Tears intermingle on cheeks as the holiday season continues. It's hard to tell whose are whose as we cry together over Christmas stockings and broken ornaments that remind us that there is brokenness in our family this year as well. Usually only one of us is down at a time, graciously allowing the other one to be able to comfort. But when Cole started pulling out the decorations, Rob and I both lost it. I'm not sure why we try to hide the tears from the kids, or each other for that matter. We all miss him. Micah was brave enough to say it out loud, "I wish Trent could be here." Me too, Micah, me too. But God knows best . . .
And then the talk turned to the funeral somehow. It's good to hear the younger kids talk about it: talk about their brother's funeral, talk about their brother. But it's so very hard at the same time. "I don't know if they put plastic under his shirt or why he felt so hard, honey; hey, Dad, he was wearing a shirt the same color as yours; it barely looked like Trent with that short hair, and remember, Mom, how you got your hairspray bottle and spiked it up?"
Tears and laughter, it's what we've been doing for over nine months. And it seems to be getting harder, rather than easier.
The battle is harder; but God continues to be ever more gracious. It is His battle, after all. He will hold us up, no matter if we think there is no possible way that we can endure yet another day, another memory, another event, another holiday. Life goes on; we either choose to live it or we die ourselves.
The decoration search continued.
My Christmas stocking was no where to be found in the midst of the others, and then I remembered . . . It was only a few short weeks after Christmas, and my stocking had never gotten put back with the rest of them because of those Ande's mints I had been indulging in. Cole found it on the chair next to my bed. Actually, I knew it was there. Maybe I have been rationalizing, on some level, that if that red stocking never got moved from where it was over nine months ago, then that night when Trent opened the door and crawled on my bed to give me one last kiss goodnight would never get moved from my brain, either . . . maybe.