls.

Good night, dear friends.

Oh! If you think about it, could you pray for all those who have experienced loss this year? Or in the past few years. It seems to take time for the wounds to really heal.

13 thoughts on “Grief and Joy Coexist

  1. Festivals and birthdays… All these do hurt do much. Friends and family are sending wishes for new year and I just feel like what is the use of these wishes now.. They no longer please me instead they hurt me. It was my mother’s birthday 2 days ago, I was so confused, it was such a difficult day.. So many thoughts in my mind. I ended up writing a blog.. There was no other escape route. And now as new year is approaching its bothering me. I just want to sit alone silently with my family, I don’t want any wishes or greetings or celebrations.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s okay to grieve. And to have grace and rejoice with those who are not grieving.

      Sometimes we simply need to step back from social engagements during grief so as to not put a damper on the festivities. It’s okay to step back for a time and slowly re-enter the social activities when you are ready.


  2. What a sweet photo. I agree totally with your comments. My oldest son Cody went to heaven on 5-15-16, and this Christmas seems harder than the last if that is even possible, but yet my heart is full of joy that our youngest and only other son is home from college for Christmas break. Can’t even put my feelings into words so a lot of times I just say nothing like you said. My thoughts & prayers are with you and your family, especially now during the Christmas season & Andrew’s birthday. God bless all of us grieving parents.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I am so sorry for your loss. You are so right that joy and grief co-exist…along with all the other complex emotions of loss and life. My brother died when I was 15, a week after Christmas. Much love to you as you continue to walk your “new normal.”

    Liked by 2 people

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