Last week I went away.
I left my home where so many reminders of Amy dwell and went down south. I’ve made this trip many times- down to the place where I spent 3 years of my life, got an education, and made a lot of friends. I’d been planning this trip for about a year and it could not be postponed. I knew it would be good for me, but I was scared. Scared that I’d have to open up more deeply, scared that I would not be able to be joyful on this trip that should be treasured.
I heard a song on the radio that I had sung before, but had not heard for a while. It’s called “Gratitude” and is a prayer asking God for rain, food, shelter, and peace but if He does not give them we will still thank Him for what we do have and for the lessons He will teach us through that (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-PEzM-4VXdg). My mother and I talked before I left about looking again for the gifts God’s giving us daily. Thankfulness sparks joy. But, I’m not there yet.
I was happy last weekend. We visited old places we would hang out and did things we had wanted to do together. We talked about our lives and our future plans. In a way, we were reliving the past- but I knew the whole time that Amy wasn’t there. She wasn’t a phone call away or waiting for me when I got home like she had been. So many reminders of her no matter where I go. But my friends were there- a miracle in itself- so we laughed and gave back massages and explored and ate. We spent the precious time God gave us with one another. I am so thankful God allowed us to be together once again.
And as I drove home I realized that I was ready to accept the change. My college years have ended- the campus does not excite me anymore. My friends have parted ways and their lives are changing also. And home will never be the same.
It’s time for me to accept the fact that life will never return to the way it was.
My priorities have changed- I view relationships more highly now than I ever did. Certain topics seem so meaningless now in view of eternity and the temporariness of life here on earth. My goals have changed with the realization of God’s sovereignty that overrules any dreams I have. Before I was just going through the motions of what had to be done. Now it’s settling in my heart. I’m ready to teach again. I’m ready to sing and play in church again. I’m ready to work. Yet, I want to spend the precious moments God gives me with my family.
Amy gave us joy. It was her daily gift to our family and we are left without it- wondering how to retain it again. We are different and I feel somewhat lost. I wish I could have that deep down happiness again- but it's just too full of sadness and missing her right now.
Somehow, at some point, with God's help and direction, joy will return.