This week has in some ways been harder than I thought it would be, but then again I should have expected the emotional waves to run high again, shouldn\’t I? The past two years I have pictured myself watching the waves of emotion, waiting and ready with my “body board”. I sometimes see the waves growing huge, coming at me like the great waves on the North Shore in Hawaii. I must jump on my body board and ride the waves, holding on and allowing the healing water to flow over me. If I don’t go for the ride, then I will get caught in the rip current of emotion and be pulled under.
Today was the two year anniversary of Paul’s passing. The waves of emotion were strong again, but we chose to ride them as a family honoring Paul’s memory and rejoicing in the blessings we have been given. We started early this morning by volunteering at the Southeastern Virginia Food Bank. We all went: Hillary, Jeff, Emily, Matt, Chuck and me. We worked hard…for others in memory of Paul. Hillary baked a ton of cookies this afternoon and I organized things for the evening picnic at the beach. Jeff, Matt, Emily, and Chuck worked at the soccer field cleaning up around the Paul Harris memorial, putting down fresh top soil and mulch.
Tonight we enjoyed the 2nd annual memorial picnic at the beach. The winds were too strong to have a candlelight time, but we celebrated Paul’s life with some of his favorite things: family, faithful friends, beautiful evening skies, the roar of the ocean, music, and tons of yummy food! About 50 people joined us sharing stories and memories of Paul, laughing and savoring each other’s companionship. We supported one another on a tough day. We loved each other and shared support as we each rode our own waves of emotion.
Tomorrow we will go to the cemetery and see the monument which was put into place on Thursday. It is another piece that is finished.
It is truly all about God’s mercy and grace shining through the darkness of sorrow. I could feel His presence as I watched the clouds racing by in the strong winds, as I listened to the laughter and chatter of friends and family, and as we prayed for our son whom we miss so much. I miss him so…always, but I am blessed. God has allowed me to see the stars shining in the darkness.
In honor of my amazing family
In loving memory of Paul