Talking about a loved one in the past tense is very hard. It reminds you that they are gone in the body so we cannot see, feel or hear from them again. I am still unpacking that one because it brings up emotions and sadness many times.
It is interesting how every loss affects the individual differently. One passing could trigger anger, another tears, another laughter, another relief, and yet another nothing at all. Yet it is still final.
I remember laughing about how some communities around here grieve. On the eve of the burial, they stay up all night singing, crying, celebrating and remembering the person. At one such event, they made us all laugh saying:
Na simu yake sasa ni mteja (now her phone is not reachable) uuuuuiiiiiwwwwwi.
Na ukimwita hataitika (if you call her she will not answer) uuuuuiiiiiwwwwwi.
Ukimtafuta hautampata (if you look for her you won’t find her) uuuuuiiiiiwwwwwi.
The leader then broke into singing and dancing for 10 minutes after that as people laughed, cried and just began to settle into the reality that this person is indeed gone for good. By the following day, mourners who had stayed up all night had processed some of the grief and were in a better place which was a little perplexing to those arriving in the morning.
There is no easy way to deal with the finality of a sealed grave and the flowers on top. There is no easy way to wake up in the morning and know that a wake-up call or text or silly emoji is not coming. There is nothing that makes the empty room but a full wardrobe better or easier. It is so final…so final.
The finality of death is contrary to the reality that God is in control.
God is the only one who can heal our hearts, dry our tears and calm our fears. It is countered over time and rarely in an instant. I am not sure that time heals, I actually think it cannot. God is the healer and the one who turns all things into good. Right now I may not see it well but I choose to believe that indeed he is the only one able and willing to heal.
I choose to believe! Even with tears flowing and questions raging…I choose to believe. Even while going through the most unbelievable pain I have ever known and an inexplicable sadness…I choose to believe.