Friday, April 24, 2009

Thoughts on Mourning

I had a dream the other night that Momma called me on my cell phone from Heaven. Strange?  Yes. Who knew they had cell phones in Heaven? :)  The conversation wasn't about anything deep; we didn't talk about how much we miss each other (Does she miss me in Heaven? Since she's with me in a more real way now?); we didn't talk about consolation or grief or what Heaven is like. Oddly enough, I asked her about her sewing machine.  Summer and I couldn't figure out how to do the fancy stitching on Momma's machine [Summer eventually looked it up in the manual and it turned out perfectly].  
In the morning when I woke up, I cried. So much of my day-to-day existence here in Boston did not directly concern Momma (or even the rest of my family), so I don't think about her as much as I did when I was at home. In a way, it's more lonely out here because when I do think about her, I feel that much farther away. 
I cried that morning because I know I can't call her anymore. I won't be able to just call her up and ask her sewing questions, or baking questions, or life-in-general questions. Later on in the dream, I remember trying to call her back (y'know, pressing the "dial last call received" button?) and it didn't work.  It was sad, but even in the dream, I knew it wouldn't work.  She's gone from us in that way.  That will just take some getting used to, I suppose. 
Another thing:  I've gotten more mail at work since Momma died than I ever have before (at work) (and I've been working here for a year and a half).  On the one hand, it's great that BC is supporting me in this way and that so many people are kind enough to remember Momma and my family in Masses and to send their thoughts and prayers my way.  But on the other hand, it's really weird to receive so many cards for such a sorrowful occasion.  In my experience, cards have always been a joyous thing to receive--a hand-written letter from a friend or anniversary cards and wedding cards (boy, did we get a lot of those!), and birthday cards, birth announcements, and graduation announcements, invitations and thank you notes and practical "sending this your way" cards. Receiving sympathy is rather different from all that. 
Now, don't take this next part the wrong way--I'm truly touched by the number of cards I've recieved--but most of the cards have words of comfort only regarding those who are dead. Very few of them have anything to say to those who remain... to those who mourn.  Maybe that is becaus there is nothing to be said. 
Faith tells me (and has always told us) that Momma is happy--far happier than we are (even if we don't factor in our grief). And faith tells me that I and my family will be ok, too.  Don't tell me Momma is happy with God; that death is just a passage to a new life; that there is no need to fear for God is merciful. I already know that. As Christians we all know that--and we believe and truly know that we will meet again at the Resurrection (Praise the LORD!).  
But in the meantime, we who remain are lonely for the presence of those who have gone before us (marked by the sign of faith). It is in this lonliness that we grieve the most. 
And there is nothing to say in the Lonliness but "Rejoice, oh Highly Favored One. You have found favor with God." 


  1. I love you Annie, and it's been so good being with you through this, as best I can. Good, that is, in the sense that Lawrence used it: "Was it good? Did you find some good in it?" God turns everything to good, it's just hard finding that at times. Part of death is an evil, because of the fall there is a bit of evil in a lot of things, and of it's nature evil is unintelligible... I guess that is one of the things that makes it hard, it can't be understood.

    Anyway, I love you very much and am so glad I married into such a wonderful family, both here in this life and waiting for us in the next.

  2. I know how you feel...It's funny you should mention this. I have a card sitting on my desk for you, but elected not to send it. It's store bought and says, "Thinking of you at this time and extending heartfelt understanding and sympathy." Then as I was about to write a personal note I stopped and said to myself this card sucks. In this circumstance I am not sure if this sentiment would be appreciated--is in this might insult. Remember the Schwan's Pizza story I told you--my advice is still, when you get upset about missing her, fill yourself up with her and do something she would do.

    BTW, happy anniversary! You are a match made in Heaven.

    I am having a Tea Party this weekend. I wish you could be there.