I have decided to take on a monthly writing challenge. Although positive things have happened in our lives and we have been blessed with another child, Ayden will always be the main purpose for this blog. I may not write about my grief as much as I used to, but it's still present. I still have moments of deep sadness. I still cry (I cried today as I watched videos of Ayden "talking" and laughing). He is forever a part of our lives, so I will continue to write about him and the part he plays in our lives.
The challenge is linked here: Faces of Loss
This month's entry is about how the changing seasons affect our grief. Here are my thoughts:
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.
This verse is part of a frame we have hanging in our house. For a long time, I took it for granted. I never really noticed the verse accompanying the pretty yellow tulip.....until Ayden passed away. After that, I read that verse over and over again each time I would pass by that picture.
When we reached the one year mark, I thought back to how I had bought floral arrangments for Ayden's spot for each season of the year. We had experienced 4 seasons without him. How had that happened? How had a year come and gone so quickly? And how had I survived a year without my baby boy?
As the seasons change, I am reminded first of God's splendor and the majesty of the nature around us. His hand commands the crisp fall air, the changing color of the leaves, the millions of snowflakes that fall in winter, (my favorite) the blooming of flowers in spring, and the heat of summer. He put it all in place. As seasons change, time moves forward, and we move with it....sometimes unwillingly, especially when we're grieving. With each changing season, I'm reminded that it's another season that is coming and going without Ayden here.
This time of year is especially difficult since Ayden passed away as fall was coming in. The heat of the August sun brings back the hardest of memories....memories I associate with planning and being a part of a memorial service I wish we had never had to organize. Saying goodbye....
On August 28, 2008, we found out I was pregnant with our first, which we ultimately learned was our Ayden Brooks. The excitement of our first child, of being pregnant for the first time, all of it...began in the fall and continued to build. The transition from summer to fall holds a lot of sweet and bittersweet memories for us.
Then, as fall approaches, I'm reminded of our first season without Ayden. Looking back, I don't know how we made it through.
Here we are, our 2nd fall without Ayden. This time is obviously different because we now have Collen with us, but having him with us is a reminder of the brother who isn't here. We should be going into this fall with two sons. Ayden should be running around here...into everything. I should be a frazzled mess (and loving every second) while trying to keep up with Ayden and a newborn at the same time.
No one season in particular holds more weight....with the exception of the transition between summer and fall (for obvious reasons). With each new season, we are reminded of the child who is no longer here and of what we're missing out on. But, as each season comes and goes, we're one season closer to eternity with him. Our focus now is to go with each season facing them in the way the Ecclesiasties verse describes - with every season comes changes...times for sadness, happiness, grief, joy. Changing seasons and time passing doesn't make it all better. Time doesn't heal this wound, but as the seasons change, we can take the time to let ourselves face our loss but also let in a little joy as well by finding the good in the changing seasons as well.