My mind is swirling this morning. It swirls in so many different directions. I don’t understand how I got to where I am. It’s still surreal. When to sit in it, to contemplate it vs when to change my questions, my mindset. Always a balancing act.
I look at your picture taken on graduation day. The picture of you and me. I’m in my heels but you’re still taller than me. You always thought you were so short. But not to me. How did I get here? Why am I left with only memories of you?
This week is intense… Survivors of Suicide Group, GriefShare, speaking at the Helpline annual meeting, a meeting with Rep Anielski about the laws around Rx meds given to minors, then the Memorial Bench dedication at the zoo. All in 4 days time. All important things I want to do. I was in control of the timing for the Wednesday commitments. When I looked at Wednesday it was open so I scheduled them. New Lesson: Part of my “new normal” is learning to look at the entire week’s events before making plans. Learning to consider the emotional strain of the week is important before saying “yes” to something else.
I used to do so many things all at once. Achiever. Accomplisher. I got so much done in a week. I’d run from meeting to meeting, prepare for a home church teaching, hang with friends and attend both soccer games of the week. I wonder what the cost was? The cost in my marriage. The cost in my relationships. Robbie’s told me – and I even remember – making Drey a priority in spite of other things I was responsible for. I didn’t do this perfectly but Drey knew I loved him. And he knew I loved the Lord. I won’t allow the voices in my head to tell me I failed him. Not this morning anyway. I delighted in my boy more than anything else in my life (not that my marriage and my relationship with God shouldn’t have been first…)
Losing Drey has meant digging deep into my identity. Deeper and deeper. At first it was “am I still a mom?” And how do I answer the, “do you have kids” question? Then I realized I hadn’t – and couldn’t – look at myself in the mirror. I would look at my hair, at each eye to put makeup on. But never at my full image. I knew I was losing weight, I knew the dark circles under my eyes were there. But I couldn’t bear to look. It took about 4 months before I actually looked in the mirror at myself in total. And all I saw staring back was Drey’s Mom. I saw the pain of a broken woman who loved her son so dearly that she would’ve given her life for his. It took a few more months before I could begin looking in the mirror without becoming nauseous.
But even now – especially now – this identity thing keeps going deeper… “I am a daughter of the King.” Blah blah blah. To know this intellectually is one thing but to really get to the root belief and meaning of who I am is risky work.
I’ve KNOWN intellectually for a long time that cookies, bra’s and panties (I worked as an Executive at Cheryl’s and at Victoria’s Secret), my ability to do 20 things in a day: attend soccer games, teach the bible, keep my house clean, go on college visits, lead DivorceCare, call a friend, buy that book for a coworker, etc. did not define who I was. But now that those things don’t fill up my time… I sometimes find myself feeling worthless. So the deeper journey into CONSIDERING who I am began on August 8th, 2012. I didn’t know it at the time. I didn’t know much of anything on that day or for several weeks afterwards – everything was foggy. But nonetheless God was and still is at work. He is the ultimate multi-tasker. Not only was He comforting me and carrying me in my grief but he was teaching me about who I was.
Fourteen months later I don’t have a new, magical answer to the “Who am I” question. I am a daughter of the King. I have been since 1987 when I realized I wasn’t perfect and needed a Savior – and that Savior was Jesus. What’s different now is that the journey to CONSIDERING myself a daughter – chewing on, meditating on, ruminating on – that I am a daughter of the King became real on August 8th, 2012. My supposed ability to attend soccer games, clean my house, and teach the bible, were stripped from me. I could not breathe without God. My journey into CONSIDERING my true identity began when I realized apart from my King I was but dust.