Adelie and Staley's World

Adelie and Staley's World

Friday, May 12, 2017

Love and Loss

I blog to remember.  This blog is a record of our life.  I try to blog fully and honestly so I can not only remember all the good moments, but also the hard ones.  I find it easier to blog about the funny quotes or sweet moments or big occasions.  At those times, the words come easily.  But it's in the harder moments or the darker times that I struggle.  Sometimes the words don't come.  There are times that words don't seem adequate.  There are times that the words can't encompass the emotions.  I want my words to reflect my heart, and sometimes they just aren't enough. 

Two weeks.  Two funerals.  Two conversations with our young children, trying to explain death.  Telling Briggs that it is not Mr. Mark mowing outside because Mr. Mark is in heaven.  Explaining to Adelie that Nana did not go to heaven in her wheelchair because people don't need wheelchairs in heaven.  Helping our kids understand that death means they will never see these individuals again.  Tears now even as I type this, thinking about the love that these two people shared with us and our children.  The impact that they made on our lives.  The sadness that, at their young ages, my children might not remember this love and the moments that were shared.  And that is why I blog.  So one day, even if their memories have faded, they can read this and know.

Love comes in all forms.  Mr. Mark, as my kids called him, was the next door neighbor and friend that everyone wishes they had.  His mowing always included a few swipes in our yard, his leaf blower consistently kept our driveway and sidewalks clear, his snow blower often found it's way down our sidewalk or into our driveway, and anything we needed to borrow, he was more than happy to share.  He always had time to chat with the kids or admire their sidewalk chalk art or compliment their new bike or take a break from watering to try to spray them with his hose.  I want the kids to remember how they loved when Mr. Mark was outside, knowing he'd always welcome them running up his driveway to tell him something or show him something.  Knowing he'd never care if they ran into his yard to get a ball.  I want them to know that they loved him, and he loved them.

My kids only knew Nana after her stroke, when she was primarily confined to her wheelchair and living at the nursing home.  But they knew Nana would always have toys in the bottom drawer of her dresser that they could play with.  That Nana would often send them home with a new stuffed animal to add to their collection.  They knew Nana would always wheel down to look at the fish in the fish tank with them.  They knew that Nana would always be happy to see them, no matter how chaotic the visit might be.  But I want my kids to know what a strong woman their great-grandmother was, leaving home and getting married at 16 to build a better life for herself.  Raising 4 beautiful daughters and living out a faith that was so evident to everyone around her.  I want my kids to know that Nana prayed for them, she cherished their hugs and kisses, and she always had pictures of them to show her visitors.  I want them to know that, as babies, she would hold them for as long as she possibly could. I want them to remember that she dressed up for Halloween when she knew they would be visiting.  I want them to know just how much she loved them.

Loss is hard, no matter what age you are.  But I want my kids to know that before the loss, there was love.  So much love.  And that is why I that they can remember this love.

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