holding them close.

I have been moved to tears more than once over this past weekend after the events in Connecticut.  I didn’t use to be this way, but then I had Lena and lost my sister, and now it only takes a few words of a news article or interview to cause my eyes to well up with tears.
There just aren’t any guarantees in this life, are there?  You choose a small town in a state known for its decorum and law-abiding citizens.  You settle down, have your long-awaited children, send them to a lovely elementary school, welcome them home each day.  And then one morning you find yourself standing in the parking lot, watching children run out of the school, weeping, and you wait and you wait and you wait and your child never comes out.  
Or you fall asleep on a quiet July Saturday night in Sicily, sleep through your sister driving down the highway, sleep through your sister overcorrecting, sleep through your sister hitting a tree, wake up to a phone call from your dad, and phone calls should never come at 4am.  Never.
I read A Wrinkle in Time yesterday and my heart swelled with the family reunion at the end of the book:
Sandy suddenly yelled, “Father!”
Mr. Murry was running across the lawn, Mrs. Murry running toward him, and they were in each other’s arms, and then there was a tremendous happy jumble of arms and legs and hugging, the older Murrys and Meg and Charles Wallace and the twins, and Calvin grinning by them until Meg reached out and pulled him in and Mrs. Murry gave him a special hug all of his own.  They were talking and laughing all at once, where they were strartled by a crash, and Fortinbras, who could bear being left out of the happiness not one second longer, catapulted his sleek black body right through the screened door to the kitchen.  He dashed across the lawn to join in the joy, and almost knocked them all over with the exuberance of his greeting.
Through the achings and the longings of this life, through the griefs and the sorrows, I am holding out in hope and awaiting with eagerness a reunion like this in Heaven, when Booie will come running across the Jordan and we’ll all be together again, reaching for each other and falling down and laughing in the shallow water, reunited for all eternity in joy and peace, where there are no more tears and there is no more night, and all the light comes from Jesus.
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5 Responses to holding them close.

  1. Joy December 17, 2012 at 5:51 pm #

    Your blog has moved me to tears more than once, too. Thank you for sharing this.

  2. lucyanngreen6 December 17, 2012 at 7:28 pm #

    Though I have a hard time expressing my thoughts eloquently, my heart swells and bursts reading this, at the sorrow and grief of losing my precious daughter. I grieve with these parents, too, having just lost their dear young children. Yet the thought of being gloriously reunited one day with dear Julia gives me great hope. I know we walk by faith now, but one day we will see. O glorious day.

  3. Meg {henninglove} December 17, 2012 at 11:08 pm #

    sometimes i feel like i dont know how to properly address situations like this that im more afraid of saying the wrong thing rather than saying anything at all. i love your words here especially at the end when you will see your sister again and she will welcome with your wide open arms saying you are home

  4. jess December 19, 2012 at 10:48 pm #

    so very sweet. and i love the pics. they’re so warm.

  5. The Amazing Trips December 20, 2012 at 5:28 am #

    Your family is always in our prayers. And it is beyond comprehension, the grieving CT families that we’ve added to our nightly prayers, as well. How? Why? Of course we could never understand, so we have to believe in God’s fingerprints … surely they are there, covering us all.

    I’m sending many blessings to you and your sweet family in this holy season.

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