Wednesday, September 30, 2015

My sweet little son just asked me if he could...

"go back to that place, you know, the one where Mercy & Sam's bodies are?"
I was speechless for just a minute, then recovered enough to try and give that sweet little 6 year old boy an answer that would make sense to his confused mind and broken heart.
To say today was difficult might be a bit of understatement.
EVERY. SINGLE. THING. stung like a sharply honed knife twisted in the festering wound of our hearts.
When I picked him up from his playtime with a friend today, his first words to me after he tackled me with a hug-
"I miss Mercy and Sam, Mama."
This was followed by the conversation at dinner during which he quizzed me about whether their bodies were still here, could we go back to "that place" and see them, or "are their bodies in heaven now?"
I swear my life mostly feels like the Twilight Zone.
I seriously wake up EVERY. DAY. sick to my stomach, exhausted and certain that this must be a nightmare and I WILL. WAKE. UP.
I'll wake up and Mercy and Sammy will be standing at my bedside, staring me in the face and scaring the stink out of me as I startle awake.
I'll wake up and they'll be in the kitchen, raiding the Nutella and bread.
I'll wake up and they'll be in the playroom, building a fort and having a castle battle.
I'll wake up and THEY WON'T BE DEAD.
This is my life now.
This is my story.
I spend my days worried that my 2 sweet, kind, formerly naive daughters have PTSD and that my son will marry the first woman who tells him what to do and how much she loves him…all because he misses his bossy twin and is so lonely his heart just hurts.
I spend my days wondering exactly what in the bloody heck we are supposed to do now.
Everything is different.
Nothing is the same.
Yesterday, I sat on the floor holding a sobbing child who couldn't even catch her breath because she was crying so hard.
All because school days remind her of Mercy & Sammy.  And how much she misses them.
2 days ago, I had to take the iPod from a miserable tween who just tries to hide herself in it when she realizes how lonely she is and how much she misses her little tribe.
Today, I had to analyze how every single decision we make is affecting how they are handling this, how we are helping them to handle it and how completely broken we are as parents, in our marriage and in our lives.
Simply put-this is a royal mess.
THIS is not how it's supposed to be.

It's fall now.
We should be picking pumpkins, planning costumes, riding on hay wagons and competing in costume contests.  We should have gone to Great Wolf Lodge with our friends.
We're not.
I am not better, it's not easier.
Still, I can't look at their pictures.  I can't watch videos.  I can't even hold Sammy's pillow right now or pick up Mercy's ballet shoes.
Because it makes me MORE ANGRY.
Angry that this is my life.  And my husband's life.  And Eva, Charley and Max's lives.
I want to see the good.  I want to praise Him in this storm.

And I have.
I will.
I must.
There is simply no other option.
So I will give it ALL to HIM.  To the one who can heal.  The one who can mend.  The one who is sovereign.
He knew, He knows, He IS.
"One bold message in the book of Job is that you can say anything to God. Throw at him your grief, your anger, your doubt, your bitterness, your betrayal, your disappointment -- he can absorb them all. As often as not, spiritual giants of the Bible are shown contending with God. They prefer to go away limping, like Jacob, rather than to shut God out."
~Philip Yancey, Disappointment with God

I'm not just limping, I'm broken.  WE are broken.  All of us.  I've said it all, I'll say it all again.  Because this isn't a simple 3 step process-
1. Children die.
2. Grieve.
3. Move on. 
It's a circle.  An INFINITE circle of grieving what should have, what could have been and what will never be.  

There is no moving on.  There is just learning to, somehow…someday... live again.  And we simply aren't there yet.  How do I know?  Because last night, I laid prostrate in the middle of a wood floor and howled myself into a snot covered, filthy, exhausted mess of a mama.  And tonight I want to get an ax and chop down every tree in my yard.  

Maybe then I'll sleep.  From the sheer exhaustion of the physical exertion-maybe then I can sleep.  

I dreamed of Mercy last night.  But I didn't get to hold her.  Instead, I lost her.  And when, finally I had found her, she was just out of my reach.  
Just. out. of. my. reach.  

Do you know what the Holy Spirit whispered to me in that dream last night?  If this anger consumes me in it's fiery furnace, Mercy and Sammy will ALWAYS be out of my reach. For now and forever more.  

I need your prayers.  I need mine.  But most of all?  
I need Jesus.  
I need to let Him hold me, mend me, and carry my burden.  

Carry it, Jesus.  PLEASE.  
Just carry it.  

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”
Matthew 11:28-30

I give You my burdens. 
Help me, Jesus.  Help me. 

clan mac mama



Ms. MaryAnn said...

Tiffany I am praying for you and your family every day. I know what it feels like to feel angry and broken...from something as miniscule as a divorce from a man I was married to for 30 years and raised seven children with. I feel your pain and Jesus does too, he will carry you and your family through this nightmare. But you will look at life differently now that your precious Mercy and Sam are no longer here on earth. You can't help but see the world differently and that's ok. Just take tiny baby steps and when you feel like you can no longer go on ask Jesus to carry yuur burden. I will keep you and your family in my prayers daily. Wishing you the peace that passeth understanding.

