is just around the corner.
The end of this month, my children and I will begin our road trip to the upper peninsula of Michigan. We are excited. We will be staying in a lodge nestled on 12 acres…beautiful setting…according to the pictures anyway. This is a biannual event on my side of the family. My mother, and my 4 siblings and I are spread out in all different states, so about 12 years ago we started this tradition of having a reunion. There are 34 of us. 24 of those being children. We have a marvelous, loud, time. Since we started this tradition my father and my husband have passed away, but several more children have been added. The Lord gives and the Lord takes away.
I have mixed feelings about this reunion. Chris will not be there. Another first. I’ll be honest..I think he did these reunions mostly for me. Large crowds of loud people were not exactly his cup of tea. But he patiently dealt with my excitement for it and willingly helped me plan and pack. He participated in some of the wild games and crazy conversations, but mostly he took the time to find a quiet corner and read. I’m really going to miss looking over and seeing him relaxing (something he hardly ever did). This year, I share a room with my mother, who is also a widow, at the reunion. I’m excited about this..having my mom to myself is a rare treat. My kids are going to miss their Dad on this reunion. He was a relaxed traveler, always willing to splurge and buy the fun stuff at the gas stations. The front seat was the coveted seat. It was there that you had Dad to yourself.
But what I’m apprehensive about the most is that this is the “last” thing. What I mean by that is that this is the last big thing happening since Chris died. After this, it’s regular life.
When someone is grieving, in an effort to deal with the long road of time ahead of you, you throw yourself into any number of activities. For me it was lots of home remodeling projects and school. With a few trips thrown in there. As I look back over the last year I am kind of astounded at what I have accomplished. It’s amazing what one will do to cope. It’s good and normal I think. Better then going to bed and never getting up I guess. But I’m exhausted. Truly exhausted. It’s time to get back to normal life. And that is what is coming after my family reunion. This has been on my mind for quite some time. I fear time with nothing to do. Not that I ever have “nothing to do”, after all, five children do provide with me with plenty to do. I think it’s more of a mind thing. Nothing to occupy my mind. Nothing to plan. Nothing to look forward to. It’s time to learn to be content to be a widow. I’m actually wincing as I type that. I’m fearful and a bit irritated that I can’t seem to put this off any longer. Why me? I don’t really want to learn how to do that.
I’ve purposely scheduled my summer work schedule to be light. I want there to be plenty of down time to hang with the kids, spend time at the pool and work in my yard. But ahhhhhh, that just doesn’t seem like enough to do. I’m afraid of the memories, the lonely feelings of missing Chris. Dealing with all of that sadness just feels overwhelming to me. I’m really hoping I’m fearing something that won’t become a reality.
So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
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