"Grieving the loss of a child is a process, it begins the day your child passes and ends the day the parent joins them."

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Don't Grieve For Me For Now I'm Free

Don't grieve for me, for now I'm free
I'm following the path God laid for me.
I took His hand when I heard Him call;
I turned my back and left it all.

I could not stay another day,
To laugh, to love, to work or play.
Tasks left undone must stay that way;
I found that place at the close of day.

If my parting has left a void,
Then fill it with remembered joy.
A friendship shared a laugh, a kiss;
Ah yes, these things, I too will miss.

Be not burdened with times of sorrow
I wish you the sunshine of tomorrow.
My life's been full, I savored much;
Good friends, good times, a loved ones touch.

Perhaps my time seems all to brief;
Don't lengthen it now with undue grief.
Lift up your heart and share with me,
God wanted me now, He set me free.


If you've been reading my blog over the past 21 1/2 months, you pretty much know that I am now, very much doubtful there even is a God. How could I not doubt this? My family has taken quite a pounding over the past several months. Just barely able to catch our breath from our first horrific loss..BAMMM, we were hit again. Yep, I have my doubts.

I often times get asked, "do you think there is a God?" and "what do you think about Heaven?" As I try my best to answer such questions, I often times find myself just shaking my head. I honestly do not know. I used to...but not now. Not anymore. It's very difficult for me to find answers for myself. I sure can't find the answers for others. Or, the answers that others want to hear coming from my mouth.

Its a terrible time in our lives. Most people think, no, they believe that we should cling to any sliver of faith. Probably we should. But we can not. We just do not have any left. I, myself, do try a little. I try to convince myself that there is in fact a Heaven..because I WANT my children there. Therefore, I must be clinging to hope that there is in fact, a God. Right? I don't know..I just don't know.

Never once did I ever question whether or not there was/is a God. EVER. Well, never before the past 21 1/2 months had I questioned God. I thought I had witnessed God's work first hand.

For example..I had Bradley, who came close to being delivered with a broken neck. Thankfully, his collar bone ended up broken (not thankful he had a broken collar bone, just thankful it was not his neck) instead. He was delivered via Vacuum Extractor. I also saw Brad clinging to life as a 5 month old who was hospitalized due to a bad bout of the flu. Which we later learned from his doctor, we nearly lost him. As we arrived at the hospital to have him admitted, his little eyes were rolled to the back of his head. I handed him to a couple of nurses who were in the hallway and they took off running with him.

And then came Carly. I'd seen Carly live through many critical health crises. Bad ones. Coding 13 hrs after open heart surgery. Battling 3 deadly blood infections. Fighting through a deadly round of chemo..to which the end result left her with no. vitals. whatsoever. I witnessed her have a stroke during chemo. I witnessed her losing the ability to use her left arm, hand and fingers..the poor kid couldn't even hold herself up on all fours without that arm acting like a wet noodle. But, even through all of that...I witnessed healing. And I believed. But now, I'm full of doubt. Full of questions. Questions that will likely, never be answered.

A sad but true story:
Several years ago, soon after Carly had been diagnosed with leukemia, Paul came home from work telling me about a co-worker who had a young cousin, we'll just call him, Pete. Sadly, Pete passed away due to leukemia. Pete's mom was a Christian and had been all of her life. She was never seen without her Bible in her hand. Her young son passed away after quite a lengthy battle. A battle that went back and forth for many years. His poor little body had been through the wringer and he ended up with the much dreaded sepsis, which claimed his life. Paul's co-worker told how his aunt went home after Pete's funeral and burned all of her Bibles. BURNED them! She cursed God. And she vowed to NEVER step foot into a church, ever again. I was shocked being told this story. I was pissed that someone would burn the Bible. Pissed at how a Christian could be so angry at God. Because I just knew, I knew there was a God. I just didn't "get" it. I didn't "get" her anger. I didn't understand the anger toward God. How could I? I mean, really... Carly was, (and Brad too, for that matter) after all, living proof...or so I thought at the time.

After losing Carly and less than 18 months later, losing Bradley.. I can honestly say that I now "get" the anger toward God. I "get" it.

I miss these kids.
I miss them so very much.
My heart actually aches.
Every. Single.

The Poem I shared today, literally takes my breath away.
It causes that 'kick to the gut' feeling way deep down inside.
But I read it anyway.
Over and over again.


Heidi Ehle said...

still always thinking of your Joany. I believe that there IS a God. God didn't take your kids, even though He welcomed them with open arms. I can't fathom your pain but my heart cries for you. Its ok to be downright pissed at God. He can take it...He understands.......

Patti said...

oh my word, Joany- that poem is beautiful. It breaks my heart, and yet it is perfect.

Its a terrible time in our lives. Most people think, no, they believe that we should cling to any sliver of faith. Probably we should. But we can not. We just do not have any left. I, myself, do try a little. I try to convince myself that there is in fact a Heaven..because I WANT my children there. Therefore, I must be clinging to hope that there is in fact, a God. Right?

