If we would have been asked what our worst fear was, the worst thing that could possibly happen, the one thing that we could never recover from, we would have answered without hesitation. Losing Ryann.
Now that the unimaginable has happened, we're left trying to right ourselves. Just last night Jared and I were talking about our feelings of loss and fear for the future. There are two very specific, very different outlooks that we each have. A part of us now knows how quickly things can be taken away. Even though we've lost Ryann, we still have so many more things that we're thankful to have and it's scary thinking of how easily we could lose them as well. Thoughts of crashing on the way to work, finding out about a disease, a fire burning our house, or even silly little things like breaking our computer. Losing a pregnancy. Losing each other. Or losing another child. All the fears make it difficult to live, to move, to breathe.
Another part seems to think that now that we've hit something so awful, we must be past the worst. Surely we've used up our portion of horror. Even though I know that this thought has no truth to it, that's not the way things work, I can always feel the thought sitting in the back of my mind. And then I remember how false that security is and the fear surges back in.
Although I hate the fear, it does somehow has a bit of comfort in it. Comfort in reminding me that I still care. That I'm not numb. That even though I could, I haven't lost everything.
When we moved to NE at the beginning of the summer, I was worried about how well Jared would handle the heat. Jared has never been good in the heat and generally tends to be fairly miserable in it. In preparing to come here I would frequently tell him that the trick is to just give in to the heat. Don't fight it, let it soak in, enjoy it. Jared has found that this little trick really does make the heat seem not quite so ferocious and occasionaly, even enjoyable.
So far I've found this to be the same way with the grief. Pushing it away only makes it worse, holding it close is smothering. Relaxing and letting it do what it will has been the best thing I could do. Sometimes it washes over me and I feel like I'm about to drown, but afterwards I'm always left refreshed, if somewhat exhausted. Most of the time it's simply present, a small thorn to make me remember. And really that's not even all that bad, because the absolute worst thing that could happen now would be to bury the pain and the memory of Ryann along with it.
We miss Ryann and we're scared to step forward. It hurts moving on without her. Knowing that every day that passes is one more day that separates us from her. But I choose to believe that there is more joy and love in our future. And Ryann will be a part of that.