Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Grief

Grief. A very real and tangible emotion that most of us try to avoid. Of course none of us ever get to. It's as much a part of our human lives as joy or hunger or air. Fortunately, for most of us, grief only shows up occasionally because our lives are mostly filled with good days. There are always the "bump in the road" kinds of things that happen, but real, deep, heart-wrenching grief, blessedly, is rare.

Yesterday we sent our kids off to Peru for three years. We will get to see them for short visits once each year. Saying goodbye to my daughter, son-in-law, and 9 month old grandson has nearly ripped my heart out. And although the pain is still raw and tender, I'm glad that much-dreaded ordeal is now history and I never have to live through yesterday again. I know there will be more good-bye's in my future, but at least this one is now behind me. I thought this whole thing was going to kill me. And then I was afraid it wouldn't. That's how grief works. It comes in waves. Just when I start feeling like maybe it's going to be okay, some little thing like finding a certain little boy's sock stuffed in the couch cushion, will cause the tears to begin flowing again.

Since October, when their decision to leave was made, I have been sadly counting the days down until they left. When it came time to turn the calendar page to February, I fought it with everything in me. But February came anyway. Now I can start counting down the days until they come home to stay. I'm on day 1093.

I want to thank all of you who have prayed for me. Many of you I know in real life. You have listened to me and comforted me and tried your best to convince me that I will survive this. Many of you I only know through blogging and you have been every bit as supportive and loving as if we lived down the street from each other. You people will never know how deeply I have appreciated your prayers and love to me. You have shown me the love of Jesus and I am humbled by your many kindnesses. Yesterday I found this post written by Bev at Life of GRITS. It was so helpful to me and it expresses my heart perfectly and exquisitely.

You may have noticed that I have placed some blog linkings on the sidebar labeled Peru Blogs. Michelle, my daughter, is the top one and she promised me she would do her best to keep it updated. She won't actually be set up in Peru to start blogging until next week - but I can't wait to read her words and see her pictures. They are spending this week with Tyler's grandparents on the other side of the family. I'm so glad they are having these days to spend together. Olivia is a friend who graduated with my daughter from college. And Wendy is a girl from our church who is leaving next week. Her mama and I have committed to meeting weekly to pray together for our kids. I would like to invite you all to read their blogs and support them in prayer as you have me during these days.

I know that somehow we are all going to adjust to this change in our lives. We are going to be okay.

I'll leave you today with this picture of my beautiful sweet boy in the airport yesterday. I can't possibly find any words that can come close to describing how much I want to kiss his sweet face.

18 comments:

Becky said...

I'm crying for you my friend.

I knew it was here and I just left you alone. I knew you'd tell us when you were ready.

Some day soon you will check the Peru blog and find yourself smiling and laughing instead of crying. Soon. It will happen.

We'll continue to pray you through.

Dawn said...

That picture of Tyler just about did me in! I am crying as well.

pressedforward said...

I thought it was right around now and have been checking. Reading your post brings it all back for me--it is hard to breathe. The good-byes are absolutely the hardest and this one the hardest of them all.

You have done a fabulous thing by giving them your blessing to go. The Lord sees this. He knows.

For all POMs, I want to thank you for your honesty and transparency! Reaching out is how to do this.

Becky is right, the day will come soon when you will be smiling again. Get your Skype and webcam working too, and find a good travel agent!

Blessings, friend!

Diane

Renna said...

I can't remember if I've commented here before or not, but I have been following along with your blog for 2 or 3 months now. My heart hurts for you. I will be lifting you before our Father, who knows your pain, and can comfort as no other can.

Michelle said...

oh Robin my heart just aches for you. Anyone who reads your blog knows how important family is to you and how much you love your grandbabies, so I can only imagine how difficult it was to say goodbye to your grandson, and of course your daughter and son-in-law. I'm glad your daughter will be able to maintain a blog so you can keep up to date with them; although I know it's not the same as seeing them in person. Sending you prayers and hugs.

