March 18th, 2010
I truly feel like I turned a corner in the grief process by going to Houston. In some ways as I drove to Houston by myself I felt like David with 5 stones going to face a giant that had inflicted much pain on my family and those I love. But there was a determination and courage that came over me as I remembered that I am an overcomer……it is my God given right. As I drove, many memories flooded my mind…..”that is where we stopped for gas,” “that is where I had to take over driving,” “there is where he kissed me.” We would frequently hold hands as he drove and as I rested my hand on the arm rest, it was almost as if I could still feel him holding my hand. As I pulled into Houston, the song that we played at his memorial service, “I Will Rise” by Chris Tomlin came on…….I shook my head and said, “Joe, that is what you did.” I had to smile because he was not in pain anymore. It was heart wrenching for me to watch such a strong man endure so much pain……but he did, for me, for him and our kids. Then he knew it was time to go………
When I got to Houston there was a chemical spill and traffic was backed up and rerouted. I got lost and drove around for an hour and half trying to find my way. I had to simply laugh because my plans for my life once again hadn’t worked but I was having fun driving in circles in my convertible…..lost, trying to find my way, but having fun….a lot like my life right now…..I could see that I had grown in letting go of my plans for my life…..and it was ok….
I had dinner with a friend from MD Anderson and it was good to see her. She was precious and it was healing to talk to her. Saturday I went to MDA to walk around and process. Tears flooded my eyes as I walked in the doors I had walked through many times with a determination to conquer cancer……I went and stood on the floor where our chemo doctor had his office and looked around in silence…….”Had this really been my life last year?” I asked myself. I went to the hospital and walked around the floor and stood by the room he was in the last time he was hospitalized…..two nurses recognized me and came up to ask about Joe. We talked, we cried together as both of them had had recent losses in their lives. As I drove out of the parking lot of MDA, I felt like Joe was talking to me, “Baby, we did it! “Did what”? I replied. I felt him say, “I am here in heaven and you are overcoming.” I could see him smiling at me as he so often did. As I left the Houston city limits, a song God frequently encouraged me with came on,……”You Make Everything Glorious.” I had to smile at God because I could see him doing that in my life.
Since then, I haven’t cried. A new peace has rested over me. I am beginning to discover my new life and like it although I do feel lost. I am encountering many new situations……today I am off to wedding dress shop. July 10th is the big day……..and life goes on.