Apr 16, 2014

The Strength of the World

April 4, 2014

So I'm pretty much a wreck today. I'm over halfway through a box of tissues and I'm confident I'll make it through the entire thing before the end of the workday.

Last night we went to the cemetery. The funeral director called us to tell us Hannah's headstone had been set. I was excited to hear it was finally in, excited to see how it turned out. But as I drove up I saw the headstone and as beautiful as it was, it was so very final. The last shoe to drop on our Hannah's life. There I was, a new mom to no one, standing in the cemetery crying because in my short life I've already lost a daughter.

Today we hosted the county-wide Child Abuse Proclamation Day at work. I stayed busy this morning and I helped get the flowers and the food ready. I got out my camera as the resident but amateur photographer here at work and snapped a few pictures of the preparations.

Then I stepped in to help sort the shoes. Today we had little tiny pairs of shoes lining the side walks of our campus, each pair represented a child that was affected by child abuse this year in our county. And then I had to stop. Although our Hannah was not a result of child abuse, she's still a child of mine, a child with empty shoes. I had the cutest shoes lined up in her closet but no little feet to fill them with.

I went to my office and I cried. Not the kind of crying people typically may do at work. This wasn't a tear or two down the cheek. It was a sobbing, snotty, heart aching cry because I missed my girl. She's not coming back to me. She really isn't. And that hurt so very much.

And so I stayed in my office and stayed productive and I typed through my tears.

When it was time for the program I went out with my camera. It's a beautiful day outside and I wanted to capture the sunshine, not to mention our kiddos faces as they sang on stage.

Then two ladies came up to sing. And they sang of family and loss and suffering. I held my camera in front of my face, but the tears came too fast for me to walk away slowly. So there I was in a crowd of people walking as fast as I could away from all the 'happiness.'

My coworkers are nothing short of lovely and while one of them checked on me earlier another checked on me during the program.

But now I'm that girl.

I'm the one who can't make it through a song in a program. I'm the one who is still very much grieving the loss of her daughter. I'm the one people pity sometimes, and that's okay. I'm not quite as strong as I used to be, but I do have a much tighter grip on the God who saved me. And for that I wouldn't trade the strength of the world.

Turns out grief doesn't just go away when it's been 100 days or 3 months, it's there. Even after many 'normal' days in a row, many days without any tears. After running around Disney World and smiling around our small town. It's still there. Because my heart still loves her, and she's still not with me. And guess what, that's okay.

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