I usually try to fall asleep on the couch with the background noise of the tv. The silence is too loud for me on some days. I usually succeed. I fall asleep and then wake up groggy, stagger to bed, and fall right back to sleep. But some days it doesn’t work.
Some days I wake up, stagger to bed, and I’m all of a sudden wide awake. In the silence. And I get that overwhelming, intense pain of grief in my chest. The one that pulls and tears at all emotions. I lie in bed with those familiar feelings of shock and disbelief and they completely take over. My head will start spinning with a million thoughts and a million memories. I close my eyes to escape and try to “check out”, but when I do that, I have those haunting images. Her crying. Her struggling to sit up. Struggling to talk. Her blank stares. Her frustration. I see her struggling to breathe. I see her looking up and following something with her eyes as she tries to smile (a good and sad memory). I’m taken back to the several “death watches” that we were on.
I open my eyes and reach for the good memories. The fun we had. The talks we had. The laughs. I try anything so that I won’t be afraid to close my eyes. I pray to God to give me peace. To give me comfort. To help me understand His will. And I end with a plea. I beg and beg to have long and vivid and happy dream about mom. Because all I want is to see her walking and happy and smiling and talking away.
“The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms” (Deuteronomy 33:27).