Thursday, October 3, 2013

Day 120


October 3, 2013

Day 120

My most favorite month of the year has begun…ahhh.  And it’s actually supposed to cool down this weekend, which excites me even further.  But, my joy in autumn is tempered this year, of course, as it is in everything.

It occurred to me today that my body is in mourning.  It’s not just my heart.  Every single cell of my body knows that Paul is gone and is keening the loss.  I’ve heard about some tribes where the wives of dead men will climb to the type of a funeral pyre (not even sure what a “pyre” is really) and just sit there and wail.  I get that.  I’m quiet on the outside, but I am screaming on the inside right now.  I want Paul.  With every fiber of my being, I miss him.  I am lonely.  I need his help in making decisions.  I need his companionship.

I did actually dream about Paul again the night before last.  We were having this glorious reunion.  In the dream, he wasn’t there and suddenly he was and it just seemed so natural.  I didn’t question his appearance.  I remember that I had so much to tell him that my tongue was having a hard time keeping up with my thoughts.  It was so exciting to have him back!

This time when I awoke, though, I didn’t feel sad, like I have with other dreams.  I went and took a shower in the dark like I do every morning.  The spray of water and having to stand upright are a gentle way to wake up.  The dream was still very much on my mind and I felt God whisper to me, “You thought your dream was great?  Just wait until the two of you are reunited in Heaven someday!”  The thought made me smile. 

When Paul died hundreds of Facebook messages poured in.  I did read them at the time and was grateful for each one.  But there was so much commotion coming at me in those early days that a lot of the expressions of comfort really just kind of went over my head.  I was locked in such a cocoon of grief and sorrow that it was hard for a lot of things to even penetrate.  But I hung onto those messages.  I started re-reading some of them today.  I had avoided doing so all summer long thinking that I would be dragged back to the pain of those early days.  Instead, I found myself really comforted as I re-read them today.  I am anxious now to finish them.  I am also wanting to go through all the sympathy cards again at some point.  I have a jumbo ziplock bag in my hope chest just full of them.

The other night Sam decided he wanted to play with the modeling clay and went and retrieved it out of the craft drawers in the basement.  He called to me, “Hey, Mom!”  I looked and he held out a race car made out of the blue clay.  He said, “I forgot that Dad made this for me.”  Paul had done such a good job, too.  I asked Sam if he’d like to save that car and he said he would.  So once we get the boys’ room situated I told him we could put his dad’s car on his bookshelf so he could have it forever.  Hopefully, modeling clay will dry out in the air without falling apart.  I’m not really sure how that stuff works.

In my last post, I wrote about the novel I had recently read about a young, western widow.  A friend pointed out to me since then that nearly all books written about a widowed heroine end up with her getting remarried.  Wow.  I had never thought about that before.  But as I mentally rifled through my files of books I’ve read, I think she’s right.  Now, the older widows – not so much.  There’s often a grandmotherly type of widow who dispenses great wisdom to the younger women in the story and the reader doesn’t expect new love for that character.  But the younger ones do seem to remarry.  Why is that?  Statistically, I don’t know what percentage of widows remarry.  I know I’ve read that most who do  will do so within 5 years of their first husband’s death.  I can see that it would make a great story.  Readers want happy endings.  They want to see their heroine overcome loss and sadness and learn to love again.  They want to see her rewarded by God for her faithfulness.

But what if a widow remains single until she dies?  Does that mean her spiritual life has faltered?  Is God withholding something good?  Is the ultimate source of happiness in life bound up in marriage alone?  Those are just some thoughts I’ve had running through my mind the last couple of days.  I don’t have any definite answers, other than to think, “I should write a story about that!”  Maybe someday.  Right now my creative juices are stewing on a back burner.  But it seems to me a good story might involve that of a younger widow who does not find love again for a very, very long time (maybe never) and instead learns contentment and grace being in the state that God has allowed to her to be. 

It’s where I am now.  I’m working on the contentment part.  I wouldn’t say I’m there yet.  I very much want to be married right now, although only to Paul.  Remarriage is not a part of my thought processes at all.  That may come in time (being willing to consider it and maybe even actually doing it someday…a long, long time from now…).  But in the meantime, there is work to be done.  There is a lot of growing in grace to happen and learning to lean on my heavenly Husband.  Since Paul and I started dating shortly after we both turned 19, I have never really been independent in my life.  I’ve always had someone to take care of me.  I have a distinct feeling that this time is designed to teach me some of those skills – well, interdependence, anyway.  I’m not so sure complete independence is necessarily a desirable thing!  And it’s about trust.  I’m having to trust the Lord like I’ve never had to before.  I am pretty sure He has some more lessons on that He wants me to learn, too.

Two years ago tonight Paul and I drove up to DMAAC for our first PS-MAPP class.  We were so excited – on our way to becoming adoptive parents!  Paul took a picture of me outside the building before going in, I remember.  I’m going to put it in the girls’ adoption scrapbook.  Today I received a letter from the Dept. of Human Services letting me know that they are officially closing my license.  A little bit of irony, date-wise, I think.  But I have to smile, too.  God was moving us along, play by play, to accomplish exactly what He wanted.  He knew of two little girls that would soon need a home and He chose us for them.  Two years to the day later they are Heywoods, firmly my daughters, and perfectly ensconced in our family.

God is good.









1 comment:

  1. You wrote, "But it seems to me a good story might involve that of a younger widow who does not find love again for a very, very long time (maybe never) and instead learns contentment and grace being in the state that God has allowed to her to be." That is who I want to be, Sarah! And God reminded me that there is such a story, a true woman named Anna. Luke 2:36-38 We don't know anything about who her husband was or the many years of her life after his death. We only hear about that day in her old age when she was in the temple when baby Jesus was brought there. Maybe someday you will write a historical fiction of her life.
    And what a special moment for Sam finding the clay car. God is so tender.
    Hugs & prayers