I’m Not a Writer

desk top

This week I decided to go back and read some of my early posts in this space. When I looked at the date of my very first post, I realized today has been one year since I started this process of writing my thoughts and sharing our love drenched life.

After the girls went to Heaven a dear friend of mine suggested that I journal my thoughts and feelings. She gifted me this space as a way to do just that. At first I hated this idea because I don’t like writing. In the past I’ve been known to spend days writing an email or putting off any writing assignment due to the very last minute.  Give me a paint brush or sewing machine and I can create for hours. Give me a piece of paper and a pen and I would draw an immediate blank.

Needless to say, I was resistant at first, but found that I didn’t have to search for words when trying to express what I was feeling or recalling a memory of my girls ~ the words just flowed ~ something that I continue to be in awe over.

This space of mine has meant the world to me. It gives me a place to process, remember, share, grieve and celebrate our family love story. I usually don’t know what I’m going to write when I sit down in front of my computer. I just pray that God will be present in the process and I feel that he always has been ~ even when there are no words.

This space has been crucial in getting through my days without my girls. Sometimes when my heart is aching more than I can bear I come to this space as a release. It has given me a place to document memories and intimate details of our lives together that I don’t want to ever forget. It also brings some memories, otherwise forgotten, to the forefront. I love when I am writing about one memory I may have about the girls and that triggers a flood of others…sometimes I can’t write fast enough.

The process of finding the perfect photograph is also very calming in that, to find the perfect one, I have to sift through hundreds of others which allows me to remember and see those smiling faces over and over again. This process almost always includes finding a new treasure.

The most important aspect of this process of writing is the connection I have with Anna and Abigail when I’m letting my mind just go. I often keep myself very busy to avoid the unbearable pain that lives in my heart. When I write, I sit at my desk, in a quiet room and just think about them and what they mean to me.  They are constantly on my mind, but for the few hours a day that I write, I am doing so without distraction and with intention.  One may say this is part of my healing ~ I say this is one of the ways I mother my girls now. Their physical bodies are no longer present but I feel I am taking care of them when I’m writing and sharing their lives.

Like I said, I’m not a writer and when I began this process a year ago I was really nervous about my grammar and making sure all my t’s were crossed and i’s were dotted. My editor, Tom, reads each post before I push publish and makes sure what I’m writing is clear and grammatically correct (any mistakes are his fault). He usually sends my draft back with a few sentences about how much he loves our girls and how much he misses them. I think this process has also allowed him to stop in the middle of his busy work day and reflect. I know it connects us in new ways too ~ sharing stories, processing our feelings about this journey and most importantly continually reflecting on how God is present in all of it.

I am so grateful for all the kind words of love and encouragement that people share. I sit, often in tears, and read through each comment and am amazed at how we are all connected in this world.  There have been a couple of times when I wasn’t sure if I was doing the right thing by writing in this space, this came after some criticism about  how I have chosen to grieve. Your comments and encouragement show that my choice to write is exactly what I should be doing. Thank you!

Thank you for your support and for joining us in celebrating our Love-Drenched-Life. I decided when I started this process that I would write in this space as long as I felt moved to do so.

Our love story will never end so I’m sure I will be writing for a long time.

My Life

Last year I think I was still in shock as we moved through the holiday season.

I’m no longer in shock and fully feel the absence of my girls. God is good and provides me with what I need to get out of bed every morning and I know he will bring me through my deepest sorrow but that doesn’t take away the pain I have right now. The longing is more than I can handle at times and I am angry. I’m not angry at anyone in particular ~ just feel I want to scream most of the time.

Today I wanted to write about being in Shrek the Musical or start one of many posts I plan on writing about our trip to Africa, but as I sit here to write, these are the only words I have.

I want my old life back.

swings

Happiness Journal

Last year I talked with a retired teacher, a friend of mine, about an idea I had for the tree and she decided to take it on with her knitting club at Anna’s school. This week she dropped off the finished product.

With the rain, wind and all around icky weather I’ve decided not to put it on the tree just yet but rather wrap myself in it this winter. To be honest I may never put it on the tree…instead I think I’ll put it around myself and look at the tree.

Being wrapped up in this blanket on a cold Fall night makes me very happy.

Blanket

I love all the details that make it so special…pocket for notes, words of remembrance and lots of buttons sewn on by Anna’s classmates. My heart is full and I feel so blessed.

blanket

Hopeful

Last week I was asked if I ever felt hopeless.

I spent a few minutes thinking about that word and what it means.

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I’ve been reading a book from Francis Chan called Crazy Love. I started this book in a bible study group a year before the girls went to Heaven and stopped before it was over because, at that time, I put everything else in my life before my time with God. I believed in Him and His truth but I am ashamed to say that I wasn’t the best follower. I knew what I should be doing but the craziness of life seemed to always come first.

I recently picked it back up and truly can’t get enough of it. My perspective on life and Eternity has shifted due to our circumstances and I see so clearly what God wants from me. He wants me to love Him with every ounce of my being, put Him first above all else, stop, slow down and listen, follow Him with all of my heart and Love.

I can honestly say that living with Eternity in mind is what I want always. I want that to be reflected in my life, my actions, how I interact with people (especially Tom) and how I go about my day-to-day.

I struggle writing this because I am ashamed that it took something so tragic in my life to really get me to understand what God wants from me and how to live with Eternity in mind. I understand that he uses our suffering for his glory but I still wish that my circumstances for living Eternally were different.

Along with reading Crazy Love I am also watching some of Francis Chan’s sermons on youtube. This morning this is what I watched and it spoke to me so I thought I would share.

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I don’t feel hopeless at all, I am hopeful.

“To live is Christ and to die is gain.” Philippians 1:21