This to me is proof that you do have faith...a faith that's taken a blow, a faith that is questioning and hurting and still grieving terribly...but faith none-the-less.

One of my favorite scriptures talks about what God can do with that kind of faith: "He will not crush the weakest reed or put out a flickering candle. Finally he will cause justice to be victorious." Maybe your faith is just a bruised reed and a flickering candle right now, but to me it is evident. I'm sure I don't have the right words to say to help lift your burden, so I'm just praying for you and sending a hundred hugs your way tonight. Lots of love from Oregon...

Unknown said...

I'm not sure....but it's nice to believe that they are somewhere that's beautiful...it's nice to believe that they are with relatives that are caring for them

It's nice to believe that you will, in fact, be reunited with them one day.

Sometimes, I think you have to believe just to keep your sanity.

Anne and Whitney: Up, Down and All Around said...

think about you guys so much and so sad and teary-eyed reading this! i do not have any words for you - just would like to send you a hug!!!!

The Mac's House said...

I often think of you, wonder how you are doing. I cannot even begin to imagine the unbelievable pain and loss that you have gone thru with not just one child but two.

I remember the pain of losing three family members within a period of six months and went into deep sadness when someone asked me how things were going I mentioned this and that I hope to be reunited with them one day, she quickly snapped back we never get united with them so get over it now. I was taken back at the time that all I could do was go to my car and burst into tears. Later I had time to sit and reflect on why/how this person could say such a thing to a person in such despair. Makes me a little sad still after all these years to think that this person felt this.

The pictures of your children are beautiful and I have no doubt that they are reunited together and you will see them again one day.

Cyber hugs!

Becca said...

As always, thinking of you, Joany. I certainly can't answer the faith question, as I, myself, am not a believer in all that much except for the *good* that resides in each of our own hearts. If God does exist, I feel certain that he can see that good in everyone, knows where our actions and feelings come from, knows our true nature and doesn't judge our beliefs, as long as we are honestly good people. I think it's okay to have your faith shaken. You're human, and you've faced what no one should ever have to face.

Okay, I always swore I'd never talk about religion in the blogosphere, but there you go. (((hugs)))

Catherine said...

That there is a God does not mean that there are not horrible hardships in this world. When you think about what happened to His son, Jesus Christ, in full view of His mother, it's pretty clear that this God should He exist is not going to be intervening in the misfortunes of the world very often. Just once in a great while to prove He exists, perhaps.

The power of God is in what the belief in Him can do. Anything that can bring strength and comfort to those who believe, is more than what anyone or anything else can do when heartaches occur. Those who believe, can get some solace; not a fresh flood of relief, but some help when times are bleak indeed. You are in a time of such grief, and anything that can mitigate the pain is valuable. But faith does not just come. It takes work to have and keep the faith, for nothing so powerful is easy to get.

Most of us do not have this powerful faith and have to use whatever human stores of strength we have to get through catastrophes. Some do not make it. I pray that you do because you have a daughter who needs and wants you very much.

I hope your pain eases in its intensity so that you can get through the days, and that you can give each other and your other family members your love and spare them more pain which they will have if you cannot survive.

The VW's said...

I truly know and believe that there is a God!

But, I also know that I've been mad at Him before. (And, I haven't gone through a quarter of what you've gone through the last couple of years!) I've questioned God many times, and wondered how He could let so many bad things happen. But, then I remind myself that it's not for me to question....because I am not God.

I can, without a doubt, say that there is a God and He has a purpose and plan for everything!

Of course, having not gone through the loss of 2 children.....I have no idea how I would feel, or what I'd believe if I had to say goodbye to 2 children as you have had to. No one can say what they'd believe, unless they were in your situation. I like to think that my faith wouldn't waiver, but I can't truly know.

Just know that there are people who think of you often.....and who pray for you, even when you can't pray for yourself right now. My prayer for you is that you will be given peace, strength, hope and grace.....and that some day your heart will be healed.....healed enough to trust in God and lean on Him.

I'm just so sorry that you are having to face each day with so much loss! Love, Big Hugs, and Prayers!!!

bluee19 said...

I read your post and totally relate to the feeling about is there really a GOD. You have every right to question and no one understands the pain you are dealing with until they are living in your life right now.

I have a disabled four year old daughter/global delays/seizures and question is there a GOD. Am I being punished for past behavior/actions? I don't know if GOD is real. I feel the pain you are going through and hope your days will only get better. I live day to day, my emotions go from really depressed to okay.

Take care and know you are being thought of.
Nicole from Rosemead, CA

Lacey said...

I question God, and haven't been through nearly what you have. I too just hope, because if I was to lose Jax, and I want to believe that he is in Heaven, and that he is happy and watching over us. But so many things knock that faith away.
Hugs to you my friend!

Sasha + Saku said...

My heart aches for you. I have no answers, nor will I presume to understand what you are going through.

I am grateful that you have shared your love for your children with us, for that love will never die and it shines through your words.

Wishing that you find comfort in knowing you loved them so well.

Merideth said...

I love you so much. I would do anything to take this pain away and restore your beautiful children to you. Please just remember you are always in my heart.