No man is an island. In the beginning, God said, “It’s not good for man to be alone.” I think he was on to something. We were created to be relational. To give and receive love.
My mom is dying. She is being transitioned to hospice in the next couple of days and in this incredibly hard season for my family, we’re together. We’re all giving, loving, supporting, sacrificing, and hurting. Having traveled from California, Oregon, and parts of Texas. Sons, daughters, sisters, grandkids, spouses. We’re in this together.
There’s also been overwhelming support and encouragement from friends that may or may not have even met my mom, but they are invested in her journey home right alongside us. Friends from college are housing my family. Friends that I haven’t seen in over a year have volunteered to help with mom’s care. My brother’s ex-wife (who will always be my sister) has spent the last week with us pouring into our family in practical and supportive ways. Friends all over the world are praying and sending encouragement to my mom and family.
Some of you may be thinking, “Good for you but my family is messed up. I don’t have those kinds of friends. I’ve been hurt and I’m done putting myself out there.” Please, let me encourage you from my perspective and my mothers. Fight. Fight for your relationships. Fight for reconciliation. Fight for family and fight for friendships. Don’t give up on people, because in life and in death, you need them.
Reach out to your family and let them know you love them. Period. Start by giving love, not asking for it. Start by apologizing and forgiving, not asking for apologies. Start by praying FOR them, not ABOUT them. Start by changing your thoughts and attitudes to seeing the good, not the bad.
Find a local church. That’s the best place to find lasting friendships that will walk through life with you. Find a church that feels like home and get involved. Go to a small group, serve on Sundays, join a family that’s not blood but that goes deeper.
No one is perfect, including you and I, so don’t expect your relationships to be perfect. Just love each other as Christ loved you. As messed up, broken people. We need each other. We weren’t created to be alone. Our best life is a connected one. Our best death is a connected one. Surround yourself with people that love you and then choose to love them even more, no matter what.
To those of you that have given time, money, tears and prayers for us. Thank you. I never imagined that preparing to lose my mom would be this painful and debilitating. I never knew that my life would pause, like a held breath, because of grief and heartache. I never knew how desperately I would grab onto the moments that I still get to have with her. I never knew I would be this angry about things I can’t control. I never knew how hard it would be to watch my dad, watch my mom slip away. I never knew I would be this afraid of what’s to come. I never knew how much I would selfishly struggle to keep her here instead of letting her go home where she will be with the One who loves her more than any of us ever could.
It’s difficult to imagine heaven when you haven’t seen it. You just have to trust in the one who holds all life in His hands. Trust that His timing is perfect and our loss is heavens gain. Trust that this is not the end. There is no way to prepare for loss. You just have to walk through it one day at a time.
But we know that we’re not alone, and that makes all the difference.
Tiffany Chapman this is so beautiful. I cry as this fits everyone of us. We cry for our loss of my sister, your Mother. But we also cry tears of joy as we know how much God loves her and wants her home with him. She will no longer be in pain. She will have a perfect new body, as God has promised each of his children. No more pain, no more sorrow. God has given June absolute peace. She is ready to go home with Jesus and those family and friends that have gone before. I pray I can be as strong as June. I pray I can let go of selfishness, wanting to have her here longer. I can do this, God is with us all helping June to go home. I love you so much June, I enjoyed be with you the past year and a half, helping in any way I could. I’m hurting but I’m now also ready for your Journey to heaven. Goodbye my beautiful sister. Till we meet again in Heaven. I love you so very much.
Thanks for commenting Aunt Joyce. We’re all so thankful for you and the love you pour on mom and us. 💗
So beautiful! You all are. I sit here reading this with tears running down my checks. You are all so strong and loving. Wish I was able to come see you all. And give Aunt June a great big hug and kiss. Praying every day for comfort and peace.
Thank you Anitra, that means so much! 💗