two weddings and a funeral

it’s been one month. somehow i have survived 31 days without the company, conversation, advice, touch, and laugh of my mother.

in the space of one shallow breath, life goes. and then – remarkably – life goes on.

and the expected impending hollowness, the unbearable devastation that is the only fathomable aftermath to such a loss…doesn’t come.

yes, the days are painful – at times to a paralyzing, breathtaking degree – but life is not empty. celebration exists alongside the mourning. though it seemed impossible when anticipating going on without her, i’ve found that a heart can be full of joy and sorrow at the same time.

in the last five weeks, my family has gathered for a wedding, a memorial service, another wedding (same bride & groom), and two birthdays. the sweetness and significance of that first impromptu marriage ceremony will forever be a cherished family memory, but mom’s absence at the subsequent occasions didn’t rob them of happiness or laughter, either.

what seemed a certain fate in the darkest hour was mercifully proven false under the festive lights.

i’m grateful that i’ve never experienced heartache like this before (i’ve been fortunate to make it 30 years without a blow of this magnitude), and i grieve for the countless people who have, do, and will experience the agony of loss (my heart is heavy with the realization that this is what people are enduring every day).

but i praise God, the Healer, the Comforter, the Provider, whose grace enables me to live, to thrive, through each bittersweet turn. i KNOW that i could not do this without Him.

The young women will dance for joy, and the men—old and young—will join in the celebration. I will turn their mourning into joy. I will comfort them and exchange their sorrow for rejoicing. ~ Jeremiah 31:13 NLT

*photo by haleigh russell

One Thought on “two weddings and a funeral

  1. That was the first thing I noticed when I saw the wedding photos – so much joy! How gracious of God to provide us celebration even in the midst of anguish and grief. You know my heart is with you, sister. May there be festive lights all along the path of mourning and healing.

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