My grandma would have been 70 years old today. I say would have been because almost a year ago today she died after a 5.5 year battle with pancreatic cancer… wow I haven’t said that out loud, or even typed that in words in a while. The truth is, because she left such an impact on me, I’m still grieving almost 6 months later. Every Sunday night at 8pm feels lonely because I don’t to talk to her on the phone and when something exciting happens, she’s one of the first people I wish I could tell. True confession, I still haven’t had the heart to delete her from my phone… every time I type in Na, her name pops up and I have to remind myself that calling Nana isn’t an option anymore. The past six months have brought healing in my heart, but the truth is, there’s still a lot of brokenness that I still feel frequently.
God keeps teaching me that trust is a key part in any relationships. Trust and true emotions. There are few times in my life when I’ve felt legitimately angry with God – after the earthquake in Haiti and the night after I said good-bye to my grandmother for the last time. While I was sad that she was being taken from me, it was so hard to try to understand why she was still here – I felt like she had suffered enough. One of my best friends told me something that night that has comforted me so much – it’s okay to be mad at God. It’s okay to ask for explanations, as long as through it, I trust that in His time He will reveal His goodness to me. Yes, today I feel angry that she died so young, that she’ll miss my college graduation, my wedding and other significant things in the next 10 years. Then I remind myself that I got 19 love filled years with her. She watched me graduate from high school — that’s a blessing. There’s less anger than 6 months ago and hopefully the next year bring more healing — I’m trusting that God will continue to heal my heart and lead me into less bitterness and sadness.
I came across a verse in Isaiah a couple days ago that I came back today, as I’m a hot mess walking around campus and crying in my room. “I, the Lord have called you in righteousness; I will take hold of your hand.” (Isaiah42:6) The second part of that is so comforting to me. The intimate act of hand-holding is something the God of the universe desires to do for me. When I think of someone holding my hand, they guide me, they stabilize me when I stumble, and they are there to motivate me when I want to give up. God is not absent in my struggles and my heartache, He is there, right alongside me hold my hand. There’s still healing in my heart to be done, January 11th and July 24th will always be two of the most difficult days of the year for me, but on these days, I find comfort in the fact that God knows and God is there right beside me; all I have to do is squeeze my hand and seek His comfort.