Two years ago I was secure. I was content. I was adjusting to my 3 kids. I was balancing homeschool, family, church. I had goals. Goals with my kids in school, in life, with Jesus. I had goals to move and goals to make things happen. I knew what I wanted and I had a plan to get there. I wanted it for my family, for Thao for us. I lived safely within my four walls, with the door locked. Simply guarded, protected and planned. I followed Christ, prayed and read my Bible. I did my thing, I wanted what was best for my family. I wanted what was safe.
And here I am.
Sometimes I hate the quiet. The stillness of a house, the rhythmic sound of sleeping children, the dark cold nights and the late morning sun. The red, yellow, brown leaves gently swirling to the ground. Yes, sometimes I hate the quiet. Sometimes the darkness starts to close in, the cold starts to catch up and the reality of life moving on is just all too much. Sometimes between the snuggles and the screaming, I catch glimpses of my children growing up. And sometimes I find myself in the quiet house, reminded of what would have been.
I find myself wanting more. More memories, more pictures, more time. How quickly time passes. But even more quickly I lose focus. I get caught up in the what if's, would have been's, or what's next.
I remember the me of two years past. I was truly content with my little family, my simple life. So much is different now. So much change. So much to give up, to get through, to survive. So much out of my control. So much out of my comfort-box.
Here I am, 2 years has passed, no flew by, dragged on, gone. Two years and I'm still here. I've made it this far. I've lost my son, my goals, my dreams. And there I go again. Counting my loss.
It's so easy to lose focus. To remember the loss, the last, the hard times. I don't find joy in that though. I want JOY, I want peace, I want Christ. Over and over again, I have to give it up, turn it over to HIM who holds it all. It really is a fight for joy.
And if I could do it all over again? I would pretty much do it the same. I can't change the past but I want to BE CHANGED by it. Every mom I know talks about being more patient, listening more, playing more...there's always something. We all mess up, forget, lose our tempers, blame the wrong kid, make the wrong choice. Having no regrets doesn't mean perfection. More than a clean house, perfectly organized closets and children clothed in matching outfits, I want my kids to know JOY IN CHRIST. I want them to know I love them, to feel safe and to have a relationship with the Lord.
After we lost Thao, I remember telling Jeff that Thao made me just want more. More kids, more love. He was worth every tear, gray hair, wrinkle, all the pain of loss. Even though we'll spend the rest of our lives missing him, he was worth it.
Can you imagine a love even greater than that? Being a parent helped me to understand the love of Christ so much more. Through my loss, I have known a depth of Christ's love I cannot explain. His perfect, unfailing love. His love that gets us through, his love that drove him to send his son for us. His love that is redeeming.
It's easy to play it safe, to take care of me and mine, to love me and mine. To lock the doors, to have a plan, to set goals and not waiver. But God is bigger than that. And sometimes God wants us out of that comfort-box that feel so warm and secure. Sometimes God has bigger things for us.
I've had people say that after losing a child they would just love the ones they have left. I think that's totally understandable. Safe.
This is where God has us. He is asking us to love more, to give more of ourselves, to fight for the children that he has chosen for us. And there is no place I'd rather be.
This season I am challenged to want more true joy and real love. More of Jesus.