Nights like tonight when the grief in your living child's eyes mirrors your own...when you see your daughter's own arms ache to hold something tangible to feel close to her sister in Heaven. The confusion and the questions "Why did she get so sick? Why did she die? When can I see her?" My responses sound so feeble, so empty as my mind races to choose my words to match their level of understanding and to keep fear out of the picture, all the while knowing they are watching my every move, expression and cadence in my voice. They're searching for clues to put this puzzle together so it makes sense. Except it doesn't make sense.
My eyes well as I listen to my daughter ask God to help Zoe know that she loves her & misses her & wants to play...then buries her face in her pillow and holds a xerox copy of her sister's handprint to her cheek.
I know those tears, those questions and the physical aches...now amplified as I watch my daughters grieve and long for their sister. This may sound strange, but I am thankful Zoe died when my girls were young, before they could speak and ask these questions. They didnt have to watch me fall to pieces & be unavailable to them. I've had a few years to work on my own grief to find a place where I can grieve with them and more importantly, support them as sadness and questions come to the surface.
My own prayer tonight is to be prepared to answer what I can and to offer comfort when there is no answer. Before that I will sweep up the broken pieces of our hearts and mop up the puddles of our tears.