Tonight was thr visitation and rosary, tomorrow is the funeral mass, and in a few days after will be the graveside service. My brother in law was Catholic. That is how they do it. Tonight, at the open casket visitation, the shell was there but the soul and spirit were gone. I barely recognized him without his huge smile, making the somber shell of him appear many years older than the 77 year old he was. There was immense sadness for he was the eldest of 8 and by far the most accepting and happy. He welcomed everyone into the family and represented them well as far as hospitality goes. In fact, if you were a pretty woman, you were maybe too heartily welcomed? But I digress. Today, with 2 siblings unable to attend due to distance and health, the remaining 5 were here and all the families celebrated the life of and mourned the loss of Mike LaLonde. He and his wife were miraculously married for over 50 years and she will miss him greatly.
The rosary was said tonight and my upbringing was not Catholic, so I just listened. The repetition was mind numbing. Same words repeated over and over, same prayers. Did they think God did not hear the first time? Is my Savior hearing impaired? I wondered at this. Why pray to Mary? The Bible never says to do this. I do not understand, I guess, not having grown up in the Catholic faith.
I asked the wife how she was doing and she said, “I want to get through this and forget this weekend”. And I feel her. I understand. Just get through it. Forget. Try to live for the remaining family, for kids and grandkids. Just get through and forget and heal from the enormous rift in the physical and emotional self. Just breathe. Be. Forget. Forget every day for over 50 years coming home to that big smile. Vacations. Fishing trips. Illnesses and recoveries. Happy occasions. Family events. Forget all that? No, to celebrate all that by forgetting the goodbye. Forgetting the bad- for there always is bad. Letting that go and forgiving it. Releasing it. Forgetting on purpose.
Just a jumble of thoughts. Good to see family but good to forget why we saw them. Get to celebrating life. Many still to love here. Many to reach for Jesus. We need to get to that.❤
I still miss my Daddy. Don’t get me wrong, I am celebrating that he is whole and happy and in charge of the choir or farming in heaven or something he loves. I know he is happy and carefree now and full of life and basking in the rewards he accumulated doing great things on this earth. No doubt in my mind at all. But in this shell, I still miss him. I am depressed no more, God healed me of that, but I still get very quiet now and again. He always had my back. He was one of a very few. He loved me unconditionally. I was his little girl and still am. So, I have taken on his oxe-like strength and greater humbleness and asked God to retain these reminders of him and it has been granted. I also sing better now and I think that was also a gift passed down, a blessing. I remember his eyes dancing every time I walked in the room and his enormous smile. God is my Daddy now and I am content most days and only when I am weak is it not enough. That is dumb though, because God loves me perfectly. I guess that imperfect love that is real is ok to miss sometimes too, though. It is ok. I am ok with still missing him. But I know I will see him, probably sooner than later, the way the world is pushing things along. I am ready. Be ready too.❤
To lose your husband unexpectedly has to be one of the hardest experiences of life. He was young, no more than 50. Not ill. Never had a sign of suffering or pain, just died overnight out of nowhere. Wake up next to a dead body instead of your husband. That is what happened this morning to my good, long time friend Susie. She had no idea that the “I love you. Sweet dreams” would have been the last time she said that ever. My heart throbs for her, tears flow. I am dropping my afternoon plans to be with her. I don’t know what to say but I know beyond all doubt that I need to keep her company and be there for and with her. So, I will cry with her, hold her, love her. And when things happen, changing your own plans is the Jesus thing to do. She has God’s peace but I need to be arms for her for Jesus.❤
Sometimes we just miss people that once were a strong part of our lives and now and forever will be missing. To miss them is human. There is not much getting around that. We feel. God made us empathetic and feeling creatures, and our hearts sometimes are fuller than we can bear and it seeps out and rolls down our cheeks. We just miss them sometimes. The pain lessens with time and prayer but sometimes you just have to pull out the pictures and memories and just remember and cry one more time. And then on we go on our journey for we do not journey backwards but ahead. We miss people from our past but we must move forward and be in the now. Good news is that God comforts us when we mourn. And I can attest to that. There were times my tears were streaming from such a deep part of my soul, I thought my heart would just break right into and I would be dead. I really thought that it was so deep. But when I prayed my famous prayer “Help me! Hold me!” God put an arm around me. It felt so real I thought someone was there. And it felt like He wiped my tears off my cheeks. It really felt that way. And I understood the entire world and God’s pain and sadness at losing valuable people. I got it. I understood mourning is not for the weak but for all people at some point and God loves us so much He cannot bear to see us so heart-broken without comforting us. He is a good Daddy. And so I missed someone today but God is faithful to comfort and then remind me to keep doing what is right and moving forward, focused on the now. “Now is the most important time in the history of mankind.” I made that up just now but I bet someone already said it somewhere. Lol But each and every day, taken one at a time, is precious and valuable and the most important time of your life. The internal decisions you make right now will change every attitude here forward. And on we go, moving forward but focused on right now. Miss if you need to, and sometimes you do, but then let God dry your tears.and move forward, focused on the no wow with His help. You and He can do it!
The truth is I am not good at losing people. I used to be great at it, many many moves ago, living in so many places, you are still friends far away but it is all good. Some people are great at losing people, shake it off and you wonder if they care deeply for anyone they are so flippant or nonchallant. A lot of people when dumped just say “Oh well, his loss” and move on. I am made of deeper running waters. I am not sure if it is the musician or artist in me or the Spirit of God who loves everybody or just how I am cut with few friends I let in my inner circle. But losing people affects me deeply. I will have good days, productive laughter filled days. And at night I am a sobbing mess just wondering how to fill such a chasm they left and justifying my leaving the chasm unfilled as a memorial somehow or I am dishonor in them. And the truth is that Christians are supposed to not mourn so long and moms are not supposed to take some time to care for themselves just keep going, and you wonder why no one tells the truth about such things. Why bottle it in? Am I the only one? And I know God is healing and restoring me, I am at peace and joy is coming back but the process is two steps forward and then one or two back and you wonder if this is still the journey or you are caught in some dance. And I pray yet again and God comforts me yet again. And maybe the depth of the heart and love therein is proportional to how much you had needed to be loved by the person you lost. And maybe the fullness of sorrow is not overcome by the fullness of missing the absent person but by a blood curdling scream at the injustice and injury and sickness and evil of the current world and releasing the desire to be loved by someone other than the deepest love of God. Maybe releasing what we long for and think we need is the key to opening up the door for God to walk in deeper with His perfect love and fill us permanently. Maybe.