Thursday, October 28, 2010

How DEEP Do You Cram Your Pain ?

Close-up of nude 1960's painting that is Sold

I was out on my morning walk a few days ago, I believe it was Monday morning...I always go for my power walks early, listen to a Christian sermon of some sort...and just keep moving. I probably walk for only 3 miles, probably about 3 1/2 , as I am trying to work myself back up to my 4 1/2 to 5 miles that I always did before.
The sun has been up for about an hour or so by now, cars whizzing by heading to work and taking kids to school. I keep moving , swing my arms some, breathe deeply...I sometimes like how my ponytail feels when it bounces gently between my shoulder blades with my strides. That's when I'm not contemplating cutting my hair and double-piercing my ears , or some other random thoughts about how to change things about me not to feel pain inside.

The sight I saw that morning, was a beautiful one...but made me sad and scared for my future vision of happiness in my life. I was coming up a street, I had passed some yardmen doing work in a corner yard..laying out fresh pinestraw in beds around a home. Then while I was looking up the street, about halfway through my walk...I saw the homeowner, a woman come jogging around the corner in the distance.
Maxine last fall ready to drag me for a early evening walk.

As I looked up, I saw her running towards me down the street, and she was still at a distance from me...and she raised both her arms in the air...and was waving them, back and a pendulum or a cheerleader. The sun was behind her, and she radiated pure joy. She must have done this about 30-50 seconds, over and over.
A joyful woman, a mesmerizing , painful vision for me.

I remember I thought, " I will never feel like that , ever again in my life. " While she got closer to me, she passed me and smiled and said, " Hi !! " So happy, she was young ( about 10 years  younger then myself I am guesstimating ), I knew she had been remarried, and I saw her out with her new husband often exercising together. 
She then passed me, and I started thinking also, rationalizing...whining... " Well of course she is happy, she is young and beautiful,  so healthy she can run and swing her arms over here head with happiness, she lives in a pretty expensive home, no money worries, she always looks in love with her new husband, she has some precious children. , what reason would she have to be unhappy ?"
Then I started considering my life...I have many blessings, but my precious youngest daughter will never , ever be in it again. The loss of her, still crushes me inside. That weight of pain, I have crammed inside me deeper...simply trying to be able to take care of my youngest son, and be there for my older children.
I can not imagine , or even consider the possibility of ever, EVER being as joyful as this beautiful young woman who jogged past me. To feel the joy of life , as I have felt before, I know that it will not be realistic or possible for me again.
I told my husband this story, and he disagrees..he thinks I will feel it again. 
I remember sitting across from him , and I told him, " There is no way , as the loss of Sarah , is too great. It will always be a deep wound inside me. It will not be possible , as the shadow of her loss will become a part of my soul. It will be there , over-shadowing future happiness and joy."
I am aware that many , many people have suffered great loss, and keep on living, and seem to be living a joyful life. I know as a witness for God, I should do that. 
I know that it has been only 3 1/2 months since her accident , and I need to be more patient with myself.
Knowing does not help , head-knowledge is secondary to the pain that leads us all , because I know everyone has some pain that they cram inside , and I know that is not healthy, and I know it needs to be addressed and taken out and either discarded , given to God ,or accepted..or all three.
Sarah in Charleston, SC , a trip we took in 2008

 I know that my other children bring me joy , I know one day I will have some grandchildren that will bring me joy. But no one can fill the hole that is left in my heart and soul , after her death.
I also know Christian bloggers will write me and tell me that God can fill that hole...I do not see that now , but I am aware that He can heal a soul.
I have told many people that God can fill the void areas of your life. Now I am given the test of proving it , from a very deep abyss of a mother's pain.

I am also aware of the scripture verse, " The joy of the LORD is my strength. " Neh. 8:10.  I am aware that as a Christian my joy in life is not supposed to come from my circumstances, but the awareness that there is a God and believe He is who He says He is ( The Alpha and the Omega )  , and that  He alone should be the reason for me to have joy.
Not helping so far.
I feel there is a block on my mental filter when I read scripture, and especially if I read anything , like the obituary, etc. of my daughter's death. The words make no sense to me when I read them, my mind will not allow me to comprehend it.
Even looking at pictures of her, is confusing to a grieving brain.
It brings the loss smack in my face...and my mind shuts down to the reality of it.

When I have had some of you kind bloggers say, that my faith is strong after this...I do not feel that, I do not see it or experience it yet . I have not given up on God ,or my Christian faith, but I do not feel it is strong at all at present.
It is clouded, and held back by the pain that I have crammed down inside myself, and I believe that God sees me as that sullen , moody child of His...sitting in the corner watching Him warily.

Knowing that I should ' give it ' to God , that we all should give our pain to Him , may help me in the future.

I can't give Him my pain yet . It is holding onto me, and I am holding on to it.  I also know that is common with grief , as we feel it is all we have left of our loved ones.

