Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Growing & Healing

I sat at the doctors office this afternoon watching MaryKate climb up the chairs, onto tables, then dash over to the fish tank & then to the pile of books on the shelf. Her light-up tennis shoes were blinking brightly & her endless chatter was filled with enthusiasm. I marveled that it was just over a year ago that I was at the doctors office with MaryKate: a bald, chubby baby who could barely roll over! It was then that I realized that growth happens so subtly, so quickly... whether I want it to or not. And although there are the few long sleepless nights that feel they will never end, they do end & before you know it, she has pig tails!

I think growing is so similar to healing. A year ago today my brother committed suicide. The loss of such a wonderful person was life shattering for us all. Knowing John, he never would want to hurt any of us & I believe he felt the world could go on just fine without him. Which is why secretly in my heart I decided that I would try to never stop grieving & mourning... then he would know that he was wrong, that we loved him so much more than he ever knew and that our world would never be the same without him. The first days & months dragged on so slowly, so miserably (much like the first long days & nights with MaryKate). But so subtly, whether I wanted to or not, I began to heal. Crying went from everyday to every other & then once a week & then once a month. Guilt & anger began to melt away along with the Utah snow & before I knew it I could think about John & smile and sometimes even laugh at a ridiculous memory I had of him.

I know we say we never want our babies to grow up, but of course we do... MaryKate is more fun everyday and though I miss the stages that have passed, I love each new one. I also know that I really believed for a while that I never wanted to heal, but of course I do... I miss John everyday & I still ache for a tight hug or a long talk with him, but I love each new day and I am thankful for the grace & miracle of healing.


Below is a picture of the last time I hugged John. It was on the day of my wedding at our reception. He left a few days later to Iraq. I am so thankful he was able to get permission to take leave so that he could be there for our wedding. It made the day even more special.


Lindsay said...

Oh Kath!!! That was a really special post. Thanks for sharing it. And MK looks ADORABLE!!!!!

Mindy said...

This was beautiful, Kathy. :) I sure do like you a lot!

Zach and Sarah said...

Wonderfully said, Kathy. I think you expressed perfectly what comes with healing from a loss. Thanks for your words. And as for those little kiddos growing up . . . don't even get me started. (Though I firmly believe what my mom's told me--every age just gets better and better:)

Sheri King said...


I've been thinking about your sweet family. My Caroline had just been born when I heard about John. I wanted to be in Arizona. My heart hurt for you all.

I dreaded the year mark that my dad died. It seemed like if you could say, last year we did such and such, then he didn't seem so far away. When it was less than a year it was so fresh to me, and it almost felt like when the hurt was fresh it made my dad more present. I sort of wanted the hurt to stay raw. Did that make any sense?

I know that both John and my dad look down on us (and our kids) and watch out for us. I bet they talk all the time. What a great family reunion it will someday be!

Love you!!

The Meesh said...

Such a beautiful post. Thanks for sharing your heart babe!