Lisa B. said...

You never know what will happen Robin. Maybe things can change and they will be home sooner than later. I have had them on my mind constantly for the last week. I may be 1800 miles away....but never that far in thought. :)

gail@more than a song said...

I've been thinking about you lately Robin and was wondering how it was going for you. I'm hurting for you reading your post. Just can't imagine how difficult it must be for you....but we know our big our God is and that He will sustain you!

Cathie said...

what town are they in?? we have a daughter and son in law, and 20 month old grand daughter going to peru. they are in costa rica now learning to speak spanish. let's connect. would love to hear from you.

i will pray for your heart tonight!!

Denise said...

dear fellow POM,

I, too, sent a grandbaby, aged 10 months with parents to the mission field. They left Nov. 15th. I set my phone calender to remind me to pray for specific needs and follow a daily prayer guide - it helps me focus on all areas of their lives. Glad to have you among us.

In Him with you,
Denise

Angie said...

Robin---I am SO glad you came by. I had you on my heart so strong yesterday---and when I recently (in the last 2 weeks) had my bloggity makeover--I LOST my sweet friends on the side!!!!!

Now I can put you back! I will try and work on that this weekend.

Yes, I understand. Totally. Ours moved away---for the first time in Rylan's sweet life, he is not right near by---no weekend visits. But---at least---for us---they didn't move across the globe. However, my brother, his wife and little baby girl...and the next one to be born in June---are about to leave for Japan for 3 years. My mother is experiencing what you are.

I have missed visiting!

Love you lots!

Bev said...

Oh Robin, isnt life just a journey of hellos and goodbyes, and we live between them? You said, I thought it would kill me, then i prayed it would - exactly. I know sometime in the near future I have to say goodbye to my daughter and her little family, and knowing I wont get to see that little boy on a regular basis, watch him grow up as I have while we've lived close together - I already dread it coming and want to get it behind me. I will continue to be praying for you, as I can only imagine how much it must hurt to let them do what God has called them to do.

Susanne said...

A big cyber hug to you, Robin. May God bring comfort and peace to your heart.

Barb said...

I feel like I understand the emotions you're going through, Robin, because if it were Cameron leaving for three years, I don't know how I could stand it. You're a lot stronger than you think you are and already, I sense a positive attitude about counting down the days until they come home.

Still, I know this is breaking your heart and you are in my prayers. Michelle's blog, especially with photos, will comfort you greatly and I'm sure she knows that and will post to it faithfully.

nanajobx said...

I can barley breath reading your blog. Just today the fact that my daughter, her husband and three children will be leaving for Haiti is hitting me.They are committed to at least 10 years. I will learn to cope. But today it does not feel like it.

Alice said...

I am sorry for your pain. I think I am going to not make it everytime my daughter leaves. She is not married and she works with YWAM, she has been with them since she was 14, full time from 18, she left to go to work in England. I will pray for you and your family. Soon you will be holding your little grandbaby again. I will keep you in my prayers daily. my email address is alicedonice@yahoo.com

dianne said...

A friend sent this blog to me...I am trying to hold it together until Monday when my precious baby girl and her sweet husband leave for 3 years to go overseas. I am grieving and the pain is so great that I, at times, would rather die. I am proud of them but my heart is being torn from my body. Thank you for your honesty.

Anonymous said...

I just found out about the POM site today and my baby has been on the field for 5 years!! Anyway - I hope that you have heard about SKYPE - if not go to skype.com and put it on your computer and get your kids to and then buy a 30.00 camera and you can see and talk to the babies everyday for FREE. I hope you have it already, but just in case!! Love and prayers, POM from AL
p.s Mine come home for 14 weeks from the middle east in 33 days!!!!!!!!!!!!

Michele said...

I was so happy to find your blog today! My mother and I have shared this grief for 15 years. I'm on the field and she is in Virginia!