 Take care,



  1. Gina, Perhaps little by little you will be able to give God pieces of your pain and your unbearable wound will begin to heal. The scar will always be there, the hole in your heart will always be there. But there will be room for great joy. It is what your beloved Sarah would want for you. Grief comes in waves and sometimes those waves knock us down and we feel we're drowning. But God holds onto us and the sea will calm. Your life will never be the same but your heart will have room for the joy. Eventually you may be able to live life joyfully in honor of the joy that Sarah brought you. Be patient with yourself. One day at a time, but with hope. Keeping you in my prayers.

  2. Dearest Gina ~ My heart aches for you. I don't know what else to say that hasn't already been said, but will say, that you are in my thoughts and prayers. The rest of your 'living' family needs you, and I pray that you will feel God's loving strength supporting you each step of the way in your continuing journey of this life.

    Love and hugs ~ FlowerLady

  3. Hi Gina...It's so easy to look at others and think that everything is perfect and glorious in their lives, but we all know that no one goes untouched by sadness or grief. It's all part of the human experience that we all share.

    You have suffered one of the worst losses imaginable, and it's true your life will never be the same, but I truly believe that your life will be filled with joy again. The quote you have posted by E.M. Forster is so true. We have our lives planned out as to how they should unfurl, but often times God has other plans...a greater plan...and it takes time to let go of our own plan. God's blessings to you!

  4. Gina,
    You have a talent for writing, Gina. You should think about doing that more... perhaps work through your grief as a fictional character who finds herself again after tremendous hardship. That might sound like some sort of admonishment or something.. I don't mean it to at all! I hope you will understand that it is my heart talking to your heart, encouraging you. Believing in you.

    I think it is beyond synchronous that I also posted a picture on my blog of the edifice of a cathedral today. And that in the few moments right before I came to your post I opened a folder of pictures on my computer and saw the last photo of my father, taken only months before his death. And I felt the surreal-ness you speak of .. there he is, smiling and yet.. there he is not, any longer.

    When I move to France you will be my guest, if you would like that. Strangers in a strange land. You would be welcome, and we can discover things together. :)

  5. There has been speculation in the press in past couple of days, about sending men to Mars:

    One English newspaper had an editorial commenting on this, and they came up with a quote from Jung. It said:

    "Space flights are merely an escape, a fleeing away from oneself, because it is easier to go to Mars or the Moon than it is to understand one's self".

    Back to you...

    Mr Jung also says that we only recognize qualities in other people that we possess ourselves. If a person accuses someone else of being a thief/hooligan, or whatever, it's because we the accuser has something of that quality in their own nature.

    Now, you've just told us that you saw this woman and you thought that she was happy. In a way, something in you, which was happy, or which once knew happiness, was reflected itself in that women, for a moment.

    It's this business about mirrors, and seeing yourself in others.

    Being happy is nice, but it's not necessaily what we are here for.

    Going to Mars is exactly like the founding of America: people were trying to get away from themselves. But they simply took themselves along, and the original problems they were running away from were never solved.

  6. Hi Gina, you have every right to feel what you are feeling. Take time to grieve and don't feel guilty about it. God is patient.

  7. You write so eloquently of your many conflicting thoughts and feelings, Gina. You are truly in touch with your soul and by working through all these emotions with honesty and without censoring them, you are allowing yourself to feel everything at the deepest level. This is how healing will take place, slowly, bit by bit, at your own pace and in your own time. Do not judge yourself or feel guilty. Eventually you will emerge from your grief and be able to feel joyful once more. With love, Des.

  8. Gina, my heart goes out to you.

  9. Dear Gina!
    Yes,god patient, this sure!
    My heart aches for you and together very much I feel for you,I am a mother.
    You would not be able to talk with a Christian spiritual caretaker,you are with a Christian psychiatrist?
    This so big pain, which it is not possible to digest alone,,only with help.
    God bless you!
    Monika from Hungary

  10. Gina,

    The Lord has truly put you on my heart and continuously in my prayers. I DID name you a winner for my blog award post today. I hope you have a wonderful weekend.


  11. Dear Gina, do not expect your feelings to be other than what they are. Three and a half months is not long enough, not nearly long enough, but I think eventually your joy will return. Not to replace or cover over what you feel for Sarah, but to add a new depth to your life. I woke the other night and felt the need to pray for you, and I am sure many others continue to do the same.

  12. I understand what you are saying. I too feel I will never know complete joy again. When I see other people happy, I know that is something I will never feel now - the wound or the hole will always be there. We will smile, we will be happy but we will never be totally, completely happy now.

  13. "We must be willing to let go of the life we have planned, so as to have the life that is waiting for us." -E.M. Forster"

    I love these lines on your sidebar. I think maybe this is some kind of an answer to the pain in this post...

  14. I believe with all my heart that what you are feeling is normal. Praying for you


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