O Joy, that seekest me through pain,
I cannot close my heart to Thee;
I trace the rainbow through the rain,
And feel the promise is not vain
That morn shall tearless be.
The other day while putting away clean dishes, I did my normal clumsy thing and accidentally knocked a Corelle bowl off my counter. I cringed as it fell, watched it instantly shatter into so many uncountable pieces. Even after cleaning up, I am still finding tiny fragments of that bowl in weird places.
The image of it falling, the sound and sight of it shattering has stayed with me all week.
It was a good visual of how, in just a moment, a life – a heart- can be shattered, changed forever.
The moment I answered my phone and learned Kevin, my brother in law, had been killed in a car accident.
The moment Kevin died.
On April the 21st, it will be one year.
One whole year without him.
How can just one year bring so many heartaches and changes? Too many shattered pieces lost, with no chance to put any of it back together.
The pain of this last year has been almost unbearable at times. Pain that is unexplainable, really.
The absence of his presence tangible and heartbreaking – Too many firsts without him: milestones, birthdays and holidays, kid’s games, and so many more moments where you look up, once again startled with the sad realization that he is not there, isn’t coming. Not then, not ever. Every time it’s a sucker punch to the gut, always a surprise.
One year later, it is still so very raw and painful.
Time is merciless. It keeps soldiering on while kids grow up, and we do life day by day.
Each day is still filled with the stark pain of his never ending absence. Sometimes it feels like he is just running an errand or at work and will come soon. Then reality slams into us- often at the oddest moments. He’s not and he is not coming.
Hope shattered again, some days it’s all you can do to put one foot in front of the other.
So many have said the second year without a loved one is even harder than the first year.
How can that even be possible?
On one hand, I cannot imagine how.
But on the other hand, looking ahead at another year, more milestones, more holidays, more changes, more of everything without him seems unfathomable and unbearable.
One thing I do know is that God has been here through the pain. He has walked with us – carried us, really – through this last year. He has promised not to forsake us and has wrapped his arms around us in our suffering. Knowing that He goes with us and before us gives my heart hope, hope that we must cling to in order to get through each and every day.
No, in all these things we are more than conquerors
though him who loved us.
For I am convinced that
neither death nor life,
neither angels or demons,
neither the present nor the future,
nor any powers,
neither height nor depths,
nor anything else in all creation,
will be able to separate us
from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
~ Romans 8: 37-39