Of course it is difficult.
But that's life.
Sometimes it's numbing.
Sometimes it's okay.
Sometimes the kids and I laugh. Oh, I try to laugh and smile a lot now because it is especially tough on my youngest ones if they see Mom sad. They need life to be "normal."
Any grieving I do happens when I'm alone. It works better that way.
And we are doing okay, but there have been a few things that bothered me. I didn't think they would. I guess I didn't know what to expect since Maggie has never died before.
Maggie and her sister Megan can wear the same clothes. Maggie was taller than Megan but Maggie was at least 15 pounds lighter than Megan (Megan is tiny but Maggie was like a skeleton with skin). So, when Maggie died I told Megan (who loves clothes) she could have all Maggie's clothes.
Twice it has bothered me this week, seeing her wearing Maggie's clothes. I haven't said anything because she is loving the opportunity to wear her sister's clothes (plus, I also told her she could).
But some of the clothes are so Maggie. They are things that just say Maggie to me. Clothes she wore over and over -- they just don't seem right on anyone else (even my own daughter).
So, when the kids went to school today I went through Maggie's clothes and picked out the ones that say Maggie to me. They were only a few pieces: a certain pair of jeans, a couple shirts, a sweater. I will put them away -- not to hold tight to Maggie. I know she's happy and free and having loads of fun in Heaven. But just cause ...well, I can't even tell you why. When her sister came down wearing this little pink jacket Maggie wore, it hurt my heart. So Silly -- I'm not even into clothes but it is amazing how things can take on meaning.
Most of the toys are still there. I'm not yet ready to let Megan and Pete go through them, but I will. They're excited they get their sister's toys. This is a good thing.
But this mama needs a bit more time.
Maggie died seven days ago.
And seven days ago she entered heaven.
Did I tell you I believe I know exactly when Maggie left?
We were praying with a chaplain there and all of the sudden, I saw a picture of Maggie in Jesus' arms laughing. Her skinny arm was flung out straight and Jesus was spinning her around. They were both laughing and shining so bright with love and joy and incredible life.
That is when I think she went to heaven. The breathing tube was still keeping her body functioning. But her brain was no longer there.
About an hour or so later, the breathing tube was taken out. Shannon held her and I kept my hand on her little heart. I felt it beat.
And I felt it fade away.
Death is an odd thing. So quirky. So final. So other-worldly. Just so darn . . . I don't know.
Here's the verse the kids and I read at our student Bible group yesterday:
John 14:1 -- Let not your heart be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in Me.
The Me is Jesus.