I've thought several times over these last few days about what I now have to say... and honestly I'm still not sure. I know that I can't believe yesterday marked one week already. It's been one week since our tiny Maddox entered this world and slipped from it almost immediately. I don't really understand how a week can go by so quickly, and yet... how it can feel like I last felt my child in my arms years ago.
“From the end of the earth I will cry to you when my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”- Psalm 61:2
I know what I loved most of my time with him is his touch. The time I spent holding him in my arms, rubbing his little body and telling him how much I loved him. I can close my eyes or look at the pictures and remember his beautiful face, but the memory of feeling him, so little and light, in my arms is something that brings me great joy... and with it great pain. The other night as I cried, I could honestly feel physical pain... I ached to have Maddox with me again. What I would give to be able to hold him. What I would give to have him back to love on, to pray with and to kiss. Oh, what I would give...
“His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; Great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23
Each day, each moment, has been new and different. Most have been very good, some have been excruciating. I feel safe in my house right now, so that is where I've been. I feel most myself when I am with Deacon as he can so quickly remind me of the "normal"~ playing puzzles, and trucks and trains... he has been my gravity through this last week. Dusty, well, he has been my rock. He has been phenomenal. He has loved on me through the tears, kissed my face, and held me as I couldn't control myself.
...But I have to say that it's funny. Funny because although I've cried many tears, truly I thought I would have cried so many more. I have spent wonderful days watching movies, going to the park, running little errands, potting plants... small things that give me a sense of normalcy. I do have to admit that I have strange feelings when I get out, like I suddenly don't want to be in public. It's weird. It's almost like I've just come home from a war and I need to decompress... like I need time to settle back in. Or maybe it's like being halfway through an Extreme Makeover and I don't want people to see me before my transformation is complete. I guess that is more precise... God has taken me through an Extreme Makeover and I'm not quite sure how to be this same, but completely changed person.
Undoubtedly the Lord has been so good, so gentle through this time of tremendous sadness. I have never once felt abandoned or alone... I KNOW that He hasn't left. He promises that. Joshua 1:5-6- “…I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and courageous…” This sadness that I feel, and is being played out through the rain outside my window, is not one without hope however. I am so thankful for my sweet friends that remind me of that... as Paul says, we aren't grieving as those who are without hope. I am grieving with the assurance that I will see my son again. I know with complete certainty where he is and that is what I cling to through these unsure feelings.
As I talked with Dusty and Alma (my mother-in-law) last night, we discussed the pain. The hurt. The aching and longing to be with Maddox. And then we began talking about God's pain. How much pain He felt as He sent His Only Son to the cross to die for each of us. How when Jesus gave up his spirit, the Earth shook and went dark. How the veil was torn. How it poured down rain. To us, all of those are signs of Our Father grieving. It's the pain and loss of His Son. ...God isn't immune to these feelings of pain and hurt. He knows our sense of great love and tragic loss. He doesn't expect us not to be sad. In fact, I believe He even cries with us. But, through his pain He painted a picture of how to walk with him through the storm. Grieving is good, the pain and longing are fine... as long as we keep our eyes on the One who walked before us, and walks with us... as long as I trust that the child that I gave over to Him will remain eternally whole, and in the happiest, most glorious place imaginable.
“And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”- Philippians 4:7