Brianna Bowling said...

I pray for you. I pray that you know that God is hugging you everyday. Like a mother that hugs her child who is crying, it may take a while for you to feel the hug and know it is there but it will ease the pain one day. It will never go away but it will be better. Feel the hug of God and the people who love you and care about you.

Years ago when I had my first child, a wise mother told me that the first six weeks are hard but just keep at it and it would get easier. I kept telling myself that and it helped me get through those first six weeks when you felt as if your life had been turned upside down.

The grief of losing a child is so much worse of course but do know it will get better. Keep walking, one day at a time. Know that each day gets you closer to being able to feel God's hug and some of that anger to go away - even if its just a tiny bit closer.

Peace, love and prayers,

Earl The Butcher said...

Though I don't know you, my heart aches for you. However, I feel as though my spirit and faith has grown stronger because you share your story. God bless you guys. I pray that God would deliver you strength, and comfort your beautiful children in His Kingdom.

Sheri Ryan said...

I pray for you and your sweet family after reading every blog. I don't know how to help or what advice to offer. All I want you to know is that people are praying for you! God can and will see you through this. I don't know the answers to your questions (why us?, when will this end?, what am I suppose to do?, etc.). What I do know is that you have an amazing set of family and friends. Lean on them and reach out when it seems too much to handle. Most of all, do not be afraid to let your husband and family see you cry. They need to know it's okay to let their feelings out. Encourage the children to journal as you have. It helps to bring their thoughts out into the open. Show them some of the things you've written. Let there be an open communication between you all. Just as you don't know how to grieve, neither do your children. You're doing an amazing job and I'm proud of how open and honest you've been about your feelings through this entire tragedy. I'll continue to pray for your family. God Bless.

Emily Egerton said...

Dear Tiffany,
God bless you and your beautiful family as you muddle through this gut wrenching time in your life. You are amazing, absolutely amazing. I admire your honesty and your boldness. You're right... Nothing can make this better while it's so incredibly raw. May God bless you and keep you and love you and take the edge off this horrendous pain.

Tolly Garrett said...

I don't really have words to express my sorrow. I know how questions about Mercy and Sam from my own son bring tears for me, so I cannot even imagine your pain with trying to comfort your sweet children in the middle of your own grief. Know that there are many of us continuing to pray for you.
Love to you and your family.

Libby Pickett said...

You don't have to be strong--God is strong for you. Show your sorrow & deep grieving; your children on earth are learning how deeply you love them, too and how you would grieve if they weren't with you. Just take some time to focus on the precious present moment with each of them to revel in their joys and times of questioning. You have a legaacy of love to keep growing in your family and with God, you will!

quaylecovey said...

I am praying for you. I am crying out to the Lord for you and your family. God keep you close. said...

I have been praying for your family since I first heard about your tragic loss, as I know you were praying for mine the year before. I know our losses are very different but your words rang so true as I read your post....

I spend my days wondering exactly what in the bloody heck we are supposed to do now.
Everything is different.
Nothing is the same.
I felt exactly this way when Caleb went to be with the Lord. How would we ever find our way to something resembling normal? It was a full year before we were able to implement a school schedule. I spent the first year saying it was ‘by His grace’ …. By His grace that I got out of bed, by His grace that there was dinner on the table… Monday, will be two years since Caleb died… and I know that we are going to be okay. I find myself saying ‘In His grace’ I feel engulfed, and surrounded, and encouraged In His grace to continue the work the Lord has for me.

I want to praise Him in this storm.

And I have.
I will.
I must.
There is simply no other option.
So I will give it ALL to HIM. To the one who can heal. The one who can mend. The one who is sovereign.
He knew, He knows, He IS.

I want to encourage you that the time will come when it is easier to praise Him. Don’t rush but trust that the Lord will mend your broken heart. It may get harder before it gets easier. Everyone around you who has supported you and been there for your family, they will one by one begin to move on with their lives and you will still be healing, questioning, hurting, wondering if you are making the right decisions for your other children and if they are going to be okay. Then slowly you will see your children begin to laugh, children heal so much faster than adults… You will see their joy and zeal for life, and it will become contagious. And you will begin to, as another wrote to you, ‘feel God’s hugs’. The Lord will share things with you and show you things that will help to heal your heart. I have visions of Caleb sitting on the Lord’s lap, of him being with his grandma, of him running through a field…. Know that there is a gift on the other side of grief, a gift that only a parent who has lost a child can know… for God also witnessed the death of a child… that gift is an intimacy with the Lord that surpasses understanding and a life that is wholly heaven minded.
May you cling to the knowledge that you will all be reunited again someday and know that greater than what we see with our eyes is what we know with our hearts!
Prayers for peace to you and your family. May you be cloaked in the joy of the Lord, that He might strengthen you.
In His grace,
Victoria Stember