(This was written almost 1 1/2 years into my grief journey. Several months later I was able to take off my wedding rings and along with the Mother’s ring my daughter’s had given me, I had the gold from them all melted down and a new single ring fashioned using all of the diamonds and colored stones. I call if my Love Story ring.)
“…keep letting yourselves be transformed by the renewing of your minds; so that you will know what God wants and will agree that what he wants is good, satisfying and able to succeed.” Romans 12:2b Complete Jewish Bible
Grief is a battle of the will and the emotions and it is one of the hardest battles in which I have ever participated. There are so many emotions that have to be processed through one by one and that processing can take place over and over again. I will skirmish awhile and think that I have put a stop to one emotion when it rears its head again and the battle rages on.
The one emotion that keeps popping up over and over is ACCEPTANCE. It has been almost a year and a half now and I am still wearing my wedding rings. I was asked if I feel like my rings are my last tangible connection with my husband and my answer was a resounding “YES”. Taking them off will be like another death blow to me. It will mean that he is no longer mine and I am no longer his. Right now I cannot even bear that thought. According to our wedding vows, only death can part us and end our marriage, but in my mind, nothing can ever part us. The thought of not being Mrs. Bob Feathers is unfathomable to me.
Dreams are one of the ways that I process and early this morning I had a dream. I dreamed that God left my husband here with me for a time after he died so that I could get used to the idea that he was soon to be gone . But, God left him here with no emotions. After a time, Bob told me that he was not going to be here much longer. I grabbed him and clung to him as I wept and cried begging him not to go. He just stared straight ahead and had no words of comfort and no return embrace or hugs.
So, the battle of ACCEPTANCE rages on as a battle of not only my emotions but of my will. The bottom line is that I do not want to accept God’s will for my life because it is not my will. In my way of thinking which we all know is NOT God’s way of thinking, THIS is not the best for me.
In her article called “Holding Onto the Past” Corienne Edwards says, “Holding on to the past is trying to breathe life into a play which is closed. It is struggling to raise the curtain in a dark theatre, on a dusty stage, by ourselves. The other players have left. The stage is empty. It is going over everyone’s lines, long since said, playing all the parts – alone. It is being stuck.”
Now I have to take a good look at myself and ask, “Am I stuck?” I do not want to be stuck in my grief, but perhaps I am. I do not believe that for me acceptance can come all at once and all of a sudden. For me acceptance is a process. God is not letting me forget that I HAVE to accept that my husband is gone and my marriage to him is finished. He continues to speak to my heart about it slowly letting me know as I can handle it that there has to come a time when my acceptance is complete.
Oh, God, forgive me for saying that Your will is not the best for me, but that is truly how I am feeling. I don’t know how You can do it, but please change my heart, mind, and my will and help me to trust that my husband’s death WAS part of this plan that You have for my life and for his.
Life didn’t go the way that I always dreamed that it would. I thought our lives would just go on forever here on this earth and we would very simply and happily grow old together. I thought we would always be together to love and comfort each other through any sorrow or loss. I never dreamed that I would be the one that would be left alone to deal with life.
God, guide my thoughts, my heart, and my emotions as I process through my grief and as we take this grief journey together. Give me the strength that I don’t have to deal with each and every memory, each and every grief trigger, and each and every emotion. And help me to finally one day let go of my will and embrace ACCEPTANCE.