Lately I’ve been learning that some memories and traditions, like friends, are silver and others are gold. It is important to make new ones, but to also keep the old. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been going with my family to get the Christmas tree. Last year I began a new tradition of staying home to reflect on the previous year and prepare for the next. (Part 1)
On this second Thanksgiving since the passing of my husband, I want to publicly honor his memory by publishing this letter to him. The time we had together was a treasure from God, and I’m grateful to Eric for the ways that he honored that gift, lived life to the fullest, and loved us so well.
As a mom, I sometimes feel like I should be an excellent question answerer. I like to have the answers, and I like to talk, so one would think that I’d be good at taking on the quandaries of my kids. But sometimes I don’t know the answers and I’m well aware that I can’t protect my kids from the world or ensure their understanding. I can rely on God’s faithfulness in knowing the heads and hearts of my children and sending the Holy Spirit to direct the words that come from my mouth to their ears.
It’s tricky to decide what to do about Halloween. Throughout my childhood on Halloween, many of my friends dressed up as innocent things like princesses and superheroes and pretty much ignored the history. Some of my friends holed up in their homes, turned out all the lights and didn’t really want to talk about why. My own family did a little bit of both.
I struggle with a quick-fused temper that sometimes spews onto the people I love most in this world. From talking with other moms, I’ve learned that I am not the only one that yells in anger say her kids. This is a very difficult thing for me to admit because it is so contrary to who I want to be as a mother. It hurts my heart more than almost anything else to see my beloved boys in pain, and there just aren’t words to describe the kind of regret I feel when I know that I am the cause of that hurt. It’s also hard to admit because I haven’t found a fix-all solution; this is not a past-tense issue. I haven’t tied this up and thrown it behind me; there’s no pretty bow.
Grief has given me an acute awareness of the brevity of earthly life. Because of that knowledge, I try to treasure each moment and each relationship just a little more. The dark side of this reality is that I also face daily this feeling of dread, that the ones I love are not safe from death.