Today. Today is a beautiful day outside and yet it’s been one of my harder days. The irony, right? It’s as if the sun makes me feel good enough to feel, and “feeling” is just not a welcome thing for me, for us right now. “Feeling” right now is loaded far beyond anything I can describe and far beyond anything I hope you ever have to feel in life. Who knew feeling so empty could be so overwhelming? There really is so much irony in grief & in struggle.
Physically I’m feeling better. My bones don’t hurt today. I’m shaky and feel weak but my guess is it’s just my body rebounding. I forced myself to get out for a walk. I felt like a baby deer walking. My pride has sure taken a shot in terms of my physical ability. Just another thing to rebuild in time. I think we can officially call round 4 in the books.
After I posted that picture of the rainbow in the water at the WTC memorial, a few of you reached out with stories about rainbows and what they’ve meant to people in your lives who have lost. First, I appreciate the stories so much. You don’t know how much they make me think and how much they make me appreciate your effort to share. Second, I love the idea of signs and I would like to think that Hilary was right, it was a sign from Hallie. These days, I find myself desperately craving something physical to fill her void. It’s like I know nothing will ever fill it but I keep chasing it. Something to keep her name present. Something to make me believe her life was really for a greater purpose. Something to remind us that she is ours. And you all helped me to see I got that in that picture. And you know what? I’m proud! My daughter would show up in such an American place like that. She would take after her firecracker mama! No, I’m not feisty, I’m literally a firecracker baby. Ok, ok, I’m feisty too. Thinking of it that way made me genuinely happy.
It got me thinking back to Mexico last June. We, as I’m sure all couples do, spent many many days (years) talking about kids, what it takes, what kind of parents we wanted to be, what kind of spouses we promised to be, etc. One of the stipulations we committed too before we started trying for a family was to take one last kid-free vacation, just the two of us, off the grid. We love travel, we love a good time and we love quality time alone, all things we knew wouldn’t be in our near future with kids! As time progressed and we realized we were ready to start a family, we were A.) excitedly terrified (is that a word?) and B.) pumped because they meant we were booking a vacation! I remember it vividly. It was last winter, we were at our local watering hole by our apartment and it was blizzarding out. We booked an all inclusive in Cancun for 8 days. No worries other than what’s the SPF and where are we eating dinner tonight. The countdown started and we had a game plan for life. A game plan that felt right for us. The irony again.
One of the first nights there, we were out on the beach and there was this incredible thunderstorm over the water. You all know my maybe-weird, maybe-overboard love for thunderstorms so I was mesmerized. We stayed out on the beach, under our hut during it. Once the storm passed and the clouds cleared, there was the most beautiful rainbow over the ocean. I’ve never been a “rainbow” girl, meaning I’ve never been drawn to them but for some reason that day, we were obsessed with taking pictures of it & of us with it in the background. I’m not kidding, we have like 30 of these silly attempts on our go pro. I remember we were laughing so hard the entire time and were so serious in our attempts to capture it! And we have one picture of Kevin that will show up one day, it’s so good. Here are just a few of the pictures:
Maybe I’m grasping at straws and if so, let me have it. But maybe these are some of the pieces of the puzzle coming together to show us there really is a reason for all of this? You have to find hope in anything and everything these days. Maybe we weren’t just weirdly obsessed with that rainbow for no reason that day. Perhaps God gave us that memory at the start of this journey as a promise that there’d be one at the end. I choose to believe that!
Here’s to finding a way to see the rainbow.