Saturday, April 25, 2009

What Remains


A few months ago I read this great book called "What Remains." It is a memoir written by Carole Radziwill. She lost her husband, her best friend and and her best friends husband within three months of each other. (Her best friend's husband was John Kennedy Jr). She speaks candidly about death and helping someone who is chronically ill. Her husband is died of a horrible cancer. This book has brought some healing into my life. Just to hear someone speak familarly about walking a road of suffering ....she talks a language I know. She writes it well. She is not Christian but pain is pain. Her suffering is familar to me. She doesn't talk about God I don't know that she knows God. God knows her so and I love this book. This book made me think about this....

We have a hope chest that was given to us by Brian's family. In it are many of the things we treasure most from Regan's life. The pill crusher we used multipule times a day..it still has the last dose that I had ready to give her. It was still setting on her bed along with a cup of water for flush it. In this box is her ducky towel we used for way to too long but worked so well after her bath. There is also the key to her coffin, some medical bands, her hair bows....the things that are left of a life and death. Her closet is still full...I don't know when I will ever get to all of that. Some things I have already given away. Most of it still remains in the closet.

Yet those things don't mean as much as my memories of her. This are not locked in a closet or shut up in a hope chest. They remain with me all the time. The flood back when I watch my tulips bloom, when I walk in my front door with out her, every night when I go to bed, when we set at the table to eat......these memories mean more to me than any token. Ultimately all that will be left of her life is a small box .....that will all that will be left of mine. So this spurs me on to what will remain after that.

Hope, faith and love remain this is the context in which I remember her. Mementos only comfort for a moment. If it is a really good momento maybe a few moments. I do love these mementos but they are limited. I need something else to help. The whole that left in my life can not be filled up by little sweet sweaters, cute socks and left over meds.....this feeling that CS Lewis says so well "Was I really made for this?" My heart says "NO!" I was made to know God and to be known by Him. To know God within the context of hope, faith and love........

A year later what remains are the memories of my baby....my love for her, my hopes for her future, my faith in the reality of her life today. Even though I don't know what her life is like I am trusting God that it is good and peaceful. But what also remains is my love for God, my hopes that He what tells me is true. My faith in His words to be true. One day my faith with be sight, there will be no more need to hope in, but love will remain. I like that.

4 comments:

Tiffany said...

Beautiful!!! I said it by her grave a year ago and we still need to remember. Hold onto hope. He is faithful.

Dave, Kristen and Katelyn McCurdy said...

Thank you for sharing your heart.

jen said...

I miss getting together with you! We hope to get together w/ your family soon!

jkrbeloved said...

Chantell, how sweet will be your reunion with Regan in Heaven!