Thursday, August 21, 2008

Wrestling

So tonight a good friend said "So, it hasn't really been that long, how are you guys really doing? Is it an every day grieving thing?" The question caught me off guard a bit but meant so much that she would ask. I love it so much when people push past that awkwardness and are just open and honest. I love knowing that others are still thinking of us in all of this even six months out.

As I have thought about this the word that came to mine was wrestling. That is what I feel like I do each and every day. It is a constant struggle and yet I fight with everything I have. Every morning I have to make the choice to be thankful for the day and allow my feet to hit the floor with the mindset that this life is not about me or my comfort or discomfort. It is about Jesus, the one and only. It is about what I can do to serve him for all he has done for me. It is exhausting, but I know it is necessary to my survival. He always gives me what I need to get through each day. Yesterday a verse from my devotional was this...

"Jacob was left alone, and a man wrestled with him until daybreak" Genesis 32:24

The man Jacob wrestled with was God in human form. He wrestled with God. But in the morning he was victorious, not because he could overcome God, but because he had given all he had and was weak and broken. He was so exhausted all he could do was collapse into the arms of his Savior and trust in Him. Jacob had come to the end of himself. He had nothing left to give. A few verses later in verse 28 the Bible says:

"Your name will no longer be Jacob, but Israel, because you have struggled with God and with men and have overcome."

Sometimes it feels like I am so deep into this grief thing that I cannot move. It is like being in quicksand to your neck. It presses on your chest and makes it difficult to even breathe or move. Anymore everything is a struggle. Tomorrow marks six months since I held sweet Asher in my arms and kissed his soft forehead. Tomorrow is also my oldest son's fifth birthday party. I have wrestled all week with why on earth I did this to myself. It was the only date we could get at the park we are having Luke's party and his heart was set on it. So tomorrow I will be celebrating five years with Luke and six months since Asher breathed his first and last breaths.

How is a person supposed to feel about that? Why does everything have to be so complicated and difficult? I want so desperately to be happy and to celebrate and yet I have this weight pushing down on my chest. Squeezing my heart. Anymore I feel like I am surrounded by new babies and pregnant moms and as badly as I want to rejoice with them and be excited for them, there is this gnawing pain in my gut. I pain I have to fight back daily so I can be the friend I want to be.

I also "wrestle" with borderline insane thoughts...Would you believe that one of the reasons I wanted my boys cremated was because I knew my crazy insane self and I knew that there would be a point down the road that if they were buried I would have this overwhelming urge to go dig them up and just hold them again? With ashes, this isn't a possibility. I just want to feel that weight. I didn't want to end up in a mental ward somewhere so I decided I would take this struggle out of the equation. A preemptive strike if you will. (Looking back this is maybe something I shouldn't have shared, but maybe some other mom out there can relate and will be glad to know we would be roommates in that mental ward) I am thankful for that decision tonight because I am not sure I could resist the urge if it were possible as awful as it would be.

Six months seems like so long ago and yet like just yesterday. I am so thankful for February 22, 2008 and yet I desperately wish the outcome would have been different. I wish I did not have to explain to Luke AGAIN why his brothers cannot die again and come back to Earth for his birthday party. I wish I were up tonight, not because I am going crazy and typing through tears, but because I needed to feed my six month old boy.

On Sunday at church I was asked (again) if I am pregnant again. This question I have to admit is the one that drives me nuts more than anything. I am not. I am just still fat. I had a baby six months ago and the evidence still resides around my midsection. (That and the Dove chocolate I use for comfort on the bad days or the ice cream that temporarily fills the void that exists in my heart, they do say the way to a person's heart is often through the stomach.). Nevertheless, the question stuns me and I have been asked three or four times now by different people. Note to all: NEVER ask a woman if she is pregnant unless you KNOW she is! Another thing I wrestle with...what to say when asked such things....What would Jesus do? :-) HMMMMM....


