The Tunnel

“O my God, teach me, when the shadows have gathered, that I am only in a tunnel. It is enough for me to know that it will be all right some day.”  George Matheson

I came across this quote the other day. And then I saw this picture. It is a perfect representation of my experience with grief.  There are stretches of darkness and then the light breaks through and I can see the life and beauty around me.  And then I turn a corner, and once again am surrounded by the darkness. It is all so random.

A very wise young woman told me this week, “grief is a lonely place”. And that is so true. I can be among people one day, in the light and then without warning, a cloud descends and I am unable to stop the tears from coming.  And those who have seen me in the light are encouraged that I am doing so “well”.  After all, it has been six months. But what they may not know is that there are many times when I grope along in the dark tunnel, unable to see the light ahead and unsure where to place my next step.  This very wise young woman wrote a blog about this and you may read it here. I hope she writes more so she can help others understand why it is so lonely and how others can help. I look forward to reading more about that.

Another very wise young woman told me this week that it “takes a community to help one grieve”.  You can read this blog hereSometimes the twists and turns of grief are just too much. And we all just hope someone will “pick us up” and relieve us of the sadness, confusion, frustrations, and general symptoms of grief. But since it has been six months now, life has gone on for those not directly impacted by our loss. And yet we still need others to hold us up and walk with us for a while; to help us get around those speed bumps.  I hope this wise young woman will write more on this topic. I look forward to reading that post.

I am so blessed to have these wise young women in my life.  They cry with me and laugh with me. We talk, pray, hope, and dream together. We keep one another moving. We pick each other up. You see, they are my daughters. We walked together through the difficult days of Mike’s diagnosis, illness, and death.  Molly and I rejoiced with Rebecca in the birth of her first child and then ached with her the next morning in the death of her Dad. Rebecca and I cheered Molly on in her victories upon her return to college and cried with her in her trials of learning how to move forward as a young woman without her Dad.  And Rebecca and Molly have showered me with their unconditional love and care…just by being who they are.  I look at them and see their Dad – in their smiles, twinkling eyes, determination, and love for others.  These are brave young women and I have no doubt that they will carry on their Dad’s spiritual legacy.  

So we continue to walk through the tunnel.  Together. Even when others may not have the words or do not know the depth of our sadness, we know we have each other.  And as we each move forward, it is ‘enough for me to know that it will be all right some day’.

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4 thoughts on “The Tunnel

  1. Vera Lenes says:

    Patti,
    I am praying for you as you enter the new season of spring without Mike. So glad God has provided Rebecca and Molly. Mother’s Day will have a new meaning this Sunday I am sure. We are so thankful for your love and care for your family and the example you are setting for us all. May you know God’s love and comfort in the days ahead.

  2. Ring, Christine says:

    You are amazing. Continue to stay in touch with your spirit and your heart. My prayers continue for you and your family.

  3. Kim Stirtan says:

    This is officially the start of the book yet to be published. The three of you are gifted communicators! What a blessing for us all!
    Love,
    Kim

  4. K says:

    You’re right. We don’t have the words. But we do have the understanding. I am always lifting you up to the Lord, our God, from afar.

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