A few weeks ago, I listened to a podcast featuring Rick & Kay Warren who talked about their son, Matthew, who took his life in 2013. I’ve heard Rick speak numerous times, but I had never heard Kay speak on the death of their child. If you have time, take a few minutes to listen. I believe you will be encouraged: Hope in the Midst of Grief, Depression and Loss – Rick and Kay Warren – HTB at Home – YouTube. The more I experience, read and hear, there is no denying, there are truly many faces of grief.
As Kay shared her story the words seemed to come from a place deep within my own heart. How many of you have faced that awkward moment when you run into someone, and they ask how you’re doing? For me there is often that pregnant pause when I hesitate for just a moment wondering if I should answer honestly or just say I’m fine and move on.
As the years have gone by I’ve found I’m able to have good days, so now I usually say, “I’m doing fine, today” with an emphasis on the word today. Not everyone wants to hear how you’re really feeling and it’s also not necessary for you to share your deep feelings with every person who comes your way. However, at this place on my journey it makes me feel better that I’m sharing my truth without over-sharing or just giving a pat answer (no pun intended).
As the weeks led up to Melanie’s recent angelversary I had a period of time when the waves were seeming to get the better of me. It seemed at every turn my eyes were leaking, as my husband sweetly says. 😉Thankfully, today is a good day. Yes, this is the face of grief. Up one day, maybe down the next.
After 9 years of walking her grief journey, Kay Warren coined the phrase “wonderful-terrible.” I love this! She said she truly has a blessed life, and after all this time she has many days where she feels wonderful. But, underneath it all she said there will always be some terrible because her child has died.
There is a hole in our heart where our loved one belongs that no one can fill, regardless of how much time goes by. This is the face of grief.
Another amazingly strong woman, Katherine Wolf, shared part of her testimony at church recently. She uses the phrase “good-hard” to describe her life. If you’ve never heard Katherine’s story, please check it out. She and husband Jay wrote a book entitled, Hope Heals. Katherine didn’t lose a child like me, but she certainly went through the grieving process. She grieved her own life – the life she thought she would live before having a major stroke at the age of 26. Her grit and grace, along with her unwavering faith during overwhelming loss is so very inspiring.
H.O.P.E. There is so much behind that word and something I so strongly believe in. When I first started blogging almost 2 years ago I prayed about what I should call my blog. It didn’t take long before the Holy Spirit whispered, there IS hope during loss and you’re living it. This is how Hope During Loss was born.
Friends, grief has so many faces and they are all not met with a downturned smile. Yes, there will always be sadness, but grief also shares the face of Determination. Faith. Trust and Hope. Layering these faces on top of the faces of Sadness, Heartbreak, Sorrow, and Pain may provide a realistic look at how grief is on a day-to-day basis as we move forward. We are always going to have wonderful-terrible, good-hard days, at least until we are called home to heaven and reunited with our loved ones.