Some days we are able to run. Some days we walk. Some days we just barely put one foot in front of the other. Some days I feel like I am crawling. And some days we are carried. We are carried by Him.
This past weekend… we were carried.
For weeks, we thought about how we would get through last weekend. Everyday hurts so what made Labor Day weekend any different than any other day of the past year? How do you ever prepare for that? I tried to think of a way to honor Nate but nothing seemed fitting to even begin to express our love for him. When I couldn’t decide what to do, I put the weekend to the back of my mind. Before I knew it September was here. I wasn’t ready but had no choice but to walk through it like we have done every day for the last year.
Sunday morning, September 1st, we woke up and got ready for church. We attended one of the most beautiful services I have ever witnessed as we watched baptisms in the most intimate setting. As we sat through a stunningly beautiful service my poor heart was aching. It was heavy. I felt this heavy weight of being lost in the day. I was stricken with grief and sadness that I didn’t know what I was supposed to be doing with the day. Then it washed over me, it was a message from God and one that I couldn’t ignore. This feeling I had was to strong to ignore or push aside. As we walked out of church, I had an overwhelming sense of where we needed to be in that moment and I didn’t question it. I looked at Justin and said that we need to go the lake. He looked at me and asked, “Today, Tomorrow, when”, and I responded with “Yes, right now, we need to go”. We didn’t give ourselves time to question anything. We headed home, we packed, and an hour later we headed out the door. A trip that I had feared, cried over, and procrastinated on, was happening. I wasn’t sure how I would make the trip but all I knew was that in my heart I wanted to be there and to get there as fast as I could.
Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. 1st Peter 5:7
I expected lots of anxiety and tears as we left, but to be honest, our drive was rather peaceful. God had set peace into my heart and I trusted it. We arrived at my parents house in the evening as it is about a 5 hour drive. For the last year I have wondered how, and when, and if, I would ever be able to go to the lake again. But Sunday, we did. We needed to be there. God knew that and He got us there.
We put food on the grill for an easy dinner and spent the evening at one of Nate’s favorite places. Drew and Justin practiced baseball out front while Kaylee played in the dirt in her “pretty dress” as she says as she was still dressed from church. She pulled out one of Nate’s dump trucks and filled it with gravel and rocks. As I watched the kids playing, I couldn’t help but wonder where would Nate fit into that picture. My guess – he’d be in the dirt with Kaylee filling “her” dump truck while waiting for his next turn with the baseball.
“While we try to teach our children all about life, our children teach us what life is all about.” – Angel Schwindt
That evening Drew asked to have breakfast on the dock the next morning. I actually found this request a little odd because he had never asked to do this before so I wondered why? So the next morning, we got up and after making breakfast took our plates down to the dock to eat. I can’t pretend it was easy. Being on the dock was hard for me. Being near the water was hard. Drew and Kaylee are innocent children of God who don’t think the same way we do. They were ready to go and start their day on the water. As we sat there eating with Drew and Kaylee smiling, and asking to put bathing suits on, I knew it was right. It forced us to soak in the morning sun, watch the momma duck and growing babies swim by, and soak in some of the natural beauty that we love.
Before heading back to the house to start our day, Drew and Kaylee, threw a few dried roses into the water in honor of Nate. In typical Kaylee fashion, she had to make sure she threw hers first instead of waiting for Drew (which, by the way, totally reminds me of Nate). As we watched the flowers in the water we all shouted our love for Nate.
After cleaning up and getting ourselves ready we headed outside for a boat ride. I knew as we headed to the lake, the day before, that a boat ride needed to happen. We, along with my parents, took the boat out and made a stop for lunch. As we crossed the lake Drew sat at the front of the boat and let the wind hit him in the face as he gazed over the water ahead. Kaylee sat beside him and soaked it in as well. I hugged them from behind, kissed their cheeks, and we talked about how Nate loved to do the same thing. He’d sit and just let the wind pass by. We took a moment to take in every breath.
I can’t say that I will ever be healed. But the weekend was peaceful and was a step in the right direction for our journey. At moments, I wondered if I’d make it through or if we’d be okay but I just kept telling myself not to worry and to hand it over to God. I surrendered all of it and He carried us through.
Everything rides on hope now
Everything rides on faith somehow
When the world has broken me down
Your love sets me free~ Hope Now, Addison Road
All My Love,