Thursday, August 4, 2011

The End

This post will be the last entry on this blog. No, it is not the end of my grief. I will carry this loss with me until I see me son once again in Heaven. But, I feel that I have reached a point in this journey when this chapter has closed and a new chapter has begun. Somehow, by God's grace, I have found the strength to take all the pain that I am feeling and use it as the driving force to do something good in this world in my son's memory. Joshua's Well was just a starting point for me and while I may never be able to be part of something of that magnitude again, I can continue to do what I can to help others both here in the United States and in Guatemala. I can finally say, with assurance, I have found my "new normal".

If you would like to read of this next phase of my grief journey and of the life that I have found after death, you can do so by following me at my new blog, Joshua's Well.

Thank you to each friend who has read my words here and who has offered prayers and words of comfort in the past almost three years. I would be blessed if you would continue to pray for me from time to time.

To Josh:

Thank you for teaching me how to walk in the rain. I love you more than life itself.

Mom

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Reflections

For the first year after Josh's death and beyond, I could do little else but dwell on my grief and reflect on the pain that I carried with me every second of every day. I spent time remembering both the good and bad. I had to be analytical about every emotion and had to disect my memories hoping that I would never forget a single thought or action of my life with Josh or even of the grief I was feeling after he left this world.

At some point, I began to spiral down to the point where I felt that I just could not go on. I knew I somehow had to go on, but I wasn't sure how to do that. Life was moving by me at lightening speed and I was sitting still in my grief, not knowing how to move forward.

I began to claw my way upward, grasping at anything that would help me focus on living rather than just existing in my pain. Then, the farm took over and my life became so filled with the obligations of tending to all the newly freshened cows, the new calves, the first time mother goats and their kids, and the demands that processing all the extra milk and keeping up with my share program presented. Now, for months, I have had no time to spend in reflection and my days are spent working myself to exhaustion. In the midst, I find myself embracing the new life around me, while at the same time carrying that grief deep inside me but not giving the grief the reflection or putting to "pen and paper" my thoughts and feelings. Sometimes the grief wells up within me, spilling out in bitter tears, wracking sobs, and even screams of anguish. Sometimes the grief leaves me feeling isolated. Sometimes the grief makes me feel tired and without hope. It's always with me. I can work to the point of exhaustion but the grief is still there.

Friday, April 29, 2011

Update on Joshua's Well

My Guatemala trip is just round the corner in July! I am getting so excited! Not only has enough money come in to provide for a deep water well, but we have close to $2000 over and above that amount that will be designated to a specific need. (We are trying to determine where there is the greatest need and give towards whatever that might be.) My heart is continually blessed knowing that so many people have given sacrificially to make Joshua's memorial and Joshua's Well a reality. Working towards this memorial has done so much to help give me focus and help me as I walk through this valley of grief. The grief never goes away, but becomes a constant companion with which one learns how to coexist and live. Now as I focus on these final months before the trip, there are a number of items that I can take along with me to give to the orphans or to the elderly that are in need in the rural areas of Guatemala. I know there are many needs right here with in the US and if your heart is telling you to contribute to other needs and not to this specific needs of the folks in Guatemala, then follow your heart. However, I wanted to list some of the items that would be useful to take along on the trip and distrubute to those in need in Guatemala, in case anyone feels led to contribute.



o Candy for the kids

o Small toys/stuffed animals/balls

o Hair ties for girls

o Underwear for children

o Kitchen towels for the kitchen workers

o infant/baby clothing, especially Onesies (Rescue Center)

o infant/baby toys (Rescue Center)

o burp cloths, bibs, etc. (Rescue Center)

o children's clothing and shoes, all sizes (Orphanage)

o lotions, soaps, toothbrushes, etc. (Elderly Home)



My heart is full and hurting for those all over the world who are in need, including those in our own country, especially after the devastating tornadoes in the south. So, search your heart and decide where it is you are to help and follow your heart. Maybe your calling is just to give your neighbor a hug. Whatever it is, I pray you are blessed in your giving.



Much love,



Tammy

Saturday, March 26, 2011

I can't relax............

About twenty years ago, I cross stitched a wall hanging for my (then) mother-in-law. It showed the face of a frazzled woman and said, "I can't relax. Tension is holding me together."

I often think about that silly little wall hanging because it seems it sums up my life at this point.

For so long, I could not function after Josh died. I went through the motions of the most basic tasks, but I just couldn't get my act together. At some point in the past few months, my brain has switched gears and now I can't do enough. I go through the days so busy that I have little time to think and it seems I like it that way. Of course, the loss of my son is always with me. It is a part of me that will never go away. But, I carry it with me as I work and fill my life with business so that I don't have time to get depressed.

Probably not healthy, but this is survival. Somehow, in the midst of the survival mode, I do find moments when I really feel like I am alive once again. Other times, I am in the middle of life and I just break down and cry over my precious son whom I miss so much.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

His Smile

I saw him smile that big, goofy smile. He waved. I waved back. I was so excited to see him as he was me. He was with friends and happy. I was thrilled. I saw him ride away in the back of his old pick up truck just grinning from ear to ear.

It was just a dream but a happy dream.

In my dream I continued to say "I saw Josh! I saw Josh!"

I told Mike my dream and he smiled.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

No Constant

If I have learned anything over the last 2 plus years, it is that in the grief journey there is not constant. Feelings will change and just when you think you are settled and have found a new normal, there is some new emotion to deal with. This is not necessarily a bad thing. It is just a fact.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas, Josh

Merry Christmas, Josh. I miss you so much.

I love you,

Mom