April 28, 2016
Yesterday would have been my son Jeremy’s 36th birthday. Normally, I post an old photo of him and tell you how thankful I am that God allowed me to be his mother for 24 years. Or I tell you how amazed I am at how God has so graciously given me the strength to walk through my loss – and how God even allows me to occasionally use my experience to help other hurting people. These statements are still true, but yesterday I did not “feel” like posting them.
I pulled Jeremy’s dirty old baseball cap out of the Zip-lock bag I keep it stored in. It used to smell like Jeremy, but in spite of my best efforts to preserve his scent, time has taken it from me. I was sad and angry and I wanted to resign from my position of being a mother who lost her firstborn son. But . . . resigning isn’t an option. I’m stuck with it.
I bought new flowers for Jeremy’s grave . . . a “To Do” item I have been avoiding, but I knew it was time to check it off my list. When I arrived at his grave, I threw a blanket on the ground above him, pulled the old faded flowers out of the vase, and programed my cell phone to repeat “On The Other Side” (a Jimmy Fortune song that I both love and hate).
As I arranged the new flowers, I sat with Jeremy . . . catching him up on this life I live . . . the good . . . the bad . . . and all the in-betweens. Listening to his mother was never one of Jeremy’s strengths, but he’s very good at it now. For almost two hours, he listened as I cried and shared my heart.
I realize this post sounds sad, and if I were the one reading it, I would be tempted to feel sorry for me. But please don’t. I think I’m sharing this to simply say that sometimes pain is more of a friend than an enemy. The pain reminds me how much I love him – and the ability to feel that much love is a good thing – even when it hurts. Yesterday didn’t look like a good day . . . but it was.
1 Corinthians 13 . . . Love never fails . . .