Friday, April 2, 2010

Ambushed


One of the terms tossed around in grief circles is “ambushed.” (Grief Circles: The club where every member is enlisted against their will)It is used in reference to an unexpected painful reminder of what has been lost. Jill experiences it often when she is out shopping: she sees a mother and daughter out shopping together, maybe even arguing, and she is reminded of Rachel and the fellowship she will never experience with her again in this life. It is difficult, and embarrassing, when you burst into tears in the middle of a department store, or a bank.There are so many losses to grieve...


It happens frequently, and it cannot be avoided. You can't prepare yourself. The other morning I was watching the news as I was putting away the dishes, getting ready for work. A commercial came on - I honestly don’t know what it was advertising - but a father and a daughter are having coffee together. The father remarks that his daughter got home awfully late the night before. She gently reminds him that she is “not 16 anymore.” “Still...” the father answers. The daughter appeases him by saying that he’s not going to have to worry about how late she stays out anymore. “Oh, yeah? Why’s that?” the father asks. She shows him her engagement ring. They hug and the father tells his daughter that her fiance is a lucky man. As he goes back to his coffee, he drops the bomb: “That’s what I told him last week when we talked!...”


This sweet little snapshot played out in front of me, and I found myself weeping as I continued putting away the dishes. What can you do, but cry and carry on?...


I never had any doubt about Rachel Getting Married. I both anticipated and dreaded the day I would walk her down the aisle and hand her over to another man. When Rachel was only a couple of years old, Jill and I watched “Father of the Bride.” I cried in anticipation of the day I would play second fiddle to another man in my precious little girl's life. I cried the morning of her 17th Birthday, too, just knowing that day was becoming a reality: she was slipping out of my hands...It is no consolation that I don’t have to worry about that anymore...


Sometimes the ambush seems particularly painful and mean spirited - almost personal. Jill and I had a difficult weekend recently: On the heels of the two year anniversary of Rachel’s death, and probably prompted by it, we had a cyclone of upsetting phone calls and developments. We look forward to the end of the workweek, but that Friday was a nightmare, and had us both at our wits' end. We awoke the next morning and tried to continue our routine, lingering in bed a little and then sitting together at the kitchen table to drink coffee and read. Jill went outside to get the newspaper and returned to the table ashen-faced and shaking. Elva’s picture was on the front page, along with an article about the continuing efforts to find and prosecute her. Not a good way to start the day. Though we appreciated the fact that the paper was reporting on this unfinished business, we had no idea the article was going to be published, and we just weren’t ready for it. Ambushed again.


After that shock, we tried to carry on with our plans for the day: rearranging some of the furniture in the house. I decided to put on some music to lighten the mood. I plugged my ipod into our stereo system and programmed it for shuffle. First, I have a confession to make: I currently have 28,614 songs on my playlist (I have the 164 gig ipod). I could listen 24 hours a day for 115 days before a song would be repeated. The second song into the shuffle that morning was “Part Of Your World” from Disney’s “Little Mermaid.” That was “Rachel’s song.” Ariel made a big impression on her as a little girl, and she grew up singing that song. I can hear her singing it in my mind’s ear. “Part Of Your World” was the song her good friends from Orland High sang at Rachel’s memorial service. We continued doing what we were doing in a fog of tears...But what are the odds? Can such a thing be purely coincidental. I don’t know. All I can say is that it doesn’t feel like it. And more than two years on, we still feel under siege...

3 comments:

鄭勝丹 said...

Drive carefully. It is not only cars that can be recalled by their Maker.............................................

BaldyMullet said...

Wonderfully written. I understand and share your pain. I love the ambush comments - there are very few days that sneak by without an unplanned tear - in our case at almost three years.
I saw your Sad-DADD and it caught me off guard. I use SadDad as my name when I post to blogs and newspaper comments on police pursuits.
Wishing you all the beautiful memories and strength to carry on.
Warmest Regards,
Jon Farris (jon@paulfarris.org) www.paulfarris.org

佩GailBohanan1蓉 said...

Make yourself necessary to someone.............................................................