Joy Comes in the Mourning

June 2nd, 2012~ what would have been David and my 33rd anniversary.

I woke up with tears streaming down my face, not because of a dream I had~ I have yet to be visited by David in my sleep~ but because my body and my mind must have been aware of the significance of this day, even as I slept. I cried some more during my shower.

Later, in front of the mirror, I did my best to disguise the evidence of what I was feeling; bereft, alone, full of sadness.

My first instinct was to sit by myself in a corner at breakfast, but instead, I wisely chose the table with the friendliest faces I could find; some I recognized and some I didn’t. Conversations about flying airplanes and traveling and writing flowed around me, calming me with their everydayness. To everyone else, it was Saturday, the last day of the conference. To me, the date was a stark reminder of just how much I had lost. Each time I felt at the edge of sobbing, I took the deep cleansing breath that had been suggested in a speech class the day before, given by Jane Rubietta, (also known as the angel who had prayed with me in the hallway my first day when the emotions overcame me during the worship service). Amazingly, the deep breathing worked to stem the tide of tears that hovered just below the surface.

Another woman joined us, asking if we could pray for her roommate who’d fallen the night before and now felt ill. The women at the table swiftly formed a circle, and holding hands, we prayed.

“Could we add me to that prayer?” I tentatively asked after the Amen, “Today would have been our 33rd anniversary, and I’m not sure I’m going to be okay.”

As the women prayed out loud for me, tears flowed freely down my face, and with them, strength and healing.

I am going to be okay, I knew then. I will never stop missing David, it is true. But as these women reached out to hug me, to hold my hand, and to comfort me in my time of need, I thought about all the reasons I was at a Christian Writer’s conference in IL; Cecil Murphey’s generosity in giving me a scholarship, a husband’s tremendous support and encouragement in applying for it, eight children who love me and want to see me happy, good friends, loving siblings who have been overseeing my family in my absence, and a table full of women who are beautiful with the light of Jesus Christ shining through their eyes.

“Weeping may spend the night, but there is joy in the morning.” –Psalm 30:5

5 thoughts on “Joy Comes in the Mourning

  1. Beth Knoedler says:

    There are reasons for everything. When you asked to be added to that prayer that helped strengthen you in your healing. Every birthday, anniversary, holiday and season in life you come to, you will find the strength and healing one step at a time. You will have many good days ahead. Thinking of you!

  2. Beth Knoedler says:

    Oh and I forgot to mention, David will come to you in your dreams. It may take time, but he will. I am a firm believer in loved ones visiting us in our dreams. I think that it takes time and it will happen when you least expect it.

  3. Jean Vaux says:

    Or coming as one of God’s winged creatures… I visited my mom’s grave on Mother’s Day. The brown and orange butterfly showed up and landed on her yet-to-be-filled flower pot. Every time it left and flew around, it came back again. Sometimes there were two flying together (Dad?), but only one lit by the flower pot every time. Amazing “Message from Heaven”, 12 years later. Keep your eyes open too. You might be awake when you see some sign.

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