Jan 14, 2009


I'm not focused enough right now to write a really well-thought out post about grief- but I'm not even sure why I'm waiting until I would be focused enough because I would be waiting for a long time. But I did want to share a few thoughts that came up in a conversation with my friend Jen over Christmas.

I think it's important to remember that even now, while Ian is making significant process, our (at least my) grief hasn't changed. And for others who have suffered and are suffering, you know that it runs too deeply to be easily removed.

Jen asked me how our grief has changed over the past two years. It was a great question and made me stop and think. I described it more of how the feeling of the grief has changed.

When Ian was first in the hospital, grief hand't hit me yet. It was all a whirlwind and instead of grief, I would describe it as intense sadness, confusion and pain. As time went on, and I slowly began to see how much Ian's life had changed, the grief began to grow. And it grew intensely. Constantly slamming me in the face. Never hidden and always there. Everywhere I looked I realized that Ian wasn't there with me.

Time does nothing to grief but make it deeper and more wearying. Two years has not erased any grief. It hasn't made it easier. Time has only made the grief deeper as each day we live one more day without Ian the way he used to be. To re-use one of Steve's illustrations, instead of an intense grief, it now is always lingering, always over our shoulder, always ready to manifest itself.

Ian's progress doesn't change my grief. It encourages me, but it doesn't even touch the grief that I know. Even if Ian were to be healed completely today, I would still grieve for what he has suffered and endured. I would still grieve for what happened to Ian September 30.

There is much to say about grief, but this is it for now. For those who encounter significant suffering in their lives, maybe the grieving never ends, until meeting Jesus.

"Sorrowful yet always rejoicing."



Anonymous said...

i am a long time reader of this blog and pray for ian. i have never posted, but this was excellent. larissa, thank you for openly and honestly sharing your thoughts. as a fellow long time sufferer - i understand. there is great encouragement and hope that comes but it does not erase what has come to pass. praise the Lord that we have Home to look forward to where there is no grief, no tears.
contuining to pray...

j. said...

yes, the agony of the kingdom come, but not quite yet...

thank goodness for this body of Christ (even on the internets!) that can continue to encourage each other as we gasp towards the finish line..

thank you for your continued sharing.

Anonymous said...

thank you for posting so eloquently....in my experience the grief does not go away, but it changes and settles. We will continue to hold you in our prayers.

Anonymous said...

thank you so much for your honesty about how you're feeling. thank you for telling us what it feels like, although none of us, except those who've gone through it, can even begin to touch it. we need to hear these things from you and ian's family so that we can know how to pray better. i'm so glad that jen asked you that question.

thank you, thank you, thank you, larissa.


Vicki said...

I am so grateful that you posted this Larissa. It is easy to get caught up in Ian's progress and want to rejoice with you, and not realize you are grieving and very much missing the pre-September 30th Ian.

Praying for you all.

Anonymous said...

"He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there shall be no more death or morning, wailing or pain, {for} the old order has passed away." Rev 21:4

Dealing with a loved one with traumatic brain injury (TBI) is to have chronic grief, chronic sorrow for the constant loss of the person, the constant loss of what may have been. I have thought at times that if our daughter had died in her accident it would have been easier for we would not have the constant reminder...but it would not of been better.

I can only say that somehow through the loss you must look for a gain. For us it is a preciousness of innocence.

In prayer and understanding.

God will bless

Anonymous said...

Larissa, you are correct. You can push Grief to the back burner, but it is always there, no matter how much time has passed. Nothing can change what has happened and is happening as a result, try as we might. It is really difficult to come to grips with that, and keep moving forward. God Bless you for your courage and fortitude. May God shower blessings of comfort and joy upon you and Ian both.

Anonymous said...

Dear Larissa,
...I've heard that "grief" is a "love" word; that you can only grieve over someone you love. Like if you hear on the news that something bad happened to someone, you might think, "Oh, that's a shame!" or something like that, but you don't (usually) grieve for that person, because you don't know or love him. Your depth of grief shows your depth of love for Ian.
I'm just feeling better now, after a week with a nasty "flu". When I'm sick more than a day or so...or maybe when I'm sick even a day...when I'm better, I always feel like I've "misplaced" the days that I haven't been feeling well. Like, the world has gone on and I don't know how to jump back into it. I can't imagine trying to "recover" the past two years. As Kristi said, "...none of us, except those who've gone through it, can even begin to touch it." My heart and prayers go out to you daily.
God says "I will restore to you the years that the swarming locust has eaten" and that He will "bind up the brokenhearted" and "wipe away every tear from their eyes". I don't know how or when, but I know that you trust Him and His promises.
Thank you so much for your post.

Still Praying.

Mary Ann K.

Anonymous said...

thanks for sharing your heart. i think most folks think over time that grief dissaptes. not so, it is an ever constant presence, coloring all we feel and, even do. it wakes us up and we go to sleep with it, and tears ...for what was, what isn't now, and will never be possibly. i sometimes can't even approach god with this pain...he allowed it. therefore, it was meant to be. sometimes we smile, laugh and have fun....is that grace? perhaps...i have no answers for you, myself or anyone. i am glad that you know how i feel...that is a comfort. one of the few............. it is promised that those that mourn will be comforted. i only believe now that that will happen after our deaths. (such a bleak post...but my heart cries out to yours...a fellow traveler)

Marshall said...

When you share this I realize that God has been right there with you through the pain, and that is the only way you have made it through. I think of what missionary John Paton wrote after his wife and son died:

"Let those who have ever passed through any similar darkness as of midnight feel for me; as for all others, it would be more than vain to try to paint my sorrows!... But for Jesus, and the fellowship he vouchsafed to me there, I must have gone mad and died beside the lonely grave!"

Anonymous said...

I wrote you a letter but this accident happened to me. I can only tell you that now, after I've improved, there are times of grief when I resent not being the way I was. But my husband said to me one day," I love you and we will go from here not where we have been" God is an amazing God and He will bring something to His glory out of this. Nancie Seymour