Tuesday, February 19, 2008

A sadness wrapped in love

When I was looking after Mom I looked often at this picture which hung on her wall. I had photographed these cosmos flowers a few years ago in the rain and the water droplets make me think of tears. It's kind of a sad picture, but it's beautiful as well. There is a beauty in some sadness, don't you think?

I think that sadness that is wrapped in love is a beautiful thing, because love is beautiful. And love comes from God. To lack that sadness would not be beautiful at all. There is a kind of gentle richness - a bittersweetness - when someone has lived a long life and then closes that life. There was a bittersweetness about spending those last weeks with Mom, hearing her last precious words. One thing she expressed a lot was her gratitude to my husband and I and to others for looking after her at that time. I'm so glad we were able to do that.

There is also a kind of beauty in the sadness I feel surrounding my friend going away for two months. This, too, is a sadness clothed in love. And if you love deeply, you hurt deeply.

All of you, my blogging pals, have been amazingly supportive. I thank you very much for that. You've all - each in a bit of a different way - helped me deal with things.

Jim: Thank you for reminding me that suffering will bring transformation.

Anne: Yes, I just need to go through the pain because doing that it is a road to emotional wholeness. (My therapist looks like she's going to be a good one. She believes she can help me with some of the feelings of anxiety I have surrounding my friend being gone for so long.)

Susan: I'm so glad you are here and for your ability to relate to me.

Nancie: I am learning to understand God's love on a new level and that's exciting.

Cathy: We have new things we can talk about, don't we? Hope to see you and to share a big hug at Living Room this Friday.

And Merelyme: I just got your response as I was writing this post. Thank you for missing me. I've got to get back to your blog - and everyone else's real soon. I love my blogging family of friends.


Bipolar Wellness Writer said...

Dear Marja,
It is a beautiful flower. As I'm writing this comment, I am glancing over at my nightstand, where I've got a pair of my mother's eye glasses. She had bold tastes in clothes, hats, and shoes. The glasses are tortoise-shell and oversized and I was with her when she bought them.

Having her things around me makes me happy and sad. It's a bittersweet kind of feeling. But my memories are so happy that the sadness is okay.

Sorry that your friend is away, and I'm glad you have a therapist you can talk with.


marja said...

Susan: I like what you said here: "My memories are so happy that the sadness is okay." I've taken to wearing an amber pendant that Mom loved and wore often. It is something I bought for her 90th birthday. When I hold it I think of her.

Jim said...

Time will heal. I do cherish my relatives things including my grandparents that I see every day on the wall.

My Life with Bipolar Disorder said...

Dear Marja, It is encouraging to see you growing in your love for the Lord even in this time. It has been my experience too that if we loved deeply, we will hurt deeply. Yet it is still worth the while to love because life is meaningless without love, as love comes from God. Your love for your Mom has made a difference in her life, and in yours too. May you continue to be a blessing and encouragement to others whom God may place along your path. Take care. Regards, Nancie

a voice in the matrix said...

Hi Marja,

I've been working through the chapter on grief and loss in "Emotionally Healthy Spirituality" and it's brought up alot of old pain that I haven't processed. My sense of abandonment is a big theme. First by my parents then by the church community. But I do find comfort in the fact that Jesus felt abandoned to. His disciples couldn't support him in his greatest hour of need. They kept falling asleep in the Garden of Gethsemane when he asked them to stay awake and pray with him.

I have always felt a connection to the pain and loneliness of God. His poetic cries for Israel to return to it's first love resonate with me both as a poet and person in pain. So I agree sadness can be beautiful when it connects you to someone or something you love.

I'm sorry for your loss but I think you are really lucky to have had a loving realtionship with your mom. I envy you that. I hope that my mom and I can part this world on that kind of loving note.

marja said...

Voice in the Matrix: I think I know you. You must be someone from Living Room - your picture looks like her. And many of us are studying Emotionally Healthy Spirituality as well.

In preparation for tomorrow's devotional I too have gone over that chapter again. As well I've listened three times to Pastor Don's sermon on that topic, entitled "Good Grief." I'll bring the CD for you tomorrow so you can listen to it if you want.

Because of the pain I've been experiencing, I've been led to the topic I call "Coping with our Pain." You will be well prepared to contribute to the discussion.

I also have abandonment issues, ones that are surfacing now because my friend is leaving for so long. I too have thought of Christ's experience with abandonment. In fact, I've written about it. I will share this writing in my next post.