Tell us about a guiding star inside your grief: are there people-whether real, or fictional-who live their own grief in a way that gives you encouragement, inspiration, or direction?
I have a person's telephone number saved in my cell phone that is waiting for a phone call from me. A kind and always loyal friend gave me her number a few weeks ago and said, "I think you are ready to talk to someone that has walked this in front of you. I think you need to know you are not alone."
I agree wholeheartedly. The days where grief falls like a big white blanket of snow over everything "normal" gives me literal panic attacks. And for whatever reason these days now as I do them for a second time, like family pictures and Thanksgiving, seem harder than they were the first time.
I am not expecting for this person on the other line to really give me advice or help me learn to cope; rather tell me that the way I grieve is just fine. Maybe just listen a lot. Talk a lot too. The way we grieve is not going to be the same and it's okay that it's not. We both lost children but in completely different circumstances. I just want to know from someone that isn't trying to be a good friend or make me feel "more normal" that what I am doing and what I am trying to do every day is enough.
I think the reason I feel like I will eventually gather the courage to call her is because in the midst of her grief she has something else that defines who she is; hope. I have that too. I want that truth to never slip from my heart and soul because without that I am not sure I could do this grief thing. Having the hope of the promise of heaven is what has kept me going on the worst days. I want to see her faith and I want to see her carry that hope above her grief. That hope in someone else is the encouragement, inspiration, and direction of a million men. It is powerful.