Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Good riddance to 2012

At the New Year, it's seems everyone is full of resolutions and reflections about the past year. To me, 2012 will be remembered as one of the most horrible years ever. There were some bright moments: delivering the BEMM ambulance to Mareya, Anna's high school graduation, blissful family time in Hawaii and finally falling in love with my youngest son among them. Layered over every single moment, though, is mourning... gut-wrenching, soul-draining grief over the loss of my dearly loved Daddy and my own struggles to handle it.

My grief has made me question everything about myself.  A formerly good athlete, I am physically falling apart.  An introvert by nature, I feel increasingly awkward around groups of people and just want to be home alone with my family more and more.  My family is my only joy.  I am lonely.  I worry about failing my family and what friends I still have.  I wonder all the time if the next 40 years will zip by and I will have accomplished little and have nothing to remember but being sad and tired.

It is said that God has a plan for each one of us.  I am listening for God, and I think I hear him.  But maybe I hear what I want God to say.  I don't know how to tell the difference.  I am praying that with God's grace, 2013 will be a healing year, a renewal year for broken me.


Crazy mom said...

Hugs, Paula! Thank you for your transparency! I will be praying that in 2013 God shows you the answers you are looking for.


kn said...

Dear Paula, You are not alone. Thank you for sharing your heart like this. Grief is an overwhelming thing. A beloved parent? Oh, what a burden. Words are small comfort I but I do believe that we have to reach out during these times. Let people be there for us. It's good for us and good for our friends. I have not lost a parent but when I lost a very dear friend many years ago, it took me over a year to feel strong enough to even reach out to friends. Once I did I began to find a path to a new beginning. Good for you for writing down your feelings. You're in my prayers. I wish you moments of profound peace in 2013.

Terry and Juli Waggoner said...

We have never officially met but this past year you have inspired me by your love for your family and the people of Ethiopia. Hoping you have a awesome 2013.
I have also lost my father. I think of him everyday and appreciate the legacy he left. You are building a legacy with your family.

smiles said...

Paula, you will be ok, the loss of a parent is the most difficult thing I have ever dealt with, and I have had my fair share of difficulties. Good parents are strong and there for you when you need them, but when they are gone who is there for you? The realization that you are on your own and that you are the parent of someone who is counting on you is very scary. It is natural to be afraid, to withdraw and to question what you do next. The answer is, that you go on for those who count on you, your children, your family and your friends. They need you and you have now moved up the ladder a rung. You have become more important than ever because we have lost one that was important to us. Time makes it better, but it is not something we get over, we just learn to live with it. The more time that passes the more the pleasant memories take over and the sad memories go away. 2013 will be better because you are still here and you make a difference to your family and friends. Love you, Sheryl

Lori S said...

I know we've said it before, but I really do think we are so much alike.
Be gentle with yourself. There is no timeline for grieving. Allow yourself that right, but don't isolate. I have a tendency to do that and it's not healthy.
I bet in 40 years you'll still miss your dad but you'll look back at some precious memories with your family.
Bless you, my friend!

Abbie W said...

Hi, Paula; I can't remember being so close to the day when my Dad graduated to Heaven, but I do know that it was certainly a life-changing event for me, as well. Please feel free to message me if you'd like more of my own experience. Or you might like to read the blog I've written about my own mental health journey... of late. www.abbieaw.blogspot.com
It will not always be like this, but it might seem like forever. *hugs*

scooping it up said...

Paula, so glad you shared. I am so sorry for your loss. I am sure your dad is right beside you, along with God, wanting to hold you up and help you find joy. Wishing you calm and peace that Jesus said he could give. He overcame the world, that means all the crud that happens to us. I hope you can find a way to let him hold that burden a little more. So so hard.

midwifemama said...

blessings to you despite your loss...and good that you can express the pain & questioning...Consider reading 1000 gifts if you haven't. She has lived through pain too and describes the battle well. It has helped me...And the body thing is really a drag: suddenly i am dealing with arthritis in my hands, elbows, feet. what for this? isn't there enough...but it does cause me to pause, slow down...and like you i want to be home more...blessings sister..thanks for sharing.

Jaime said...

Paula, thank you for sharing this. Grief is way more of a monster than I ever imaged. I wish I had words to offer but I feel I am failing miserably with my own. I can say I know your pain and I love you.

Rachael Danforth said...


We are sisters in Christ and I ask God to give you His comfort and peace in 2013. I pray that you will feel purpose and be well in the coming year.

Andrea said...

Grief is hard, Paula. God is always there, and He knows your suffering. Lean on Him. He wants you to. :)

Diane Larson said...

Thanks for being so honest. I rarely blog because I can't summon the strength to be honest. 2012 has been rough for our family as well. Praying for 2013 to blow your socks off! I hear God does amazing
things:) And if you fell in love with your youngest son that is no small thing!! Still praying that for myself.

Unknown said...

Hi Paula, We have never met, but I follow your blog; it is so inspiring. I lost my father 10 years ago; the pain is still raw and sometimes I cry but I use that energy to try to be more of the kind of person he wanted me to be/become: a better mother, wife, an ethical, compassionate and kind person. Even in his absence, my father (and my stepmother, who also passed away) is a constant inspiration to me. I think---and your blog really brings this home to me---that what my father created for us as a family is part of his legacy and what continues to inspire me---you seem to be doing this with your family: creating an atmosphere of love, joy, and respect. Sometimes this is a lonely walk. You are such an inspiration and so honest. I hope we meet someday.