Tuesday, November 25, 2008

My Thanksgiving Ramble

It is funny how memory works. I was recently talking with a friend. She was describing how her young daughter had to be tested for the flu. She was sharing about how traumatizing the testing was because they had to stick a tube down her nose into her throat to get mucus to test for flu. I was agreeing with her about how bad that is because we had to do this to Regan multiple times a day. Regan hated it too.

I was sharing this story with Brian and we were talking to each other about how when we think about Regan we don't think about suction, breathing treatments, or sleepless nights....we mostly remember her. It has been a while since we really thought about suction. Since we thought about the sound it makes and the face it made her make. Our heart and soul remember her sweet smell, her fun faces, her laughter, her cooing, her peaceful presence, her hair, her reminder of hope.

I find myself very sad the past few weeks. I know that I am not as thankful this year as the last. I want Regan with us. I miss her so bad it hurts. I am really tired of feeling this way. I have always loved the line in the John Meyer song that says, "I can't wait to say, this is the way that I used to be." I know that this deep pain will not last for ever. There will be a Thanksgiving that I feel thankful again. BUT the only way to get to that place is to be present in the place you are....and honestly I feel sad because it is sad. Just like I had to chose to glad on the thanksgivings when we were hauling a van full medical supplies to Indiana or Kansas because I was so glad have Regan in my life. So I refused to complain then because I knew this thanksgiving would come. I knew that some day out in the future there would be a gap in my life because Regan would die. So I made that chose to be happy with her and to be sad later. Later has come. I never wanted her to know it was hard. I know she knew because I have never been good at hiding the way I feel.

This year I am thankful for Jesus in new ways. I've never liked prayers that thank him for what I have. It sounds so much like the prayer of the Pharisee who thanked God he was not a woman or a gentile. When we thank God for what we have often it is because we see others who have not and we are glad we are not them. Don't get me wrong we should always be thankful but I think it should be deeper than that. The truth is we could have nothing but Jesus and it would be enough. Sometimes we say Jesus is enough. But it is really Jesus plus ______________ (my family, my husband, my really great devotional Bible, my service, my guilt, my friends, my education, my extended family, my country, my president, my house, my cute decorations, my bonus check, the gifts I can buy....).....But this year I am trying to simply be thankful for Jesus. I am checking my heart to see if I mean it. Is He really all I need? I want to grow and let go of what holds me back from loving Him like I should. To simply be thankful because of Jesus. To be thankful because Jesus paid it all.


Nate and Ruthie said...

Thank you for being so open about what's on your heart. We miss you guys! Love you beautiful lady.

randsmadden said...

I love reading your blog. You cause me to really stop and think. I want to be more thankful for Jesus and all that he is in my life. I want so much more of him. I love you and miss those fun times when we were both single and carefree. Continue to be blessed.

Tiffany said...

I needed this.

I love you.

I miss her.

Stacy Peacock said...

you guys are great. your time of healing brings a phenomenal Jesus factor to everyone who knows you. your openness amazes me. Thank you for who and all you are.

amyjo said...

I was just thinking about you guys and Thanksgiving yesterday and remembering a couple of years ago helping you get together a Tgiving meal while Regan was in the hospital. I'm sure you're remembering all of those past holidays too...Just wanted you to know that I still remember with you.

Cheryl said...

After my mom died, I sank into a pit. At the bottom of the pit, there were only two things I knew were true.
1. I believe God is who the Bible says He is.
2. Jesus is the only way of salvation.
That was all I had to cling too, and that was all that mattered. Through my grief I discovered the one thing God wanted from me...unshakeable faith. I am so thankful for that faith today.
You are good for my soul Chantell.
Thank you,

Mandy said...

love you friend. So thankful you shared this.

As overwhelming as our grief is, especially in this time of year, we should be even more overwhelmed with Jesus...

I'm learning as I go...