I sat for a long time and as the sun sank deeper, it began to get harder and harder to see my surroundings. I strained my eyes to see Colton's swingset, and I could barely make out the outline of our Australian Shepherd as he paced the lawn, still searching for his beloved master even after two weeks have already passed. Even familiar surroundings were difficult to decipher and navigate in the scant twilight.
Since my best friend died, life has felt like it's literally in a twilight zone - not just because of how strange everything feels, but because twilight is dim and gloomy and it feels like it will be eons until the world is bright again. So it feels without Ryan. Was it really just two months ago that we went out for his birthday and traipsed through a furniture store, bouncing on mattresses and drawing the ire of the store clerk? Were we really laughing, imagining how we would decorate our new home together? Was it really just two years ago (and some odd days) that we were making plans for when we were going to have our second child and planning the birthday bash for our firstborn's first birthday? Only two years ago.
How did I get here?
Where am I going?
In this dark, dimly lit period of my life, I have but one hope:
"I consider that our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us."
Romans 8:18 - NIV, emphasis added
While I sit rocking on a porch, contemplating the darkness that has suddenly enveloped my life in the short span of two months - okay, well, two years - I pause to think of what my best friend is doing. What he's seeing. Who he's talking to. Imagining his grin as he gets to worship in wild, unadulterated adoration of the Savior that he clung to. And as much as I hurt, and as much as I ache for the Ryan that I had, I can't help but be happy that he is where he is. Whole. Free. And I feel a twinge of jealousy and longing for the same glory.
Eventually it got completely pitch black as I was outside and I was completely blinded to what was in front of me. But I do know this: darkness does not last forever. I know, somewhere down this painful road, that there is joy ahead, in the morning. And direction. Guidance. Purpose. Meaning. I do not know what that looks like, and I don't know when it's coming. All I know to do right now is to sit patiently, rock, and wait upon the One who loves me - and feels every single ache right along with me as I sit in silent darkness.