The sun was shining, the kids were (mostly) happy,
I felt renewed and refreshed.
It's not the first time I've felt joy in the last 8 months, in fact,
I really do feel it often.
I have a friend (who knows who she is, :] ) who might think this is a 'pretty words' kind of post, where I tell you all about how I can keep on living because God is carrying me, even through my pain.
Those things are true, for sure.
But really, I'm giving you on honest look at my heart.
but it's not the end of the world.
Though many days, I wish it was!
How much easier it would be, to have Christ come and bring us all home, than to have to deal with this heartache each and every day.
Yes, it's always there, even on the good days.
But you know what, joy is too.
Even on the bad days.
Rarely do I have a day that is just ALL difficult.
There are tough days, where it feel like I could just curl up in a ball and stay in bed all day long. I want to go to the cemetery and pull my sweet boy from his grave, even though I know he's not really there. I want to rewind and just hold him and hear him laugh again.
But even on those days, there is joy.
Joy because of the peace in my heart.
Peace because of the joy that Skyler has forever.
Both joy and peace because I'll have that too, even though I'd often prefer sooner than later.
I've said before, I'm SOO thankful for my three other little blessings.
They keep me going, they remind me of what I'm here for.
They give me a purpose each morning and a reason to get out of bed.
The other day, the one when I felt so much joy, it was mostly because of them.
And I had to laugh, because as I was writing this post in my head that day, Rystin and Vayah were singing
"I have a joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart!"
(and no, as far as I know, I had said nothing out loud about joy!)
Then, ironically, they started arguing about WHO had the joy in their heart.
I have been doing some preschool work with Rystin.
He is a bit of a perfectionist.
He has more patience than any kid (or anyone!) I know when it comes to working on things. He can do a 100 piece puzzle all by himself without much trouble, and has loved puzzles since before he turned two.
He has been interested in writing lately, but struggles when he can't get it right. That day, it connected with him and he figured out how to (mostly) write all the letters in his name!
And Skyler would be too!
And these are the moments that I'm reminded of joy.
This boy turned 4 just last week. He reminded me of Skyler in the way that he was SO excited for his birthday (as most little boys) and talked about it for months until it came.
As a typical mom, I'm proud of my kids. I love them beyond words, and they are the coolest things that exist (except the days you want to hide out in the bathroom because you're going crazy! ha). I was SO proud of Skyler and thought no other kid compared (even though I knew that every mom thought that... but really... mine was the best right!? haha). I've felt that love about all of my kids, but that first born just
amazes you with what they teach you as a parent.
I feel like I'm getting to know Rystin on such a different, new level
And I'm feeling that pride all over again.
This boy has gone through so much.
I've watched him walk through so many emotions and listened to him tell me the things on his broken heart. This is also a gift, as he is NOT the type to share his feelings easily. He is learning, and the moments have been brief.
He is by no means done with grief, and neither are we.
Though my heart has been happy to hear him TRULY laugh again, when I hadn't even realized it was missing, I also know there will still be tears.
That is grief.
Days more filled with joy than pain.
Days more filled with pain than joy.
Both are real.
And the pain isn't going away any time soon.
The day following my 'joy day' was a harder day.
As the months pass and Skyler becomes more distant, people start to forget,
or think things are fine now.
We don't forget. Things aren't fine.
But I know that is the way this goes.
Also, I want to point at that people haven't forgotten. This holiday season we were so blessed by many of you who remembered us and our son through one of the most difficult months of our lives.
December was rough.
I think we could have skipped Christmas this year and been fine with it.
Again, thanks to the kids, we had to push through it, and even enjoy it, to the best of our ability.
And we did.
Sometimes the days that the pain hits is surprising.
Sometimes it doesn't hit when you thought it would.
But there was a HUGE hole this Christmas.
I'm glad we didn't skip it, because it would make next year harder than it already will be.
I have been very relieved to have December over, but also was torn about starting a new year without Skyler in it.
You can't stop time, and the days keep rolling by.
One day closer to Skyler.
One year closer to Heaven.
Praying we can keep focusing on those little
'whispers of joy'.