“Many still mourn, many still weep
For those that they love who have fallen asleep
But we have this hope though our hearts may still ache
Just one shout from above and they all will awake”-Grave Robber by Petra
A restless night ; my achey joints and my dreams have kept me tossing and turning; I haven’t slept well. I think I’ve disturbed my husband’s sleep also, although he won’t complain. He is a gentleman.
It’s a welcome relief to see the sun peeking through my bedroom blinds, reminding me night time is over. I’m relieved until I remember it’s not all a dream. The virus is still out there and it is real. The world has changed in a few short weeks into something beyond my imagination. The Covid-19 pandemic has affected many lives and even caused death around the world. In my family, it has certainly caused disappointment.
In less than a week , both my adult children and I have lost our jobs until this is over. My son, my daughter and my future son-in-law have been exposed to the virus so they are in quarantine.
Since social distancing and travel bans are in effect across the continent, my daughter has canceled the June wedding we have been preparing for for 2 years. She now plans to marry in a small courthouse ceremony as soon as it is reasonable. My husband and I want to be there for them but right now we cannot say when we are able to travel out of state to be with them. Planning and doing as we please is no longer a luxury we can enjoy.
In all of this , I am trying to stay positive and courageous but I am not good at either. This is evident when I read family group texts from our kids. Both our children seem concerned and perhaps a little annoyed with the angst in my responses and suggestions in our conversation. I realize we are blessed. All we have to do now is wait and stay home. My loved ones are safe, and although the unknown is difficult, we are not suffering in the true sense of the word. We have shortages in hospital equipment and test kits for the virus, but we have modern medicine and courageous medical personnel doing the best they can. My family is safe; I am loved by my gentleman, and I have all that I need.
Yet, my mind is swirling with thoughts of family, weddings and funerals. Tomorrow is my mother’s birthday; she would be 83 had she not passed away 5 years ago. My father is in a nursing home due to failing health. His memory has been failing for some time and now he doesn’t always remember who I am when I call him.
With all of this, I have to recognize that it’s normal for me to feel somewhat fragile. My thoughts swirl with memories of family gatherings, of funerals and weddings.
I have been finding comfort from music and good memories shared with my family. These memories include my wedding day, the birth of my children and conversations with my mother and my father. These conversations offered hope in a troubled, imperfect world. I remember that as she got older, my mother would remind me that when the time came , I was not to grieve for her. She was looking forward to a perfect eternity. She was at peace with where she was going. This past December, when I visited my father, he was cognizant of who I was, and he told me the same thing. He looked forward to life eternal, and going to be with my mom. He told me not to miss him, or feel bad for him, but instead to be present with those around me and pay attention to who might need me, instead of who I might need.
In this time of fear and uncertainty, I have spent some time thinking about death and about these conversations with my parents. I try to hold onto what my parents taught me, and to reflect those teachings in my life. This is not an easy task for me. It is in my nature to overthink. Some might call this unhealthy rumination, but it is the way I’m wired and it’s a process for me to combat fear and anxiety. I am reminded to let go of what I can’t control , and not give in to the fear that struggles to take hold of me. I must allow Peace and Love and Joy to rule instead.
“When the last enemy is done, from the dust will come a song
Those asleep will be awakened, not a one will be forsakened
He shall wipe away our tears, He will steal away our fears
There will be no sad tomorrow, there will be no pain and sorrow”-Grave Robber by Petra