The waves...they come...Some big and some small.
Sometimes you see them coming and sometimes you do not.
It has been 6 weeks since Mark's passing and the emotional journey, the mind games and the reality of it all is one that life does not prepare you for.
The reality of daily life with 4 little ones and no father to help with the discipline, the bible studies, the feeling of all around safety that he brought.
The reality of finances, businesses, and the weight of being THE one responsible for the well being of the family.
It all feels like sucker punches to the gut. Some harder than others.
I recently took the family on a trip to Arizona to tie up some loose ends and visit our house for the first time since Mark's passing.
The house would be empty as we had moved everything to North Dakota to be by Mark's family for their support and care during his last days.
As we drive up to the house, the kids are rambunctious with excitement to see friends they haven't seen in awhile... the house was just a sidebar to them.
We park and the kids excitedly scream and rush out of the car to run inside before me and run around the house, check things out and then scurry off to be with friends.
As I watch this in amazement at their strength, I walk around and think, it doesn't feel as empty as I can still see where all the furniture would be, almost as though it were still there.
I walk up the stairs, check out the kids bedrooms, find random items to send back to North Dakota, think to myself that this isn't so bad.
And then I make my way to the Master bedroom...
The best way to describe the feeling, is this...
Immediately when I walked through the doors it felt like someone who was 250 pounds punched me right in the gut and I dropped to my knees and began to weep so hard to the point of not being able to breathe for a moment.
I saw Mark everywhere at once.
I saw him in his reading chair with me rubbing his feet, I saw us dancing in the middle of the room, I saw Mark out on the balcony having breakfast with stacks of books all around him, I saw us laying together in bed listening to "our" songs, I saw us making love, I saw his smile, I saw him everywhere.
Breathe Shannon, breathe.
As the wave moved on and the waters became calm again in that moment...
I arose, I put on my "Brave Wings" and Arose to give praise to God that he gave me those memories, that he gave me my soulmate for a time on this earth.
I share this because I know I am not the only one going through a painful time.
I remember Mark telling one time early in his success journey, the stress he felt and that he was thinking of quitting.
I replied to Mark, "Mark, what if it isn't about you?"
The rest is history for those of you who knew him.
So, I share, as raw as it may seem because it may not be about me.
I know not what the future holds but I want to encourage others who are experiencing their own type of pain that they are not alone.
They are not alone when:
*The morning comes and all you want to do is curl up in a ball and not wake up
They are not alone when:
*A wave of emotion overcomes you and you just want to scream and cry and punch a hole in the wall all at the same time.
I have heard it said that after your greatest pain can come your greatest success, whatever success looks like to you.
So, in the meantime, I am learning to embrace and rise above the waves, learn, grow, wake up in the mornings and share the journey, because..It may not be about me.