Does it matter?

I’ve written about my Dad and siblings (The Oldest Girl, A Little Boy, The Dreamer, A Tortured Soul). Sometimes creative, sometimes just letting words flow from my heart into the page. My mind is filled with questions without answer. My mind is replete with scenarios that get called up time and again.

I come from a large family. Somewhere along the way I’ve landed on my “own”. Out of all my siblings three of us remain. The connection between us, if there ever was one, is gone. One sits all alone having recently lost his wife. They never had children of their own. The other navigates the limitations of his aging body along with his ailing wife, somehow alone.

How does all this play out?

I’ve watched my Dad’s end (The Unexpected) in horror. My Mom’s strength and vitality withered away slowly. Her dignity shattered as I had to care for her in every way. Her lifeless frame shipped like cargo(The Unforgettable Crate), words said to me by the mortuary.

The marking of time. Such a strange phenomenon. Like an eternity, yet like yesterday.

I wonder, does it make a difference whether you have a lot of family or not? Does closeness remain? Are we really in this together? In the end will I be surrounded or alone?

In the end, does any of this matter?

“The challenge of death comes to us all, and no one can die for another. Everyone must fight his own battle with death by himself, alone…I will not be with you then, nor you with me”

Luther

Waiting Room

Sitting in the waiting room flooded by memories of my girl. It’s an interesting phenomena that I never know from where it’s going to come.

The thoughts of those first visits where so much unknown lingered, to those “final” visits where she could barely keep herself up. In fact, there’s the one where she was literally slouched in her wheelchair not even able to open her eyes. My goodness what a journey!

Today I sit, by myself, waiting for my body to be put through prodding and pushing. No anxiety of the outcome. No wondering what’s next. Simply sitting here flooded with the memories of my girl.

Heading into her fourth year that she went to glory, yet the images are of “today”. Vivid, gripping my heart to a degree I thought wasn’t possible – again! Sometimes I wonder if the pain of her absence will subside, then these days happen with a brazen reminder that the gap in my heart remains wide open.

And, so, the testing and the prodding left me bruised and achy. But this physical pain will subside. It’s outcome is already in the hands of the One who holds my every moment in His hands.

The waiting room will come again…I know. For now, I will rest and recover. For now, I have peace because the God of peace is with me.

The One

What if I had been born into another family?

What if my Mother was my best friend?

What if my Dad was my hero?

The perfect parents…the perfect upbringing…

BUT who, what dictates “perfection”?

What if I hadn’t been sexually abused as a child?

What if I hadn’t been beaten by my protector?

What if my parenting was flawless?

The fairy tale life…the life worth emulating…

BUT where do we find “perfection”?

Not excusing, but not demanding answers either. I’m transported to the last doctor’s appointment of my daughter’s journey. The Doctor said to me, “Why didn’t you bring her here sooner?” That sharp dagger that I had been wielding, was plunged into my soul by another. Speechless, lost in the barrage of accusations that already invaded my soul. Yes, if only…and, the what ifs…

We are a peculiar people. We swear that we will never. We demand our rights. We all want something better than Eden. There’s eternity in our hearts. There’s a sense of right and wrong. There’s a longing desire for The One who alone is perfect. Who alone loves perfectly.

“O soul are you weary and troubled? No light in the darkness you see? There’s light for a look at the Savior And life more abundant and free

Turn you eyes upon Jesus / Look full in His wonderful face / And the things of earth will grow strangely dim / In the light of His glory and grace…”

Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus by Alan Jackson

Counterpart

The weight of darkness even amidst the light. The loud, relentless chatter amidst the silence. Sinking…sinking…sinking. How is it possible to sink without knowing it?

My unwelcome Companion has a counterpart. Not always, but at times it makes its appearance. I’m continually learning to surrender and accept The Companion, but it’s counterpart shakes me to the core.

I have not learned its tricks, yet. When I know it’s here it’s because I’m sinking in its grip. And, honestly, it lulls me to a degree that it feels soothing and inviting. Not until I’m “outside” it’s lure can I see it’s horrifying end and destruction.

As a Believer in Jesus Christ, I am fully aware that my life is not my own; that my life is a gift; that it’s beginning and end are not mine to wield. Yet, in the midst of my sinking thoughts, this Truth is not something I go to.

My sister took her own life, so you’d think remembering the heartache and devastation this left behind, that would shake me into reality.

Or…focusing on the many, many blessings around me. Or…I’m sure you can write a litany of things that SHOULD knock some sense into me. Yup, I’ve had those lists for others, and the shake of the head when they did not keep my list. Oh, may God forgive me for thinking I had all the answers. HE is the only answer and the only One who knows each person intricately and individually, including me.

And, so, I’m here, looking back at “that pit”, AGAIN. Grateful, that God in His amazing grace and mercy has plucked me out – AGAIN; that today the “sun-is-shining” and that the next step is all that is needed.

Grateful for another moment of clarity. 

Unending Grief

It comes in waves

Waves that relentlessly pound

Waves that smash you into a wall

One picture…one memory…is all it takes

The reality that a warm hug is not an option

that she’ll never walk through the door

that she’s gone – forever!

The emptiness of her absence brings

a sting that doesn’t subside

a deep ache that permeates my very soul

Say her name…please say her name

Remember her…please remember her

My beautiful girl, how I miss you…

Companion

“I thought you had left me for good”, was my thought. “But, oh, how I sense your tenacity”, the surrendered sigh echoed.

The companion I did not choose. The companion I did not invite, yet here you are as present as ever. Somehow, I don’t fear you anymore. Somehow, I “almost” see you coming, grab my hibernation attire and sink back for it’s duration. How long will you stay, is as unknown as the heaviness of your hand. That is still an area that frustrates this control freak.

How I wish I could control your arrival. Heck, you may never be welcomed, if I had my say. But, no, you are there just lurking around the corner, waiting to make your appearance known.

Your familiar presence can still rattle my routine.

Depression with all it’s intricate angles…

Depression is the name of my companion…

…a companion I never chose.

Monday Musings

The beginning of a new week. Fresh, clean, ready to take on the world! “What will this week bring”, I ask. With energy and stamina after an “off day”, I head to the gym. Oh, Gymboland, you never disappoint with your many side shows and aggravations. It’s usual locker room antics, with it’s noises and views. The selfie station in front of the mirror. The “I own this whole row” spread and the mad-dog faces wanting to look mean and tough. I sometimes wonder if “we” ever left high school? (Gym Rant , Another Gym Rant, Inquiring Mind)

California’s weather is changing and with it lots of coughs and sniffles. Would it be rude to carry a disinfectant spray? People simply do not know how to cover their cough and sneezes. Then you have people with open mouth breathing…goodness! Why?!?!

Nonetheless, got it done! Endorphins flowing to the brain. Ready for the day. Here’s hoping for a “balanced”, productive day 😀