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Lessons in Grief:

Everybody hurts. There's Power in Prayer.
Lori Sorenson
Lori Sorenson, editor

Carson has been gone for a month.
It’s been one of the hardest parts of grieving his loss — knowing that with each passing day he’s slipping farther into the past.
There will be no new social media posts, no new Christmas card photos with his smiling face among our own, and no new milestones in his life to celebrate.
What we have of Carson’s 21 years is the current sum of all we’ll get.
But we’re blessed to have had him for 21 years.
One of the first things we learn in grief is that we’re not alone. Many others in this “Grieving Parents Club” lost their children as infants or young children.
At least I have more memories to cherish.
In the first four weeks of this journey, I’ve learned some other things.
For one thing, people are good. Very good. And very generous — with their time, talents, gifts, sentiments and prayers.
We continue to receive cards with heartfelt messages of sympathy and encouragement … in handwritten notes in beautiful cards, some of them artfully handmade.
A mountain of cards remains in our home office waiting to be read. My thoughtful husband has opened each note to direct monetary gifts and then returned the messages to their envelopes for a day when I’m ready.
I look forward to reading them all (and properly thanking their senders).
When asked how I’m doing, I say, “People have been so good to us.”
And I say, “God is good.”
And when they ask what they can do for us, I say, “Please keep praying for us.”  Because this is hard.
In grief we learn about the power of prayer.
I felt it during the four-hour funeral wake of marathon hugs and tears. At the end of what should have been an exhausting night, I wasn’t tired. Remarkably.
I described what felt like a pair of angels, one on each side, with wings under my arms for strength and grace.
Which allowed me to connect with each and every dear person in that long line of human sympathizers, young and old. I felt their connection to my Carson, and I was deeply grateful for their presence.
At times I felt like a third-party observer, watching myself and my grieving family and friends among the flowers and tears, wondering when I’d wake from the bad dream. 
They say grief brings clarity, and it’s even more true now than when I buried my parents. Skies seem bluer, sunsets more magnificent, harvest moons more celestial … Stars twinkle with prisms when viewed through tears.
Clarity in loss reminds us that in a blink of God’s eternal plan, we’ll be with our loved ones again.
And we’ll meanwhile hold our earthly loved ones more closely, count our blessings more often, and lean on angels’ wings when needed.

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