Easter Sunday... HE IS ALIVE!

It has been 4 months since Nana died. Ironically, this anniversary of her homecoming came on Easter Sunday. How glorious her Easter must have been. While we had bright sunny skies, the air was crisp and blustery. She would have said, "Too cold for my blood!" The realization that she is gone hits me at the strangest times. Like while we're singing "In Christ Alone" on Sunday, the tears started streaming and a lump climbed high in my throat. Christ burst forth from that stone tomb so that 2,000 years later I could have hope of living with Him and reassurance that death isn't the final good-bye. It's an old theme--especially for those of us who have grown up in the church--but the older I grow the sweeter the story.

I think the hardest part of grief is that it is so human. I can know in my head and believe with my heart that one day I'll hear Nana's voice again, or see her when I go to heaven, but that still doesn't stop the pain or the surprise hiccups death leaves us with. Just as one fights to control the diaphragm when those peculiar muscle spasms trigger, one attempts to inwardly push down the fright, the grief, the emptiness of losing a loved one. I'm watching my mother throw herself into a new job, preparing the house for sale, and countless other things as she struggles to deal with the life changes she has been handed. She turns inwardly, as though the battle must be fought alone. Every once in a while she gives me a glimpse of the hurt, but there doesn't seem to be a willingness to share her burden.

I, on the other hand, spill my sorrow into knitting. Nana taught me how to knit. So since her death, I've begun a frenzy of knitting projects. And unlike most knitters, I must finish each project quickly. At first, I claimed it was because I generally don't like things to remain undone. However, as I was cleaning tonight I came across a bag of knitting Nana had never finished. The yarn is cheap acrylic. The pattern a basketweave variety. As I tucked it away I realized that this was why every project I start is finished within 10 days. I am fearful that I'll leave something undone, die and have projects still on needles that no one will understand what to do with. I can lose myself in the rhythm of knitting. The texture of yarn sliding between my fingers is a healing balm. Each item I have knitted my love, myself, and my sorrow entwine within the stitches. Perhaps, this is further evidence of why I've done so many baby items recently. Yes, many friends are having children, but my heart wants to cover the hurt and the absence of Nana with the hope of new life...whether that is represented in a baby cap or an Easter shawl. It's my way of remembering her and keeping her close.

Happy Easter Nana. Your laugh and smile and jello salad are missed. Still I know that you are tanning yourself in His heavenly glow and are for the first time in so many years happy. Happy to be with Grandpa, and Dearma and Dearpa, and Papa and Grandma Gail. You're veil of grief has lifted, shifted to us, and you are experiencing joy. We won't be sad forever. You taught us not to be. But you're help would be appreciated every once in a while...especially as I tackle socks.


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