Saturday, March 31, 2012

Letting go to move forward

I'm sure my friends wondered why I still had the sympathy cards up 6 months after my husband died. I found them comforting. It visually confirmed all our friends and family that cared for my daughters and me. I wasn't ready to put them away. I needed to find a special place for them and decided one day I'd get around to it.

The closets were still untouched. One of Nelson's shirts had a musty smell. Had it been that long? My husband died in April and now it was October. Many friends offered their help. I knew they just loved me and wanted me to move on. Was I afraid that if I moved forward I'd have to let go of the past? Material things weren't important to me, however, I felt very possessive with Nelson's belongings.

Perhaps I was stuck in grief at this point. I think God knows how to nudge us when it's time to let go. Mornings were getting a little chilly. My friend, Dinah, called me one day to ask me what I was planning to do with Nelson's leather jacket. Dinah and her husband, Arturo, had been our very close friends.

My hand clenched the phone. "I hadn't thought about it," I said. "Well, Arturo was planning to buy a leather and if you're not keeping Nelson's, could Arturo have it?" Dinah asked. Our conversation caught me off guard. What if I wanted to keep it? But it was too big for me. The sleeves covered my fingers. I had no reason to keep it other than for sentimental reasons. It was Nelson's favorite coat!

Of course I gave the coat to Arturo. But when I did, I felt a part of Nelson go. God knew it was time and I had been holding on as long as I could. When Arturo picked up the jacket, my tears came later on that evening. In the midst of my painful cries, I suddenly felt God's peace flow through my body. He was my comforter.

The process of letting go became easier after this point. Closets got cleaned out and I felt like it was the right time. Now the cards were a different story. I waited until Christmas cards came in, then I replaced the sympathy cards with the Christmas cards. This was my way of adjusting. And I always did things my way! (With God's gentle nudging and guidance of course!)


Maureen Hunter said...

It is always so important to grieve in our own way, in our own time. I enjoyed reading a snippet of your journey ~ Maureen

Cindy Adams said...

I agree Maureen. It's a journey that's similar but different in our own way. Makes it kind of special in that way:) Thanks for stopping by!! Cindy