My dear mama friends who are living after loss,
It hurts. And it’s hard to explain.
The days go on, but our stories remain. Our stories are so complicated with emotions of pain and heartache, anger and sorrow. Our memories leave us in chaos, living after loss. Our very being entangled with coils of grief, we walk different and even cast a different shadow. Our hearts beat out of rhythm. Our minds captivated with thoughts of you. Our eyes see a different world. A world without you.
Will it always be this way? Will it always hurt this bad? What does life look like, living after loss?
I will always have a scar. A deep, noticeable scar. Sometimes, I feel like it’s an ugly scar. One I can’t really hide. People notice. They try their best not to be obvious with their curiosity and wonder of what may have caused this vicious mark. And others avoid the reality they see and try to exchange pleasantries and pretend it goes unnoticed. And over time, my scar has faded. It’s less visible in the day to day encounters. I’ve learned how to respond to the questions and give answers to keep others comfortable. But loss leaves a permanent scar. Still tender to the touch even after years go by.
But love changes everything. Love changes our story.
Our stories can go on with a clenched fist, holding tightly to the tangles of grief, rooting ourselves in bitterness and anger, or we can loosen our grip and let love rest in the palm of our hand. Even when that might expose our scars. Because love is patient, kind and gentle…and that’s everything we need. We need love to take us by the hand and walk us through this life after loss. Through the unthinkable. Unbearable. Impossible. Only love knows how to navigate through our twisted story of loss. Love sees our tears and knows the pain runs deep. Love has been there. Love teaches us grace for those who have not been down our road. Love shares our stories, even when it’s uncomfortable. Love finds a way, even in the darkness.
Because of love, I know my story and I’m learning how to live after loss. Choosing love sets me free. Free from what others might think as I learn these new steps. Free to embrace the journey, even the darkest days.
I don’t think I would ever have known such love, without being in the depths of loss. I would never choose loss. I would never choose this story. But I will choose the love that I have found through it.
Love writes a beautiful story. And that is the story I choose to live.