I’m sitting in the car right now (actually it was yesterday) jotting down random thoughts, trying to think how in the world I can explain in a coherent way what has been going on in my heart the past few weeks. It all started Thursday. Well actually…I think it started about seventeen days before Thursday. The seventeen days prior to Thursday, Griffin reached the time frame when we found out about Cora’s cancer, started our stay in the hospital, began the battle for our daughter’s life, prayed more fervently than we ever had before, and said goodbye to our eleven month and three days old baby girl.
Thursday, Griffin reached that eleven month and three days milestone. Not a typical milestone, but one that is definitive for us. The past few weeks my heart has been heavy. And in many ways I’ve felt stuck in a “sorrow slump”. I remember grieving as Levi reached this eleven month and three days milestone…but it was different. With Levi I was grieving my oldest not being the oldest anymore. I was grieving the “what should have been”. All of a sudden Levi started hitting the milestones that we never got to experience with Cora.
Reaching this milestone for the second time has been different. The past few weeks I have been reliving the pain of finding out my baby girl had cancer and having to say goodbye when I should have been watching her as a growing eleven month old just like Griffin. I’ve had to force myself to not dwell on how horrible it would be to lose Griffin right now…just like when we lost Cora. I’ve found myself wanting to hold him close. I don’t know if it is because Griffin looks so much like his sissy…and even acts like her sometimes too? The reminders are much more real and I have felt like the past few weeks I’ve been reliving those seventeen days in the hospital with my baby girl…feeling the pain rush in all over again. I probably could go on analyzing how I am feeling and why, but the reality is that it is just grief…it is what it is.
Thursday, as Griffin reached the eleven month and three days milestone, Joel and I also left on a little ten year anniversary getaway. Good planning on our part…I know. It was the first time we have left Griffin overnight and the first time we have been away from the boys for that long (three nights). I was having a really hard time leaving them. An emotional wreck? Ummm…yes. It is probably a good thing that Joel ended up getting delayed at work and the boys left before he got home and we had to leave. I reluctantly said goodbye to my boys and ran back into the house and had a good, long cry. Sometimes you just need to have a good cry.
It is times like this along my grief journey, as I feel myself wanting to stay stuck in my sorrow, that I have to remind myself again of who my Jesus is.
Who is my Jesus?
I know that He is the answer to my deepest needs, but sometimes I just need another reminder.
I recently heard an arrangement of Jesus, What a Friend for Sinners by Ginger Millerman at a women’s conference. (And just as a side note, her new Hymns CD is so good!) The words have been playing over and over in my head ever since. Not a coinsidence, I know. But words that my loving Heavenly Father knew that I needed to be reminded of during those seventeen days.
Jesus! what a Friend for sinners!
Jesus! Lover of my soul;
Friends may fail me, foes assail me,
He, my Savior, makes me whole.
. . . . .
Jesus! what a Strength in weakness!
Let me hide myself in Him.
Tempted tried, and sometimes failing,
He, my Strength, my victory wins.
. . . . .
Jesus! what a Help in sorrow!
While the billows over me roll,
Even when my heart is breaking,
He, my Comfort, helps my soul.
. . . . .
Jesus! I do now adore Him,
More than all in Him I find.
He hath granted me forgiveness,
I am His and He is mine.
. . . . .
Hallelujah! What a Savior!
Hallelujah! What a Friend!
Saving, helping, keeping, loving,
He is with me to the end.
The third verse is what really stuck out to me as I’ve felt weighted by sorrow the past few weeks. Who is my Jesus? He is my Help…even when the billows are rolling over me…even when my heart is breaking. Who is my Jesus? My Comfort, the One who helps my soul. I love the end of the first verse too. He, my Savior, makes me whole. A mama who has a hole in her heart, needs a Savior who can make her whole. And the reality is that we all need a Savior who can make us whole. Who is my Jesus? My Savior, the One who makes me whole.
So we went on our little anniversary trip to Dallas. It was hard to leave the boys but it was such a refreshing trip. One that Joel and I needed in a bad way. We talked for hours uninterrupted, ate lots of yummy food (also uninterrupted), slept in, shopped, and just hung out together. And I am not going to lie…sleeping through the night for three nights in a row was AWESOME!! I’m so thankful that we went even though it was hard. I’m thankful for a husband who understands my messes of emotions. I’m thankful for the two little boys that I got to come home to last night. And I am thankful that they both have passed that eleven month and three day milestone. Their lives are a gift…and each day that I get to spend as their mama is a gift as well.
Even today as I finished up these thoughts I jotted down on our drive and continued to sort through all the emotions that come with having a “hole” from losing your child, I just kept hearing those words…
He, my Savior, makes me whole.
Whatever holes you are facing in you life this week, I pray that you can rest in the wholeness of a relationship with our loving Savior. That is something to rejoice in today! And if you don’t have a relationship with this Savior I am talking about, I pray that the Lord would impress upon your heart the wholeness that can be found in Him alone. Hallelujah! What a Savior!