Saturday, May 31, 2014

On Death and Grief: Nineteen Years Later

I like to look for quotes that will express what I feel I can't. Often, my posts on Facebook will be a quote on a subject that I am struggling with, or thinking of. I've been told that I should use my own words more often and quote others less. But the act of searching for a good quote often helps me and strengthens me as I usually read through many quotes before finding one I want to post. 

This morning, I wanted to post a quote about death. About grieving. About my loss and my heartache over Laurie Ann. I began to look through quotes that I have through an app called "LDS Quotes". I don't know as that I had any expectations about what I would find, but I wanted to find something to express subtlety the significance of today to any who would read. I did not expect to be schooled. I did not expect to be changed. I did not expect personal healing to take place. My expectations were clearly not high enough!!

Here's the quote: “Resolving grief is more than just accepting the death. It involves gradually reinvesting that emotional energy, not in the past, but in the future; not in pain, but in growth.” — Kathleen Rawlings Buntin

It has really never occurred to me that I can "resolve" my grief. And perhaps, being completely honest here, I haven't wanted to resolve my grief. I have felt the need to grieve. To hold this pain as some sort of evidence of my love for Laurie Ann. But today, after nineteen years, I feel like I am ready to resolve the grief and to reinvest my emotional energy into the future, "not in pain, but in growth". And it may be for this one day or for a week, a month, a year, or for the rest of my life. And I may continue to feel the pain and sadness of my loss. It will be a process. Gradual. But I am ready to progress. I am ready to purposefully move forward. I am ready to be more in control and more focused on growing. 

And I find it curious that I have to convince myself that it is a good thing to do. That it in no way diminishes my love for my daughter. I believe that The Lord wants me to be able to grow. He wants me to be able to look forward, not back. There is a resurrection, a day for tears of joy and for a joyous reunion to take place. And as I stay focused on that, my heart and soul are filled with hope and faith and desire to live my life in such a way as to guarantee a joyous reunion. A day when the songs of the heart will be sung all the day! 

I think I will print this quote out and read it everyday. I will begin today refocusing my emotional energy to the future and allow the Spirit to help me resolve my grief.