Dear Adeline,

This past week was a difficult one.

I remember our therapist warning us that some moments, days, or weeks would be ok; others would not. There would be no warning. It would just happen. This week, it just happened… and it hurt all over again.  

I’ve spent this evening trying to understand why this week hurt so much. 

Here’s what I discovered. 

A few weeks ago, I was reading The Art of Money by Barri Tessler, a beautiful book introducing a mindful approach to our relationship with money.  At one point, she writes about the healing power of forgiveness and as I read those words tears welled up in my eyes.  My immediate thoughts were “That’s exactly what I need,” but not in relation to money (well maybe that too) but my thoughts went right to losing you. 

Life after a loss is just like that, Adeline.  One minute I’m reading about finances and the next I’m missing you. The simplest and most unrelated subjects can all of sudden trigger the realities of my world… and the emotions bubble to the surface. There I was reading about finances and I think of you and how I needed to find a way to forgive.

And so, as I always do, I went to writing. I wrote the blog post 4 Reasons to Focus on Forgiveness.  Looking back, it was an attempt to convince myself that forgiveness was worth the effort and something I should try.  And so I did.

Forgiveness.

It sounds so easy, right?

But it is not. 

This last week made me realize this is going to be hard work. I’m going to have to dig deep into the pain of missing you.  I’m going to have to expereince my anger and sadness all over again as I try to find a way to forgive. 

Initially my thoughts turned to questions: 

Why did you have to go?

Why can’t you be here now?

Why would the world take a precious child from her parents?   

Why did it have to be you?

Why did it have to be us?

Why couldn't we have caught something earlier?

Why? Why? Why?

And then the anger settled in:

It’s absolutely stupid that you can’t be here. 

This is ridiculous! 

I don’t understand.

You should have had the chance at a full, happy life. 

Damn it, you should be here. 

I’m so sorry you can’t be here with us.  

It breaks my heart every single moment of every single day that you’ll never expereince life here with us. 

As those questions and the anger surfaced again, I realized I haven’t even begun to scratch the surface of forgiveness. And so again, I write. This time I write directly to you, Adeline, because forgiveness is not something I can complete via a “how to” list.

Forgiveness will take real heart work.  

Heart work: it's messy, unsettling, scary, and painful. There is no defined timeframe for when (or if) I’ll be able to forgive this world for taking you from me, but I promise to try. 

I promise I will do my best to dig deep and to try to forgive because I know holding onto the hurt and the pain will not get me closer to you. It will only allow for more distance and distraction between you and me. 

For you, I will try, sweet baby girl.  For you.

Love, 

Mom

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