Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Beauty from Ashes.

So I have a confession to make. This is not an idle confession, even though it may appear that way to some of you.

The pain hurts a little bit less now than it did 11 months ago. But I clutch at the pain and hold it tight as if the pain will keep me close to Eva or Eva close to me. Because pain is all I have to hold onto. Losing Eva is pain. And I know that Eva is also life and love but it feels like a betrayal to her to not have the constant pain of the loss of her. As if holding onto the pain will bring my treasure home to me, somehow.  But nothing, nothing will bring my little princess home...Not the tears I cry for her daily, not the joy I have in holding her living brothers, not the Hope we hope for, and not the ray of light who is building a room in my heart.  Nothing. One day I will go to her, and my prayer is that when I go to her, she will also come to me...

But nothing will bring her home to me now, and only God can heal my heart.

Now there is the real question. Do I want God to heal my heart? Do I really want to let Him in and let Him heal me? Or do I want to hold onto the pain of losing Eva? Who would choose pain over healing? Ah, knowing with my head and truly giving it up to Him are two completely different things. Completely.

And I am not ready. Not ready to give my pain to the One who can heal me. Not ready to hold onto love and let Him take the pain of her sweetness. Not ready to see the Beauty from Ashes. No, not ready. Not ready to rejoice in other people's daughters simply because they were created by God. Not ready to look at little girls and not wish that mine was playing there too (and yet there is a subtle shift here because now I can (mostly) wish my daughter was there as well as when all I could wish before was instead of - ah, who knows the dark thoughts on the surface of my mind as I watch your innocent daughters play). Not ready to see the Beauty from ashes. However I am ready to admit that there is a possibility of Beauty from Ashes. Not ready to dance among the ashes (never will be) but ready to admit to the possibility that there is Beauty to be found amongst the ashes.

Ah, ashes. That is another topic in and of itself here. The ashes that are and are not my daughter. The ashes on our bookshelf that elicit both sympathy and repulsion from others. Ashes. Beauty from Ashes. Is it possible? Can there be beauty from the death of such a sweet one? Can there be true joy again? Not just the fake happiness that I put on like a garment for everyone else to see when inside my heart is black and swollen with grief.  When inside it clenches and squeezes with love and pain and desire for a child I will never hold again, as long as I draw breath.

Is there room for true joy? For true beauty? From Ashes?


  1. I saw this on a blog once and it was in my post titled "Is it November Already" in 11/09.

    "They say that time in Heaven is compared to the "blink of an eye" for us here on this earth. Sometimes it helps me to think of my son (daughter) running ahead of me through a beautiful field of wildflowers and butterflies. So happy and completely caught up in what he (she) is doing, that by the time he (she) turns around to see if I'm behind her....I will be."

    You are very articulate and I love your posts. You speak the truth about what it is like to lose a child. I'm sure anyone who has lost can relate to the feelings that you describe. It does almost feel like a betrayal of love when you no longer feel the pain like you did in the early days of grief.

    Who would have thought that we would want to hang on to the pain? God's ways are certainly higher than our ways. 9 “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts. Isaiah 55:9

    With Hope,

    1. Cheryl, I have seen that very statement myself somewhere and I often think of it. Thank you for reminding me.

    2. That was lovely, Cheryl - what you said about running in the field.

      I guess that is the way I think of it. Not expecting to outrun suffering in this life, but grasping after the Day when no more tears truly means No More Tears.

      Until then, tears. With hope mixed in, but tears.

      Em, I do love reading your thoughts, musings, questions - and struggles, not that I am glad you have them.

      Little Eva, run for us when our feet won't move.


      Cathy in Missouri