I come to you all tonight asking for prayer. Tomorrow will be a day that I wrestle with joy and grief yet again. My prayer is that the God of Jacob will continue to be faithful. That he will again give me the grace to get through a tough day, that I will come through my wrestling with Him victoriously, with a new life, one better than I could ever have imagined. If we have to keep wrestling until he beats all of the old out of me I am okay with that. I just pray I, like Jacob come out a new person. I don't necessarily need a name change, but I can only imagine what it would be like to hear God say, "You have wrestled with God and men, and have overcome." Oh, Lord how I want to overcome. I know He is the only way to do that so I am white knuckled, clinging with every ounce of strength I can muster, but man some days and especially nights are so hard.

I am continually astounded that so many of you continue to check in on our family and I covet each comment and email. Your prayers and encouragement mean more than you could know. If there is any way I can pray for any of you please feel free to email me! I would be honored. Again thank you for reading my insane ramblings of a grieving mother!

27 comments:

Corie said...

I will most certeinly be praying for you. I know how hard it is in the midst of all the wrestling. There are definitly more time in the day that I don't feel a dark cloud over me, but it is certeinly hard to celebrate when it seems someone is missing.

As I kissed my own Luke to bed tonight, I praise God for his 7 miraculous years. I don't think I would be as grateful today, without so much sadness. I can be at peace knowing God is in contol of all things, including the length of life of all my childre...but I certeinly doesn't change my desire to have Larson here. Hard to keep moving forward without our loved ones, yet rejoicing in what we have. I know God is with us.

Praying that you can enjoy the birthday with your sweet Luke. Be gentle with yourself and don't expect yourself to not feel what you need to. You are doing this so well. The way God intended you to. Praying for your day tomorrow as we pass another 22nd!

Suzie said...

Well you would not be alone in the mental ward because I too, have thought about digging Cooper up. I long to hold him just one more time. I am sure that if I mentioned that to anyone, other than my mommy friends, they would think I am absolutely nuts... so I am with you on that.

I am so sorry that you have to have such an emotional day tomorrow. I will be praying for you so hard tomorrow. I know that you will be surrounded by the bestest of friends and family, to help you through the pain.

I wish I could be there. But know that I will be thinking of you all day long. I love ya bunches.

And Happy Birthday to Luke. I am sure he is going to be soooo happy with his party. He has the greatest parents in the world.
**hugs**

Devon Rene said...

We can be roommates in that mental ward. I couldn't put my boys in the ground either...I wanted them close by me. How sick is that?

I will be praying and thinking of you tomorrow. So much joy and yet so much sorrow...May God grant you peace tomorrow.

I cherish your words and thank you for your open heart. You remind me time and time again that I am NOT alone. That in itself, is a gift.

milehighmom said...

You are so open and honest, and the things you are willing to share just make you more real to me. Thank you for sharing.

I will definitely be praying for you as you celebrate Luke's birthday and try to honor the memory of sweet Asher as well. It is a struggle I can only imagine, but one I know our good Lord will give you the strength to overcome.

God bless you and your precious family.

-Melissa

ajc4ever said...

A friend of mine lost her 5 hour old son ten years ago and he was not cremated. A few nights when the grief was so overwhelming to her she would just leave the house with the plan to go to the cemetery and dig up her baby. She was told by her counselor this feeling/desire is normal. I do NOT think any of the feelings/emotions you express on this blog are crazy. You are processing through your grief the way you need to. I will keep you in mind all day tomorrow and be praying for you a bunch.

Angela

Lissa Lane said...

Sweetheart, you definitely have my prayers. God is with you holding you hand.

I too have been asked if I am pregnant. This is an exceptionally hard question for me as I am not able to have more children. People have gone as far as to ask 'How's the TTC going' and tell me 'I've been praying God blesses you with a new baby soon'

Oh it's like a stab to my already tender bruised heart.

Please if you don't mind me asking. Keep us in your thoughts and prayers too. August 25th, 2007 was Calypso's original EDD. Last year that date was so hard on us I'm dreading this year

M said...

