When it comes to my emotions, this has definitely been a rollercoaster week. Sunday night through Thursday night, I participated in our VBS. My grandchildren attended with me and I assisted in Timothy’s “tribe.” Although he is only 2, he had just the best time. It was a little iffy the first night, but he got into the groove and loved every minute of it. My heart swelled with joy and grandma pride as he sang his little heart out while trying to keep up with the hand movements of the fast-paced songs. To watch Lesley get so involved in helping raise enough money to reach our goal for misquito nets for children in Mali was contagious. I’m not exactly sure just how much money I ended up giving her!!! It was tiring, but an emotional high.
Part of being at VBS was for Lesley and Timothy, but another part of it was so I could get involved some at church again. A few weeks ago, I felt the Lord telling me it was time. As good as it was being there this week, some difficult emotions found their way into my soul. Honestly, it just seems easier to stay home than to be out with others. Being with others makes me lonelier than actually being alone at home. (You have to be where I am for that to make any sense and I hope you’re not there!!) I continue to be amazed by people’s reactions to my presence. Some are so happy to see me. In fact, one person told me this week they were glad to see me out and involved. Some just look at me and never even speak. I guess they don’t know what to say so they just say nothing. Guess how that makes me feel? I wonder sometimes if I have leprosy or a scarlet letter on my forehead.
I miss Les so much. My need to simply be held and told everything is going to be okay rose strongly to the surface this week. He would let me talk. Sometimes he would definitely hold my “face to the fire”, so to speak. In other words, he held me accountable. But when I wasn’t hurting anyone else or heading in a bad direction for me, he would just let me talk. He would let me cry. He would hold me until the tears dried. He didn’t always want to do that, but he would. Now I don’t have anyone like that in my life. I can’t ask a single man to hold me because they might get the wrong impression and I can’t ask a married man to hold me because he’s married and his wife might not appreciate it. So where does that leave me? Alone. Alone with an ache to be held and to be told it is going to be okay. (Since my last post, I changed up my blog site. Isn’t it interesting that my picture is of Les with his arm around me? These feelings just emerged this week. Some might call that coincidence. I call it a God-thing.) 🙂
Yesterday, one of our church members died unexpectedly, so last night I went over to visit his wife. It was SOOOO hard. Being there brought up pains I’d rather had avoided. One sweet friend that was there hugged me and said they knew it had to be hard. That meant a lot to me. I was so upset when I left that I showed up on the doorsteps of a couple who I knew would welcome me and let me just cry. They did and I cried and cried and cried. In fact, we cried together. I am so thankful for them.
Today was a tough one for me. I worked in my yard, trying to catch up with all that needs to be done. Mowing grass is mindless work to me, so it tends to be a time that my thoughts run in all kinds of directions. As I rode the lawnmower, my mind was singing one of our VBS songs over and over: “God is with us through it all.” At the same time my mind is singing this wonderful reminder, I am crying my eyes out and talking to my sweet Jesus. Seems almost crazy, doesn’t it? I told you it has been a rollercoaster this week.
There are lots of hurting people all around us. We don’t understand what they are going through unless we’ve walked in their shoes. Before Les went to be with Jesus, I had the impression that 8 months was plenty of time for someone to get on with their life. But guess what? It’s not. My life has been permanently altered. Every single piece of it. Each day it gets a little better, but my life is not where you might think it should be at this point. I still need your support. I still need your caring. I still need your love. I still need your prayers. Life does go on, but mine goes on differently now.
After having a nice dinner with my family tonight, I rode down the street to the house of a 52 year old widow I had never met. Eight weeks ago, her husband of 30 years died suddenly, leaving her totally devastated. Les didn’t leave me suddenly so I don’t understand that part of what’s she is going through, but I do get the “alone” part. I knocked on her door and after introducing myself, she invited me in. We sat at her table and I shared my story with her so she could know me enough to feel free to open up to me. She began crying before we ever went in the house and just like me, she apologized for her tears. I assured her, as did my friend last night, that there was no need to apologize for the tears. We did talk some and she asked me how I lived my life. I shared how my relationship with Jesus is my lifeline. Without Him, I would be drowning. She listened but didn’t respond in kind. I tried to encourage her and assure her that what she’s feeling is normal. It’s just part of the grief process. She is hurting deeply. Before I left, I did ask her if I could pray with her and she was very receptive. Perhaps a seed was planted in her broken soul.
Big, big fun. Deep, deep hurt. The joy of sharing how Jesus gets me through each day. Up and down, up and down goes the rollercoaster. But isn’t that life? I guess the question is what we do while we’re on the ride.
Lots of love, Sharon