Monday, November 30, 2009


Grief and joy can co-exist.

I wouldn't have thought so before Olivia because, at least to me, they seem like polar opposites. But I have found, that even on the darkest day, there is joy to be found. At first, it was probably mostly grief with little bits of joy mixed in, but gradually the days have changed to not include so much grief. There is more joy now, with bits of grief scattered here and there.

The two lessons this teaches are these: just because I'm grieving does not mean that I never smile and just because I am smiling does not mean that I never grieve. I think most people probably realize the first to be true. If you've ever been to a funeral where you're remembering the loved one who has passed, and reminiscing about their antics or stubborn streak brings you to laughter, you'll know what I mean. I know that the second lesson might be a little trickier to understand as many people may see the smile and assume that I am 'over it' or that there are no longer tears lurking beneath or that I have moved on. Which isn't exactly true.

It's freeing for me to realize that the two, grief and joy, aren't mutually exclusive. I don't have to choose between them. I can have a sad day with smiles sprinkled in or I can have a great day with a sudden bout of tears.

And it seems that the one makes me truly appreciate the other.



property said...

I think you are sooooo stinkin' awesome!!!
Sending a huge hug too!

Amber said...

I agree too! I've had the same sort of days. :-)

Jenilee said...

I agree! and what a beautiful way to write something that is so hard to explain.

chadandnikki said...

100% agree. You have written exactly what's on my heart today.

Jeana said...

i absolutely agree!

Christy said...

I most certainly do....agree, that is. As time passes, unfortunately, I do find happiness easier to experience again. Joy is possible---I have it, in my husband, in my 3 living children. But I am so terribly sad, too. For what is not. Memories are painful...forevermore. They are happy, but they are painful. And all to be cherished.
A very true post I definitely relate to. Hugs,

Saralyn said...

I think you will always grieve. It's been 40 years this week that my mom gave birth to my stillborn brothers and this time of year is always difficult. Seeing twin boys has always dropped her stomach to her knees. It's over, but it's never over.