Friday, May 30, 2008

The realities of losing your husband –OR- Momma said there’d be days like this

I remember sitting in a dark room, bawling my eyes out, looking at Amanda and quite clearly stating, “I can handle it if Shannon dies, I’m just going to be very lonely” and Amanda quietly replying, “Sarah, I know”.

So that’s where I am. Lonely. Very depressingly lonely.

I am acting like a person with a mental issue lately…cycling from happy to wanting to die-sad. And while I feel like my friends love me, I don’t really feel it lately…only a handful of them have shown me that they continually support and love me.

I loved being married. Let me clarify, I loved being a wife. I loved the responsibility of taking care of my husband and my home, of building an amazing relationship with another person, of supporting his career. I miss having that confidant to talk to on a daily basis…a person who knows all your fears, insecurities, joys, pains, struggles. I miss having arms wrap around you after a hard day and you feel the love radiating from their body. I miss random sweet kisses on my forward and love letters that popped up around the house. I miss smiles from a person at the very moment they catch a glimpse of your face. I hate feeling lonely, I hate being alone. I hate not having someone that fully loves and appreciates me.

So to say the least, I am struggling. I am finally admitting that I am human, and even though God has shown me miles of amazing lessons, I am now in what seems like a vast valley, walking alone, and completely unhappy with things. I know this is all very normal grieving things I am dealing with, but it is still a miserable place to be…being lonely.

posted by Sarah W @ 9:05 AM   39 Comments

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Onslow

Here is the newest addition to our family...this is Onslow. Technically his Christian Birth Name is William Herbert Pitt the third, but he is know to our family simply as Onslow (or when he's in trouble, Elic Jr-hehe)

posted by Sarah W @ 10:16 PM   2 Comments

Thursday, May 22, 2008

My theory on rising gas prices...

I was struck by this thought...its completely a theory...but what if politicians have secretly struck a deal with the oil-people to drive the prices up, knowing that consumers would drive less therefore reducing the threat of global warming?

I have no basis, or proof, or anything...but I thought, it kinda could make sense.

posted by Sarah W @ 3:45 PM   0 Comments

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Glorious Headlights and Bubble Wrapping

(Background – last year Chris backed into my car with his Land Rover, which left my front right headlight broken and my hood crunched in and scratched. Then a few months later Laura backed into my car, which left a huge dent and multiple scruff marks)

I finally de-ghettoized my car a little. I ordered an entire headlight on Ebay, knowing Chris could take out the broken one and replace it with the new headlight. As I entered the house at lunchtime, I saw a huge box in the kitchen and squealed with delight that it was my new headlight. It was like Christmas at the Brebb household. I tore into the box and layers of blue bubble wrap, and held up the new headlight with pride and joy. It has been such a long time since my car hasn’t looked like trash, so you can imagine my excitement with the thought of a less ghetto-looking car.

Last night after the storms subsided, Chris and I replaced my headlight. I learned two things. One, how to replace a headlight in a 2006 Hyundai Elantra. And Two, I have quite an advantage…because my hands are so small, when the bolts we are trying to screw in, fall, I can reach right in and grab them. After 30 minutes of work, we turned the key in the ignition and began flashing the lights. I was beyond happy.

I shut the hood and inspected my new light. Chris and I both looked at each other a bit confused though, b/c the hood was sticking up more than normal. We couldn’t figure it out, we knew that when he hit it, it made the hood stick up a little, but we were looking at the hood sticking up 2 inches or so. I walked in the house and didn’t think much of it, until Chris came in and said “Sarah, you are such an idiot”. We walked outside and popped the hood, and to my horror, I had shut the hood, with the Mag light still under it!

So later in the evening (as we watched Enchanted and I had the funniest AIM conversation with one of my “bosses/partners/amigos” Josh) I put the box the headlight in and the bubble wrap to the side and told Amanda and Chris not to throw it away b/c I was going to pack things in it. After the movie, I went to bed. I sat on my bed setting my alarm and thinking that my cover was sounding a little crunchy. I wiggled my butt a little and you could definitely hear a crunchy noise. I lifted the blanket, and Amanda had strategically placed a huge piece of bubble wrap in my bed.

I ran in the living laughing saying “Amanda you are so crazy”…then tried to go to bed. As I am arranging my pillow once again I hear the crunchy sound…and Lo and Behold she had put bubble wrap in my pillowcase. I ran in the living room again saying “Amanda you are so funny”…once again tried to go to bed, as I am laying down I hear the crunchy noise again! She had put bubble wrap under my sheets. We all spent about five minutes laughing about Amanda’s ventures into bubble-wrapping my bed. And then I finally was able to go to bed.

These are the things that I will miss about Rocky Mount.

posted by Sarah W @ 10:04 AM   1 Comments

Monday, May 19, 2008

Monkey Wrenches in My Plans

THANK GOD He knows the plans He has for me...otherwise, I would be in a completely hopeless state!!!!!

