'Why did God let this happen?' 'How can bad things happen to good people?' 'Why does only bad luck seem to follow me?' 'I'm sure there is a black cloud hanging over me.' 'If it wasn't for bad luck, I have no luck at all!'
When life seems unfair we try to find answers in the strangest places. We look for explanations or try to blame someone or something. A friend of mine seems to have hit a string of bad luck, it seems that everything is going wrong all of a sudden, you can hear the frustration and anxiety in their voice; they don't know where to turn next. We have all heard the expression, 'when it rains it pours,' and that seems to be the case with my friend.
A few months after my daughter died, I was speaking to a friend on the phone, and this individual asked me if I was angry. Was I mad at God? I said 'no' my daughter was the only one to blame, she was tired, fell asleep and the rest is history. They were uncomfortable with my response, they felt I should be angry at someone or something.
Later in the first year, I was driving my son to school and he asked me where God was when Rachel died. Why didn't He save her? Why did He let her die? So many of us our plagued by these very same questions. We want to understand why something so tragic could be allowed to happen. I felt that God had not abandoned us, that He had been with us the entire time; crying and hurting just as we were. That is what I still believe, that is my faith, and I know that it has been my faith that has sustained me these past four years.
For so many of us we believe that there is a higher power, and that even if we die, our souls or spirits continue to live on. We are free, no longer encumbered by our earthly bodies. Whatever your religious or non-religious beliefs may be, only you know what sustains you, what keeps you going day in and day out. Whether you are a Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Pagan, Jehovah, Baptist or Atheist, or whatever your religious beliefs are, we all have our own interpretation of death and what happens after. Some believe in resurrection, others reincarnation, some believe that our spirit lives on in nature, and yet others believe there is nothing after this life.
I will speak only for my self, I know it is my faith and the belief that I will meet my daughter and all my deceased loved ones again, that has truly been my strength. I will share this with anyone who wants to know why I have come so far after Rachel's death. For me God has been my rock, supporting me at my weakest, carrying me when I could not take another step. I have been able to lean on Him, and even yell at Him when I couldn't understand, and I felt as if I had hit rock bottom.
We were in Mass (Church) the morning after Rachel died, and people were surprised to see us there. But for my family and I, we knew that this is where we needed to be. This is were I would be accepted even in all my brokenness. This is were I knew that we were truly at home among not only our immediate family but our extended family as well. Where I was being held and embraced, comforted and guided, where I could surrender everything.
I truly understand that God is not for everyone, and for some faith is overrated, but I know in my heart that this is what made a difference in my life. I am sharing this part of me, because so many have asked me how I have managed to go on, move forward, smile again, for me it has been through my faith, always my faith.
So take comfort in what you believe in, whether it be God, Yahweh, Allah, Jehovah, Buddha or any other Deity. If your spirituality involves nature and the natural sciences, find your comfort there. The important thing is to find your way through your grief, leaning on whatever guides you and strengthens you.
Hold on to the hope! Let the love live on!
“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden,
and I will give you rest."
Blessings! and until we meet again.