Saturday, March 12, 2011

Good Days . . .

Last weekend was GLOOMY. Outside the weather was gray and cold, just plain gloomy. Inside, I was every bit as gloomy. I didn't raise the shades all day on Saturday and other than a quick trip to pick up a prescription I didn't leave the house. A friend from the church came by late in the afternoon to bring homemade soup and pimento cheese. That was the day's only bright spot. I didn't feel sorry for myself, but did allow myself to be sad and lonely and tell God just how I felt. He listened, just as He always does. Sunday I woke up too late to get to church on time--it was still rainy and cold. Late that afternoon I went to Tommy and Liz's for supper and the gloom lifted. When I walked in Tommy said, "Mom, you don't look like you feel well," so I told him about my gloomy two days, plus the fact that I felt silly about them. His reply was: "So, you think you're Wonder Woman and get through the stages of grief in three weeks?" Enter Meredith, who gave me a big hug and continued to give me hugs when she thought I needed one throughout the evening. The two of them broke through the gloom.

I have learned that it's perfectly all right, and perfectly natural, to be sad. There would be something wrong with me if I didn't feel lonely. Sometimes I can see Tom sitting across from me and hear him when his wisdom is needed and feel his hand in mine offering comfort in a single touch. After all, he is and will always be in my heart. I remember the message of the story I related in my last blog. God understands the pain of losing a loved one. God loved Tom even more than I; He loves me and He will heal the pain. Those are the facts. I pray that God will make them a part of me.

This weekend is bright and beautiful--no gloom in sight. Yesterday I went to Memphis with two friends. We shopped at a wonderful grocery store, went to Penzey's Spices, had a two hour knitting lesson, ate lunch and were home by four. All three of us declared that we didn't know when we had laughed as much!. I bought veal loin chops with the condition that Tommy create something delicious. He didn't let us down. Last night we had veal chops on a bed of Charleston grits, smothered with a mushroom gravy. What a feast! The only low point in the day was watching Mississippi State lose in the SEC tourney.

The knitting lesson was so much fun. I haven't knit in at least twenty years and decided to pick it up again. One particular chemo drug has created permanent numbness in my feet and fingers and off and on pain in my toes. The numbness in my fingers makes most needlework difficult and I thought knitting might be just what I needed to try. I miss not having a project in progress. A customer in the shop told me she had some kind of arthiritis in her hands and fingers and that the knitting actually was therapeutic for her. When I first picked up the needles, they felt like telephone poles in my hands, but once the teacher got me started things began coming back to me. I'm going to love my renewed activity--especially with great friends who will knit alongside me.

Speaking of the lady in the shop who told me of her hand and finger problems, God has brought many women who have either spoken a word or two about their experience with widow-hood or people like a dear California friend who wrote and told me a story that I had never known about her life, her experience with grief and how God has provided for her in every aspect of her life. Sometimes when we share something of ourselves with others we may think we are merely saying words, but the Holy Spirit uses those words in ways we cannot even imagine. I am blessed to have friends who care and who take the time to share with me.

The rest of today will be busy with a little cooking, attending a memorial service at the church and studying for two circles I'm teaching on Monday. There is plenty to keep me busy. I must not forget to be still in God's presence. He will keep me in perfect peace---in the midst of any and everything.

Pastor Margaret

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