Grief is very sneaky. You walk along having a typical day then all of sudden out of the blue something hits you – a song, a quote, a TV show, a comment, a picture. You have no way to prepare yourself for it. It’s too late by the time it happens. The next thing you know, you are riding down the road crying. Trying to pull it together one more time. Sneaky. Unpredictable. Tricky. Random. Erratic. Can’t prepare for these moments – Anxiety is abounding during these times.
We can try to prepare ourselves for moments we know ahead of time are going to be difficult. Amanda’s birthday, Thanksgiving and Christmas are the things I have prepared myself for lately. Although, things never go the way you expect, you kind of have a plan. But, the random things that sneak up on you are the worst. Mainly because you never know where you are going to be, who is going to be around. It’s embarrassing. It’s confusing. It’s unsettling.
I always hope it happens around people who love me and understand. Maybe I will not have to explain or say “I’m alright” one more time. Maybe I will not have to pull the car over to pull myself together. The best I can hope for is I’m alone at home. But, that is not usually the case. Usually it’s somewhere very public. I just say a prayer and try to get out as fast as I can.
It’s normal. I know. Doesn’t help me at the moment, except I tell myself – it’s normal, I’m not crazy! I have talked with many of you who many years later are still dealing with the sneaky moments. The good news is the moments seem to get fewer and farther apart.
I am not a professional therapist. Just a Mom who’s daughter died. I hope some of what I have gone through and am going through will help you in some way. I want y’all to know you are not alone. This is a hard time of year for grieving. It’s a battle everyday, but this time of year is even harder. Or it has been for me since April 11th 2015, when Amanda died. So take the following advice for what it’s worth.
Make yourself get out of bed every single day. Make yourself get dressed every single day. Make yourself do something every single day; go to work, clean a closet, vacuum, go to the mall or walk around. If you have done those three things, you have defeated Satan in three ways. Satan would love for you to stay in bed, with the covers up, doing nothing – he wins. You can not be used for God’s purpose if you are in bed, locked up in your house.
The most important thing you can do for yourself is to read Scripture, every morning. Pray. Sit quietly with the Lord. The Christmas account in Luke is great to read, especially this time of year. It speaks to my heart so very clearly. It also makes me ponder so much.
“But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.” Luke 2:10 (NASB)
These words are as true to us as they were to the Shepherds in the field. Do not be afraid! We have good news. We can have joy, even when there is disaster in our life – only the Lord can give you real joy. We have a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. A Savior who walks with us, talks with us, lives within us, knows the very numbers of the hairs on our head, He has a purpose for us, and He loves us. This is the same Jesus who died for us, defeated death for us and lives forevermore.
“When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man. And He placed His right hand on me, saying, “Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last, and the Living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades.” Rev. 1:17 & 18
“Humble yourselves, therefore under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time He may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on Him, because He cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world. And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. To Him be the dominion forever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 5: 6-11
Do not live a defeated life. Christ gave Himself freely to save each of us. Love for each and every person is the reason. We are not alone. He has called us. Let us answer the call. So, let’s get up and get going. One minute at a time some days but that’s better than sleeping our life away!
Love to all of you! Praying you have a Merry Christmas, celebrating His love for us.
Manda’s Mom #APG