Winter’s milky sunlight weakly made its way through the sliding doors. My spot on the couch, usually bathed in sunlight, felt chilled and distant today. Memories pricked the surface of my mind and reality took over my thoughts and feelings.
The milky sunlight matched the memories fading in and out as I found myself in the space in the middle. I’m caught somewhere between snapshots that are vivid and photos that are yellowing and curling at the corners. I recall what this day means and hold onto how it makes me feel. I want to treasure each feeling and give it a name, but sometimes we are in between until loss connects with our grief. The milky sunlight has it right as it tries its best to show off brightly, but somehow needs a push to break through the clouds.
I am celebrating an anniversary of sorts. One of a parent who is no longer present but one where emptiness has filled the space left behind. As I woke up the other day, I immediately felt the loss all over again. I left the warmth of my bed feeling that I needed to grab hold of every snippet of my mom that I could recall. In that moment, I believed that not remembering specific details about my mom meant I would soon lose her completely. I struggled with this notion and realized that the space in the middle housed all my memories, but God needs time to show you the way forward again.
I am not writing this today for sympathy or to make you feel sorry for me. Instead, I want to help you understand and encourage you in this thing called grief. A piece of you is missing and that space will always feel empty. My family and I are learning how grief needs time to catch up and connect you to the One who carries your tears and heartaches. We are in this space in the middle as the loss of our mom now helps us to understand the loss of our dad. The connection of present time with memories of lives well-lived softens the heartache that could consume us.
I wrote last week in more detail about “middle” and want to expand on the lessons I am learning as well as leave you with encouragement. What I know is that being in the middle is exactly where I need to be and that is okay because God is sitting here with me. Click here to read my Five Minute Friday post in full.
The space in the middle teaches me that…
There is beauty in grief when God helps you carry your brokenness
Sitting in this space allows me to feel all the feels without outside judgment
Hope is found when you see your legacy as a continuation of what your parents began in you. As my pastor said, I am the floor to my parents ceiling. What they began is now mine to grow forward to my sons.
When I find myself hanging in the in between, I work to continually invite God to sit with me. Hanging out here alone and believing I can figure it out by myself removes what I need the most- the One who loves me without end.
Even in laughter the heart may ache,
and rejoicing may end in grief. Proverbs 14:13
If you find yourself facing loss, doubt, or a time of waiting that causes you to hang in the in between, know that God is always with you. He never stops loving or working behind the scenes of your life. God takes your brokenness and gently loves you into wholeness. Finally, know that you are not alone on this journey. Please let me know how I can pray for you in the comments.
Linking today with:
and Dawn for Grace Moments
Join my mailing list!
Subscribers receive updates, newsletters, and the first five chapters of
Brave Faith: A 31 Day Devotional Journey.