Sunday, September 9, 2007

Comfort and Loss

Today was a funeral for a parent volunteer from our school. This lady was a fixture around the place - helping out in her child’s classroom. She was also our first-call substitute and often worked in my classroom. She was a very pleasant woman and a doting mother.

On Easter Sunday of this year, she had a seizure. Since that time, she had ups and downs of recovery, with the doctors never putting their finger on exactly what was wrong. Swelling on her brain and strain on her heart finally took her.

I didn’t go to the funeral home nor to the funeral. Funerals are tricky things; sometimes they are a celebration of life, and sometimes they are a mournful time of loss.

My own mother died when I was 8 years old. 34 years later and I still tear up thinking about her and that loss - how I never had her around for my wedding, for the birth of my children. I did have a stepmother and I love her - but it just wasn’t the same.

I remember when I found out I was pregnant with my first child. I went out to the grave site and poured out my news. It made me feel a little better - but the tears still flowed.

Since I heard about the parent’s death, I have had a hard time talking about it. Her child is only a little older than I was when my mother died. I didn’t want to go to the funeral because I knew I would be too focused on my own loss - and too teary-eyed to be any good.

In a couple of weeks, I will talk to the child’s family about the things that would have helped me if they had been done - a memory book from other people about my mother. Permission to keep something and to have something tangible to touch to know that it was once in my mother’s hands. I hope that I can be of some help to this child.

The Bible says in 2 Corinthians 1:4, “He comforts us whenever we suffer. That is why whenever other people suffer, we are able to comfort them by using the same comfort we have received from God.”

I’d like to think that good has come from my loss - that God has worked things out so that I can support this child. I still don’t understand why God intervenes in some cases and not in other, but that’s where faith comes in. I’m still kind of mad at Him, but - He’s big enough. He can take it.


Shelina said...

How awful for such a young child to lose his/her mother. Not that there is ever any good time to lose a mother.
And death certainly does make you think about your own losses and situation. When my grandmother died, I was thinking about how much time there is left for the next generation.

Mrs. Goodneedle said...

It's OK to be mad at God, you're right to know that He can take it. But, God's plan and timing are perfect, it's not for us to understand, either. I'm so sorry to know that you were such a young child when your mother died, what an incredibly sad occurrence that was. This, too, seems so unfair for the young student at your school. I am praying for strength for all of you.