Wednesday, August 1, 2012

once again...

I have welcomed a friend into the horrible, awful Cancer is Terrible and My Parent Died Because of It club. Not a club anyone is clammoring to join, but a growing group nonetheless. I have a heavy heart for my friend Jon and his family in the passing of Mr. Bud, who I likely never spoke with, but have been blessed by watching how he handled his illness coupled with his faith in our good and gracious Father.

Each time I see a friend go through this, I am taken back to those days over six years ago. The days of grieving for the just-gone. Those days when you wake up, and you think "ok, it's ok...oh, wait..." because it takes time for it to sink in, really sink in. And then one day you wake up and it's just there, it doesn't hit you again like a ton of bricks. It's just always there, and that is both a good and a hard day.

I recently watched the movie Rabbit Hole, about a couple bereaving the death of their son. I don't recommend that you watch this movie, as the language in it is a bit much, however I keep coming back to this one part that really resonates with me. Becca's brother had died earlier, and she's asking her mother about grief:

Becca: Does it ever go away?
Nat: No, I don't think it does. Not for me, it hasn't, and that's goin' on eleven years. It changes, though.
Becca: How?
Nat: I don't know... the weight of it, I guess. At some point, it becomes bearable. It turns into something that you can crawl out from under and... carry around like a brick in your pocket. And you... you even forget it, for a while. But then you reach in for whatever reason and - there it is. Oh right, that. Which could be awful - But not all the time. It's kinda... not that you like it exactly, but it's what you have instead of your son, so you don't wanna let go of it either. So you carry it around. And it doesn't go away, which is...
Becca: What.
Nat: Fine... actually.

So, I say to Jon and his family, it does turn bearable at some point, and getting to that point looks different for each person. But there is that place where you gladly hold on to your missing them, because it's what you have left of them. I never want to stop missing my dad, as painful as it {still} can be at times, it's like a golden thread that keeps him here with me, in the smallest possible way. And with it is the happy hope I have of being with him again One Day. Oh, Happy Day!

As for your sweet dad, you know he is Home - the very place he was made for:

“If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.”
C.S. Lewis

"I was made for more than this world could offer me. My heart to hold true mystery. My voice was made to fall on holy ears. My life to collide with majesty... I was made me for rest, in a world that’s striving. To lie down in the fields of green. To set my feet upon this holy ground. To build my life on the things unseen." from Christy Nockles "Into the Glorious"

Things unseen - though our dads are not "things," I think we can take great comfort that they are now among those things unseen, and add to that upon which we now continue to build our lives. You said in a twitter post that your dad was your biggest fan. I've said the same thing about my dad many times... now as a way to honor them, we can each live our lives in ways that will make them prouder still.

The Lord's grace is in this place, too. And never forget that One Day "all sad things will come untrue." Tim Keller