Lessons from My Momma

My momma would say to just write - it helps heal, it helps discover - write what you know. Don't worry about grammar, just write.

Lately, what I know is grief. The ups and downs, the ins and outs - grief. I know it makes a lot of people uncomfortable. No one knows what to say. (There's nothing they can say.) Some people don't want to bring it up because they don't want to remind me of it. (It's with me every second.) Others don't want to mention it because they are scared it might happen to them. I honestly get that. I did the same thing. I did all of them, actually, before 2005. But, really, there's nothing anyone can do.

Grief is a vicious part of life. A thousand bandaids all over your body - grief maliciously rips them off. Sometimes it's one big one. Other times it's ten or so little ones. Either way - you never know when it will happen. Sometimes the trigger can be obvious, but more often than not, it just happens. And you never really heal. It's been seven years since I lost Daddy. I still think of him every day. I never really healed from his loss. I just grew accustomed to it. I learned how to reshape my life around his absence. That's the part that hurts. It will be the same for Momma. But somehow her loss seems to entail missing her and missing Daddy. Once he was gone, the majority, if not all, of her presence was wrapped in his absence. So now, losing her is almost like losing them both - Daddy all over again.

I keep wondering how a hole, an absence, can weigh so much and feel so heavy.

There are days I am so happy for them both. It hit me at her viewing, this is the first time my parents have been together in seven years. I have not felt that peace in so long.

Then there are days I'm so angry with both of them. To have loved each other so deeply that in order to truly live, they must be together. People ask me if this was a shock, losing Momma. How do I answer that? It was a shock in the fact that it happened when it did. I had just convinced myself that she would rock 90 like her mom and her grandmother did. I had nothing to worry about it. But in all honesty, no, it's not a shock. I lost both of my parents on September 27, 2005. Momma's spirit was gone, her body remained against her will. She fought for it to come back, but it never fully did.

Part of the pain in this grieving process is that a revised version of Momma had finally started to emerge. She was beginning to show signs of happiness, of acceptance of this life that had been given to her. She just bought a new car, had finally entered the world of Apple with a new iPad, and was looking forward to her new dog. Life, for the first time in seven years, was looking good for her.

There are so many moments when I consciously pretend nothing's happened. The phone rings and I hurry to it, thinking it's Momma. Events will happen in the day and I'll make mental note to be sure to tell her. I think this is my body's way of not letting me sink into it too quickly. The few moments when the reality has truly sunk in - the physical and emotional pain is too much. I cannot go on. So I try to immediately go to the next step on my to-do list. Anything to get me out of that great abyss.

My hope, my only source of peace and comfort is the fact that my precious parents are together. They are happy. They are with one another and they are worshiping our Savior. They are seeing and experiencing things I've only dreamed of and imagined. My hope is that one day I will experience the unimaginable with them.

I am eternally blessed to have been given such amazing parents. They both taught me countless lessons. They both showed me how to live this life. My parents set such a clear example of how to live for what is most important - to live for this moment with expectations of eternity.  I am eternally grateful.


  1. Beautifully written. Thirteen years later & I still grieve. I love you sweet, Liz.


Post a Comment

Popular Posts