People often talk to me about my bravery, the beauty of my written words and the strength that I appear to show in the face of adversity. The sharing of my story, our story, with others is at its core a selfish endeavor and one I feel compelled to do in order to put my thoughts on virtual paper and get them out of my cluttered mind. I said to someone recently that my telling our story of love and grief keeps Wesley somehow present for me and allows my soul to feel quieted. My mind which is often a cacophony of “What if?” and “Am I doing this right?” is soothed as words form and appear on the computer screen and there is a tightness that fades, even momentarily, as I send my thoughts into the vast blogosphere.
I’m not writing about me this time…I’m writing about others. I have been called a Superwoman by others who I suppose think I jump emotional hurtles with a single bound and save others in trouble but I must say it is those around me who I see wearing the capes of red and blue. Many other people have superpowers which astound and move me. Julia, whose heart and experience makes her much older and mature in some ways than her 5 years. She knows true loss that she cannot fully understand and yet goes through her life with joy and peace in the uncertainty. While straightening Julia’s room which is often cluttered with baby dolls and stray Legos I recently discovered a note she had scribbled in blue ink, “I’m sad and do not know why” When I later asked if she wanted to talk about it Julia said, “Sometimes I just miss the olden days…” I miss those days too when I feel like our lives made better sense. I yearn for the times when my heart felt untethered by sadness and I felt carefree, a feeling which alludes me now. She struggles with missing Wesley and not knowing how to reconcile his loss with an ever growing understanding of death’s permanence. Heaven holds few loopholes and there are no weekend furloughs to Earth and our happy home for Daddy. But still she stands, hands on her hips and braves on with her smiling face and clear brown eyes grabbing joy and wonderment as her mind expands and grows in ways which her father would absolutely delight. She braves on with a mother who sometimes feels frazzled and who asks for her help to run our home. She grew up faster than I would have liked, but she just keeps pulling me forward into the future.
I’m almost daily reminded of the friends and family members who care deeply about Julia and myself and are so open to my voice and writing provide a safe and secure place for me.. Honestly, if others had not supported my blog and my willingness to talk and laugh and cry about Wesley I think I would have crawled into my own protective cocoon. Because I was fragile and at times still am but find myself bolstered by the strength of others. People ask and share and do not shy away and cringe as I say, “Gosh, Wesley used to say that exact same thing!” as I slap the table with my palm and laugh over pizza dinners. I am included in activities and can honestly share the days of happiness and the times that I find it hard to see any joy. Both are true and honest realities for me and I need to not hide from them. I cannot stop talking and sharing and loving and if I had nobody to talk to about it I think I would crumble. I need the people in my life with whom I can be both the damsel in distress and the strong action figure.
I am so moved at the love I feel from people who know me, who knew Wesley, who may never have ever laid eyes on us but who share a similar experience. I see the Superman behind the black thick rimmed glasses who asks how I’m doing and truly wants to know. I feel the love of people who may never comment or tell me they read that blog and who I know pray for us. I’m surrounded by heroes who will never know how much they mean to us and how they make my hurting heart feel bold and brave by words spoken and unspoken and how their joy and love makes my wounded heart feel like it might beat again.