I love how real you are with your thoughts and emotions. I can't even imagine how hard this must be yesterday, today and tomorrow. I am praying for you as you go thoughout your day tomorrow. Your boys are amazing to me and I am so glad you share your journey with me and allow me to pray for you!

Michelle

The Dale's said...

I don't know you from Adam (as the saying goes) but every time I click on over here to your blog (through a friend, through a friend) to read your posts, I cry. Its a good cry, its a cry to God to comfort you and your family and to abundantly bless you. I KNOW He will. His timing is so perfect that we cannot understand it. He is with you and He holds both of your boys, how amazing! Your heart will never completely heal, a mother's heart will always long for her boys but one day, God will give you a peace. I know you want that peace now but God works is crazy ways sometimes. He is going to reward you for being so faithful! I'm believing it!

The Lenda's said...

I am praying for you and shedding tears for you right now. May God continue to grant you comfort and peace and give you extra strength when you are around pregnant woman and babies. praying God grants wisdom to others when talking to you. May they think before they open their mouths. I too have experienced many extremely insensitive comments after my numerous miscarriage and find it hard to believe how "stupid" people can act. Knowing they really don't get it does not help the sting and pain at the moment when they make these comments. May God's peace and graciousness continue to surround you at this time. May you be bale to get through Luke's birthday celebration with a heart of joy knowing what a beautiful gift God has given you in your four amazing boys. He makes all things beautiful in His time.
Hugs and Prayers
Rachel in PA
PS In the previous post I left you a reply about how to make the sundried tomatoes.

Laurie said...

Hi Kristy,

Today is the day you asked for prayer and I am praying for you sweetie. There is not one crazy thing in the words you write, just honest and true feelings and this is what I love about you. And you know what? You answered a question I have always had on my heart about burying a child. I could never ask if anyone thought the way I do, but I am so glad that you answered it for me. Praying that today will be a most wonderful one as you celebrate sweet Lukes birthday and you realize that Isaac and Asher are there with you in your heart. Have a great time with "everyone" who will be there celebrating with you. I just love your honesty Kristy and it always ministers to me. Tell Luke "Happy Birthday" from Grandma Laurie:)

Love and Hugs, Laurie in Ca.

Laurie said...

PS. I have to tell you also that the new type on the darker background is so much easier for my eyes to read. I about went blind with the blue on blue!! Just thought I'd be honest too!:) Hey, I am 60 and some things don't work as good as they used to.

Love, Laurie in Ca.

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry that you are experiencing what you are. I also thank you for sharing your most private feelings, you have helped me to care for my patients that have also experienced a loss of their child. You are enlightening a lot of people. Your sons have brought more knowledge to me in their short life than anyone that I have known for many years! Marcie

Kim (marygracesummons.blogspot.com) said...

Kristy,
I am praying for you friend. My heart is so tender with some of the same feelings you are having.
I still can't believe there are people out there who ask a woman that question not knowing for sure if she is pregnant....I have had it too. "Um, we didn't get to breast feed our baby so our bellys still buldge!!" aaahhhh..... I am sorry you have to endure this.
I am thinking of you today on Asher's six month birthday. The bitter sweet feelings you have to have today while celebrating Luke's birthday. Know that Asher and Isacc are looking down on you guys and enjoying your celebration, loving to see that you are choosing to live your life with joy and celebration. It's not always easy or sucessful but you are choosing to try to do it every day. You are amazing and beautiful to me. Know that I am continuing to pray for you every day!
With love,
Kim

Mandy said...

Hi Kristi,
I will be praying for you this weekend to get you through a rough weekend. Happy Birthday to Luke!!! May every moment of his day be a joy!!!

Love, Mandy

Melissa said...

You are not crazy for having these thoughts. My sons are buried in the cemetery and I have been know to go there and lay right down on top of where they were buried. Pushing my chest and the side of my face into the ground trying to get as close to them as possible. Yearning to touch them again and knowing that there little bodies are right below me but that there is nothing I can do to reach them.

I am hopeful that you can have a wonderful day with Luke. I hope that his joy and happiness will help ease some of the pain even if it is just for a short time.

