Life should really just stop. How does it just keep going, like everything is okay? And yet, here we are, a month after my dear boy has passed into heaven. A month without him. A month without seeing his sweet face. A month without hearing that precious voice. A month without his arms wrapped around my neck. A whole month. And somehow I've survived it. The sleepless nights. The haunted dreams. The fault-finding and self-examination of what I could've, should've, would've done, if only I'd known.
The "things" in our house are still the same. His toothbrush still sits in the bathroom, greeting me every morning, every evening. I stare at it and cry while I brush my teeth. Will I ever be able to put it away? His clothes hang in the closet, waiting for him. His "special toy bucket" remains untouched. (*a little background...with so many children, all the toys are "shared" toys, except for the ones in your special bucket, which only that child may play with, unless they grant special permission for sharing.) Each child in my house has their own stack of cups...his remain on the cabinet shelf. Elly has been sleeping in his bed for comfort and she stares at his hulk poster every night while falling asleep. The cars blanket that he loved so much is carefully folded on my nightstand. His shoes remain in the shoe bucket with everyone else's. His cochlear processors sit, untouched, unused, on my computer desk, next to the batteries that are still charged. All the "things" are the same, but the people are not. The people are wandering, longing for a face they can no longer see. Grieving for the precious boy they used to hug and kiss and play with, the boy who gave so much love, who appreciated every little thing. The people are shattered...broken.
I find myself struggling with new things. God's Word, which has brought me so much comfort, now brings mixed emotions. Last night I was reading in James and I was particularly bothered by chapter 5:13-16. I find myself questioning my faith. Why wasn't he healed? Was my faith too weak? Not fervent? God could have. He could have saved William. Easily. He could have brought William back from the dead, had He chosen. But He chose not to. He chose to take William home. Would I have chosen differently? Even knowing all I know? Yes, I probably I would have. Selfishly, I would have kept William here for my own comfort, my own desires. Then I was reminded of all William has been through. His poor, little, fragile body. How much he suffered with so much patience. This time last year he was in the hospital on life support, struggling to breathe. And yet, God granted us another year. Another year to love him. Another year to treasure him. Another year to comfort him. Now he has God for that. Now he walks unhindered, no more pain, no more suffering, no longing to do things that he couldn't. Now he is perfect in every way. His beautiful eyes behold the magnificence of heaven. He hears God's voice clearly. How can I be angry at the Lord for that?
I do not know if tomorrow will be a better day. I do not know if I will be able to put one foot in front of the other. I do not know if my faith will be stronger tomorrow or weaker. I only know that it is only by God's grace that we will continue on. Only by His grace that we have hope for a future. And because we trust Him, because we believe Him, we are able to continue, day after day, and look forward to being reunited. Someday.
**Update...this was the memory that showed up on my FB page this morning...