Tonight I finally sat down and finished reading a book that was sent to me by a friend shortly after Hope's death. The book is called 'A Grace Disguised' by Gerald L. Sittser. I highly recommend this book to anyone that is suffering a loss or tragedy of some kind, his thoughts and reflections are very powerful.
A specific section on community in the presence of sorrow jumped out at me tonight and I wanted to share it:
"First of all, it requires a choice on the part of those who want to provide community for suffering friends. They must be willing to be changed by someone else's loss, though they might not have been directly affected by it. Good comfort requires empathy, forces adjustments, and sometimes mandates huge sacrifices. Comforters must be prepared to let the pain of another become their own and so let it transform them. They will never be the same after that decision. Their own world will be permanently altered by the presence of one who suffers. It will bring an end to detachment, control, and convenience. It will prevent them from ever thinking again that the world is a safe place full of nice people, positive experiences, and favourable circumstances."
Reading this section reminded me again of how thankful I am for the people that made that difficult decision to be our community and to be forever changed for the ordinary. Although life is no longer a "pretty" thing, there is beauty to be seen in true community. Thank you for making that sacrifice and for growing along side us.
Tucking Sadie in tonight she asked once again, "Do you think we could ask Jesus to give Hope back?" I said no. "Do you think if we wave a magic wand she might come back?" I had to say no once again. "Mommy do you think that God will give me a new sister next week then?" I answered with a more thoughtful, "well, we can ask him to do that and then see what happens!" She continues to miss her sister and longs for the comfort that I never knew a small child could bring to an older child at such a young age. I look forward to her getting older and building her own community. Right now as a family we are that community for her, but I know she is still lonely in her loss as well.
Thank you for continuing to care.