It is very late, and as usual, I want to be sleeping. But I cannot sleep until I wrestle with these words I have been avoiding...
I feel like I'm betraying Lynn. There, I said it. It's out there. It's done.
Today, my mind was overrun with questions and revelation as I read a book given to me by one of my many aunts on the Island, Grieving with Hope, by Samuel J. Hodges and Kathy Leonard, a Grief Share resource. I haven't read any grief resources in quite a while; my mind couldn't take it in the midst of the move. So this was the first time in months (I am ashamed to admit) that I entered into the world of help, where the symptoms and tendencies of grief are normal and understood... displayed in practical outlines. I was greatly "convicted" as I read on p.13, [Unhealthy denial] happens when you continue to believe your life can go back to the way it was and when you think happiness can be found only in the way things used to be.
Is that what I'm doing? I thought? I have physically moved into a new life, but I am not yet living it. I am struggling and surviving, coping and sustaining. But engaging in a new life...? That's different. I've started, but I'm running from it...
At a prayer meeting last week they prayed for me... a new thing... God is doing a new thing... (Is 43:19) I made a commitment of faith to receive that new thing, but thought, What if I don't want it? What if I just want things to go back to the way they were?
Since the beginning of this journey, starting sometime after the funeral, I have struggled with how to move on, how to accept the sudden death of my husband, the end of our family values and co-parenting rhythm, the lack of closure to our ministry, the jolting halt of so many things. Am I really sitting here waiting for Lynn to come back? Thinking I'll wake up one day and it will all be back to normal?
I have come to terms with the fact that I feel like I am betraying Lynn by moving forward and emotionally do not cope with it well. Psychologically, I struggle to accept the reality of my "new world". I know this is "normal" for the bereaved and am getting the necessary help, booking appointments, etc... But it is jarring. I have days where I feel crazy and irrational. My brain is unable to recognize the world around me and juggles with the present while trying to keep the past alive.
Leaving my church felt like a betrayal (I love you all!!). Leaving my home felt like a betrayal. Making financial decisions without Lynn feels like a betrayal. Doing something he wouldn't have done feels wrong and unjust. Wearing a style he didn't prefer feels like a betrayal. Choosing meat over vegan :). Trying to live a different life feels like a betrayal.
I wonder... Am I trying to keep Lynn alive somehow? If he were alive, it would be a betrayal, like I left him... I laugh, often several times a day, at all the reasons Lynn would not have moved to PEI! When random tractors drive by my front window and little kittens run playfully into my kitchen... Lynn would never have lived here, would never have chosen this life. But I chose it. And I'm the one here. He is not.
A sweet sister at the prayer meeting told me about her mother's death and her own struggle with grief. She said that the Lord finally spoke to her heart that her mother was at peace with where she was, and it relieved her soul. Soon she was also at peace. I don't know if I doubt Lynn's peacefulness and joy at being with the Lord. But I certainly doubt it in myself. What does the Lord need to speak to my heart to let me know that it's okay? What do I need to know in order to feel released? released from my husband... the man I have loved for so long...? the calling to be his wife and go with him wherever he goes???
I don't know what it is. But I know I need it. God has set before me life, and I must choose life... so that my children and I may live... (Deut 30:19) Sunny said to me, God knows the way out of your grief... He will lead you.
Okay, Lord. Lead me in the Way everlasting, for your name's sake!