Shannon's life insurance claim was denied, leaving me with yet another large bill (specifically a $9,000 funeral bill).

It humors me greatly that this has happened. Don't get me wrong I am very upset and increasingly concerned with how things will work out, but in the midst of this dilema, I read the words I wrote just this morning, and take comfort knowing that God has this all under control.

However, this does change things a bit. My plan to go back to college will now be put on hold until January. One huge blessing will be my new job. When I move, I will be renting from our friends, which greatly reduces my bills, which in turn will help me pay off this sum.

As Justin the guy told me "Sarah, just remember to breathe"...I am repeating my newest mantra "God is in control, God is in control, God is in control"

posted by Sarah W @ 4:10 PM   0 Comments

The year that Shannon died, I saw the Lord

Situations.

Situations can change everything about your life, particularly bad situations, where hope seems to fade daily. Our pastor once told us that God will speak to us either by using a burning bush or a burning house. How sad that some people have to experience the pain of a burning house for them to see the Lord.

I have floated through this life with my eyes fixed on Jesus, but still continually being distracted by everything around me. When situations seem to overwhelm me I would lose focus of Him. I would begin to be consumed by my situation and how desperately hopeless it is. When the Dr. told me on the phone that he couldn’t help us anymore and we needed to see a specialist to have a baby, I lost my focus. I remember feeling as if the world was collapsing on my head and all my dreams were being thrown into the trash. I argued with God, citing His miracle-working powers and questioning why He wouldn’t touch us in this area. It took losing Shannon for God’s ultimate mercy in this situation to be revealed and for me to realize how truly good God was to me, even when I lost my focus.

There is an amazing story in 1 Kings 19:11-12. Elijah was feeling an intense desperation and he was starting to lose his focus. The passage says “Then he was told, ‘Go, stand on the mountain at attention before God. God will pass by.’ A hurricane wind ripped through the mountains and shattered the rocks before God, but God wasn't to be found in the wind; after the wind an earthquake, but God wasn't in the earthquake; and after the earthquake fire, but God wasn't in the fire; and after the fire a gentle and quiet whisper.”

As I look back on the different circumstances that surrounded my life, I begin to see how God was trying to work on my heart. I mistook our struggle with infertility and Shannon’s death as God trying to speak to me…trying to wake me up. But in truth it was the gentle whisper after the dust had settled that has spoken volumes to my broken heart and awakened me to see the true and intense glory of God. It took a burning house, for me to see the burning bush and to hear God’s whisper.

This past weekend our pastor had a message that I believe was tailor-made just for me. It was based on the passage in Isaiah 6:1 where Isaiah saw the Lord.

“In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord seated on a throne, high and exalted, and the train of his robe filled the temple.”

Isaiah was giving us a reference point of where his life was when he saw the Lord. He was giving us the historical marker that revealed the biggest moment in his life. Our pastor discussed how we each have a tendency to remember where we were when certain things happened in life. He referenced 9-11 and said that we probably all remember where we were when we found out it was happening. I remember very clearly being in the elevator at ECU and someone talking about the planes that were hijacked. I remember more clearly the fact that I was skipping history class that day, when one of the biggest moments in history was happening at that very moment.

At this point in my life going forward I will always remember the year I saw the Lord. The year I clearly saw the Lord and recognized all His glory and power. The year that Shannon died I saw the Lord. I have found a contentment and peace that can only be described as wonderful. I feel an awakening.

This is my charge to you. My challenge. Try to see the Lord when He is calling to you. I don’t know what your specific situation may be or what struggles you are going through. I don’t know if you feel like you can’t go on and that you are slowly dying on the inside. I don’t know if you feel like you are overwhelmed beyond the point of relief. But whatever you are going through, try to rest in the knowledge that ultimately, God is in control. And this may very well be your season in life where God is calling out to you and asking you to listen to his voice. This may be YOUR year to see the Lord.

posted by Sarah W @ 9:38 AM   3 Comments

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Contentment...


One New Years eve I sat in a group of 10 people and proclaimed my resolution was going to be finding contentment no matter WHAT the circumstances were. In growing up in church, I should've known that you don't make a statement like that because God will slowly and painfully teach you this lesson.

As I look on the past few months I see the hand of God still directing my life and my paths. After Shannon died and all that followed, I thought I was initially handling it well. I see now that I was handling it "ok" but still going through the process of grieving.

1. Shock - I walked around like a zombie for 21 days exactly. That was the time that I refer to as "when my brain was turned off". I don't remember much except either laughing really hard or crying even harder. There were intense dance parties and guitar hero games...and intense bouts of sobbing, sitting at the computer thinking about Shannon.
2. On day 22 I entered into denial. I was in denial that I was actually grieving. I thought that I was done and over with the grieving and that I was in the healing process, but lo and behold...
3. I was angry all the time. I was angry driving, I was angry working, I was angry going to the Walmart. I could seem to stop being angry about everything...money, work, dirty house, etc.
4. And then I was depressed...I was depressed because I was alone. I was depressed because my life was good the way it was. I was depressed because my self esteem disappeared and I struggled to see the beauty that is me.
5. Acceptance...

