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Monday, February 21, 2011

Awake, again.

Sleeping has never been an issue for me. I enjoy my pillow, down comforter, and soft sheets just about as much as anything else I can imagine, but I just can't seem to lay my head down. For the first time in my life the idea of "something keeping me up at night" hits way too close to home. Matthew 6:19 has been playing on repeat in my head over these last two or three days. . ."Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal." I have practically written a melody for these very words, and sing it as I work around the house.

I am beginning the long and daunting task of sorting through Matt's things in preparing us for the inevitable upcoming (and mostly unwanted) move. I wonder if he is watching over me. At times I think he must be cringing to watch me throw away his earthly "treasures", the ones I pleaded with him to discard time and time again without luck. The things I am finding are outstanding, outrageous, hilarious, and yet sad as well. He spent such time with these things, moving them, learning about them, fixing them. It was who he was, it was what he did, and I love him for that.

And then there are times I get the feeling I am wrong about his possible annoyance with me, and rather he is watching over me, encouraging me to do what I need to do. Less stuff, means less work, means more time with the kids, and more money to support us. Does he now have a greater and deeper understanding of what this passage is truly all about?

Or what if there isn't disgust or encouragement, maybe there is something in regards to this whole thing I can't understand still being of this Earth. I've shed a lot of tears in these last hours over just this issue. Which may seem weird to some, but Matt loved this stuff, he spent a lifetime gathering it - and with some exceptions it is mostly just useless junk. For those of you who didn't know him well Matt was not a hoarder, TLC style, but he had "hoarding tendencies" (as I would so lovingly call them). He also loved to shop, he loved toys, and he had a need to have two (or more) of everything he owned. This was one of the things that made him the most fun dad on the planet.

I think this "stuff" was his form of release in this world, it helped him to have control, make sense of things. He liked to be surrounded by stuff that he could tangibly hold, organize, move, and mess around with. It made him feel grounded and safe in some strange way. And now I am left behind to clean it up. To pick up those 10,000 twist ties so neatly straighten and organized into labeled containers and say, 'These don't matter, and I'm throwing them out'. It is gut wrenching, it is painful, it feels wrong. I don't have a choice though, it needs to be done, and I'm doing the right thing. And even with all that Truth filled knowledge the lies are still eating me up inside. This terrible feeling that I am actually hurting him, that somewhere he is angry with me.


Jean said...

Stephanie, you write and express yourself so beautifully. You can articulate a thought so well that I feel it too. Please know that I don't know the pain you are going through, but I do feel pain for you. It may not be an easy road, but you will make it.

Pickle juice,

Jean (Eberlein) DeLarco

Tracey said...

Hey Steph, I am so amazed by your eloquence! This is a great blog. You should be a writer! I do want you to know that I've dealt with what I call a "pack rat" which we now call hoarding through my father in law and my husband. My father in law kept things like old doors they replaced, every screw and nail that was still worth reusing. By today's standards he'd probably be commended for his 'green' attitude of reusing. The problem is he had so much stuff he could never find what he needed! My husband has those tendencies too, but we now live in a home where we have no storage (an old 70's split) and we have no room for that which we do not need. I told him he's not allowed to keep stuff after how long it took us to go through his dad's things when he died - Probably about 5 years since his mom still lives in that house which was their first and only house. I don't know what it is that keeps us from being able to let go of 'things.' They hold keys to our past and a safety blanket for the future as we change and grow. They help us to remember moments in time. I've had to let go of my 'things' time and time again as we moved a lot when I was a kid. I wish I had some of them because maybe it would trigger a memory that I've lost. But, for the most part our world is filled with stuff and that part is replaceable. Don't fret over what Matt would think right now - he's in a place where he's not even thinking of his stuff! But waiting with open arms for his family. I remember one thing Mike said when he lost his dad was that 'now he has someone waiting for him that has prepared the way and will recognize him when he gets to heaven' other than God of course. Though we have a huge hole in our heart for who we've lost, they are patiently waiting for us when we reunite. I'll be praying for you that as time goes on, that hole is filled with wonder and love, that you won't ever forget the love you and Matt have, and that your kids will innately know him just by the stories and the love you shared. It's amazing to hear Sam talk about his Grandpa Sam whom he's never met, but because we talk about him all the time he feels he knows him. God bless Steph - He has amazing things planned for you and your beautiful children!

Amy Bergstrom said...

This blog is outstanding. You are an incredible writer. I am sobbing at your entries and it really helps me know how better to pray for you. You seem so strong and yet I know inside you are crumbling. There is so much perspective in your thoughts, the kind of perspective that I know is going to help others! God IS using you. Family and friends who read this will love more, make more time for loved ones, be a little more patient, follow Jesus and try to make sense of things that don't. Keep writing, my friend. You are helping...helping others, your children and yourself. love you!
Amy B.