December 6, 1941
 marks the lives
 of an entire generation.  
The day that lived in infamy 
as President Franklin Delano Roosevelt declared. 
 A day that changed lives forever.

For most of us
 there’s a day  
A day where
life changes 
For us, is was August 17, 2000.

It was the first day of school 
for my husband, third grader, and kindergartner.
I was busy canning apple and peach pie filling.
In a sticky, messy kitchen 
with a toddler at my feet 
and a baby in the high chair.

A call came,
 Mom’s having a hard time breathing, 
we’re taking her to the hospital.
We decided to go, 
My mom came to help
“Mommy, will grandma be okay?”

(Nothing’s probably wrong. 
 But what if ?
What if I say,

 “She’ll be fine” 

and she’s not?

What will that do
to her faith?)

“Kaylee, I can’t answer that.  
But God’s in control.”
I had no idea

For us, 
life changed in a hospital chapel
by a chaplain we didn’t know
“She’s expired” 
were the words 
that changed our life
 about the woman 
who defined our world

What about you?

What date defines your life,
When life changed
 and you’re left 
with a broken heart?


There were days 
I could literally feel my chest ache
Like there was a hole so big
that nothing could ever fill it
And over time, 
when I talked about her
the pain would come like waves
 all over again

Mommy, don’t cry. 
 Don’t go, huhu”

my toddler said 
more than two years later
when I was telling him
  about the grandma 
he never knew

I sobbed so much
 when I talked about her
And he didn’t like to see
 his mom cry 

And so I walked.

Through the journey of grief
Holding on to the memories,
And pondering the legacy
I wanted to pass on
so she would not be 

And I slowly realized that 
letting go of grief
did not mean 
letting go of her.

Today, August 17
was uneventful.

But every autumn, 

on a bright sunny day

when leaves in color
fall to the ground
I catch a glimpse of her face
and tears roll down my cheeks
and my heart is filled with pain

 some things
will never
 be the same.

Record my lament,
list my tears on your scroll
are they not in your record?
Psalm 56:8

Lord, for those whose days 
are filled with grieve, pain, and loss, 
comfort them in ways only you can.
Call them to you,
be their shelter, 
and surround them with your grace
that transcends every excruciating pain
they experience. 
Thank you for seeing every tear 
and honoring each one.


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