It was Saturday morning when Zoe’s Aunt Joan took her last breath. I feel weird saying Zoe’s Aunt because she meant so much to me as well. When the news came, both of us felt our hearts break and knew our lives would never be the same again. Joanie was one of those people who made a difference in your life. She was the first person in the family to welcome me with open arms. In my last conversation with her, she said, “I am so glad Zoe found you.” It seemed a bit out of character for her then, and even now, but the love and peace in those words continues to minister to me and I know will for time to come.
This whole weekend has been sad as we were also informed of the death of a 20 year old student where I teach. I have come to expect death and passing, but that does not mean I like it. As I have talked about death with friends, they have shared memories of how even years later something will trigger their grief and bring back memories of someone they love. A friend of mine shared that sometimes she just breaks down in tears over the passing of a 17 year old that was near and dear to her heart. One thing we have all agreed on is that none of us grieve the same way. This weekend Zoe has just wanted to read. I, who normally fills my day working through piles has just wanted to cry and sleep.
I have been wanting to write, but could not find the words. I have been trying to act in a way to honor her life and legacy, but just wanted to cry and sleep. It has been the words of Anne Lamott, an author I should read more often, who has ministered to my soul this weekend. She wrote, “Grief, as I read somewhere once, is a lazy Susan. One day it is heavy and underwater, and the next day it spins and stops at loud and rageful, and the next day at wounded keening, and the next day numbness, silence.” Thus far I have felt the heavy and underwater and the wounded and the numbness. I am rarely one to have it stop at loud and rageful.
Being reminded that what I am feeling is normal has in and of itself been healing. I must say there are aspects of this lazy susan which have been easier then others. However, being reminded that they are all parts of the process and the journey has been helpful and healing.