Grief Challenge – Moving Forward after Death

Grief - Panels of Life

A Challenge of Grief – “The Devil in Everything”

Grief wrestled for center stage during the last half year of my father’s life. We often heard the query, “Is the devil in everything?” Beset by physical pain run rampant in a hard-used body, emotional pain of missing Mom, and winter weather compounding the misery of both, few things went right. His search for foothold, in wait for spring and brighter days, delivered slow-paced solace, fleeting when found.

Those months represented a hard season of life. My siblings and I joined resources to journey alongside the man who cooperated with His creator to give us life. We mourned our mother as he mourned the love of his life, making farewells in so many ways. We searched for opportunities to assuage his pain.

Looking back in happy recall of good times, we counted blessings of earlier days. Looking ahead we proposed ideas for swathing paths of possibility for going on. In his last weeks, we clung to assurance of hospice workers that dawn of future days would bring  consideration of our final days together as gift.

God in Everything Too

Difficult to grasp through hazier moments of pain was another, more important truth. My brother and sisters, each in his or her own way, demonstrated strong belief in God. We used different words, expressed different tenets, and experienced consolations unique to our life experiences, but through it all, found commonality and courage to support Dad and each other.

After Mom passed away, several of my blog posts (here, here, and here) contained reflection on new emotions influencing my thinking. I believe that Mom, to the extent she experienced all of these passing months in spirit, is pleased.

And because we all move forward more in hope than regret, we hold confidence that God is Love. The two great commandments  – love God with your whole heart, soul and mind, and your neighbor as yourself – describe Mom & Dad’s lived witness.

We greet each day desiring to do the same.

After Days

I did not think I’d track, so swiftly,

back to place where resolution lies,

waylaid, dust-gathered. In trust of

all you meant to me, firm purpose

of amendment means to change (or

rearrange) priorities to live full well.

To tell a tale of ‘might-have-been’,

when possibilities abound – all ’round,

stands tantamount to treasure, lost

for want of cost, poor-figured as too

dear to pay in moments, ticked away.

I’ll hold then, near to heart, a start,

repeated and repeating until once,

nostalgic leaning glows from gleaning

of your legacy, full-realized; a wondrous

bit of betterment, enabled by the

joining of your wisdom with His will.


I’ve missed you, rhyme-loving friends! These months away from blogging, though filled with weighty measure, leave me renewed with anticipation of days to come. Please leave a comment below on happenings in your life – perhaps a sharing of actions or ideas that helped you move forward after grief. Let’s learn from each other!

Happy Rhyming, Friends!




  1. Suzanne

    Hello dear Paula,
    My love and condolences to you and you family.
    Your writing… from a place so honest and deep is gift.
    Thank you for sharing it.

    1. Post

      Ah Suzanne – lovely to hear from you! Thank you – condolences are much appreciated. So many emotions at play during this season of life, and I’m most thankful that it came across through this post in a relatable and sincere way. This new positioning in the ‘queue of life’ – with both parents now passed beyond the temporal plane – leaves me still pinching myself at times. I know what is true – yet still expect to see them around the corner at many turns. Mostly, I center myself in the truth that I’ve been blessed to have had such wonderful people as parents.

      How are things going for you? Still writing? Thank you again for taking time to comment.

  2. Janet

    Hello, Paula! So glad to hear this update from you and so sorry for your losses. I’ve lost both of my parents, too. It did bring siblings together from 4 states, not just physically but emotionally. We grieved differently but with a sense of “oneness” that is elusive over distance.

    My thoughts and prayers are with you as I undertake a move from my home of 27 years to a new house. Change is hard but exciting. Keep writing and rhyming, friend!

    1. Post

      Oh Janet – first let me say I’m sorry for your loss – the death of parents is something I’ve heard people speak about as different from any other loss.

      You hit the nail on the head in a couple of ways with these comments! To think of the two people who cooperated with God to bring you into existence, who nurtured you as a child, launched you when you reached young adulthood, and stood by you through the many years following after – it is a deep reflection calling forth many emotions.

      Best of luck on your move! 27 years is a long time to have roots in one domicile and your stance, looking forward while appreciating all that has brought you to this point, sounds a very positive note. Pat and I will be making a move back to the family farm soon too – so I’ll be ‘following your footsteps’ in a sense on that particular path as well. Keep me posted how it goes (and send any tips for making smooth transition as you discover them). 🙂

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