This is the point where God gently reminds me of my goal of contentment. I can't change the circumstances of what happened with Shannon or the aftermath of it all, but I can change the way that I handle day to day struggles and decisions. When I realized this it was like God unlocked a place in my heart that had been idle for the 2 1/2 months. With every thought and decision I have been reminded that ultimately, God IS IN CONTROL.

Now, I have actively started applying this principle to my life. One of the first things that hit me was the whole concept of dating. Dating. Scary.

Everyone knows that I never dated. It was Shannon and thats it. I wanted to date, and I spent many nights crying because of my lack dating-ness...but God put us together and clearly He had purpose and a plan for our union, and Shannon and I touched alot of people with our love and our testimony. So when I think about the scariness of dating now, and the corruption of our men of God's minds in the whole area of women...I started to freak out. I began comparing myself with every single woman around me and pointing our all my serious flaws. I began obsessing with thinking about how guys see me...physically and personality.

Then God once again gently reminded me that even in this area, I needed to learn to be content. He told me after Shannon died that there was someone else out there for me, but I needed to be patient. I sat and looked at my life and looked at how good was God is to me, I realized that I needed to stop focusing on this area and just put it in His hands. So I have given this area up...the area of my future family. Which made me realize...

This is my 4th Mothers Day being childless. Normally I would've shut myself away and wished the day would pass, but I see this as the Mothers Day that gives me momentary glimpses of God's promises...the promises of Ruth and my life restored.

Back to contentment...God will never give you more than you can handle. But He may give you a situation that will stretch and strengthen you so that you can be more flexible and stronger so you can handle it. In my life, I became complacent in my walk with Christ and it took losing my hsuband to really open my eyes that if I want to live the best life possible I have to give God every area of my life and live in the contentment and peace that God is IN CONTROL. Not me. God is showing me that He has given me a rare and beautiful gift...

I am a 25 year old woman who has learned the lessons of biblical submission as a wife, embodying the proverbs woman in every way, loyalty, strength, joy, the ability to laugh no matter how tough something is, a beautiful marriage that did not last long but still was insanely happy & beautiful, the ability to love myself for all the beauty that God created (because technically I was created in His image) and he's given me the gift of my youth...

I have this rare gift of youth...I have been equipped with knowledge and strength, and now I have the chance to do something with my life. I went to a college graduation this weekend and at that moment I decided that this is what I wanted...I wanted to walk down that field and get my college diploma. This has been my clearest goal yet...something I'm willing to work to make it happen. So as my new life begins to unfold I am excited that God has given me the opportunity to start a new, awesome job, go back to college, and focus of what God wants to do with me. I am content finally with my life and where its going.

Contentment. Thank you Lord for this precious lesson you have taught. It hasn't been easy. It hasn't been enjoyable. But you have taken this lump of coal that is my life, put it through the fire and I present to you beautiful diamonds.

***on a side note. A preacher once spoke over me that "the joy of the Lord would be my strength". I hadn't thought about that in years. But as I am getting to know my new bosses, I began to realize that I am probably the most random, complex, and random (emphasis on random) person I know. But its awesome you know? I was created in God's image and He made me this way...I really hadn't thought about it though...the random singing, whistling of the Indiana Jones theme song, my love of Quantum Leap, random facts, love of Nintendo, playing dress up...if you can't laugh at me its okay, I laugh at myself on a daily basis.

posted by Sarah W @ 8:31 PM   1 Comments

Tuesday, May 06, 2008

Updates

Once the fog lifts theres nothing really to talk about...

I've dealt pretty heavily with anger, depression and a general dislike of everything about me. I went through a good 3 weeks of not being able to come out of these feelings, and was having a really tough time with being joyful.

I really thought about something though. The Book of Ruth.

How interesting, this woman who was married for 10 years and never had a child AND then lost her husband on top of that. She leaves her land and eventually finds the man of her dreams, gets married, and has a child that is a direct descendant of Jesus.

I think God challenging me to start actively standing on the promises of Ruth. The promises of a life restored. So from now on, I'm starting to see my life going from Considering Job...to Remembering Ruth.

In light of this great epiphany there are more updates to talk about.

I'm moving. THIS IS A GOOD THING. I have decided to take a job with an insurance agency in Lynchburg, VA doing what I do here in Rocky Mount...except I will be working for incredible men of God with an exciting vision for their company, its future, and their employees...going back to school...starting a new life. I'm so excited about all this and so encouraged. I know everyone here will miss me, but I really see God moving mountains and opening doors and I can't help but be excited.

In light of this news, God brought the story of Ruth to me on Saturday night. He reminded me of her story and what happened after it seemed like her world fell apart. So I'm even more encouraged by this...and excited...and so HAPPY!!!!!!!!!!!!!

posted by Sarah W @ 10:28 PM   27 Comments