I've had a couple of good days in a row. It's not getting easier, but I am beginning to feel God's comfort more. I know I will see William again. The grief is for what I miss. But the grief has taught me much already. First and foremost, that any control I pretend to have is an illusion. I have always been a "control freak." I have never been one to struggle with fear but I think it's largely because I felt I was so prepared for things. We drill our children on safety measures. We weigh the risk vs. benefit of every decision on everything they want to do. We are extra cautious when it comes to what we allow our children to do, not because we don't trust them, but because we want to do everything in our power to keep them safe. So many times I've said, "We do the best we can with the knowledge we have and trust God for the rest." And I believed it. Now I know it. I have control over nothing.
The other thing that really sticks with me is the fact that I'm dying. Not in the sense that I have a terminal illness, but in the sense that our bodies are all wasting away. I do not know how many days I have left, but the only thing I truly have control over is how I spend them. I choose to spend them praising the God who made me. Even if He does not deliver me from the fire. Though He slay me, yet I will praise Him.
Our time here is so short. Time gets away from us. All too easily we focus on the here and now instead of eternity. Our eternity begins now. It's not for someday. It's about the relationship we have with Christ and the relationships we build here. That's it. That's all we take with us. All the stuff that gets done really doesn't matter...only the love we've shared.
I found this handprint of William's the other day as I was going through papers that needed grading. His last one. Sydnee had been doing school with him and she was using red on white for contrast to see if he could decipher it. Just for fun, she painted his hand and placed his print. He always loved that! He couldn't see detail, but he could see enough to know there was something there and be able to touch it. And, of course, that brought a huge smile!
And the handprint got me thinking about the footprint canvas that hangs in the boys' room. I had always intended to redo the footprints. After Titus was born, I was going to do a whole new one. I never did. Ugh. Now it's too late. So I added Titus to the top and Andrew inside Michael's prints. That's another thing about grief...it's always there to remind you of all the things you didn't do with your loved one when you had the opportunity.
I can't say that I've completely turned over a new leaf and that I'm suddenly willing to let my children jump off cliffs or travel to Europe alone, but I am finding that I'm willing to say "yes" more often. I am reminded of one of William's favorite shirts...