Just Know That You Are Loved – My Personal Encounter with an Angel

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Two years ago today, on the worst day of my life, I had my first encounter with an angel, at the baggage claim of the RDU airport.

I stood alone, completely wiped out and broken, waiting for my bag to come around on the conveyor belt. There were a few other people waiting for their bags there as well, not many but a few. After about two minutes, my feet could no longer support the dead weight of my body and I sat down on a nearby bench. A young man, I’d guess my age or younger, came and sat down next to me.

“Excuse me,” he interrupted my empty, swollen stare, “Are you okay?” Hardly able to even turn to face him, I nod my head and mutter back, “Yea I’m fine.” My body language was screaming, “LEAVE ME ALONE!!!!” but he persisted. “It isn’t a death, is it?”

“No,” I snap back, justifying my lie with his increasingly annoying invasiveness.

“Okay, well I just wanted to say, I was in love with this girl for many years and we were happily together. I wanted to be engaged and when I asked her to marry me, she said ‘no’ and we broke up. I know it’s not the same…” he continued, despite my lack of response cues, “…but it hurt like hell.”

I managed to look him dead in the eyes this time, “It’s not the same,” I growled, my eyes piercing into him.

Looking forward, I spotted my large, brown, leather suitcase coming around the belt. One of the only ones left. I began to stand up and head towards my bag when the guy said, “Well, here,” as he handed me a 2-dollar bill, “just know that you are loved.”

I hadn’t intended to take the 2-dollar bill but there it was in my hand as I grabbed my bag from the conveyor belt. Dropping the heavy piece of luggage to the ground, I looked up to see my mom running towards me. I gave her a huge hug, momentarily allowing myself to collapse in her arms.

But wait, I wondered aloud, “Where did that guy go?”

“What guy?” my mom replied.

“The guy who just handed me this,” I waved the 2-dollar bill for her to see.

“I didn’t see any guys around, Sweetie. I saw you standing here by yourself. That’s why I came running over.”

In bewilderment, mixed with the still heavy shock of the day’s event, I stumbled towards my mom’s car, “Hmm…” I thought to myself, “Well, that was strange.”

Two years ago today, I lost my best friend in a tragic accident. He wasn’t far from me that day and he’s still as close as ever now.

My angel, I miss you.

A Personal Post on Love and Loss

It’s a strange thing when you start to feel better after thinking you never would. It’s even stranger when you want to love again after losing the love of your life. A part of you says, “No, you can’t! It’d be a betrayal.” But another part of you, the better part of you, screams, “Yes! Live again! Love again!”

Truth is, he is the love of my life. And that will never change. But he is the love of that life. No doubt in my mind he was the soul mate for that me. But when you lose someone who is the most important part of your life, your world changes. And so do you. Inevitably and irreversibly, you’re not the same person you were.  And now I understand, there’s going to be another perfect person for the new me. Another love of my new life.  And that person will in no way undermine his position in my heart.

Some people only get to live one life, but I’ve been given two. Perhaps, as we each navigate this world and our relationships, we can all see it as a new life each time we cycle round and round.

Finally, I realize there is no better way to honor him and our love then by embracing my new life and finding a new person to love. I am ready.

 

Is Freedom Really What We Want? (A Personal Reflection)

When my boyfriend died, the life I knew died along with him. Shortly thereafter, I packed up all of my belongings, everything I had acquired in California, and drove across the country to be back home again in North Carolina. Because, of course, when the world fails you, the only place you have to go is home.

Within one year, I had a monumental career change, my parents divorced, my childhood home was sold, and I was living on my own in an apartment for the first time in my life. All this change in only one year! Even writing about it now, it seems surreal. How has my life become so crazy, so chaotic? How have I been able to push through, to survive?

Well, God is good. And that is where I am now. Completely lost, approaching the second birthday that I will spend without my boyfriend and the only thing that I know for certain is God’s goodness and grace. Other than that, I feel adrift. Floating in a world that I have no control over, a world that is constantly shifting, one without ground.

I guess on the bright side, I have nothing holding me back. I have no attachments that hold me down, hold me steady. I’m free to fly like a bird, as I have always yearned to do.

This also means I have little security, no sense of stability, a feeling of total loss of control. Does a baby bird feel this way before it leaves its nest for the first time? I wonder. And how many nests will I have to leave? Is flying free really all it’s cracked up to be?

bird

Heartbreak Hero

Heartbreak Hero

       Come take my lovin’ away

       Heartbreak Hero

       Won’t you fly in and save the day

       Never know when you’re coming

       Never know how long you’ll stay

       You’re my heartbreak hero

Couldn’t have you any other way

heartbreak

A Poem on Loss

A poem on loss. For all those who have lost someone you love and wondered if you will ever get to see them again.

“I Simply Can’t Be Convinced”

 I can’t be convinced I won’t see him again.

I simply can’t be convinced.

I feel him all around me

His very breath awakens my sixth sense.

I wonder when you’re so entwined

And someone you love passes through

If a part of them stays left behind

Running like veins inside of you

Not only is he all around me,

Stitching my wounds with his personal thread

He’s watching me as I sleep soundly,

Filling my dreams and emptying my head.

I know that I can’t see him

I understand that he’s no longer here

But by God did I believe him

When he said, “I’ll see you soon, my dear.”

The last words that we spoke in person

But our souls whisper every day

I just close my eyes

See his face

Hear his voice

And

Pray.

A Poem: “Suffering Is”

Suffering is

the dark cloud

that produces tears

like

rain

watering the flower

of compassion,

enabling it

to

grow.

A Poem: “Your Love is Mean”

Your love is mean

Your love is mean

But you mean so much to me

How can it be?

Your lies, deceit

Your love is mean.

Can’t you see

just what I mean?

Why it’s your love I don’t need

Still you remain inside of me

Your love is mean.

Where is God in Suffering?

A year ago, my world fell apart as the ground on which I stood was snatched from beneath me. I don’t know if you’ve ever had the ground taken from underneath you, but I pray that you do.
When you lose the ground you stand upon, you find the Rock that you can rest upon. The only true solid ground that exists. And you experience His grace in ways you never thought imaginable.
 It takes a while to see it from this perspective, and you may never totally understand His ways but I can assure you, you’re suffering is not in vain. God’s calling you to know Him more, while a million other things are trying to distract you. But if the goal is to know Him, to really experience Him, then whatever it takes to get your full attention  is worth it. Even if it’s painful, and my God is it painful…

Night

Night is the time when we’re alone, isolated in our bed, away from distractions and forced to confront our pain. I used to fear the night. I dreaded falling asleep, while needing rest more than ever before. In the quiet dark, the pain I spent all day running from, would sit right down on the edge of my own bed, like a familiar stranger, just staring at me. I hid from it any way I could; sleeping aids, prescription meds, exhaustion, alcohol… But no matter how great my hiding place, or how long I hid, the pain was relentless. It wouldn’t leave. Night after night, there it sat on my bed. Waiting for me. What does it want from me?!

Eventually, I learned to stare back. I began to even look forward to the night, when I could lie with that familiar stranger, face to face. Today, although the pain remains, its power is weakened. Finally, I am able to look it in the eyes and say, “I’m not scared of you anymore. I am grateful for you.”

A Time for Healing

There will come a time when you’ll see clearly again; tears will no longer blur your eyes and love will no longer break your heart. Trust in this.