Stage 1: Shock and Denial

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There are a lot of different emotions that you experience when you lose a loved one.  Especially when it is sudden or unexpected.  But the shock of it all very often almost forces you into a place of denial.  I know the truth of this firsthand as I go through the process of reconciling myself to the fact that my 92-year-old mom is gone.

Now that may sound strange to you, particularly if you are relatively young.  You might think, Dude, she was 92!  I get that. But in the early fall all of my siblings and I responded to a call to her side because of what we were told was probably pneumonia.  That event and her amazing recovery renewed in us a sense that she was not going to leave us for a while.  Over the next three months, every time one of us spoke to her she made a point of telling us that she had not felt ‘this good’ in years.  She lost some weight and was incredibly pleased that she was fitting into clothes that had been on the shelves for some time.  We had all been preconditioned by the phrase that we had used many times, ‘she will probably outlive us all.’

Well…she did not.  The mortar of our family had crumbled and fallen in the blink of an eye.  Our phone rang at 1:30AM and my younger brother, 2,000 kilometers away gave me the news. A heart attack that saw her die in her chair after just complaining to the nighttime care worker that she had been woken up by ‘the worst heartburn she had ever had’.

So…I sit here…trying to think of something encouraging to say to you but in my mind, in my soul, it just does not seem real.  December the 4th seems so long ago now.  Every now and then I reach for the phone, thinking to call mom…and then I stop and tell myself she won’t answer. She’s gone to be with Jesus and that’s a good thing for sure. 

It was such a long time in coming and it happened with such harsh urgency.  Someday, this summer we hope, we will gather around a grave site and lay her to rest.  Then I’ll know for sure…I think.  I hope not.

Funny thing, I will soon be 66 years old and I miss my mom.

Let my teaching fall like rain
and my words descend like dew,
like showers on new grass,
like abundant rain on tender plants.
Deuteronomy 32:2

My name is Dennis. What is your name?

We would love an opportunity to walk through your journey with you. What is the loss you are currently experiencing?
(Write in the comments below or email us)

Stage 2