My Journal of Grief 7-13-15

Have you ever felt like you missed the mark? Like you were suppose to do something and didn’t? I have been guilty of this many times, and thought maybe I had learned my lesson…but apparently not!

On one of questions asked on the Sunshine Blogger award, I was asked what book would I recommend. My answer was the Bible, but I also said, “Just enjoy reading. I’m preaching to myself. Will explain another time, 🤐” Well, I’m going to try to explain here.

I felt led to share my journal entries yesterday, but didn’t do it…I felt it was too close-up and personal. I wanted to post something on a happier tone. Nothing else came to me, so I brushed the feeling aside and didn’t post anything.

Today my friend, Debbie from beetreegathering, lost her dad. Maybe this was suppose to be for her…This may be a long post, so my apologies ahead of time.

The above pic is from the cover of my last journal, a gift from a friend. To explain a little before sharing the journal entries, my father passed away in November of 2012 and also my step mom a couple years later.

Something happened inside me that changed me. Before that time, I was an avid reader and journaler. But after my dad’s death, and then my step mom’s, I no longer could do either. My spirit felt crippled. I have been able to read a little the past year. I only made two journal entries in 2015 and two in 2018, since my dad first passed away.

(Please forgive my sloppy handwriting!)

(I’m gonna recap the rest, due to privacy of names, etc., that need to stay private.)

His Hospice nurse came out. Through all this, we felt peace.

….Before the funeral, my pastor walked up to my step-mom and I during the last viewing of my father. He looked peaceful. The military flag was draped at the end and felt so honoring to his memory.

It was at this moment that Nerene told us both about Dad reading and kissing his Bible very night before he went to bed. I was trying not to lose it.

My Dad had never told the pastor that he had been in WWII and the Korean War. Daddy never talked about the war to us kids. It was either too traumatic for him, or maybe he was just trying to protect us. We will never know.

He had started out as a young 17 year old in the navy, who had lied about his age in order to enlist. He was on the ship, USS St. Louis at Pearl Harbor. Then moved on later to the army and became a Sargent.

In the eulogy, pastor brought out all that. But something else happened to me during his funeral. I couldn’t cry. I held it all in. My Dad was from the old-school. I have mentioned this. Most men of this era, didn’t like for anyone to see them cry. Maybe I felt it was honoring to his memory.

And I didn’t cry after that. Whenever I thought of my Dad and tears threatened, I thought of something else. So for several years, I held my grief inside.

I don’t exactly know, but maybe it was last year or the year before, I was watching a movie by myself one night. I had no idea the movie would end with the Dad coming down with a disease and dying. The dam broke inside me, and I cried till I didn’t have any tears left.

I was able to let go of the grief. I didn’t know why the movie had caused me to do that. But I have realized since then, I had locked my grief away as a memorial to him.

Yes, grief is a funny thing. Grief comes in many forms, shapes and sizes. Please know that you must let someone grieve the way they feel they need to. Do NOT judge anyone if you do not see any tears. It does not mean they don’t care. I can remember making that snap judgement one time. I am woman enough to realize I was very wrong. I didn’t know any better.

Along the way if you need counseling, please seek it. Do what you have to in order to heal.

Get angry if you feel like getting angry. Pray to God and tell him every feeling, good or bad, that you are feeling or not feeling.

Cry on someone’s shoulder, call someone and talk about your loved one’s memory, watch sad movies, but grieve. Let yourself cry. Allow yourself to cry. It’s ok to cry.

Remember the good times and the bad times. I wish someone had told me that back then.

Bravely Seated

She attends church by herself. Every Sunday morning. Every Sunday night. Every Wednesday night. With the diligence a mail carrier models, she treks through the days, and shoulders through the rain, sleet and snow, into her fierce trials and disappointments.

There was a time–previously in her fond memories–where they all stood as a family, on the old familiar pew. Together was once a feeling of familiarity and comfort. Even though her circumstances have changed, somehow she knows she isn’t truly alone.

Bravely, she takes a seat, hands clasped, fingers locked tight with her promises. “God has seen his ways, and will heal him”….”They will come again to their own border….”

And there is hope in thine end, saith the LORD, that thy children shall come again to their own border.” Jeremiah 31:17

Seated together. Hope. Promises. God. She is not alone.

Pic credits to covenantheirs.org