Monday, November 28, 2011


On October 13, 2011, when my world as I knew disappeared, I was shaken.  I think the best analogy to use is "shaken like a rag doll".  So many books talk about grief and how to get through it and how to cope and how to love and how to pray and how to and how to...the list goes on and on.  For me the loss of my daughter has made me so vulnerable, all the nuts and bolts that keep all  my unwanted emotions tacked in place; suppressed fears, childhood mishaps, toxic relationships, trust issues, misguided issues the list goes on and on.  I can now feel them, like little scavengers, feeding off of my vulnerability, my lack of strength, and my inability to overcome these emotions that just two months ago I would have said I had conquered.  This morning I am struggling with so many unanswered whys.

An onion, someone had once described my journey of Faith to me as an onion and the layers are peeled off one by one.  I thought I had peeled most of those layers off.  Well this is not the case.  Those suppressed, yes I now know I had only suppressed, feelings are now a contribution to this new sense of loss.

Lack of sympathy
Lack of empathy

These are coping mechanisms that as a young girl I used to build this wall.  A wall that I used to protect myself from the world.  I didn't know better, I didn't understand then that these where only destructive emotions and that building a protective wall with only these supplies would inhibit my ability to contribute to fulfilling relationships. Over the years I have taken each experience, each failed relationship, each failed friendship and I have always looked at myself and asked myself what could I have done differently what part of myself contributed and I really have tried to take whatever contributing factor good or bad and worked on that part of me.  Hoping that the next relationship or friendship I will be better, more loving, more thoughtful, more open. 

All of this leads me to Jeff, my husband.  In the short time that we have been together we have together really worked at trying to make me more a wife and less of a husband.  Ha, not physically but emotionally yes, I have many emotional characteristics that many would say that their husbands exhibit. A toughness that in the beginning I know Jeff respected and adored, but today is an emotional obstacle that is very hard for him or I to overcome.  The absolute hardest part of this is grieving with but differently than your spouse.  How can you be there for someone the way that they truly need you to be when it is emotionally and even physically exhausting just to get out of bed most days.  How do you put aside your own selfish "grieving" needs and support your husband who is grieving just as you are grieving if not worse. 

I can tell you my prayers are so childlike, I do hope it is true that God knows your heart.  I hope He knows that when I mumble Jeff's name over and over again.  When that's all I can get out that I really am praying for our marriage and for our love to truly endure this tragedy.  I am praying for so many things that even as I write the words do not come.  How do you find the love, the marriage, you once had.  How do you rebuild, put the pieces back togther when such a catastrophic storm has hit your beleoved shores.  The answers to these questions are different for everyone and for us we will never know the how to's.  For now I just mumble Jeff's name as I stumble through so many prayers.

I pray that through this journey the layers of so many negative emotions are truly peeled away.  That the loving wife, the thoughtful wife, the vulnerable sympathetic and empatheitic wife that I want to be, that I need to be will be there again.

I walk up and down this short flight of stairs and I look at these pictures everyday.  Sometimes I look and I smile, sometimes I cry, sometimes I wonder who is this family that seems so happy, I am reminded of the family that I still have and I am reminded of a daughter that is still gone but evertime I run my hand up or down that rail I am reminded of a family that lives, that loves and that still laughs even through the hardest times. My heart is just as empty as it is full.


  1. Summer, I can relate to the grieving differently than your husband. In the first months of Daniel's tragedy I found myself struggling so much with how Brent processed things...sometimes empathizing, but sometimes just totally annoyed...sometimes connected and sometimes feeling so alone. I too mumbled prayers and asked others to pray for us...and God has answered. Instead of our tragedy driving a wedge (like it naturally would, because of 2 different people processing differently) it has brought us closer...not immediately...but over several months. I think I have changed. I think I give Brent more room now to be himself. And he gives me room to be myself. And we try to navigate our family through these life circumstances and a brutal disease trusting the Lord each step of the way. And He is faithful. Even when I am faithless, He is faithful.

    Praying for you all.

  2. As long as you are saying his name,and even if you werent saying Jeff's name God is listening. Jeff came into your life at a time when you were ready for him. I truly believe all in Gods timing. I love you and there is no doubt in my mind that Jeff loves you and you love Jeff and Love is the greatest gift that he gave us.

  3. Baby Girl, God hears every word, every tear, every little laugh and every name you utter, especially's Jeff's. So many are praying for ya'll, but your words, thoughts and tears, to God's ears are better than a Hallelujah! My precious Summer, I love you so much and I know that You and Jeff will choose LOVE! And that Love will get you through. mom

  4. Sometimes all you have to do is mutter the world 'help' ...God knows what you need.

  5. "As long as you are saying his name,and even if you werent saying Jeff's name God is listening. Jeff came into your life at a time when you were ready for him. I truly believe all in Gods timing. I love you and there is no doubt in my mind that Jeff loves you and you love Jeff and Love is the greatest gift that he gave us."--Jesika Jewell wrote it. I'm only Amening it!

    Summer, I've told you I don't read every day. Never, ever think that I don't care when I don't. With all of me, I do care. Christmas is and will always be the hardest time for me. There are some days I can't pick at what's been scabbed over. Yes, in many ways our losses are different, but that absolute splintered heart and wandering and wondering, they're pretty much the same. You are a beautiful and gifted writer. You have much to share and God has already given you a huge ministry. My love and prayers are always with you. Always.