Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Life After Loss

Life after loss is hard, obviously, that's a given.  But it is so much more than just that; it is beautiful and sad and confusing and heartbreaking and emotional and lonely and joyful all mixed into one.

For most of you that have shared this journey with us, your lives have returned back to normal.  I cannot blame you for that and I cannot hold that against you.  But please understand that my life will never be normal again.  There will always be this sweet little boy missing from our family pictures.  There will always be a part of my heart missing.

Not only am I grieving the loss of sweet baby Asher.  I am grieving an entire lifetime of precious memories that I will never get to have with my sweet boy.  I am also grieving the mom that I used to be, the friend that I used to be, the wife that I used to, and the daughter that I used to be.  My life is different now, my outlook is different;  I am far from the same girl I used to be, no matter how much you think I may be.  Losing a child changes you.

Life must go on, believe me, I get that.  But this new life is quite different from what it used to be.  It's hard for me to be around new people.  I try to avoid engaging in conversation because I know the words are coming, "how many kids do you have?"  I tell them the truth and they get that look in their eyes like they are scared silly and terrified and just want to run away.  I lie to them because I want to avoid that reaction and I feel guilty like I am disowning my own child.  Tough stuff, let's just say that.  Please friends, keep this in mind when someone answers this question in a way you did not expect.  Talk with them, love them, support them, encourage them.  We want to share our child with you, we want the world to know we have a baby in heaven.  I long for people to talk about my sweet Asher, to say his name, it is music to my ears, it warms my heart.  

So you ask how can there be days filled with joy?  The love I have for Asher is like nothing I can explain.  I love Micah and I love my husband and I love my family with all of my heart.  But nothing will ever compare to the love and the connection I have with Asher.  The love I have for Asher runs so deep.  That boy is special, that about sums it up.  And that is how there is joy.  When I think of Asher, my heart is filled with joy because of the relationship I share with him.  The lessons he has taught me, the wisdom he has given me, the strength he has left me.

Joy because Asher has changed me; I am a better mom now than I ever was before.  Joy because my hurting and my story can bring someone else hope.  Joy because I have a God who loves me.  Joy because I get to see my baby boy again one day.  Joy because I have experienced a love like no other. Joy because I can wake up every day with a smile on my face.  Joy because I am loved and taken care of.  Joy because I have two handsome little boys, one here on earth and one watching over me in heaven.  Joy because there is hope after the storm.

So much has been taken from me.  So much pain, sorrow, and grief surrounds me.  So much it can be overwhelming at times.  But I cannot help but focus on the good and what has already and what will continue to happen because of Asher's story.  He may be physically gone, but I can tell you one thing, his story will continue to live on.

Very truly I tell you, you will weep and mourn while the world rejoices.  You will grieve, but your grief will turn to joy.  John 16:20

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