Tough Seasons – The Ebb and Flow of Grief

pexels-photoThis is the tough season. I wasn’t expecting it. Christmas flew by with a flurry of activity. Before I knew it, it was mid-January and my heart was ice. I didn’t have energy. I was just making the survival motions to get to the end of each day.

That’s when the crying started. Finally the heart-ice was melting but it hurt oh-so-much. My wonderful hubby’s shoulder was regularly whetted with my tears. It was as if Mom died yesterday. I thought I was past this point of grief.

This has been my life for the past month. As I approach the one-year of Mom’s death on February 26, I have a roller coaster of emotions. This week last year I was at Mom’s bedside at the Coudersport Hospital ICU in Pennsylvania. She was breathing with the help of a respirator. She couldn’t talk. She couldn’t swallow. I never knew what it meant to not be able to swallow. She was in agony. I wanted more than anything to trade places with her. To take away the suffering she felt. I was helpless.

I’ve always loved my birthday. It sounds pretty selfish but it’s true. I have so many happy memories associated with the day. This year my birthday engenders a different feeling. There’s a gray cloud over next Tuesday. It was the day we made the decision to remove Mom from all artificial life-sustaining support. It was the day we chose to let Mom go. That was a hard day.

This week, the storm clouds of grief have lifted a bit. I have finally arrived at a place where I can write again. I can communicate with others what is going on inside my heart. I can remember the good of my Mother’s life and be incredibly thankful. I can live. I can see that there is good yet to come in this life. I can look at the future with a smile.

These next two weeks are going to be hard. I’ll need the love and support from the Lord, my family, and my friends to get to the other side. However, I know these two weeks will be good. It’s good to remember. To mourn and to grieve. There’s a time for everything. I trust it will be time to laugh, to celebrate, to rejoice soon.

Thanks for reading. Thank you for caring. I am so thankful for the community the Lord has given me for this season.

6 thoughts on “Tough Seasons – The Ebb and Flow of Grief

  1. Kirsten says:

    Praying for you, Liz, in this difficult season and phase of mourning. “The LORD is close to the broken hearted” May you rest in His Presence with peace today.

  2. Sarah Bell says:

    Dear Liz, thank you for sharing your heart and pain. Your example has been good for me over this past year. I have been mourning my great aunt’s passing and that was just a few months ago and recently, grieving again for my brother who died 17 years ago. You are right, grief ebbs and flows- probably all of our lives. I rejoice that God is happy and joyful- who would want a morose Sovereign to obey and follow but I also am deeply grateful that Jesus became a Man of Sorrows, acquainted with grief and that he is therefore, a faithful High Priest who understands our deep sadness. I often think of Ps. 42 where it says “Deep calls to deep
    in the roar of your waterfalls;
    all your waves and breakers
    have swept over me.”
    and the Psalm ends:
    “Why, my soul, are you downcast?
    Why so disturbed within me?
    Put your hope in God,
    for I will yet praise him,
    my Savior and my God.”
    May both you and I (and others!) use our grief to propel us to lean ever closer on Jesus and come to know him more deeply through the tears… and, I agree with you that sharing our grief with other humans is hard but necessary for the strength & comfort from Jesus (2 Cor. 1:4). I love you!

    • Liz Udall says:

      Thank you so much, Sarah. I know you have had these multiple grief and you understand. It is certainly a time to allow the Lord to lead me to the Rock that is higher than I. Thank you for this passage. I have been learning about real joy that is not connected to circumstances a lot this year. I’m thankful the Lord trusts me enough to walk through these things. I’m thinking of you and your family as you remember your brother. Big, big hugs, Sister!! I’m so thankful for you. I love you!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *