Death by Vanessa
There was a time in my life where I told God that I hated him.
Just writing that sentence now makes me cringe. It hurts to type it out but that is what I said and that is how I felt for a short time.
When I was 13 years old a man I loved very much passed away. I watched my mother receive the phone call, break down and reach out to me for an embrace.
After hugging her I ran down to my room and told God that I hated him, went to my bed and sobbed huge messy, hateful sobs.
The next day was my first day at a new school. We had just moved across the country. While my mom was hurrying to pack for attending her father’s funeral, I was getting off at the wrong bus stop. I wandered about some neighborhood for quite a while not really trying to go home. I didn’t want to get home. I walked by a group of older boys who called me over and tried to get me to try…let’s not worry my mom to death…certain substances. Part of me wanted to. I felt very dark and lonely inside and they looked as if they had escaped life for the time being.
That seemed like the perfect answer but I didn’t do it. I knew now that my grandfather could SEE me and that I would make him very sad. Finally a neighbor who was trying to help my mom find her lost daughter so she could make it in time for her flight to attend her father’s funeral found me and brought me home.
That night I came home and prayed, sobbed, plead and prayed some more. I still felt hate but this time I didn’t know who the hate was directed towards. I still wanted to find something to make me feel empty so all the darkness could go away. But then I felt two arms wrap around my curled up body and hug me. No one was in my room with me, but those arms were there. All of the hatred left my heart.
I wish that through other deaths in my life I could have been humble and faithful and trusting enough to do what I had done at age 13. To plead and pray for someone to help me with the feelings of darkness. Unfortunately I did not and in a past life that seems very distant to me, I was approached by different people to use substances to “escape” to nothing for a while. And I did.
Experiencing death of loved ones is a very pivotal time. It is a time where you can let those arms embrace you, physically or spiritually. Or you can choose to go deeper into your own darkness, in whatever form that might be.
The most recent death last year of a woman very close to me was a very scary time where I could feel myself wondering which side I wanted to go towards. I held tight, physically held tight to women’s hands I didn’t even know in the mortuary, listening to a prayer that healed my heart. I was scared. Honestly, I was horrified. I thought to myself, ‘is this even true?’ All that we have been taught? With what is right in front of me, is any of this even true? That we have a God? That we go somewhere after we die? I did wonder for about 2 minutes until I felt His strength again through a prayer. Then I knew with everything in me that it was all true. Beautifully true.
This is why we have the gospel. This is why we serve each other. This is the power of prayer. And I pray that every time I am in a dark place in my life that I am strong enough to choose to come closer to God, instead of further away.