As a far as being asked about being pregnant...people can just be soo ignorant? I really am amazed at how people do not think before opening their mouths. I also thought that was a cardinal rule...you never ask a woman if they are pregnant unless you have 100% comformation that it is true. I am sorry you have to endure those questions.

Thinking of you and your family.

W said...

I've been reading your blog since the beginning and just felt like today was the day to say hi. So...hi.

The VW's said...

I'll say some extra prayers for you! I'm so sorry that you have to wrestle with so many difficult emotions! I can't even imagine. Just know that you are thought of often and that your story has touched so many. You are such a blessing and God has a great purpose for you and your family!

Devin said...

Nothing, absolutely nothing about those 'ramblings' sounded anything but normal to me Kristy!

I will be praying for you on this very difficult day--may the peace of the Lord be right by your side.

Laura said...

Hmm don't know if I pushed publish the last post! If I did sorry to repost! Thinking of you tonight..praying the day was more than you could have ever asked or imagined. You are a brave mama..keep wrestling...He is right there, never letting go. I like the limp I have now and can't imagine my life without it. You are an amazing mama..I know Luke had a special day. Proud of you!

Wish I was closer to bring you a Starbucks and just sit together. Sweet dreams tonight...maybe even a sweet dream of all 4 of your boys. Sending much love to all of you.

Anonymous said...

I will continue to pray for your family. I lift you up to God each day.

Anonymous said...

Hi Kristy! I just read your post tonight after seeing you today at Waldameer. (I wish I would have read it last night and then hugged you today) If you were struggling, you did a good job for Luke of not showing it. That's a real sacrifice...you are such a good mom. praying for you, Beth

Emily said...

I always knew we could be roomies... I just didn't know it would have been in a mental ward. But we could. I can go down that road with you as far as you want to... and come back to the conclusion that God is God and He is the very glue that binds us. I love you so much more than you know and you have been heavy, heavy on my heart.

Anonymous said...

I posted a comment a long while back - I had one twin baby girl die of Trisomy 18 and one twin girl survive, but she was born at 26 weeks and almost didn't make it. In any event, I so relate to the bittersweet. Every single birthday (she is almost five now), we celebrate my living daughter's birthday and the anniversary of her sister's death. We have finally decided to separate our "celebrations" of the two events - it is just too hard to do both on the same day; too high as we thank God that our one daughter lived and too low as we grieve the loss of our other daughter. I understand how difficult the day must have been for you.

happy gram said...

still checking in on you and praying for you. your comment on my daughter's blog was so sweet and i know it makes those dark days a little easier to know that someone is experiencing exactly the same 'crazy' thoughts - celebrate your "craziness". it is what will keep you sane. well, i guess that is an oxymoron. but it is true! :) jan

The Whalen Family said...

Kristy I think you are such a beautiful person inside and out and you are always in my thoughts and prayers. I put a picture up of our neice Kinsie because it just didn't feel right now having her picture out here. I asked my sister-in-law if she would be uncomfortable with that and she started crying and said no, I am honored that you would do that. In some strange way looking up and seeing that beautiful, precious baby girl's face helps me get through the day and stay sane as we have to anxiously await to find out the progress and development of our unborn son. It's comforting. I love being able to read about your true feelings and what is on your mind. It helps me to relate more to my sister-in-law and be there for her. Thank you for the opportunity!

I love you Kristy!

*Tiffany!*

Mrs Wibbs said...

...six months isn't THAT long when you're grieving you know...! you are not crazy, or mad, and i do think you shouldn't be too hard on yourself. Jesus is holding you in His loving arms, grieving Mama; the sting of your losses will lessen with time, but for now, you are entitled to wrestle and hurt, as long as you let Him carry you...

Heather said...

Your blog is so touching. I cannot even begin to fathom what you and your family are going thru. My closest friend's son was born still in January and it was one of the hardest days of my life and I'm not even his mother... Thankyou for your faith. It is so amazing to see God's strength shining thru you.