...rejoicing may end in grief.
– Proverbs 14:13
In September of last year, Shawna and I lost our unborn son. The month leading up to that point was horrifically painful as we were being told and shown how poorly his body was being formed. We were four months into what had been an amazingly wonderful time for the two of us when all of this took place. It became the most excruciating experience we've ever encountered...so far.
Tomorrow is Father's Day. While I am still well aware of a void in my life, I don't feel bitterness any longer. What has helped me feel sweetness amidst the overwhelming anguish and grief is observing and savoring the blessings our son gave us and, in many ways, still is.
He expanded Shawna's and my heart to fantastic levels we never imagined possible. He bonded (and is bonding) Shawna and I together in new, deeper, and greater ways. He brought us out of our comfort and into new horizons. He taught me the value of grieving, and acknowledging and feeling the depth of sorrow in life.
Before our son left our lives, I avoided grief and sorrow. Now, I see how much I miss out on with that condition of aversion. Once I allowed myself to see that he is worth being sad about, my eyes were opened to seeing why he is worth being sad about. There are so many beautiful and loving reasons to miss him and feel heartbroken. His life is one of the most meaningful ones we've ever encountered. He is worth mourning because he is worth celebrating.
When I avoid grief, I avoid the meaning and beauty of things worth grieving about. Aversion is burdensome.
To all who've lost their child or their father, please have a very wonderful Father's Day.