I am farther along on this journey than I ever expected to be – in healing, in grace, in the entire rebuild. And yet, there are still triggers. Feelings still surface from time to time – ones I so wish were far far behind me. This week there have been many changes and developments, touching quite a few of those triggers. And then last night, Eliot brought home this drawing for me from school. It is a picture of him, loving the people he loves most in the world: me, and his father. Even though he has no memory of a time we were married or lived together, even though he deeply loves his bonus-families: maybe this will always be the deepest core of his love.

When loss or sadness resurfaces, I would so prefer to stuff it or ignore it and hedge on it just passing through. Who doesn’t want to be done with grief? And I think I’m always a little afraid of getting stuck – that resurfacing of pain could mean I’m not moving or healing.

But that’s simply not true. Even after a deep physical injury, after all the right surgery and physical therapy – the pain is bound to trigger from time to time. It doesn’t negate the healing that’s taken place.

Susan Stiffelman, a family therapist, describes it well in Honoring My Post-Divorce Sadness:

As well adjusted as our post-divorce children may be, it doesn’t mean that that particular sorrow doesn’t ever rear its head and ask to be felt for a little while … But when those feelings bubble up, I give them their due. Even though I haven’t been with my son’s dad for 10 years and we clearly weren’t right for one another, it is still a significant loss, and deserves to be treated as such.

It is no small thing to create a life with someone, to become parents together, to embark down a road full of hope and promise, only to see it unravel. I for one believe in honoring that breeze of sadness when it occasionally blows through my heart, rather than talking myself out of those feelings with the list of reasons our marriage had to end.


Unless you have traveled this road, you won’t understand what I’m talking about. And if you have traveled this road, you know exactly what I mean. Even years after loss, there will be moments when we’re reminded of what might have been.

And I am so thankful for a husband that understands this; how any time that breeze blows through, he does not feel threatened – but honors it as well and by freely giving me the space to process it. It is one of the best gifts he gives me, and our marriage. It is one I hope I live out as well.

Last night I had a great, old-fashioned cry. I didn’t figure anything out, or change any circumstance, or work through some issue: I just cried. And it was so good. It left me feeling cleared out, free, hopeful, and resolute. I wonder some of those days if Jesus in the flesh sitting next to me might drop a tear or two Himself, if he feels and sees what also was lost – even while simultaneously rejoicing in all that is and will be. As a man walking this earth He had his own tears; reflected in point as the shortest verse Bible, ‘Jesus wept.’

So today, simply, thank you Jesus for the gift of tears and all they can release.
And thank you that indeed, I am very much Farther Along.

from a lovely song by Josh Garrells.

Farther along we’ll know all about it 
Farther along we’ll understand why 
Cheer up my brothers, live in the sunshine 
We’ll understand this, all by and by 


One Response to “Farther Along”

  1. MJD says:

    Great entry.. Thanks for being honest and sharing this.

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