I had read and heard repeatedly that holidays make grief stronger and harder. I didn’t think Halloween would be a very big deal, but I’m finding it to be hard. What I hadn’t really thought about beforehand is that Halloween is a holiday all about kids. So duh! Of course that will be hard! So many reminders of what is not here with me.
I have been crying more all week. Everyone at school is in costumes and smiling and laughing. I am thinking of the froggie costume I had for Luke hanging in the closet, unworn. The tears just keep coming. It probably was too big for the first year, but I would’ve had fun finding something for him to wear. This day would be so different if he were here. My first Halloween with a child of my own.
My principal showed me pictures of her grandbaby in his elephant costume, smiling with candy wrappers strewn about him. I wondered how she could not be aware that that might make me sad, but I just smiled and didn’t let on to the pain I was feeling. Maybe because I behave normally most of the time, people think I am over it. Maybe they forget the loss.
On Tuesday, I worked at the Fall Festival at school. I was assigned to supervise the dance. I thought that would be fine; I’m around school-age kids every day. But someone’s little brother came. He was probably about 2 and was in a batman costume. He was out in the middle of the dance floor by himself, just spinning in circles. So cute. I couldn’t keep my eyes off of him. I wondered what Luke would be like at a school dance.
Today, I’m supposed to be celebrating Halloween with my students and being happy and cheery. I’m not. Many other teachers are in costume. I am just in orange and black. I feel like a black cloud in the midst of a bunch of happy sunshines. I cried before school. I barely contained the lump in my throat during calendar time. I cried during morning recess and lunch. One of my aides was talking about holidays with the class and said, “Mrs. Hopper, what’s your favorite holiday?”. I said, “I don’t really like any of them right now”. I kind of wanted a little acknowledgment of Luke or maybe sympathy. She laughed. I thought, “it’s really not funny”. I usually LOVE holidays. I am just not myself right now. I hope I will be again eventually.
I was planning to take a pregnancy test on Saturday. We started trying this month at 5 months out. I was pretty excited about testing. I thought I really might be pregnant and was thinking I was having some symptoms. I got my period Tuesday, earlier than I expected, so I have no need to take a test. Please pray for God’s perfect timing in conceiving our next baby, my patience in waiting on that timing, and that I will get to keep that baby on earth.
I hope your Halloween is going better than mine, blog friends! Thanks for all of your kind support and comments. I read and treasure them all.
I have been looking for a frame to put Luke’s foot picture in so I could put it by my desk at work. I couldn’t find a baby frame that was vertical that I liked. I decided to put it in an “L” holder. It feels good to display and acknowledge him publicly, even if it’s only his little foot. I wish it wasn’t so taboo to display his other photos, but this is at least something. I love you and am proud to display you, my precious baby.
I heard something on the radio that really struck me. It was Max Lucado speaking. He said he had just gone through a week during which there were 5 funerals at his church. Even though it is not unusual for him to be involved in such events, the high frequency in the short time period brought him down and made him sad. He said people might think, “Why ? They are in heaven. Death is a natural part of life.”
But then he said that death is NOT a natural part of life. I thought, “Huh? Isn’t it? It happens to all of us. It’s a certainty.” Then he explained further. We were not originally created with the expectation that we would experience death or separation.
A light bulb went on for me. This is not something I have ever thought before, but it’s true. Adam and Eve were made to be in companionship with God and each other in the Garden of Eden. Our intricate design plan did not include death or being away from our loved ones, ever. No wonder it hurts so much! Unfortunately Adam and Eve made a sinful choice that changed the plan (although I don’t blame them, I as a sinful being would likely have done the same thing). But thankfully, our loving and forgiving God has repaired the plan so that we can still have that companionship for eternity though the sacrifice of His precious Son Jesus. He does know how I feel tenfold as He had to go through losing His Son too. And just as He knew it was a temporary separation, so I know that mine and Luke’s will be also.
I googled Max Lucado to make sure I was spelling his name correctly and I found more encouragement on his website http://maxlucado.com/ pertinent to my loss. It says:
“In May of 2008, Steven Curtis Chapman and his wife, Mary Beth lost their five-year-old daughter in an automobile accident. They were deluged by messages of kindness. One in particular gave Steven strength. It was from a pastor friend who’d lost his son in an auto accident. “Remember, your future with your daughter will be greater than your past with her.”
Death seems to take so much. We bury the wedding that never happened, the golden years we never knew. We bury dreams. But in heaven these dreams will come true. Acts 3:21 says that God has promised a “restoration of all things.”
All things includes all relationships. Our final home will hear no good-byes. Gone forever. Let the promise change you. From sagging to seeking, from mournful to hopeful! From dwellers in the land of good-byes to a heaven of hellos! You’ll get through this!”
Max Lucado has new a book about this called “You’ll Get Through This”. Sounds like a good to read to me! I’ve never read any of his books before, but write about getting through heartache and being with my baby again and I’m sold;)
Hooray for that day! Thank you, Lord