Ugh. You'd think I would be getting used to this by now, but there is something so utterly wrong about those two words when they're in the context of death. The death of the man I loved more than anything. The death of my dreams. The death of a girl who would never be again.
This week I have felt the distance. I have felt the length of time. I have also felt the still very raw heartache that comes no matter how much time will pass. At least a hundred times a day, I'm trying to remember what I was doing exactly 2 years ago, trying to hold on to all the pieces leading up to Jeremy's death.
Don't get me wrong, I've picked up a lot of pieces. My grief is no longer inward and isolated (most of the time), and I am able to smile when I see his face. I am thankful for the opportunity to still make Jeremy proud in this life and carry on his legacy through his stories and the lives of the three beautiful children he brought into the world. But there are some parts that just still hurt.
One part I've noticed this in is singing. Singing was what brought Jeremy and I together (we met at an audition for an Acapella group in college) and it was something we were both passionate about. The night before he died, we had been at rehearsal for an instrumental worship service he and I were going to lead two days later. We never got to sing that night together and I can't remember the last time we were on stage singing together before that (in was likely the week or two before that, I just can't remember specifically). This kills me for some reason.
This weekend, I was able to travel with friends to lead worship at a youth rally in Kentucky. It's been such a long time since I've been able to do that, I forgot how much I missed it. How much it ignites in me. How much I feel Jer's presence (and God's presence) when I go. But for some reason, I can't bring myself to get back up at our church to sing. It's too hard. Because Jeremy should be up there leading worship, and I should be standing next to him. It feels too different without him there.
That same night after rehearsal, we drove home for what would be the last time together. Tired and stressed from a 14 hour day for us both, way past the kids' bedtime, and ready to crawl into bed and call it a day, Jeremy reached over and grabbed my hand...
"I love to hear you sing. And I love getting to sing with you."
I will never forget that moment. It's a moment that I now look back at with foresight - a gift that Jeremy gave me to continue to pursue that passion even when it was hard, even when it hurt. I sang for him until I could sing for me again.
Now I sing for us both, and I carry Jeremy in my heart whenever I do. Because he's a part of me, and now he's a song in my heart. There will be no singing this week, for my heart is heavy with the memory of my last moments with him 2 short years ago.
But the song is there, and it will return.
P.S. I would like to ask you all to pray for Jessica Woods, who became a widow today after her husband, Ryan, lost his battle with terminal brain cancer. They are a young family with young children, and they have lived an incredible story that will touch your heart. Please visit http://www.grassrootsconspiracy.com/blog/ and read about them and send some encouragement to Jessica and her family.