What Do I Do Now?

I don’t know what to do with my hands.
I don’t know what to do with my face.
I don’t know what to do with my heart.

I feel so lost and out of control.

Some things happen in your life that you just can’t wrap your head or your heart around. This is one of those things. Although I am now 39 years old, I can’t stop thinking the thought, “I am an orphan.”

When I was 19 years old, my biological father (who I had only met 3 years earlier) committed suicide.465791_129270637231923_88648518_o

My sweet mama took her own life on October 21, 2011.

On January 10, 2016 my daddy, the man who raised me and loved me with all he had from the day I became a part of his life, had a heart attack and died instantly.

I don’t know what to do with my hands.
I don’t know what to do with my face.
I don’t know what to do with my heart.

I feel so lost and out of control.

I know what scripture says. I know that God is a father to the fatherless (Psalm 68:5). I know He is Abba Father (Romans 8:15). I know that I am adopted by God into his family through faith in Christ Jesus (Galatians 3:26) I know that He is near to the broken hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit (Psalm 34:18).

I know God’s promises, and I hold onto them daily, sometimes hourly. But right now…in this exact moment, I am broken hearted. I am crushed in spirit. I feel alone and fatherless, and so forlorn.

There are times in our walks, times in our trials and tribulations and tragedies, where we don’t find comfort in God’s words and promises. It happens to every single one of us that call ourselves followers of Christ. That is not to say they are not true. That is not to say that tomorrow they won’t fill my heart with joy and give me the strength I need to get out of bed, to take another step, or to actually get up and go to work. But that’s what faith is. Faith is holding on to the promises of God, whether we feel like it or not. We allow the feelings of pain, the feelings of grief and loss, and sometimes we do have feelings of hopelessness and despair, and that’s human and natural. God himself feels (John 11:35, Psalm 95:9-10), and He created us in His image with the ability to feel. Some of those feelings we sit with for awhile, because it’s healthy and we NEED to, and it’s just part of the journey. But those moments of hopelessness, I will not not hold onto those. They are not true. They are not what’s real, and faith is not letting my emotions drive my actions or control my life. Faith is confidence in what we hope for, and it gives us assurance about things we cannot see (Hebrews 11:1)

I know I am not an orphan. I know I am adopted in to the family of Christ, and I know that God does indeed father the fatherless…He is my Abba Father.  I am loved. I am treasured. I know these things, even when I do not feel them.

I don’t know what to do with my hands… I just may fold them in prayer. I just may hold them over my face as I despair in those moments when it feels as if I just can’t go on one more second with this pain. I just may hold them to the heavens and cry out to the God that is broken hearted for me and who promises to comfort me (2 Corinthians 1:3-4), who promises to never leave or forsake me (Deuteronomy 3:6). I just may put them to a keyboard and write.

I don’t know what to do with my face. I just may cry. I just may close my eyes and breathe in the life that still surrounds me and is such a gift every second. I may open my mouth and sing praises to my King, or I may wail in despair. I just may smile, even when I don’t feel like it (and I may not).

I don’t know what to do with my heart. It’s on its own program right now. So I will declare with my mouth and in faith that my heart is His, no matter what may come.

I feel lost and out of control, but the truth is that I am found and He is in control.

 

Day 27 – A picture of yourself and a family member

I’ve been thinking a lot about writing lately…journaling, actually. I’ve done it a little bit, but I had the notion to revisit my blog today. Then I realized I never finished my Photo Challenge. On day 27, lo and behold the topic is a picture of me and and a family member.

The picture is of my mom and me. It’s not the greatest one of her, it was on one of her “bad days”. I’m sure I’ll post some of her later on, but this is the only one I have of the two of us.

On October 21st, my mother took her own life. When I was 19, my father did the same. At 34 years old, I have no living parents, and they both chose how and when they were going to die. I go through various emotions every other 5 mins, and I’m sure that I’ll be doing this for sometime. I’m prepared for that. 15 years after my father died, I still ask questions, and I wasn’t even that close to him.

My mom, on the other hand, is almost impossible to process. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve said as an adult “I want my mommy” and really meant it. I can safely say right now, I want my mommy, and I can never have her again. The fact that she didn’t just die, she left, makes that realization that much harder.

Regardless of all that, my mama was an amazing woman. She had her struggles, she battled her demons, and sometimes she could drive you insane, but when she was HER…I don’t know a more wonderful person. She was compassionate, and passionate, and creative, and loved harder than I’ve ever known anyone to love. And most of all…  I miss her. I miss her, and I just want her back.

Life and Death

I’m going to write right now before the emotion kicks in.
I got a very strange phone call this afternoon. It’s funny, but my mother never calls me. I tell her, you have to call me so I know you’re thinking about me! She says she doesn’t want to bother me, so I always end up calling her. So, whenever I have a call from a 505 area code, something is usually going down in Roswell.
I got a 505 today.
Many of you that know me, know that when I was 19 years old, my biological father committed suicide. He suffered from major depression, along with substance abuse (the little time I spent with him, I wouldn’t be surprised if he was actually bipolar). I guess after a few days of heavy drinking and drug use, he put a gun in his mouth and pulled the trigger. A very traumatic experience in my life to say the least. I was not close to him, had little contact with him, and one of the few times I had with him he verbally and physically abused me. However, he was my father, and I had tried to form a relationship w/him. I actually got a jailhouse apoplogy, and he showed up out of the blue at my high school graduation. That was the last time I saw him alive.
When he died, I suffered so much confusion and devastation. He was not my dad, but he was a part of me. He was a musician, a writer, we looked alike, I had the same egotistical personality. When he died, there was this part of me that I was missing, because I didn’t KNOW him. The saddest thing was that the majority of the few parts I did know, I didn’t like. I never wanted him or needed him to be a daddy to me. I have a dad, the best one I could have asked for, but there was so much more I wanted to get to know. And I think I was pissed because he was so selfish and took that away from me. I was also pissed because I have a little brother. A brother I met at his funeral. A brother who knew him more than I did and would miss him more than I would. And I was pissed off at him for leaving my little brother without a father, or a dad.

I remember the first time I met my father, when I was 16 years old, I also met my uncle, his oldest brother. My uncle seemed everything my own father was not. Yeah, he drank a lot, but he was fun, knew how to be a dad (he had 3 little ones of his own at the time), and he actually seemed happy to see me, happy to have me around, talked to me and asked me about my life. I remember telling him (privately, of course) that I wished he’d been the one that was my dad. It was only after my father died that I found out my father hated his brother, was jealous of him because everyone liked him better, everyone always compared the two and found the younger lacking. And I found out how sad and true it was at his funeral.
Ironic…but the biggest irony, was that the demons that haunted my father also seemed to have gotten the best of my uncle. My uncle had gotten a divorce and had been living with my grandmother in Roswell for the past couple of years. He’d been battling depression and our lovely generational curse of alcoholism.
Flash forward to my 505 call.
My grandmother couldn’t find my uncle yesterday and went looking for him. I guess she went back home after awhile, went outside to throw some rubbish, and found him hanging from the railing of the apartment out back. It wasn’t a gun in the mouth, but this time he left his own mother to find him…

I’m not sure how to feel right now. I don’t think I’ve even processed it yet.

I have battled that demon of depression before–even almost succumbed once, but how does one let the demon prevail when there are children involved? However old or young, I can’t understand it. Part of me knows how deep and hopeless that pit is, but the other part of me is now a parent, and I just find it the most selfish and cowardly thing a parent can do.

I’m sure I will be sad, I’m sure I will feel sorry for my grandmother (she’s a topic for a whole other post, trust me), but for now, I’m just in disbelief.